Sunday School

Sunday School August 28th 2022

This topic contains 69 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by  PopeBeanie 4 weeks, 1 day ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 70 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #44361

    In the second case, where they just express an observation about one tribal group being more intelligent, on genetic grounds, say, in a book … should a responsible publisher bring out this book?

    This has already happened. It has been observed within the Ashkenazi Jewish population. They have the highest average IQ of any ethnic group and for centuries tended not to bond with others outside of their group. Reference here.

    In science there are no universal truths, just views of the world that are yet to be shown to be false, to paraphrase Brian Cox. Science reports observations. It is not the role of the scientist to then make philosophical statements about the implications of her findings. The philosopher has a role here.

    On a personal note, I know some Ashkenazi Jews. I have discussed this topic with them and while they don’t care too much about it, it was evident to me that they are “smarter than the average smart bear”.

    There is no point publishing any academic paper in a commercial publication unless it is peer-reviewed first.

    #44362

    _Robert_
    Participant

    As I have mentioned before on the nature vs nurture debate, I think the heredity aspect gets underappreciated these days, but both are important.

    Take musical ability. Some folks can study and practice till the cows come home, and they just never become excellent, and others just do it with ease. That’s why we call them “naturals”. However even if they have that ability, if they are raised in a non-musical environment, it may never get a chance to manifest.

    #44363

    jakelafort
    Participant

    I may have indicated this one other time but one thing that is obvious to me is that perceived superiority and inferiority ought to have no place in justifying exploitation, genocide, oppression or marginilization. How is that nobody says this? Lets hope aliens intent on visiting or our burgeoning AI are more advanced than the troglodytes we are. And that is probably a big time insult to cave people.

    Unseen brings up an interesting moral debate involving censorship and tragic conseqences of publication. Some of the earlier eugenecists were apparently not at all racists and in fact well intentioned. I wonder whether nazism would have been just as virulent without knowledge of genetics and the consequent social darwinism.

    The degree of anti-semitism in Germany and Europe in general was astounding. The old tropes, stereotypes, lies and mythology were quite possibly sufficient. I don’t think a veneer of rational justification was required to ignite the tinder box. On the other hand eugenics and social darwinism probably played a central role in mass-sterilization and various unconsented racist experiments.

    When contemplating the history of Jews and Blacks it strikes me that the former were seen as more intelligent and more successful; the latter less intelligent and less successful. From what i have read during Nazi Germany Jews were heads and shoulders more successful than the German population at large. Oh and as i type the same can be said of Armenians in Turkey during their genocide. So i suppose it is scapegoating that occurs when a group is superior. When perceived as inferior it is perhaps akin to our we don’t give a flying fuck mentality that we exhibit for factory animals. And come to think of it indigenous Americans were conceived as lazy, feckless, dull, treacherous; as one people when they considered themselves different oh and the old chestnut…the only good injun is a dead injun.

    My conclusion? It is all bullshit. When one group of people can exploit another it does so. Might makes right. We are all motherfuckas. Have the power as an individual or a nation and see it abused. I am reminded of the gentlemen here whose name escapes me but who linked lots of good stuff on racism and insists there is no such thing as race-we are all just homo sapiens. And then he condemns Whites…”what is wrong with you white people?” I am not sure if he sees the contradiction.

    I think new guy is hinting at Charles Murray. Sorry i forgot your name but new blood is appreciated as this place gets quiet for extended periods and has great but limited contributors. If we assume arguendo that there is nothing racist in Murray’s research and publication ( i doubt there is unanimity on this point) is it wrong to censor it? I think so.

    #44364

    Unseen
    Participant

    I think we need to study anything and everything.  Reality is a complete picture whose parts all fit together logically.  One part may inform another more distant part.

    Here’s a topic that a little research could finally determine: On the whole, is intelligence linked to skin color? In other words, viewing the overall greater success of the white world, might it be explained via skin color?

    This is an “anything and everything” topic, is it not?

    Related: It’s obvious that blacks tend to excel at many highly-physical sports, so are non-blacks inferior physically?

    #44365

    Unseen
    Participant

    Here’s a study revealing something we all needed to know:

    A new study in the Canadian Journal of Economics provides the first evidence on sexual orientation and economic outcomes in Canada. The study found that gay men have 12 percent lower personal incomes and lesbians have 15 percent higher personal incomes than heterosexual men and women.

    What are the implications of this study? Assuming that the results can be generalized across the border to the U.S., is it that we need to set up an assistance program to help gay men rise to a more normal level of income? Or do we need to do a separate American study first?

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  Unseen.
    #44367

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Here’s a topic that a little research could finally determine: On the whole, is intelligence linked to skin color? In other words, viewing the overall greater success of the white world, might it be explained via skin color?

    Anybody who has the courage to do it would be free to knock themselves out.  If handled by non-racists, I’m sure it would be very enlightening to open this can of worms.  The problem is that racists would jump all over it, in their disingenuous way.

    It’s obvious that blacks tend to excel at many highly-physical sports, so are non-blacks inferior physically?

    As with intelligence, physical excellence is so multi-dimensional as to make a single comparison meaningless.  The comparison would have to be handled standard by standard as part of a collection of traits.

