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Race Without Color Essay

In this article written by Jared Diamond entitled “Race Without Color”, he explains about the difference of race in humanity and how humans should not be classified that way because there are too many variations. Depending on how a person looks, they would be put into a certain race categories such as “African blacks,” “whites,” “Mongoloids,” “aboriginal Australians”, and “Khoisans.” However, this classification of humans only affect how we view others; it does not involve our senses or who we are as a person. This can be discriminating. Anthropologists believe that humans should not be classified into a particular race. There are other ways to group humans, such as natural selection, sexual preferences, and fingerprints.

Diamond goes on to explain how confusion may come up in classifications. In the human race, people in different races are visibly different. This also holds true in the animal world. He gives the example of a common bird, the yellow-rumped warbler. The bird’s throat color in the west is yellow and in the east is white. They have different songs and environmental preferences yet have the same name. Racial classification for these two birds is simple; the color of their throat, song, and their environment. However, their differences in these areas lead to different varied offspring. Some traits in animals alternate because of natural selection. Natural selection has to do with the survival in a particular environment. For example the hare who is white to blend in with snow so that it is invisible to predators.

As humans, we live all over the world in different areas and climates. We have traits brought out by natural selection to adapt to the area we live in. Our skin color, body type, height, and hair color all play a role in the environment we live in. Thus is why race is not always a good way to describe cultural differences in humans. If we were to classify the human race by this different criteria, it would produce different groupings. Racial classifications are not a good way to describe biological differences in humans. If we were to classify races by body chemistry, it would be different than races defined by the color of our skin. When it comes to skin color, it plays a role in the climate. People look a certain way in certain parts of the world so that they can survive in that particular environment. For example, someone with very light skin would not do well in an environment with a lot of sun.

Other traits have to do with sexual selection are our hair, eye color, and other beauty traits play a role in sexual preference. In America today, we don’t dye or hair or change our appearance to survive. It’s to become more sexually attractive. Science does not play a part in racial classification, but the way our body reacts to someone does.

There is another way to classify humans and that is by fingerprint. To do this, everyone with the same pattern would be grouped together. However, fingerprints have nothing to do with survival. Fingerprints also have nothing to do with sexual preferences. There is no real function to a person’s fingerprint.

There are certain traits in humans that play a function such as the color of our skin for survival. Others have no function such as fingerprints. Particular traits play a role in sexual preference, such as eye color or hair color. Science does not play a role in racial classification, but attraction does. Our body can tell us if we are attracted to someone or not. People now are more varied in appearance. Now, it is unnecessary to rank people with many difference appearances into a racial classification.


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