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What is "race"? Show more Show less

Race is one way humans classify one another. Race may be based on ancestry, skin color, hair type, or other physical or non-physical features. Yet, views of how humans are classified can differ person-to-person and even country-to-country. Scientists and modern geneticists have begun to find that humans of different "races" may have more in common with one another than they do with humans within the same "race." At the same time, many people look at the racial disparities in education, wealth, and health in the U.S. and conclude that there must be a biological, natural reason why Black Americans and Latinos are less-educated, poorer, or more affected by COVID-19 than White Americans. The debate of "what race is" has important - and perhaps dangerous - implications across society and between individuals.

Race is a biological reality Show more Show less

Humans are different from each other - physically, culturally, linguistically, psychologically. Proponents of race as a biological reality view such differences as anchored in genetic differences at a group level. Black people, white people, Jewish people, etc have certain key characteristic that make them unique and different from others.
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Some races are genetically predisposed to outperform others

Racial disparities exist because of biological inheritance and genetics.
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The Argument

Traits are passed down through generations. People in the same geographical location tend to reproduce with one another, which causes groups of humans to slowly differentiate from one another. Thus, genetic differences between people are the source of inequality between races. Racial inequality exists in many societies. Differences between race in the realms of education, wealth, and health may be attributed to culture, history, and society. Yet, through the process of natural selection and genetics, innate and biological differences between populations must play a role in why groups outperform others.[1]

Counter arguments



P1: Biological makeup determines a person's personality, intelligence, and ability to succeed. P2: Based on natural selection, some populations are naturally selected to maintain beneficial traits and eventually outlive weaker populations which die out easier.

Rejecting the premises


Further Reading

See the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy's entry on "Race" for more information on the history of race as a concept and the contemporary arguments surrounding race (



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This page was last edited on Monday, 18 May 2020 at 17:04 UTC