A new study out has figured out about 60% of the letters of DNA from three different Neanderthal bones. It is amazing how much a scientist can learn from a long extinct relative.
First off, it looks like there was some interbreeding between species at some point. By comparing human and Neanderthal DNA, scientists can tell that around 1-4% of European and Asian DNA came from Neanderthals. And it looks like Africans have no Neanderthal DNA at all.
This is just what might be expected if there was interbreeding because Neanderthals and Africans probably never met. All the evidence so far points to Neanderthals living in Europe and Asia and not in Africa. (source)
Racists have tended to depict Africans as more primitive than Europeans or Asians. However, when most of us think of primitive humans, Neanderthals come to mind. The latest theory on the demise of Neanderthals no longer has them being killed off by modern Man or dying off by an inability to compete. Rather, it looks like the moderns and Neanderthals interbred. They blended in, genetically speaking, with modern man.
I guess--assuming these jerks give a flying fuck about what science says--they'd decided that the neanderthals are *superior* to homo sapiens and that we white folks are therefore superior to the black folks just because we carry some superior genes.
People will jump through endless hoops of illogic to justify their prejudices.
Please no nonsense!
Back when this started there was no sociology or anthropology nor much of an idea of progress either. Europeans discovered socially and technologically inferior people. They had no other explanation than their own natural superiority. They also considered themselves inferior to some ancient civilizations such as the Egyptians, Greece and Rome. London was the first European city to exceed the population of ancient Rome and that was in the 19th century. London was also the first modern city to build a sewage system to rival ancient Rome.
So when they started exceeding Rome and needing to explain primitive people there were very few available explanations.
The good news is that such ideas were for politicians and the masses. The intellectuals knew it was too simple and did invent anthropology and sociology. It took until the mid 20th c. before the answers were good enough to dispel the inherit superiority nonsense.
We cannot think like our ancestors of barely a century ago. They may have had no great educations but there were no studies of "primitive" people to read. There were no generalities about social structure known so they could not be taught. There were NO examples of any "primitive" people developing any modern society to talk about.
Try talking about the world with none of our present knowledge as better explanations than superiority.
Speaking of thinking like our ancestors. Genes were only discovered in the early 1950s. No one could have said superior genes before that.
The did have the nature/nurture argument and with the foundational idea that superior nurture resulted in superior people. European peasants swallowed that for centuries in regard to the nobility being superior to them.
Educated was considered superior. It was only when everyone was educated that it became obvious stupidity is equally distributed among the ranks and professions.
It was only the US rising from farmers to a world power that shook the foundational preconceptions. Obviously the superior breeding of the nobility was nonsense. The superiority of some races (meaning British, German, French, Italian and the like a century ago) was overturned when the US showed it did not matter.