Ten Arguments for the Existence of Racial Differences in Intelligence - and Why to
Welcome Race Realism
CHRIS BRAND (UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH) PROPOSES
"This House believes that there are deep-seated racial differences
For Gonville Hall Debating Society (University of Cambridge)
Tuesday, January 28, 1997
Mr President, I owe Cambridge a debt. During 1996, I have achieved a
certain notoriety for making what I call 'realistic' observations about race, sex, genes,
IQ and paedophilia. As a result of upsetting the new Thought Police -- the 'politically
correct' -- my book, The g Factor, was withdrawn by my censorious 'publisher', John Wiley
& Sons (New York and Chichester); and I am suspended from teaching and administration
at the University of Edinburgh. Yet student societies at the University of Cambridge have
twice invited me to address them - and even though I am myself an Oxford man! I am
grateful to you, Mr President.
Ironically, when last asked to talk in Cambridge on race and IQ, I
declined. I said it would be irresponsible to talk to a non-specialist audience on race
without having first covered the topic of IQ itself in reasonable depth. This year is
different. I now have no alternative but to present and support the views for which I have
been vilified. However, I will be presenting this address on the Internet and will there
be able to indicate some of the sober academic detail that I must needs omit tonight. I
will also gladly put up Darcus Howe's address should he wish me to do so. I will leave the
Website address <http://cycad.com/cgi-bin/Brand/>
with you, Mr President.
Whether there are deep-seated group differences in any important human
qualities is today an excruciatingly delicate topic in the West. Two years ago, Sir Roger
Bannister, the first four-minute-miler, himself a medical man of distinction, provoked
media frenzy in Britain by mentioning the obvious truth that Black people are superior to
Whites at running. Last year, my own repetition of the seventy-year old observation that
Whites are 15 points ahead of Blacks on IQ tests was what most commonly interested British
newshounds. Following the withdrawal of my own book, US Wiley soon cancelled a book by
Arthur Jensen while that pre-eminent IQ scholar was writing the book's last two chapters -
Yet what happens when my views do actually vault the censors and reach
the pubic domain? In September, my article for trend-setting Blacks -- explaining that I
wanted relevant, IQ-respecting education and suitable marital arrangements for them
(including polygamy) -- went out to 10,000 readers of the smart Black magazine downlow
('music for the hip hop nation'). Well, I did not receive a single letter or e-mail or
phone call of protest. Whoever wants to censor me and Art Jensen, it is not Black people,
even Blacks who read 'Black power' magazines that play up to full-blooded Black racists
like Louis Farrakhan and Ice Cube.
I will now address the factual question that confronts this House
tonight; but I will return to identify the true source of the demand that deep seated race
differences be denied.
The factual question about racial differences is one that would have
surprised many of our cultural forebears. The Hebrews of the Bible were certainly
nationalistic and what would doubtless today be called 'racist.' Yet the Jews did not base
themselves on any race realism about the lasting qualities of other peoples from whom they
kept themselves apart when not trying to fight them. The Greeks, too, despite their own
wars and empire-building did not have any racial theory. Serious race-theorizing only
developed with the European Enlightenment and the arrival of White missionaries and
explorers in Africa itself. David Hume, Immanuel Kant, Richard Burton (who translated the
Karma Sutra), Friedrich Engels, Karl Marx, Francis Galton, H. G. Wells (ex-PM Michael
Foot's hero) and Winston Churchill were among the many who accepted that Black-White
differences in mentality were substantial. The arrival of IQ testing from France after
1910 allowed the first serious demonstration of the correctness of this view. At the same
time, the testers found other interesting results for racial and ethnic groups: Jewish
people reliably have IQ's which, averaging 117, are markedly superior to those of other
Caucasian peoples; and East Asian peoples have average IQ's of around IQ 105-110. These
differences are largely as Galton estimated them in 1869 and in line with the frequency
with which Nobel Prizes are awarded to people from the different groups: for example,
Jewish people (3% of the US population) account for 27% of US Nobel Laureates. As Darwin
put it (1871, The Descent of Man): "The races differ....in constitution, in
acclimatization and in liability to certain diseases. Their mental characteristics are
likewise very distinct...." What twentieth-century psychometry has achieved is
reliable measurement allowing objective testing of racial theorizing.
