So much for the “no race” theory

And we’re back to the Origin of the Species and the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life:

Researchers studying other single genes have found evidence for recent evolutionary change in the genes that mediate conditions like skin color, resistance to malaria and salt retention.

The most striking instances of recent human evolution have emerged from a new kind of study, one in which the genome is scanned for evidence of selective pressures by looking at a few hundred thousand specific sites where variation is common.

Last year Benjamin Voight, Jonathan Pritchard and colleagues at the University of Chicago searched for genes under natural selection in Africans, Europeans and East Asians. In each race, some 200 genes showed signals of selection, but without much overlap, suggesting that the populations on each continent were adapting to local challenges.

Another study, by Scott Williamson of Cornell University and colleagues, published in PLoS Genetics this month, found 100 genes under selection in Chinese, African-Americans and European-Americans….

A genomic survey of world populations by Dr. Feldman, Noah Rosenberg and colleagues in 2002 showed that people clustered genetically on the basis of small differences in DNA into five groups that correspond to the five continent-based populations: Africans, Australian aborigines, East Asians, American Indians and Caucasians, a group that includes Europeans, Middle Easterners and people of the Indian subcontinent….The concept of race as having a biological basis is controversial, and most geneticists are reluctant to describe it that way.

No wonder Richard Dawkins wants to reopen the discussion about eugenics. It would appear that he anticipated these developments, the clever fellow. If the process is moving along faster than the evolutionary biologists had previously thought, how long will it be before the human race is divided into two or more species?

And why, oh why, would geneticists be reluctant to talk about their scientific conclusions? My understanding was that scientists were trained to be objective and dedicated only to the results of their experiments and observations.

I don’t think the term will catch on, though. Stop Genetic Clusterism Now just doesn’t have the same ring to it. I find it tremendously interesting that science fetishists throw a fit if anyone questions the evolutionary process, but are remarkably quiet when the biological basis of race is similarly questioned.