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The most recent installment of Politically Correct mind control comes from Harvard University itself, the world capital of Political Correctness and at least a major metropolis of mind control.

It concerns no less a victim than the president of Harvard himself, Lawrence Summers, a veteran of the Clinton administration, who recently uttered some remarks about women that made the mind controllers sick at their stomachs.

A tip of the hat to President Summers.

What exactly he said is not clear since there seems to be no transcript or record of it, but in general he unbosomed the heresy that maybe human beings (in this case, women) are not merely blank slates on which social engineers can scribble whatever fictions they please.

As the New York Times described what he is supposed to have said (and does not deny saying):

“Dr. Summers cited research showing that more high school boys than girls tend to score at very high and very low levels on standardized math tests, and that it was important to consider the possibility that such differences may stem from biological differences between the sexes.”[Harvard Chief Defends His Talk on Women , By Sam Dillon, January 18, 2005]

He was discussing the general reason why there are so many more male scientists than female ones, and one such reason was possible biologically based sex differences.

On the scale of Political Incorrectness, this is not much more than a misdemeanor.

But it’s Harvard, you see, and up there they’re just not used to hearing opinions they don’t like.

To date, Mr. Summers has had to apologize at least three times.

“I felt I was going to be sick,” trembled one female scientist in the audience, M.I.T. biology professor Nancy Hopkins, who listened to part of the speech. As the Washington Post noted, “she walked out in what she described as a physical sense of disgust.” [Harvard Chief's Comments on Women Assailed, by Michael Dobbs, January 14, 2005]

“My heart was pounding and my breath was shallow,” she panted to the Post. “I was extremely upset.”

Dr. Hopkins’ breath is perhaps not the only thing about her that’s shallow.

But she wasn’t the only one, and for the last week or so, Mr. Summers has enjoyed all the vitriol that modern totalitarianism can pour upon him.

To be sure, he has had his defenders, including several women scientists, who have suggested that there really may be the kind of innate biological differences between the sexes that he postulated.

But, as in tyranny’s more prosperous days under Stalin and Mao Tse Tung, truth is no defense. Even after his third apology, one Thought Patroller, the female head of the Harvard chemistry department, sniffed that it just didn’t go far enough. Of course it never does.

“The problem is that you can’t take it back,” she sighed.

What is remarkable about the hate fest directed at Mr. Summers is not that he was necessarily right (though there’s strong evidence that innate differences between the sexes account for differing mathematical aptitudes as well as many other differences) nor even that a distinguished academic official has to grovel in multiple apologies for his innocuous comments.

What is remarkable is why those who objected to what he said did so at all.

They got sick at their stomachs because they can’t stand the idea that innate or “biologically” grounded differences account for anything.

What Mr. Summers said contradicted the blank slate model of humanity that has been enthroned in academic dogma for nearly a century.

And one reason denying that human beings are blank slates is such a dreadful sin and makes some people physically sick is that it ultimately threatens their careers, their whole world-view, and indeed their power.

The blank slate ideology, increasingly discarded by scientists, asserts that there are no constants in human nature, that in fact there is no such thing as human nature at all, and it implies that whoever or whatever controls the “environment”—the social or cultural environment in which a child grows up—controls the man (or woman) that eventually emerges.

It’s an idea that underlies both communism and much of modern liberalism.

What Mr. Summers’ remarks imply is that you can’t reconstruct human beings, that there’s something natural—meaning genes—in human nature that survives even totalitarian manipulation and social engineering.

So far from making people sick at their stomachs, the possibility that human beings possess a nature beyond the capacity of political power to twist as it wants ought to make us rejoice.

But if that’s true, then the ideologies rooted in the blank slate dogma are in serious trouble, and so are those whose careers are based on such ideologies.

That very thought is enough to make some people sick, and it’s also enough, if you challenge the dogma, to cause a few problems for your own career—even when you’re the president of Harvard.

