So, I was reading this post today, not a bad article in general, but the distancing language made it clear to me, that the genetic link wasn’t to be considered a familial link, just genetic, and while it could be important, how important was it really. The last sentence in the quote below, just seem disingenuous in a post about donor conception and families and whether or not the genetic link is important.
“Throughout the history of mankind—the history of families—genetic lineage has mattered. But are we currently in a post-genetic age? We now know that two unrelated people share 99 percent of their DNA in common.”
While I’m not disputing it is true, I am disputing the relevance in including it in an article on whether, or not, knowing who your genetic parents are is important. I say that for several reasons and the obvious one is because humans, chimpanzees, and bonobos, all share somewhere (depending on the type of testing) between 94% and 99% percent of their DNA (source)…but that was left out, I assume because the reader knowing that, would then realize that 1% difference must be pretty important and is very relevant to who you are, the line you came down from, and why you are different from you neighbor, friend, co-worker, but similar in some to many ways to those within your ancestral line.
Another reason, much less scientific mumbo-jumbo, but what it really comes down to, is that your ancestral line is a connection that secures your place within your family tree, a map if you will, that stretches back generation, after generation. Your ancestors passed down their legacy and connection every successive generation, including, to you. I would think that most who want to procreate and become parents, also want to see themselves reflected in their children, and perhaps, on a deeper level the idea that even after they are gone, a part of them still lives on in their children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and beyond. We shouldn’t be trying to say this is wrong, or denying how important it is too many. It is in large part, who we are as human beings, and why we also look back to where we came from. That connection to the past (however far back you want to go) is grounding in way that nothing else truly is, you come from that line, those people are your people despite never having met some of them, you followed after them, you are family, you aren’t alone, you aren’t an only.
So that is why I say it was a red-herring to distract by pointing out that humans are 99% the same (and omitting what other species we are so similar too), it was designed to deny the importance for some, the most fundamental element of all – that basic connection through time from whence you came. Which I also feel inclined to point out, at the same time takes nothing away from the family you are raised in, belong in, love, and are loved by, because that is a separate and different subject. In turn, your family shouldn’t willingly take that away from you, or assume that it won’t be important to you, because you didn’t choose to grow up having your nature and nurture split between two different families (whether that is adoption or donor conception).
“I saw behind me those who had gone, and before me those who are to come. I looked back and saw my father and his father and all our fathers, and in front to see my son and his son, and the sons upon sons beyond. And their eyes were my eyes. As I felt so they had felt, and were to feel, as then, so now, as tomorrow and forever. Then I was not afraid for I was in a long line that had no beginning and no end. And the hand of his father grasped my father’s hand and his hand was in mine, and my unborn son took my right hand and all, up and down the line that stretched from time that was to time that is not yet, raised their hands to show the link, and we found that we were one, born of Woman, Son of Man, made in the Image, fashioned in the Womb by the Will of God, the Eternal Father.”
~ Robert Llewellyn, How Green Was My Valley