Date: Sat, 12 Dec 2009 17:01:17 -0800 (PST)
Local: Sun, Dec 13 2009 9:01 am
Subject: Hang Tuah was a Chinese - DNA test showed
Be critical readers - DNA and race
Posted by: monadc
I was just browsing through when a recent comment caught my eye -
something about Hang Tuah was Chinese. I believe it's a reference to
the still-floating "scientific articles" that's frequently blogged
about how a team of scientists from the Federal Association of
Archaeology & Research of Michigan, USA (which does not exist, btw)
discovered the remains of the "5 Sahabat", did DNA testing and
discovered that Hang Tuah was a Chinese.
I'm not interested to argue about the supremacy of one race over the
other. My only concern is about how people often accept things at face
value without being more critical with what they read, especially if
it's something that appears scientic. The term "DNA testing" often
comes across as sophisticated and I noticed people's tendency of
believing something easily if it sounds scientific enough for them.
Genetics and DNA studies have come a long way now, and are able to
answer so many questions, thanks to the completion of the Human Genome
Project. However, people need to remember and understand that DNA
testing can only do so much. You can't actually identify someone's
ethnicity from the gene coding. Let me try break it down. Your bones
will identify you as one of three major races: Caucasoid (Europeans),
Negroid (African, Native Australian) and Mongoloid (Asians). Your DNA
can help trace your ancestry. Your DNA can determine paternity test.
DNA can help with identifying a body. Your DNA can prove whether the
blood left at a crime scene is yours. Your DNA sequence can provide
information on what diseases you are susceptible to. Your DNA may be
able to provide major population affiliation. But your DNA does not
classify your race by 100%. It does not tell you if you are 100%
Chinese or 100% Indian or Eskimo or Mexican.
But interestingly enough, our DNA can show how diverse we are as a
human being. The mutations, among other markers on our genes trace
back your heritage. Therefore, there is no such DNA test that can
state 100% that you are of this ethnicity, but it may be able to
identify your heritage as being 45% African, 33% Native American and
so on. If my grandmother was Indonesian, my father was a New Zealander
and I was born in Johannesberg - does that automatically make me an
African? Maybe by citizenship, if the government made me one. Human
migration is a common thing throughout the history of mankind. It is
on a wider scale today because travelling is now cheaper. Along the
way, our genetic makeup experiences shifts, changes and mutations as
other factors play their influences on us. But that is the beauty of
it because that's what made us who we are and it creates diversity.
This is the reason why there is much protest against UKBA plan on
testing asylum seekers to determine whether or not they came from
Somalia in order to limit false claims for asylum. Because of the
reasons I have outlined above, the plan is flawed. Very. It's also
discrimination on a grand scale.
Tbh I cannot understand the argument about whose ethnicity is better
than whose, along with its stereotype. Malays are lazy. Chinese are
greedy. Indians are troublemakers. White people are ignorant. Really?
What about those who do not fit in the traditional stereotype. A
person is who he or she chooses to be. Be fair with your judgment. If
you take a piece of your DNA and have it analysed, you'd be surprised
at the revelation of who you are really and how diversed your true
Isn't there enough hate in the world already? It'd be far wiser to use
great knowledge like this to forge better friendships with one another
rather than using it to attack each other. Celebrate diversity.
As for Hang Tuah, well, every culture has a folk hero. Think of him as
a positive anthropological significance rather than something to fuel