• Category: Science • Tags: Feminism, Larry Summers 
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On May 27, a 34-year-old black male named Derrick Todd Lee was arrested in Atlanta for the serial murders of five women in Baton Rouge, LA, between September, 2001 and last March. Mr. Lee will be tried for the murders in due course, but how he was captured tells us something important about the realities of race and how much the liberal pseudo-science that denies that reality can cost us. Predictably, most of the national media have ignored the story.

A recent Public Broadcasting Service series tried to claim that race is merely a “human invention,” a social construct, and therefore that you cannot detect race from genetic evidence such as DNA.

As I argued in a recent column, the liberal-to-left-wing pseudo-scientists who make such claims are lying, for the purpose of bolstering the anti-white policies they favor and to salvage the notion that differences between the races are really the result of the “social environment” (especially “white racism.“).

If race is merely a “social construct,” then indeed you could not identify a person’s race by examining his DNA, any more than you could tell what language he speaks, what his religion is, or which baseball team he likes. All those preferences really are “social constructs” that do not exist in nature.

But race is real, which is how they caught Derrick Todd Lee. Authorities identified his race from a DNA sample connected to one of the victims, and that led them to suspect Mr. Lee as the killer. They already had a sample of his own DNA that he had given voluntarily during the investigation of another murder in the area.

But for months the manhunt for the killer who was terrorizing Baton Rouge concentrated on white males – mainly because an FBI “behavioral profile” suggested the killer was white. More than 600 white men had their cheeks swabbed for DNA samples by the police, and there was a minor dust-up about the legitimacy of such “racial profiling” of whites. (Note it was “minor”; racial profiling is taboo only when used to identify non-whites.)

But not until February of this year did the local law enforcement task force investigating the four known murders in Baton Rouge give the killer’s DNA to DNAPrint Genomics, a company in Florida that specializes in using genetic evidence to identify criminal suspects.

Within weeks the CEO of the company, Tony Frudakis, identified the race of the killer as being “85 percent Sub-Saharan African and 15 percent Native American.”

So much for the FBI “behavioral profile.”

By March 21, the truth had sunk in to the task force. It called a news conference to announce that the public should not assume the killer was white after all.

They wouldn’t say why.

It may not be important for the outcome of the investigation, which soon culminated in Mr. Lee’s identification, but it’s pretty clear why. Any public employee saying a scientific test shows the reality of race would lose his job and career, regardless of how many murderers he caught.

Yet it’s still not entirely clear exactly when the task force obtained a DNA sample from the unknown killer and, if they had one earlier than last February (by which time four of the five known victims had died), why they didn’t approach Mr. Frudakis’ firm before then?

It may be they were still relying on the FBI profile and various witness accounts of white males seen near the sites of the murders. It may also be they insisted on walking down those blind alleys because they either were afraid to look at the genetic reality of race or had themselves come to believe in the pseudo-science that denies race exists.

Mr. Frudakis says “he aggressively courted the task force, sending a representative to meet State Police Crime Lab personnel at a forensics conference in Chicago earlier,” the Baton Rouge Advocate reported last week, and the Associated Press quotes him as saying “his company’s test result led investigators to pay more attention to leads involving blacks than to other leads, and ‘that is why the case was solved two months after we ran the test for them.’”

He gave the task force his company’s findings “within a week,” and by the end of May, the suspect was in custody.

That’s great, but if the task force had consulted his firm earlier, several lives might have been saved.

Had the task force relied on the ace scientists interviewed in the PBS series, the killer would still be at large and the cops would still be scraping the cheeks of white men.

That’s why racial pseudo-science contributes to murder.

It’s also why the frauds who make up the pseudo-science, poison the public mind with it, and now dominate universities and the media ought to be booted out of both.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity, Science • Tags: Race 
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Superstitions about race never seem to die, in large part because those who peddle racial pseudo-science get funding and publicity from the U.S. government.

The Public Broadcasting System has just finished airing a three-part wallow in brainwash called “Race: The Power of an Illusion,” which purports, as an academic it interviews spouts, that “Race is a human invention.” The truth is that the illusion—”propaganda” would probably be a better word—is what PBS has served up to the taxpayers who finance it.