Are measurable racial differences deep-seated (most probably genetic)
(contrary to the infamous 1951 declaration by the United Nations Organization)? There are
ten main lines of relevant evidence.
1. Economic. Poverty and low social class do not provide much
explanatory help. The Jews arrived in America in poverty from pogrom-torn Russian and
Poland and nevertheless scored well immediately on the early mental tests and soon
prospered. What happens if we match Black and White children today for the income of their
parents? Doing this reduces the children's usual 15-point IQ gap by only around 3 points.1
2. Medical & educational. What of other environmental features as
indexed by the mother's level of education, lack of pregnancy complications (e.g. because
of drug addiction) and the early health of her child? Again, matching Black and White
three-year-old children on these variables narrows the IQ gap by only one or two IQ
3. Paternal deprivation. Father-absence has often been ventured by
social science as an explanation for the problems of Black children with delinquency and
school failure.3 But the Black-White difference has grown no greater
through the twentieth century despite Black family structure -- once more stable than that
of Whites -- collapsing from 1970 into what is now the Black norm of single-parenting.
4. Alienation. What about the handicap of growing up as part of a
different culture, speaking a non-standard form of English and experiencing hostility from
the dominant culture because of one's difference? Fortunately for scholars, this problem
does not afflict Black people alone. In Britain, Pakistani children are bilingual, have a
different religion and sexual code from their hosts, and experience intense racial
hostility (often based on jealousy of their family's success). Despite these handicaps,
the IQ of Pakistani children has never been a problem, being an entirely normal 100 in
children of families who have been in Britain for five years or longer; and, perhaps
because of hard work, Pakistani schoolchildren perform a little better than do other
British children in mid-adolescence. Still worse for the 'alienation' thesis, children who
grow up deaf have entirely normal IQs on non-verbal tests: mainly born to hearing parents,
these children grow up in a misunderstanding environment in which even their nearest and
dearest are often cross with them and label them as 'stupid'; yet their IQs are at normal
Caucasian levels. Perhaps worst of all for the alienation thesis, the Japanese of
California, after experiencing a century of racial prejudice (which banned them from
churches, swimming pools and trade unions) found themselves cordially detested after the
Battle of Pearl Harbour and put into 'relocation camps' in the Eastern Californian desert.
Subsequently they were released on condition that they did not return to their ruined
homes and businesses but went eastwards instead. The result of all this racial
discrimination is well known4: the American Japanese are
over-represented in all of the professions, have a crime rate almost as low as that of the
Jews, and have been awarded multi-million dollar sums for the violation of their civil
rights in the 1940's.
5. Psychometric. In the 1970's, it became fashionable to suppose that IQ
tests must be somehow 'unfair' to Black children. Yet no criterion emerged by which this
claim could be demonstrated - except of course the very B-W difference which the
'unfairness' theory was itself meant to explain. IQ tests have the same psychometric
properties (reliabilities, correlations between their component parts) for Blacks as for
Whites of similar intelligence; and, far from homing in unfairly on special Black
weaknesses, the tests actually over-predict how well Blacks will do when assigned to
educational courses or jobs.5 Some psychological tests are better
measures of intelligence than others - they correlate higher with other mental tests; and
some psychological tests yield relatively better scores for Black children; but they are
not the same tests -Black children do better at just those tests (rote memory, simple
reaction times, bead threading) that are not principally measures of general intelligence.
