Race exists, or race realism, is the true statement that there is a distribution of genetics in the human population that meets the following criteria:
1) Different groups of humans form statistical clusters within the genetic distribution.
2) Genetic frequencies and their differences across clusters vary according to the geographical origins of one's ancestors.
3) These patterns are continued into present times because of preferential breeding within these clusters as opposed to in-between the clusters.
4) The genetic differences across these clusters contribute to observable phenotypic differences that are inherited across generations.
The argument is often opposed to the false counterclaim that Race does not exist, which is usually accompanied by several fallacies including an equivocation on the definition of races. For instance, race deniers will attack a strawman and falsely claim that race implies genetic homogeneity or that the existence of races would make interracial marriages impossible. Other fallacies such as appealing to experts' publicly professed beliefs can also be used as part of race denial.
Numerous studies have demonstrated that human genetics around the world have a clustered distribution and that the clusters identified by a statistical algorithm correspond to the classification that regular people would think of as that of race: "[...]of those who self-reported as white, 99.5 % were assigned into the “white” category by the cluster analysis. Of those who self-reported as black, 99.3 % were classified as “black.” [...] Of those self-classifying as non–South Asians (including Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, Filipinos, and Vietnamese), 97.7 % were assigned as “non–South Asians.”". The Guo et al. study demonstrates three of the four criteria for the existence of race, since it shows that 1) there are genetic clusters in humanity, 2) these genetic clusters follow geographical patterns, and 4) people are readily able to observe these genetic differences by observing the phenotype of an individual.
The third criterion for the existence of races can easily be demonstrated by the fact that people demonstrate same-race preferences in marriage. For instance, only 15% of new marriages were found to be interracial according to research by the Pew Research Center, thus indicating that same-race marriages represent the vast majority of marriages. This demonstrates that any clustered distribution of genetics across the groups referred to as races in humanity will be perpetuated into the future, so long as the breeding pattern of humans contribute to the maintenance of this differentiation.
|Statement of the claim||Race exists|
|Level of certainty||True|
|Counterclaim||Race does not exist|
- Guo et al., (February, 2014) Genetic Bio-Ancestry and Social Construction of Racial Classification in Social Surveys in the Contemporary United States. Demography 51:141-172. Accessed on January 26, 2022.
- Pew Research, (February 16, 2012) The Rise of Intermarriage. Pew Research Center. Accessed on January 26, 2022.