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Racists using ancient human genomes as fuel for arguments?

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In “What makes a modern human” (Nature, 3 May 2012), Chris Stringer notes (in a polite way), that racists are beginning to make use of research into ancient human genomes:

Already I’m reading blogs that speculate about whether some groups are less ‘modern’ than others, and I fear that such discussions endanger the considerable progress promised by palaeogenetic research. So to highlight these issues and steer the debate in a positive direction, I would like to assert that the term modern humans, by definition, equally describes all humans living today. Some of us may have more DNA from archaic populations than others, but the great majority of our genes, morphology and behaviour derives from our common African heritage. And what unites us should take precedence over that which distinguishes us from each other.

Stringer still wants to keep the “separate human species” idea. It would make more sense to just dump the lot, but ….

(You have to pay to read his article.)

Good point. They want to keep open the idea we are not, as the bible says, of one blood from two people. Darwin attacked this idea even. I know in my funk and wagnalls they offer as a fact or option that the natives of australia were not like the rest of us and this because they were so primitive. This from the '70's. Evolutionary biology must entertain this as a option despite modern politics . If it wasn't that racial concepts had brought about such problems it probably would be enforced doctrine in the science classes. Evolutionists, many, seem to me to be chomping at the bit to revitalize we are not just different races/species but intelligence/morality is also affected. Just don't got the nerve these days! Robert Byers

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