Racial Justice

Most scientists and social scientists agree that there is no biological basis for race. Yet the idea that racial groups can be found in biology continues to make its way into human genetic research and biotechnologies. Some common examples include genetic studies on racialized health disparities, direct-to-consumer genetic ancestry tests, and forensic DNA databases. These products and practices typically try to reduce race to a set of biological markers, and fail to address the social, political, environmental, and economic inequalities that continue to make race a salient social category. Critical race scholars and racial justice advocates alike seek to promote public awareness and regulatory oversight of biotechnology to ensure that genetics isn’t used to exploit or reinforce existing institutional racial inequalities.


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The DNA testing company Color Genomics says that early next year it will offer customers a new type of gene analysis that could tell them if they are at risk of a heart attack.

Here’s the problem, though: it only...

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They tell us race is an invention.

That there is more genetic variation between two black people than there is between a black person and a white person. Then they tell us black people have a worse kind of breast...

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Dr. Carlos Bustamante, a prominent population geneticist, recently concluded that Senator Elizabeth Warren had “a Native American ancestor.” While geneticists...

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Late last year, Justina Crawford decided to swab the inside of her mouth for a saliva sample to do a...

Pipet in test tubes

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Red stained DNA markers

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Purple test tubes in rack

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Gloved hand on DNA sample

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Elizabeth Warren speaking at podium

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Elizabeth Warren speaking at a podium

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Different colored test tubes with double stranded DNA inside

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