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DNA Testing and Recreational Genetics

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Americans are now able to redefine their roots thanks to the explosion in popularity for DNA testing and genealogy. Recently a report in the British newspaper The Observer investigated the  new trend in DNA testing and genetics that is currently sweeping  across America. DNA testing has uncovered some surprising truths that show how easily misconceptions in relation to identity and roots can manifest themselves in the present day. For example, DNA testing has revealed that Barack Obama, a man who hoped to be the country’s first black president, is  in fact descended from white slave owners.

DNA Testing Reveals Surprising Truths

DNA testing has shown that the majority of black Americans have European ancestors. An interesting story of unusual genealogy that the Observer followed was that of Al Sharpton. Reverend Sharpton is known as one of the most outspoken black civil rights leaders.  DNA tests  however have now revealed that he was actually descended from Strom Thurmond who was a white segregationist and who ran for the presidency based on his racist views.

Complex Identity

Just as DNA testing has shown white racists like BNP members do have strains of African blood in their make-up, this revelations show that identity is a great deal more complex than the colour of a person’s skin.

DNA Testing and Genealogy

All over America, people are delving into their family history as part of the hobby of discovering their family trees. Identity and roots are particularly important to many Americans who immigrated to the land only a few generations ago. Many are eager to re-connect to their roots, and DNA testing is one way to confirm family relations.

Modern DNA Testing Techniques

Modern DNA testing can reveal which part of the world a person’s ancestors originated from and what percentage of their make up is European, Asian or African. Many Americans are making surprising discoveries. As well as whites with black blood or vice-versa, the Native American population has increased because of DNA testing and is revealing unknown ancestors in their genes.

An Identity Revolution

DNA testing is unveiling ancestral make-up and because of this it has caused what is in America what has become known as an ‘identity revolution’. Caucasian people are discovering for example that they are a quarter Native American, and some black people finding that they are a quarter white. DNA testing is literally changing the way many Americans think. It has revealed that the racial lines drawn by the colour of a person’s skin are far more blurred and much more complicated.

DNA Testing – Recreational Genetics

This trend in DNA testing has been labelled as ‘recreational genetics’ and the tests can radically change how a person perceives himself by use of a simple swab sample. The result is that some whites who have discovered African DNA are now applying for scholarships aimed at minorities or using their new revelations to find distant relatives. It has been reported that DNA hunters will go to any lengths to obtain samples for DNA testing, including plucking hair from relatives who have very recently died.


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