Produced by Larry Adelman and funded by the Ford Foundation as well as the taxpayers, the first part of the series concentrates on the “race doesn’t exist” theme, generously larded with shots of Adolf Hitler, lynchings of blacks, and the appropriate dirge music to make sure you’re in right mood for the message the series is sending.

The series interviews such heavies as the late Stephen Jay Gould of Harvard, geneticist Richard Lewontin, anthropologist Alan Goodman, and various black academics like biologist Joseph Graves and historian Evelyn Hammond (the source of the quote cited above).

Not one single scientist who believes that race really does exist is interviewed, though half a dozen could be named.

But bias isn’t the heart of the series’ problem. Plain untruthfulness is. The whole series is framed by a discussion in what’s supposed to be a high school science class, where students of various racial backgrounds are asked to select other students to whom they are probably most closely related genetically. Predictably, each student picks someone of the same or similar racial background. Predictably also, that turns out to be wrong—at least according to the program.

The class then took DNA samples form each other and analyzed them, and lo and behold, if it didn’t turn out that the racial “identities” the kids had picked were all wet.

The DNA tests supposedly show, as one pathetic kid named “Noah,” who looks like a teenage Woody Allen, blurts, that “we’re all just mongrels.”

The problem is that the test the students conduct proves nothing, as biologist Michael Rienzi points out in a blistering critique of the series in the June issue of American Renaissance, the monthly newsletter on racial realities.

As the program notes, the DNA the students are testing is what’s called “mitochondrial DNA,” stuff from the cells that is inherited exclusively from the maternal line. As Dr. Rienzi notes, “all mitochondrial DNA can tell any individual is the possible place of origin of one out of thousands of ancestors. It is impossible to determine race this way, and for the ‘experts’ to imply that this test somehow invalidates the concept of race is outright deception.”

In fact, as Dr. Rienzi also notes, a genetic test that does reveal ancestry and genetic relatedness (and therefore race) is readily available to any high school class, and indeed is accessible on the web. Its latest version, he tells us, “determines the proportion of ancestry that is Indo-European (Caucasian), African (sub-Saharan African; i.e., Negro), Native American (Amerindian), or East Asian (Mongolid/Oriental/Pacific Islander).” It’s produced by a company that specializes in identifying criminal suspects for law enforcement through DNA samples.

The PBS propaganda makes much of the claim that “there is no single gene unique to any particular racial group.” But so what? The implication the series insists on drawing is that members of any given “race” may differ from each other more than each does from a member of another “race”; therefore, race doesn’t really exist.

But as Dr. Rienzi points out, by the same argument, one could claim that, if, “for any particular genes or traits, two family members are less like each other than to a complete stranger, then ‘family does not exist, and family is an illusion.’”

A man with hair color different from that of his own brother would be said to be “more closely related” to a non-relative who has the same hair color.

The argument the PBS series is making is absurd on its face.

There’s a good deal more in Dr. Rienzi’s critique that’s a bit too complicated to discuss, but falsehood by falsehood he takes the PBS series apart at its seams.

PBS’s lies about race are worth exposing, not only because it’s not true that we’re all mongrels but also because those lies help perpetuate the anti-white claims that whites and their whole civilization are inherently “racist” and based on the repression and exploitation of other races.

Showing that it’s the anti-white crusaders who are doing the lying and perpetrating the pseudo-science—and who just possibly might like to do a bit of repressing and exploiting themselves—tells us a few truths, not only about race itself but also about how Americans of all races are being deceived about it.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity, Science • Tags: Genomics, Race 
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Two of the major superstitions of our time are the notion that man is merely a blank slate whose behavior is merely the product of the social environment and its sister, that race doesn’t exist. Yet one by one, the pseudo-scientific sources of these myths are being discredited by serious scientists, and last week, one of the biggest sources of all took a nose dive.

Franz Boas, often called the grandfather of modern anthropology and a pioneer pusher of the idea that race is not a very meaningful concept, merely a “social construct” not found in nature, probably ranks with Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud as one of the most influential thinkers of the modern age. As a Columbia professor from 1899 to 1942, he virtually created modern anthropology, and the students he trained—among them, Margaret Mead and some of the most famous names in the field—dominated the discipline until only a few years ago.