    #44369

    _Robert_
    Participant

    If you accept the evolutionary concept of biological adaptation to regional environmental conditions over many generations; it is what it is. This includes mental or physical abilities on the median. Not sure how Nazis or AI would have anything to do with that, other than attempts to exploit the facts.

    #44370

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    There would have to be selection pressure for intelligence, i.e., intelligent people would be more likely to reproduce.  That seems unlikely except possibly in the case of the Ashkenazi jews.

    #44371

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Simon that is a hypothesis with Ashkenazi. My dad is 100 percent. And he is a freak of intelligence-or he was before his brain tumors. His two brothers also. I grew up wondering about genetics and intelligence cuz it punched in my the face over and over.

    #44372

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I think intelligence runs in families, as do a lot of things.  But the distribution of traits is pretty much random between families, and somewhat random within families.

    #44373

    Colin Jackson, the British 110m hurdler, has a “fast twitch” gene which makes him very fast out of the blocks. It is a trait common to many people that can trace their ancestry back to a specific part of Africa (around Liberia, I think).

    Many Tibetans have an extra blood vessel in their lips and the extra blood flow keeps their faces warmer and gets more oxygen to their brain at higher altitudes.

    People in some islands have developed greater lung capacity and can “free swim” for longer, thus getting more food. They gain more for less effort.

    I could make a longer list but these are scientific facts. They show the diversity of the human race and this should be celebrated. We adapt to our specific environment over time.

    On the other hand, we have the nature vs nurture debate. I can concentrate for hours on anything I have an interest in and learn new topics very quickly. But don’t ask me to paint a bowl of fruit or sing a song.  But I know artists that stop me in my tracks and music that can inspire me. A silk purse was never made from a sow’s ear, I suppose.

    There is a gene called MAOA (aka the warrior gene) that is an indicator of psychopathy. One of the researchers discovered he had it. But it never fully manifested itself because he grew up to have a very loving family. He was glad it was not nurtured.

    Serena Williams will possibly play her final professional tennis match today. I hope it’s not.  She is a perfect example of nature and nurture. Other players became better because of her. It’s not that she faded but rather that the standard of tennis evolved because of her. If she did not have that effect on the game then she would just keep winning.

    Nigel Bannister run the first sub 4 minute mile. Something that was not ever done before. 46 days later his record was broken! And that keeps happening to it.

    Almost 8 billion of us on the planet and every so often someone does something brilliant for the first time and others will immediately think “I can do that”. Maybe but you will never serve like Serena does.

    #44374

    Autumn
    Participant

    The problem with most of those examples isn’t the science per se, but rather the tendency to overrepresent their practical value especially in terms of explaining behaviour. The MAOA gene in particular has had a contentious history of being billed as the ‘warrior gene’ or the ‘serial killer gene’. While variations of the MAOA gene may correlate with violent behaviour, behavioural drivers tend to be more complex.

    While this isn’t necessarily the best article, it’s an easy read:

    https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/cross-check/code-rage-the-warrior-gene-makes-me-mad-whether-i-have-it-or-not/

    #44375

    jakelafort
    Participant

    I am guessing most of us on AZ think there are hereditary traits, proclivities,susceptibility to illness/disease, tendencies in intelligence and aptitudes. That is not to deny the relationship between nature and nurture.

    There should be no issue in studying, describing and publishing those findings. But i think the notion that we are not equal or born identical is either welcome or anathema. Some will jump on the genetic variation among populations to justify some wrong. Others will deny it to prevent the former from doing so. The ones who assimilate the knowledge without getting political are probably in the minority.

    #44376

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    There is a gene called MAOA (aka the warrior gene) that is an indicator of psychopathy.

    A definition of psychopaths as intrinsically violent, sadistic etc. is contentious and almost certainly inaccurate.  I think this kind of person is more likely a cluster B personality like narcissistic or anti-social or borderline.  Psychopaths just don’t feel a lot, especially negative emotions.  That’s why they are immune to punishment, and are ungoverned by normal emotions, and hence, tend to do outrageous things to get what they want.

    #44377

    Autumn
    Participant

    There should be no issue in studying, describing and publishing those findings. But i think the notion that we are not equal or born identical is either welcome or anathema.

    The problem comes before and after the study. When we look at the study of treating homosexuality, many proposed treatments were predicated on the idea that it was a disease, moral failing, or otherwise disorderly affliction. When you start from that point, you may actually produce a valid study indicating increased levels anxiety, depression, substance abuse and other issues. But when you take those findings and present them to reinforce your initial bias, you aren’t doing science anymore.

    And with some studies concerning genetics, we’ve seen similar patterns sometimes leading to erroneous conclusions from valid data. Where studies should conclude that more study is needed, we end up with pop science spreading information about the gay gene or XYY violence etc.

    Going back to the start of this—the ethics guidelines for publication in that particular journal (I’ve already forgotten the name)—it talks more about the precautions that should be taken in conducting and publishing research rather than a call to stop inquiry so we can avoid repeating certain mistakes, especially those that have contributed to undue bias or harms against people.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 70 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.