Friday, August 15, 2014

The high priests are out again

From The Times today.
"A British writer is facing global protests from scientists for suggesting that there are biological differences between races that could explain the success of European nations and make African societies prone to poverty and violence.

"Nicholas Wade had expressed the hope that his book, A Troublesome Inheritance, would “draw some of the tension from this fraught subject by showing that the understanding of genetic differences between human groups does not lead to racism”.

"The book, which speculates on whether differences between societies and nations are based on genetic variations, has caused uproar in academia and allegations that its author is doing the very thing he said he was seeking to avoid and encouraging racism.

"In a letter to The New York Times books section, 143 geneticists from universities in Europe and the US protest that his book “juxtaposes an incomplete and inaccurate account of our research on human genetic differences with speculation that recent natural selection has led to worldwide differences in IQ test results, political institutions and economic development.”

"The scientists rejected “Wade’s implication that our findings substantiate his guesswork”, adding that “there is no support from the field of population genetics for Wade’s conjectures.”

"Besides a chapter speculating on an evolutionary basis for “Jewish intelligence” and passages suggesting that genetic traits had led Africans to fail to “develop the ingrained behaviours of trust, non-violence and thrift that a productive economy requires,” Wade examines whether a genetic variation could predispose young African-Americans towards aggressive behaviour.

"He notes that 5 per cent of African-Americans in a study had the mutation as against 0.1 per cent of Caucasians. African-Americans with the genetic variation were “significantly more likely to have been arrested and imprisoned.”

"He says “a large number of genes are evidently involved in controlling aggression” and that even if African-Americans were more likely to possess one particular mutation, Caucasians may carry other mutations."
I reviewed Nicholas Wade's book here.

In other news, leading scientists confirm that the sun does indeed circle the earth, and that the world was created in 4004 BC.