What is the relationship between the theory of evolution and racism?

the problem is we for the most part do not have direct insight as to why scientific experts hold a position

hopefully it is because they did their best to do good science

but as fallible humans, many other factors can muddy the water

hence the need to check the scientists claims and not give them carte blanche authority

i also disagree about scientists correcting rapidly, see khun

many of the ideas that motivated eugenics and racism are still mainstream today, cough darwinism cough

Mainstream in science? I don’t think so. Mainstream in religions and politics? For sure, if you look worldwide. Current biology would hold that all people are equally evolved and races are a social construct.


But how often do you find a scientist who is more concerned with his positions than his facts? For that matter who turns to scientists for their positions?


And you can also quote the bible to get passages to justify racism and slavery.


During the Civil War time period, many preachers were using the Bible to justify their racism. Their sermons are still available to read today, though they’re quite disgusting and I don’t recommend it.

Just because someone twists something to justify evil doesn’t mean that thing is actually evil, be it the Bible or “Darwinism”. There’s certainly nothing about evolutionary theory that suggests to me that I should be racist or kill anyone. That’s complete nonsense.


racism isn’t taught anywhere in the bible, nor is the american form of slavery, and is outright contradicted, e.g. jubilee year every seven years when all slaves get freed, all human beings created in image of God and have the same ultimate human ancestors in Adam and Eve, so we are all distant relatives of each other

otoh racism is quite consistent with Darwinism, and you can find racist ideas in Darwin’s books, in the descent of man and i do recall it in origin of species. even the full title of origin mentions selection of favored races which means all animal varieties, but also means human varieties

grant darwin was against slavery, or so i’ve read, but racism is racism, whether benevolent or malevolent

and darwinism was argued base on animal breeding, so if humans are merely animals too what’s wrong with breeding them too, i.e. eugenics?

anyways, many modern problems are bound up with darwinian evolution. e.g. there are direct quotes from most of the past century’s genocidal dictators pointing explicitly to Darwinism to support their amorality, as well as serial killers and Columbine killers. i have had more trouble finding genocidal dictators espousing Christianity and making explicit reliance on the teachings of Jesus

Yes, it is hard to make Jesus into the motivation for genocide. But let’s not pretend that “Darwin” is the key motivation for modern atrocities. Powerful people will use whatever convenient ideology supports their nationalistic and/or personal goals. I think some of the European kings big on “divine right” were pretty genocidal and dictatorial. A pretty bloody time in Europe’s history came from using Protestantism/Catholicism as an excuse for war. The Mongols did not need Darwin to be some of the most brutal conquerors in history.

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No, the year of Jubilee freed Hebrew servants. Lev. 25 is explicit that it was lawful to own foreigners for life.


So the Bible teaches a nice form of slavery, where it’s perfectly fine to enslave somebody for seven years. How edifying.

The Bible has been used to justify antisemitism for CENTURIES. It is only in later times that emphasis shifted to the scientific justification for antisemitism. The religious basis for antisemitism never completely went away.

it isn’t in the bible for sure

it is at least a very strong correlation between death on a scale and brutality never before seen in history and a scientific theory that proposes survival of the fittest is the engine of progress

I would agree with you, but some would say that it’s in the NT, where the Jews (mainly those of Jewish faith) are condemned for killing Jesus (it’s Jewish people who make these pronouncements, so it’s obviously not related to Jewish identity). However, Jesus’ own words, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” would seem to rule that out as a reason. In addition, most realize that in a way, we are all those who are responsible for Christ dying, in reality.


Also Paul says Gentiles are grafted onto the Jewish tree. If the Jewish tree is condemned, then sucks for the Gentiles!

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25:46 And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession; they shall be your bondmen for ever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour.

It is at least not the chattel slavery practiced in America, which is essentially a Darwinian view that Africans were a form of animal lower than Europeans, and could be thus treated like animals for breeding.

Additionally, the OT has a lot of admonitions to treat the foreigner well. And I believe there is the possibility for the foreigner to become a part of the Israelites, which for a foreign slave would be a path to freedom.

So, while on the surface American slavers could probably cherry pick OT verses to support their practice, a careful reading does not. Which is why slaves who learned to read the Bible rebelled, such as Nat Turner and Frederick Douglass, and why the slave owners outlawed reading.

On the other hand, no such cherry picking is necessary to use Darwinism to dehumanize others and support slavery. Darwinism is at least indifferent to slavery, if not supportive of it in terms of making all humans animals, and thus available to be treated like animals.

Well, evolution might be construed to be more likely to show that it’s appropriate to treat each other humanely, as that has shown better survival :slight_smile:

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So if slavery promotes survival, then evolution entails slavery?

Oh, also it is hard to have a religious justification for anti-semitism when your religion is founded by a fully observant Jew:

Matthew 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

I’m not going to follow there–I just wanted to point out that evolution is as likely to promote good care of your fellow man as not. History is littered with mistakes of double guessing on morality. The '60s thought that it was “natural” to have free “love”–turns out the Oneida experiment proved that wrong even earlier, and it makes perfect sense in biologics to have familial stability with a father, mother and child, unchanging unit with faithfulness from both parents. Thanks. I would not base my morality on conjecture there, either-what is that quote about scientists finally finding that theologians already figured out a lot of that on morality?

Great! I agree.

I’m pointing out evolution at best tells us nothing about what promotes survival, and at worst promotes immorality on the pretext of survival.

Plus, evolution itself is amoral, and does not even say that survival is itself desirable. All it claims, dubiously and ambiguously, is that whatever is fit will survive. Which also does not entail that what survives is fit, as that is the fallacy of affirming the consequent. An extremely common fallacy I see in the context of evolution theory.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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