Miscegenation theories alive and well

Their South Asian and white genetic backgrounds … put their children in potential harm’s way.

Sounds almost like something you’d expect to see on a white supremacist site, but it’s actually from the LA Times.  Nor is this alone: it comes mere months after an image was posted to the Republican party Facebook page with the caption, “Miscegenation is a crime against American values,” and after a Louisiana judge refused to issue a marriage license for an interracial couple, citing increased difficulty for such relationships.

It might seem perfectly reasonable, knowing nothing about genetics, to read the LA Times article and conclude that a real and present danger of genetic disorder exists as a result of mixed-race heritage.  The article certainly does nothing to dispel this myth, and one can easily imagine advocates for racial purity pointing to this in triumph.

While the instance of some genetic disorders (such as the one in the article) may be increased by multiracial pairing, other genetic orders (such as cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia) are increased by same-race pairing.  The implication that multiracial pairing is somehow genetically unsafe compared to other options is an irresponsible and uneducated myth.  If mainstream media sources such as the LA Times are unable or unwilling to correct these errors, it is no surprise that their readership and sales continue to plummet.


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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I clicked here off of your twitter feed and was stunned in regards to the Republican party thing. But if you read the link, it was an image a random user (most likely a troll based off of his screen name) posted on Facebook. Hardly the Republic Party’s website. I think you were misleading here.

    • It was not the main Republican party site; rather, it was posted on an official party Facebook page (which is “a Republican party website,” the wording I used), and remained up until opponents of the Republican party noticed and began to complain about it. Apologies if that was not clear. I have changed that to specify “Facebook page.”

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mori, Melinda Beasi. Melinda Beasi said: Worth reading. "Miscegenation theories alive and well" RT @moritheil New TMR … http://bit.ly/6F9xzd […]


    See Big Media? This is why I hate you. (also Rupert Murdoch but that’s like saying all lawyers are Jack Thompson)

  4. Amazing story, I did not thought reading it was going to be so stunning when I looked at the link.

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