The left-media elite stroke their egos that they “follow the science” and that, consequently, anyone who disagrees with them is a “denialist”. Yet, on certain essential facts, the left are the world’s great denialists. One such fact is the correlation between race and average IQ scores.

Many on the left go even further and deny that race even exists at all. 30 million and more customers of DNA ancestry companies disprove that nostrum by having their racial ancestry measured with pinpoint accuracy.

An almost equal mistake is imagining that genetics are concrete destiny. As a recent New Yorker profile of University of Texas psychologist Page Harden put it, we are facing “a two-front campaign: on her left are those who assume that genes are irrelevant, on her right those who insist that they’re everything”.

First, the facts, even as admitted to by boiler-plate leftist publication, Vox:

(1) Differences in intelligence, as measured by IQ tests, are real.
(2) Intelligence is partly heritable […] Like the validity of intelligence testing, the heritability of intelligence is no longer scientifically contentious.
(3) Racial groups differ in average IQ […] That is simply a fact….
(4) Standard racial categories like black and white are validated by genetic tests

These are the facts. As I recently put it, in The BFD: “The Link Between Race and IQ Is Real – But Not Immutable”. This has inevitable relevance to public policy. Policies made in the absence of, or worse, blatant denial of facts, are bad policies. Often for the very people they claim to be helping. Charles Murray, who outraged the woke left by talking about IQ and race, notes how artificially promoting lower IQ students into high-IQ schools leads directly to high dropout rates. Instead of going to a middle-tier school and doing well, average students, surrounded by geniuses they can’t hope to compete with, become disillusioned and give up.

In the New Yorker piece, fellow psychologist Eric Turkheimer agrees that:

You have to believe in a certain amount of genetic causation or you don’t have a science, and you can’t believe in too much genetic causation or you believe that poor people are poor because they have poor genes—and that’s a very, very delicate walk.

But Harden, who likes to cite Matthew 25:40 (“Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me”), believes exactly that: Poor people often are poor because they received poor genes in the “genetic lottery.”

But, in fact, it’s far from “simple genetic luck”, as claimed.

Do you really get your genes wholly through a random raffle, as Harden’s Genetic Lottery title implies? Or perhaps your ancestors and their decisions had something to do with it?

Babies aren’t really accidents […]

Consider a suddenly relevant example of poor genes: birth defects stemming from inbreeding.

The prevalence of inbreeding in certain areas and cultures is an excellent example of very large groups of parents making generations of bad decisions that load the genetic dice against their offspring.

Afghans have very high rates of birth defects because they are so inbred: 28 percent of married Afghans are wed to their first cousins and another 7 percent of couples are double first cousins, who are as closely related as half siblings.

Not surprisingly, 39% of Afghan infants suffer unfortunate disorders. The average IQ of Afghans is probably depressed several points by their penchant for consanguineous marriages.

Inbreeding is one area where the confluence of culture and genetics notably contributes to lower than average IQs. A 2017 study noted that, “there is an important cluster of countries with high levels of consanguinity observed in most communities of North Africa, the Middle East and Western Asia”.

Now, what cultural factor might all those regions have in common? Guess.

Here, too, is where the facts of race and IQ collide with questions of policy.

Should the U.S. public be informed of the high rate of costly genetic problems in Afghans before letting in more of them?

Or should this kind of genetic knowledge be off-limits to American voters?

Should Americans attempt to persuade the huge number of Afghans who are now being admitted that their culture’s custom of inbreeding is wrong?

Or would enforcing our various state laws against cousin marriage be eugenics and discriminatory against Afghans and their right to move here and avail themselves of our tax dollars?

Takimag

These are important questions, but as Steve Sailer gloomily asks: do you really think it’s possible to have an intelligent, fact-based discussion of such issues? Try asking Paddy Gower.

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Genes and IQ: It’s Not Just a Random ‘Lottery’
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Lushington D. Brady

Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. I grew up in a generational-Labor-voting family. I kept the faith long after the political left had abandoned it. In last decade or...