[quote author="Ryan Banta" date="1343600558"]I didn’t the environment did. Food, medicine, vitamins, playing sports when younger, etc. All of those can play a role.
With all due respect, this just doesn’t fly. The differences in protein levels etc. between the U.S. and China absolutely does not retard the growth of China’s children making them a foot shorter than if they were raised int the U.S. The average female in China is 5′ 2″, and the average height for a U.S. female is around 5′ 4″. Is your girl really over 6 feet tall? The numbers vary depending on where you research, but its about a 2″ difference. And if you just compare females of Chinese descent living in the U.S. vs Chinese nationals, the difference is even smaller. I don’t think there is anything you could feed a young teenager, or any type of environmental situation you could put her in, that would alter her genes to the point that she would be 6″ taller, much less a foot. Its one thing if she were malnourished or sick, but the typical environment in China is not so much worse than the U.S., certainly not to the point that it would retard growth by more than an inch or two.[/quote]
Star61: Sorry, but you don’t understand how genetic expression works. Chinese human and cultural diversity are quite expansive and profound, but unless you are in the ruling class in China you cannot recreate in China what is typical of the United States. Genes are not altered but expressed differently in the United States than in China mainly derived from cultural differences that cannot be escaped within local settings in China compared to local settings in the US. Chinese sports programs would not have probably bypassed someone over who runs a 400m in 79s at age 13-14 and in fact it is quite easy to say a bunch of US coaches probably wouldn’t have expected much either and the girl would have been stereotyped. Once you escape stereotypes, you are able to escape the local optima of given abilities.