The article I found is titled “Why racism is not backed by science”, and it talked about how Darwin’s cousin, Galton, took his work and used it to support his racist ideals of some groups of individuals being inferior and separate from others. This way of thinking has led to a strain of thought that considers certain diseases to be tied to particular “races” of humans. However, these ideals have been disproved the more we learn about human genetics. There is no one trait that separates one so called “race” from another. In fact, most differentiation occurs within a “racial” group, and not between groups. Furthermore, this information also combats the idea that certain diseases only affect particular “races” of people. The end statement of this article sums up the author’s point about the social construct of race very succinctly: “Race doesn’t exist, racism does. But we can now confine it to opinions and not pretend that there might be any scientific validity in bigotry.”
This article relates to this week’s materials because it tackles the false idea that there is a biological component to race that can be, and some people believe is, supported by genetics. For example, while there are certain diseases such as Sickle Cell Anemia and Tay-Sachs that have been associated with certain groups of people, individuals of African descent and Jewish individuals respectively, these diseases do not just affect one particular “race”. As was discussed in this week’s readings and in the article I chose, sickle cell anemia was found in areas that experienced high case numbers of malaria. This is due to its ability to provide the affected individual with some resistance to the malaria virus (Rutherford, 2015 and Week 6 readings). Likewise, Tay-Sachs was found to not be a “Jewish Disease”, but a disease that also affects people of French Canadian and Cajun decent (Rutherford, 2015 and Week 6 material).