It's a biological fact that there are innate differences in IQ among different races. If you can't deal with that, enjoy being a truther.Set aside the fact that Charles Johnson is a soulless ginger (heh), let's talk about race and intelligence and this assertion he makes about a fact of biology. But more, let's talk about the consequences of his assertion about that fact of biology.
— Charles C. Johnson (@ChuckCJohnson) January 30, 2015
To start, I will declare outright some biases: (a) I fucking love science (ahem) (b) I am bi-racial; specifically, I'm half white boy, half black girl. That sounds weird, but there you have it. I have some skin (heh) in the game, so to speak. And (c) I am a Christian.
I was born in Cameroon, lived the first half of my life in Nigeria in the west of Africa and then moved around until I settled in Florida, which is as close to a melting pot as you will have anywhere else in the US, both in literal and metaphorical terms. What this means is that, as an average observer of humanity--certainly enough to know I don't like most humans--I can tell you that there are truths to be found in generalities about groups. Where things start to fray is in applying those averages, those generalities to individual members of those groups. It takes a steady mind to avoid bigotry, and we are all of us guilty of it regardless of skin color.
For example, the myriad problems in Nigeria have at their root the deep divides between Nigerian ethnic and attendant religious groups: the eastern Igbos, reputed to be more intelligent than the northern Hausas, don't like the western Yorubas, etc. And they each say things about each other in generalities: "Don't trust an Igbo trader, son. He's out to steal as much as he can. Learn to bargain!" And so on.
We are generalization engines. We categorize. We sort and classify. It's what has made us the dominant species on the planet. But it is also the bane of our existence. The source of much strife, of war, of violence, of evil. With this in mind, let's talk about genetics, of which I know just enough from High School & College biology (I was a Zoology major at a University in Nigeria, intending on going on to Medical School). It is a fact that certain attributes pass genetically from generation to generation. It is, truly, settled science if there ever was such a thing. Among black Americans, a doctor will say, high blood pressure is more common. Sickle Cell Anemia is prevalent among black Africans, etc.
Chances are, you inherited your father's thighs or your mother's breasts--which would really suck for you if you're a man. Chances are, you'll likely die from the same disease that killed one of your grandfathers, if medical science doesn't find a cure. Chances are, people will say you have your mother's green eyes, Chances are, you and your sisters share your grandmother's Roman nose. And the list goes on.
There's no valid reason why genetic inheritance of attributes should stop, by human fiat, at the neck and go no higher. Those calf muscles you got from your father, but no one knows why you both suck at mathematics. No idea. Nonsense. Intelligence and the attendant capability is heritable. I've seen it, you've seen it. I believe, based on the evidence, that this is a fact of life.
Well now, what about groups? Ah now there's where the road is not so easy to walk. The Nazis (you knew it was coming) used the "biological fact" of racial differences to send millions to the gas chambers. Does this, one wonders, therefore invalidate the study of racial differences? Of course not, because to do so is to commit a logical fallacy. Are there racial differences between peoples and are those differences genetic? I say yes. Race, like sex, is most certainly not a social "construct" and it is foolish to think otherwise.
And if by extension, there are biological--including morphology--differences between the races, transferrable through the genes, and if, intelligence is likewise transferrable through the genes, it ought to follow that there are differences in intelligence between the races. As a half-black, half-white man, this makes sense to me; it does not make me uncomfortable in the least.
And this is why: I do not apply what I know to be true about groups to the individual members of that group. For two reasons: first because it's committing a logical fallacy to do otherwise and also because earlier I declared the bias that I am a Christian. What that means is that in the way I live my life and in my interactions with people, there are certain rules and regulations that govern and provide guidance to those interactions. I believe I am made in God's image (Imago Dei) and I also believe every human being on the planet is also made in God's image. This does not nullify the fact of our differences, of which there are many: racial, ideological, political, and so on. What is does do is require that I act accordingly for we are, all of us, God's children, brothers and sisters.
The problem is, we're humans. Fallible and fallen creatures that really suck generally. With evil in the heart, we seize on our differences to rationalize our evil actions against others. It is "harder" to shoot your son in the head than a stranger's. It is "easier" to kick a dog (Canis familiaris) than it is to kick a child (Homo sapiens). People and things that are different from us are easier to act against with malice. It is the stuff of which human history is made and all you have to do to convince yourself of this reality is to read a few history books.
So then, for argument's sake accept the fact of the matter that there are differences between the races. The question now is, so what? From which follows, no what? What are we to do with this information? As with most questions posed to humanity, it comes fraught with advantage and danger.
My doctor asks me for a family history so he can help me avoid "family-related" problems so I can live longer and healthier than my mother who died young. The racist down the street from me assumes because of my mother's skin color that I am unintelligent, if not outright stupid, and because of this, am two steps away from being violent. Well, in a way, he's right: I am steps away from being violent, but that requires he takes the first few steps first. :)
For good and for bad, there are differences between the races. For good, we can tailor health practices to ensure we all live longer. For bad, we can have Auschwitz. Personally, for you, as an individual, what should this bit of information do for you? Information, data, sitting there means nothing. You may as well have never known it--and I believe this is the path many take, to turn a blind eye. Does this mean that you will act in a certain way when you meet a black person? An Arab? A Jew? A Chinese man? Will it change the way you would have acted?
If it is shown that the intelligence of black Africans is lower than that of white Europeans, does this mean you now understand why black African countries are such hell holes? Does this remove the blinders, everything now clear? Does the relatively high intelligence of the Ashkenazi Jews now mean we should only have those Jews be scientists? Drawing only from that class of persons the doctors, engineers? Are you, as a white man, better than me, as a half-white man who is in turn better than a fully-black man? What does "better" mean in this situation?
As a government, do we start passing legislation barring certain groups from occupying certain posts in society based on genetics? Are we to segregate blacks in certain sections of our cities (which they already do on their own, by choice, it seems)? Japanese? Do we pass laws requiring that blacks cannot intermarry with Asians because the ensuing offspring will be "less capable" for society?
What do we do with this information, considering it's truth? Now, what? Considering how bad we are at statistics, replete through and through with cognitive bias after cognitive bias, now what.