The Null Device

Blond people are an "endangered species"?

A German study claims that blond-haired people will die out in 200 years. Blond hair is caused by a recessive gene, and is thus genetically disadvantaged. This was compensated for by blond people being widely seen as more attractive (*ahem*), but modern artificial blond colourings exploit this bias much more effectively than natural blond hair.

Or will blondes die out? Professor Jonathan Rees (who previously proved that redheads are sexier) claims that the blonde gene will become less common but never completely disappear, as it does not carry any disadvantage. (Except in jokes, that is.) (via FmH)

There are 7 comments on "Blond people are an "endangered species"?":

Posted by: GJW Mon Sep 30 00:58:07 2002

I doubt blonde genes survive purely because they are "more attractive"; I think it's got more to do with blone people coming from certain cultures that were, until recently, fairly geographically destinct and isolated (ie. Scandanavia). There wasn't as much breeding with brown-haired people, so double-recessives were more common. Now we're a bit more globalised, blondes breed with browns, and browns carrying a recessive blonde gene breed with browns, but like all recessive genes it IS impossible to totally destroy.

Posted by: acb Mon Sep 30 05:16:09 2002

I once read that blond hair was a sign of youth and health (like a peacock tail, it costs more to maintain in good form and is thus more meaningful as an advertisement), and thus breeding potential, which led to the whole "blond(e)s are more attractive" idea.

Though that's all subjective. I'm personally one of those freaks who can't see what anybody sees in Pamela Anderson or Britney Spears, so I can't really talk.

Posted by: hot soup girl Wed Oct 2 12:11:44 2002

Apparently, it's a hoax:

Or at least a semi-hoax. The WHO didn't conduct the study (as is claimed in the original article picked up by the BBC and other media) and don't know anything about this Jonathan Rees character. Hm.

Posted by: acb Wed Oct 2 13:41:00 2002

Jonathan Rees appeared in the news before, having conducted a study showing that red hair is common in Scotland partly because of a genetic bias towards finding redheads sexually attractive. If it's a hoax, then it's one well planned in advance.

Posted by: hot soup girl Wed Oct 2 16:21:46 2002

Sorry, I actually didn't read the Jonathan Rees part properly. You're quite right; he checks out.

Posted by: Ben http:// Thu Oct 3 16:21:58 2002

Sounds like a scam to me. Doing a study of why there are so many redheads in Scotland and finding it is because there is a genetic bias to find them attractive seems logically flawed, if the numbers of red-heads are as large as they are in the north.

It's all a big scam. Everyone knows redheads are brainier and more attractive, it's not genetics, just common sense. Just ask Shauny.

Posted by: acb Thu Oct 3 16:25:10 2002

Ever heard of something called the "green beard gene"?

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