One of Boas’ favorite targets was so-called “scientific racism,” and much of his own writing was intended to combat what he saw—sometimes rightly—as unscientific or simply false thinking about race.

But it now turns out that Boas himself was guilty of no small degree of unscientific blunder—and maybe even fraud.

In 1912, Boas published what became a classic study that claimed to show that the skull shapes (“cranial forms”) of the descendants of European immigrants to the United States altered from those of the original immigrants. Boas offered no explanation for why the changes took place, but if they were real, his finding pretty much wiped out the idea that different racial and ethnic types differ in fixed physical characteristics.

Boas’s study, write Abram Kardiner and Edward Preble in their popular history of anthropology, They Studied Man, [pay archive]

“did much to establish the notion in human genetics that what are transmitted in the germ plasm are not fixed characters but potentialities … dependent upon the environment for the particular form they will assume. The ‘nature-nurture’ controversy was largely obviated by this alternative.”

In political terms, if human beings have few or no “fixed characters” and are shaped by the social environment, then what we know as modern liberalism is in business. So is communism, which also assumes that human beings can be transformed by manipulating the social environment.

It’s no accident that Boas was a lifelong sympathizer of Marxism.

Unfortunately, for the social and human engineers, the study has now been shown to be invalid. Last week in the New York Times Science section, science reporter Nicholas Wade reported on an article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by anthropologists Corey Sparks and Richard L. Jantz that took another look at Boas’s study and methods. The effects of the new environment on the skulls of the immigrants’ descendants, they found, are “insignificant,” and the difference between the European and American born children were “negligible in comparison to the differentiation between ethnic groups.” ["A New Look at Old Data May Discredit a Theory on Race"By Nicholas Wade, NYT.Oct 8, 2002]

Moreover, as Dr. Jantz told the Times, Boas

“was intent on showing that the scientific racism of the day had no basis, but he did have to shade his data some to make it come out that way.”

In other words, Boas decided what his conclusions would be before he finished the research and then “shaded”—i.e., cheated on—the data to make them support the conclusion he wanted.

This is not science; it’s fraud — and modern liberalism is founded on it.

It doesn’t mean that the “scientific racism” Boas wanted to destroy is valid, but then again, as Dr. Jantz, says, it also “doesn’t mean cranial morphology [the classification of skulls by race] is meaningless either.”

Yet Boas was by far not the worst offender when it came to twisting data to support politically desired conclusions. His student Margaret Mead has been shown to have outright fabricated much of her data on Samoan sex life in the 1920s, and the claims about the lack of genetic influence on IQ of several other scientists trained or influenced by Boas have also been challenged by later research.

Anthropologist David Thomas, curator of anthropology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, tells the Times

“once we anthropologists said race doesn’t exist, we have ignored it since then,”

but now, the reappraisal of Boas’ work

“really does have far-reaching ramifications.”

You can say that again.

Not only has a giant of modern social science—and a pillar of modern liberalism—tumbled from his pedestal, but the dogma that man is merely a blank slate, on which state bureaucrats and social engineers may scribble whatever ideologies they please, has toppled with him.

If that dogma really can be killed, then much of the tyranny and chaos it has helped create will die with it.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity, Science • Tags: Race 
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When the Human Genome Project (the vast plan to decode and map all the genes of the human body) was completed last year, the first pronouncement about it from many scientists was that it proved “race doesn’t exist.”

The claim was not new. The notion that race is merely a “social construct” and a “biologically meaningless” concept as the New England Journal of Medicine editorialized had prevailed among most biological and social scientists for decades.

Now, however, the scientists have made yet another discovery: Race exists.

One scientist who says race exists is Dr. Neil Risch of Stanford University. His claims were surveyed in the New York Times Science section last month, and a good many of his colleagues are agreeing with him. Dr. Risch points out that some variations in human genetic endowment largely correspond to common ethnic and racial categories and, most importantly for his purposes, that the variations have immense medical significance.

