an imaginative look a palaeolithic life

The One Drop Rule

The one drop rule has to be one of the stupidest things human beings have ever conceived of.  I take a very dim view of racism generally, considering it to be ridiculously moronic, but even as catastrophically illogical racist thinking goes, the one drop rule was clearly plundered from far deeper in the abyss of malicious stupidity than is usual for these people.The one drop rule basically says that it doesn’t matter how many “white” ancestors you have, or what colour your actual skin, hair and eyes are, if you have just one “black” ancestor (i.e. just one drop of “black blood”), then you are “black” and not “white”.  Aside from the fact that there’s no scientific validity behind “racial groups” to begin with, it’s just plain silly to forcibly assign someone to the group that they have the least amount of ancestry from.  “Oh, you have straight blonde hair, blue eyes, freckles and European facial features but you seem to have inherited sickle-cell trait from somewhere, therefore you must be black.”  Mmnnyeeesss….

If we were to take the one drop rule seriously, we’d have to apply it to species too, not just races, and it would have very grave implications.  I mean a race is a vague term that’s not even recognised by science, while a species is a scientifically validated concept and represents a much more fundamental difference between two groups than the superficial differences associated with so-called “race”.  As the one drop rule specifies that if someone has just one drop of blood from a minority group they cannot be considered to be a member of the majority group, and that the majority human species on this planet is Homo sapiens, and DNA testing has revealed that most people have 1-4% neanderthal DNA, we must therefore reclassify nearly everyone on the planet as Homo neanderthalensis.

The best, most sweetest irony of this is that the very group that the one drop rule was created to discriminate against (i.e.African-Americans), also happen to be from the only group on the planet who doesn’t seem to have any neanderthal DNA (sub-Saharan Africans), so they would be more likely to still be classified as Homo sapiens under the new rule.  However bear in mind that 58% of African-Americans have some European ancestry, and as all Europeans would now be Homo neanderthalensis, 58% of African-Americans would still be Homo neanderthalensis under the one drop rule.  However people who originate from African countries south of the Sahara would be the only ones who are in with a chance of remaining classified as Homo sapiens.

So, if anyone still believes in the one drop rule, please refrain from referring to yourself as a member of the species Homo sapiens, because the one drop rule makes you a Homo neanderthalensis.  Thank you.

image: public domain, modified by me

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One response

  1. I seriously wonder how much the “one drop rule” was ever actually enforced, because I hail from the Deep South and have mixed whtie/black ancestry, and near as I can tell, none of my mixed ancestors were ever given grief about it. In fact, I don’t think my ancestors even *knew* they were mixed–I only found out through genetic testing, and all of my still-alive relatives (a few cousins excepted) look white. But I was talking to my grandmother the other day, and she was talking about her grandmother or great-grandmother, and described her as “dark as an Indian.” So great-great etc. grannie was probably half or a quarter black, grew up in the Deep South, and no one in the family seems to have even realized, much less treated her differently or refused to marry her as a result. Of course, I don’t have the full story on my ancestor’s life, so maybe she did face significant hardships, but it looks to me like this one drop business may not have been very consistently enforced.

    May 7, 2015 at 01:31

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