The preceding article, on how environmentalists are ignoring reality when it comes to reintroducing predators to areas where they’d previously been exterminated, brought to mind the politically-correct blinkered approach of many scientists today. City Journal highlighted one such refusal to face reality in a recent article.
A strange thing is happening to the venerable magazine Scientific American. It has decided to kick its science-loving readers in the teeth and embrace a modern equivalent of Lysenkoism—the doctrine that required Soviet biologists to ignore evolution and the genetics of plants.
The great biologist Edward O. Wilson died on December 26. Few readers of Scientific American could be unaware of Wilson’s towering contributions to biology and conservation, or of his rare gifts as a synthesizer and writer. They surely didn’t expect that the oeuvre of this globally renowned scientist would be labeled by Scientific American, just three days after his death, as “built on racist ideas.”
Why would the editor of the magazine, Laura Helmuth, take it into her head to insult almost everything her readers believe in? The sad truth is that she, like some editors of more important scientific journals, has been infected by a taste-destroying, judgment-paralyzing malady: the virus of progressive wokeness.
The article she ran, by a junior academic at UC San Francisco, Monica McLemore (who holds a Ph.D. in nursing science), asserts that Wilson’s “racist ideas” come from his book Sociobiology, which supported “the notion that differences among humans could be explained by genetics, inheritance and other biological mechanisms.”
The assertion reflects the foundation on which woke theory is built: everyone is the same, with no genetic differences between sexes or races. By rejecting genetics, adherents can dismiss the notion that people might have different innate talents and earn different rewards. The theory instead attributes any deviation from equality, whether in occupations or income, to discrimination. At one blow, the hope of a merit-rewarding society is destroyed, to be replaced by a distribution of wealth according to wokeist rules.
Woke theory provides the platform for putting opponents on the defensive, grabbing more spoils for practitioners of identity politics, and smearing as racist anyone who dares dispute the premise of the whole racket—that people have no genetic differences. Since no one wants to be called a racist, the intimidation works perfectly and is spreading an ever-widening circle of fear in campuses, corporations, and media.
The premise is, of course, entirely false.
. . .
The denial of genetics is a truly surprising modern reprise of Lysenkoism. Wokeists, too, both deny the role of genetics in biology and aggressively seek to punish or ostracize their critics. Some 3,000 Soviet biologists were dismissed, imprisoned, or killed because they refused to abandon the theory of evolution for the nonsense Trofim Lysenko was peddling. Our academics are evidently made of more pliant stuff.
There’s more at the link.
This is on the same level as the radical pro-choice side (which should really be called the “anti-life” side) of the abortion debate. The radicals could not possibly deny that a living thing – the foetus – was being killed during an abortion; so they challenged the nature of life itself, arguing that the foetus was not actually alive as an independent entity, or denying that it was a human being at all (calling it a “clump of cells” instead), or using any other contortion of speech and denial of reality that came to hand, rather than acknowledge that abortion is killing a human being. They continue to do that to this day. Even though abortion providers make fortunes every year by selling foetal body parts for human medical research, they continue to deny that they’re killing human beings. They dare not admit it – because if they did, they’d destroy their own industry, and expose their own lies.
The “woke” dare not admit that their pontifications bear no relationship whatsoever to reality. They dare not admit that they seek to crush any alternative viewpoint because their own claims can’t stand up to serious, in-depth, logical analysis or rational argument. They can’t win an argument on the basis of the merits of their position, so they attack the merits of any and every other position. They’re the living embodiment of the old lawyer’s advice: “If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If both the facts and the law are against you, assassinate the character of the witness.”
“Wokeness” is a plague that’s caused immense damage to the human race. We’re going to have to exterminate it, and get rid of the influence of its practitioners, if we want to get out of the mess we’re in right now.