White Nationalism, a small and insignificant resistance a few years back, has now developed into a full-fledged movement. From a few isolated supporters, it now draws ugly attention from thousands of people in the US. White Nationalists have wrongly reinterpreted themselves to be a part of “identity politics” and have taken to the movement to “claim” their Rights.
We also live in the times when it is extremely easy to get a genetic ancestry test.
Two sociologists from the University of California, Joan Donovan and Aaron Panofsky, decided to study the new trend of white nationalists going for GATs. These white nationalists hope to reaffirm their assumed ancestry with these tests. But apparently, most of them are not too happy with the results.
The duo presented their research at the annual American Sociological Association in 2017 in Montreal. This presentation was in August, just a few days before the Charlottesville incident. Their paper was named “When Genetics Challenges a Racist’s Identity: Genetic Ancestry Testing Among White Nationalists”.
White Nationalists on Stormfront
Donovan and Panofsky went through the White Nationalist neo-Nazi online forum, Stormfront. Stormfront was set up by a former KKK Grand Wizard. On the platform, the duo observed the reaction of more than 600 such white nationalists to their GAT results.
In an article for Cultural Anthropology, Panofsky explained how many were pleasantly surprised with their ancestry results. But most others were not too pleased. One person even said: “See, THIS is why I don’t recommend these tests to people. Did they bother to tell you that there were Whites in what is now Senegal all that time ago? No? So they led you to believe that you’re mixed even though in all probability, you are simply related to some White fool who left some of his DNA with the locals in what is now Senegal.”
Most forum users resorted to their hateful behavior even towards their fellow members. When one person posted how their result came back as 61% European, another White nationalist responded: “I’ve prepared you a drink. It’s 61 percent pure water. The rest is potassium cyanide… Cyanide isn’t water, and YOU are not White.”
But mostly the white nationalists rejected the results, terming the test as a misleading Jewish multiple-cultural conspiracy.
Donovan and Panofsky say this rejection should not be dismissed as plain ignorance. Although most of their theories are groundless, they show how the nationalists are not only misunderstanding the science behind it but also trying to propagate purposeful misuse of it.
In conclusion to their Anthropology article, Panofsky says, “Most population geneticists would be appalled at the use of their variation-based research to build typological theories of human classification. But these scientists have produced tools open to such interpretations.”
GATs can be both good and bad. On a positive note, it can help people better understand their own history and culture. But on a darker note, they can be used to threaten a person’s privacy and also be used for undisclosed open-ended data mining.
“But what GAT also does is set up a whole new infrastructure for racists to endow their groundless theories with a high-tech scientific imprimatur and to convince each other of the myths that mobilize them as a social group in the first place.”
As you might know, tech giants like Facebook, Twitter, and Google (Also Youtube), increasingly censor information that does not fit the mainstream narrative. Freedom of speech should be the basic human right, however, in the current era, you are not allowed to share your views anymore. Fortunately, alternative platforms appear that are censorship-free. Minds.com is one of these platforms. You can sign up for free, HERE, and make sure you follow Truth Theory on Minds.
Image Credit: Robert Thivierge