Genetics, Genealogies, and Racism


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #21

Yes, I have now read all of his posting that I can get to. Sorry, but not impressed with the mixing of science and religious beliefs, so I admit to being biased against anything where science and faith mix. Sorry if my non-beliefs offend your UU openness.

I did.

(George) #22

@Patrick, I can handle any offense to my UU perspectives.

But you wrote:

This sentence, even in a purely randomized trial, demonstrates that this could happen for a single mated pair - - but that there are very likely dozens or hundreds or thousands of mated pairs from 2,000 years ago who simultaneously qualify for Universal Common Ancestry to all humans who are alive today.

For this to happen, of course, there must also be many many mated pairs whose lineage dies out … leaving not even the genealogical trace (as opposed to a genetic trace) of their ancestry in any living humans today.

@patrick, Are you following my explanation?

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #23

It “could” have happened but it didn’t happen. The flaw in your argument is the mated pair part. While Gengas Khan is in the genealogy of billions of people today, it wasn’t through one female.

(George) #24



Oh for goodness sake… how could you possibly know it didn’t happen? The point the researchers are making is that somewhere, even if you double the timelines from 2000 to 5000, the reality of the exponential effect of genealogy is unavoidable.

There are mated pairs from Sumeria, 7000 years ago, that are almost certainly the Universal Common Ancestors of everyone alive today. And this is 99.999% likely.

(Mark M Moore) #25

Your first sentence is an absolutist pronouncement that you not only can’t prove, but accredited experts like @swamidass Dr. Swamidass have done peer-reviewed science concluding the opposite. None of that seems to phase you, you just make these grand pronouncements with nothing to back it up but your own chutzpah.

Oh and about G. Khan, he came along in the 14th century A.D. How do you know that he was not one of the descendants of Adam himself? If one man can be in the family tree of over 1 billion people in less than 1,000 years then what is so hard to believe about one of his distant ancestors from 6-14K ago being in everyone’s family tree?

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #26

You said 2000 years ago (and all humans). Now you are changing that to 2000 to 5000 years ago. At 5000 years ago, didn’t happen either. 7000 years ago, not possible either. Look there are 7 billion people alive today but 100 billion who live previously. World population was about 50 million at the dawn of animal domestication and agriculture. Sure you may have a mathematical model that says it “could” have happened, but you have no historical evidence that it did happen. And there is a preponderance of evidence that it didn’t happen. What do you say about the 65,000 years of continuous people in Australia?

(S. Joshua Swamidass) #27

That is not what I said, but what the 2004 Nature study said. You still have not explained the evidential reasons they are incorrect.

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #28

Of course it is pronouncement that I can’t prove or disprove. Atheism is an opinion that you can’t prove or disprove. So is theism.

The argument here is whether you can get the main characters (Adam, Eve and the talking snake) of the Genesis story into the genealogy of actual human history. The whole purely mathematical discussion of whether a mated pair of some species of the genus homo can lead to every human being that ever lived is not what you are after. You need to get the Genesis story characters into human history. Mathematical modeling with genealogy is not enough.

(Mark M Moore) #29

With science. Because God by definition is outside of nature and not subject to its laws, but the formulator of them. Therefore efforts to get Him to do lab tricks for you based on the idea He must behave in a repeatable manner IOW His own natural laws is nonsense. Fortunately there are other methods of determining truth outside of the scientific method.

And mathematically, you can. Does that in itself mean that it happened? No. Does that mean that this event can be detected scientifically? Joshua would say “no” and I would say “perhaps, but not necessarily”. The point here is that there is nothing unreasonable, by the math, in believing they are in everyone’s family tree somewhere, if they existed. Getting them into human history requires more, but showing that it is possible and reasonable to believe they were does not. And I say that as someone who does not see the theological necessity of GA.

BTW there is a lot more evidence outside the mathematical model that they were there, but you can’t “prove” it by science. You can only point to anomalies in human history which are consistent with that hypothesis.

As for the “talking snake”, you should look at the Hebrew. There is a whole lot more going on there than that.

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #30

I don’t have to give reasons they are incorrect. The person making the claim has to give the reasons to support their claim or else is just pronouncements. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

(Mark M Moore) #31

What is wrong with you Patrick? The people who did the Nature study DID give reasons to support their claim. You are coming along and saying they are incorrect and giving no reason for it. It is just not what you want to believe, so it must be false.

The word for this is delusion Patrick. You are behaving as one who is in delusion and has forsaken the use of reason. A famous atheist, Thomas Paine said ““To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason, and whose philosophy consists in holding humanity in contempt, is like administering medicine to the dead,

So I must ask you Patrick, do you accept the authority of reason?

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #32

Oh my, a single paper in Nature did give reasons. How can I be so skeptical. Um, I need a lot more than just a single paper. Unless you say the paper was “inspired” Then I will put more credence in it. :rofl:

You are calling me delusional. When one person has delusional thoughts we call it a mental illness. When a group of people have collective delusional thoughts we call it religion.

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #33

Certainly not YOUR authority of reason.

(Mark M Moore) #34

Reason is not personal, only our choice of how and if to accept its authority. “Your” reason is not reason at all, but another way to put your will in the drivers seat over and above discordant feedback from reality.

So I will ask you the question again. Do you accept the authority of reason?

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #35

My comment about the talking snake is much more than a snide remark. The talking snake in Genesis proves to me that the Ancient Near Easterner writers were being good story tellers. They were not interested in science, nor history, but instead to tell a story about their God. And it was a good story to tell children of that day. But as we know a mythological story isn’t the same as real history, real science. Reading Genesis as a story gets me into the minds of the people then. That is the value of Genesis. We can use Genesis to date the people, culture, technology of the time period that the writers lived. But sorry, the people then and people today don’t really believe that snakes talked. It is purely literary.

(Mark M Moore) #36

So I will ask you the question a third time. Do you accept the authority of reason?

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #37

I don’t accept the authority of anything. Senses can be deceived. The mind can be tricked in all sorts of ways. As I have gotten older, things I thought were absolutely true weren’t. I really don’t know anything is true. I am a 6.999 on the Dawkins Scale of atheism but as an engineer I round that to 7. But who knows I could be wrong. (But don’t bet on it.)

(George) #38


I changed the time frame so that you would have an opportunity to realize that one way or another, the genealogical expansion is inevitable. And so even if 2000 years might be a tight squeeze for a purely random process, 5000 years would not be.

And still you deny it.

You don’t belong here at all.


I think I’m going to get quickly bored with Patrick. However, to balance my distaste of atheist polemics & provocations, let me extend an olive branch to George, not to the UUism he is still representing. He really does have a way of summarising @swamidass’s thoughts for him sometimes & I appreciate this clarification he makes above.

After that statement, the unavoidability of ‘some’ study of genealogy is required. @swamidass’s flip from monogenesis to monopyhlogeny might seem to do ‘unavoidable’ things as well (e.g. going beyond phylogenetics). The genealogical effects, however, are not exponential for every phyla, nor for every family nor every person. So the ‘science’ behind the ‘selection’ is still lacking.

What kind of ‘science’ is genealogy? I don’t think calling it ‘racist’ makes any sense. But it involves ‘races’ in so far as ‘race’ is part of genealogical studies. Some scholars, not a few, reject the scientificity of ‘race’ as a concept. Certainly labelling people ‘racist’ is bad form; labelling a field of study as ‘racist’ is wrong-headed.

(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #40

Sure, if this a not a place where different ideologies can be discussed honestly and openly, I don’t belong here.
But if this is really a place of peaceful science discussion then perhaps there is “room at the inn” for me.