Race cannot be classified into a hierarchy

by Oliver on September 13, 2016 - 1:16pm

All humans are different, physically for sure but also inside their body. I am talking about what only science can tell us. But socially we have created many categories to separate people into the groups to which they belong. Do we really belong to a certain category which is made of society’s point of view based on “race”?

In Jared Diamond’s article, it is explained how many things are classified and separated into groups, for example whites and blacks or different types of animals. It also explains how classification presents a problem of “hierarchy”. This classification is even used for birds; it is called a” hierarchy of distinctness”. Starting with a “distinct group as a race separate from the rest” and it continue by “separating populations as race”, but the problem with this classification “is that the extent to which you continue the racial classification is arbitrary”. The article also shows the variability of traits by which we classify race, the first one varies because of natural selection, and the other one varies geographically because of sexual selection(2016, para.11-12-13). This can be applied to birds to recognize them and know specific things about them. In a certain point of view, I understand that it is used for people to just know specific information about them. But in another way I do not believe that human should be classified by race because the only difference is the skin color and some physical traits, other than this all humans are alike.

With this article I now have a better understanding of why people are so different looking, due to their origins or habitat. Although there are these differences, inside each of us nothing really is different, because we all have the same genes and cells, it is only the adaptation that our body made that shapes people in their own ways. Also it is more comprehensible how those categories were made to classify people. At first it was not a racial problem, it was more because the majority groups believed something and then it had evolve into something bigger than the social view, and ended in everybody having the same idea about race. In Diamond’s article, it says that “five major races are recognize by anthropology textbook: “whites”, “African blacks”, “Mogoloids,” “aboriginal Australians,” and “Khoisans.”” Before, I didn’t know that all the categories mostly known in our generation come from these ones at the beginning and that in general people only knew the sub-races, like “Asians”, and “Black People” (Diamond, 2016, para. 36)

Race is something used for animals and in my opinion it should not be used to classify people into different groups because people seem to forget that everybody has one brain, a heart and two legs. These are some examples to show that all people look alike. 


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This post really got my attention. Hierarchy is the cause of most problems in society. Whites think they are superior to blacks and in some states or neighborhoods, blacks think they are superior to whites. Humans should all be on the same level since we are all classified as humans, even though we have different skin colors. I do believe that race shouldn't apply to humans since we are all alike besides skin color. People are different based on there origins or habitat but in the end, we are all people and human beings. We are not animals, therefore, we should not be considered a race. In high school, we had a very diverse school. Personally, there was no hierarchy. Everyone was friends with everyone and there was no top group. The reason there was no problems with hierarchy is because we all treated each other with respect as all humans should.

I agree with you about your last comment. We are all physically made up of the same body parts and its not right that people are judged because their skin color may not be the same as another person. This got my attention because the race issue has been put in the spotlight recently throughout 2016. We shouldn't make a hierarchy to determine who is superior because were all exactly the same physically except our skin color and that shouldn't make a difference.

I love your last point, which states how people seem to forget that we all as humans share the same characteristics, two legs, two arms, a pair of eyes, and a brain. I also agree with how you coined the terms of a hierarchy. Having a hierarchy is a way in which we distinct people of different race and allows us to put people on top of others. Being placed in different categories whether you’re African American, Latino, Asian, or a Pacific Islander is wrong. The only difference is skin color and some physical characteristics like you have mentioned. I think this has to do with intersectionality, which is oppression seen beyond gender. Intersectionality entails oppression based on religion, sexual orientation, social class, age and of course race, like you have mentioned. I think it is important to realize that we are discriminated based on other factors but I think gender is a true issue as well. Intersectionality and feminism together argue exactly what I mean, which like race, is another source of inequality. A major key example is a group called Black Feminism, which engages both race and gender together. I think you would be quite interested in this. This group argued that African American women had a more challenging experience when it came to power and oppression in America compared to your average white woman. This takes your race position into consideration with also more of an emphasis on gender. To find out more information on what I am talking about, take a look at this link: http://isreview.org/issue/91/black-feminism-and-intersectionality

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