In fact, that has long been known. As the Times article points out, Africans tend to have a genetic mutation that causes sickle cell anemia, while another that causes a certain metabolic disorder is rare among Chinese and Indians but present among Swedes. There are similar racial variations for such disorders or diseases as cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs syndrome and the ability to digest milk. Put simply, different racial groups inherit certain diseases or tendencies to contract them, and therefore there are genetic differences between the races. Race exists.

Dr. Risch isn’t the only one saying this these days. As the Times notes,

“Many population geneticists … say it is essential to take race and ethnicity into account to understand each group’s specific pattern of disease and to ensure that everyone shares equally in the expected benefits of genomic medicine.”

Dr. Risch argues that race

“has arisen because of the numerous small genetic differences that have developed in populations around the world,”

and he points to studies showing that

“these differences cluster into five major groups, which are simply the world’s major continental areas.”

Dr. Risch is not using his claim to justify donning a bedsheet, and so far nobody seems to have accused him of that (give them a little time, though).

His point is simply that denying the existence of race, largely for ideological reasons, is not only scientifically false but also medically harmful.

Knowing that racial variations in diseases exist is immensely helpful to doctors and researchers trying to cure or prevent the diseases.

Denying the reality of race doesn’t advance such efforts. It’s a little like trying to develop a space program if you assume the earth is flat and rests on the back of giant turtle.

The “race doesn’t exist” school of thought, of course, has been invoked to discredit segregation, white supremacy and apartheid (though all of those institutions developed well before any scientific concept of race existed at all). But challenging and abandoning the very concept of race when white racial power was the target was not exactly consistent with programs like affirmative action that counted by race.

Nor were the supposed racial egalitarians able to do without the concept of race when they wanted to dole out special privileges and treatment for the races they favored.

In short, when whites used race to justify and entrench their privileges, race didn’t exist; when non-whites used race to justify and entrench theirs, it did.

Denying that race exists, therefore, doesn’t mean that it can’t be used to serve a particular group’s political agenda, nor does affirming that race does exist necessarily imply that it will or should be used to serve another group’s agenda.

It does mean that scientists, of all people, ought to face the truth about what they study.

And it also means that race may mean more than differences in diseases. If race “has arisen because of the numerous small genetic differences that have developed in populations around the world,” then there logically ought to be other differences between the races than merely their proclivity to different health problems.

Each race, developing in a different environment, came into existence because of the need to adapt to such environments. It makes sense to believe that there may be many other differences between the races in addition to those we are—painfully—finally acknowledging as real.

Now that we know that race is real, the thing for serious scientists to do is to stop denying its existence and get on with finding out what else is real about it.

Once we know what race really means—not just for disease and health but also for intelligence, temperament and behavior—we’ll be able to forget about some agendas and pursue others that are based on something closer to scientific reality than to racial and political ideology.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity, Science • Tags: Genomics, Race 
Sam Francis
About Sam Francis

Dr. Samuel T. Francis (1947-2005) was a leading paleoconservative columnist and intellectual theorist, serving as an adviser to the presidential campaigns of Patrick Buchanan and as an editorial writer, columnist, and editor at The Washington Times. He received the Distinguished Writing Award for Editorial Writing of the American Society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE) in both 1989 and 1990, while being a finalist for the National Journalism Award (Walker Stone Prize) for Editorial Writing of the Scripps Howard Foundation those same years. His undergraduate education was at Johns Hopkins and he later earned his Ph.D. in modern history at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

His books include The Soviet Strategy of Terror(1981, rev.1985), Power and History: The Political Thought of James Burnham (1984); Beautiful Losers: Essays on the Failure of American Conservatism (1993); Revolution from the Middle: Essays and Articles from Chronicles, 1989–1996 (1997); and Thinkers of Our Time: James Burnham (1999). His published articles or reviews appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, National Review, The Spectator (London), The New American, The Occidental Quarterly, and Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture, of which he was political editor and for which he wrote a monthly column, “Principalities and Powers.”