6. Psycho-social engineering. Head Start programmes were long held by
the media to be likely to discredit hereditarianism about the race difference. But even
beyond-the-norm spending of $10,000 dollars annually per child was not enough to achieve
lasting IQ gains - and normally only those gains that could be expected from 'teaching the
test' (i.e. from nursery school children becoming familiar with the types of materials and
problems used by mental testers).6 After 30 years of effort in the
States, mainstream scholars conclude that Head Start programmes have a slightly improving
effect on delinquency rates (presumably because of the kindly atmosphere provided for
pre-schoolers) but not the long-term effects on intelligence and achievement that were
once eagerly anticipated.
7. Caucasoid genetic admixture. Many US Blacks have a degree of
Caucasian genetic admixture which can be estimated in groups by the frequency of
occurrence of the Duffy gene - a gene found in all Caucasians and in virtually no pure
Blacks. In the one study to date, Californian Blacks (of whom 23% have the Duffy gene) had
an average IQ of 90 on US Army tests; by contrast, Georgian Blacks (of whom only 11% had
the gene) scored around 80. Likewise, testing in Africa itself - where Caucasian admixture
is far less - yields IQ levels of around 70. Lately, testing in Soweto yielded a mean
Black IQ of 57; and testing in Israel of Black Jews from Ethiopia found an IQ of 70.7 The most recent result was provided by a Black psychologist in Zimbabwe:
he found 200 representative Zimbabwean children scored around IQ 67 whereas White
inner-city children in London averaged 95.8 By contrast, Vietnamese and
North Korean refugee children adopted into Belgian families had IQ's of 110 in 1994 - ten
points higher than modern Belgian norms.
8. Within-group heritability. Within each of the three main racial
groups -- within Whites, Blacks and East Asians - identical twins are substantially more
similar to each other than are fraternal twins (who share on average only 50% of human
genetic variations). It would be surprising and require some special explanation if
differences that were principally genetic when occurring within races turned out to be
largely environmental when happening to occur between races. (Needless to say, at present
no such explanation has been advanced, let alone vindicated.)
9. In-breeding depression ï¿½ B-W difference. An indication that a trait
is inherited on dominant genes is provided when trait levels are reduced by cousin
marriage - a phenomenon called 'inbreeding depression.' Some mental tests show more
inbreeding depression than others, and it is mainly these tests which show the biggest
Black-White differences in performance levels: poor Black performance occurs on just those
tests where dominant genes are influential.9
10. Adoption studies. The main recent adoption study involves Black,
mixed-race and White children in Minnesota who were all fostered into White homes. Fifteen
years ago, when the children were around age 7, it appeared that the Black adoptees had an
IQ of 95. This raised environmentalist hopes; but in the 1990's it transpired that, by
late adolescence, the White adoptees averaged 106, the mixed-race adoptees 99 and the
Black adoptees 89.10 As is usual, the high-quality environment
provided by adoptive parents had helped all the children to slightly higher IQs than are
normal for their racial groupings; but the racial differences between them had only been
temporarily, not permanently diminished. (In modern psychogenetic work, it is quite common
to find that environmental influences on intelligence which are strong in early childhood
wear off in adolescence and adulthood.)
Mr President, in 1933, a momentous debate took place at the Oxford
Union. A straightforward motion was rejected by that House. It was 'That this House would
fight for King and Country.' Mr Hitler heard of this rejection with delight, and within
six years the opponents of that motion were eating their words while fighting the man with
whom pacifists had thought peace could be made.
Just as the mid-1930's marked the high peak of British pacifism, so the
mid-1990's mark a new peak - hopefully the highest - of Political Correctness (PC), the
movement that is the true source of demands that deep-seated race differences be denied.
Even though the British Labour Party today acknowledges the need for 'fast track learning'
(which permits educating children according to their own abilities rather than in defiance
of them), the forces of PC say 'No!' PC favours egalitarianism, not freedom -- whether for
parents or children. PC insists on treating children according to their chronological ages
rather than the psychological reality of their mental ages. Entrenched in the media, the
publishing houses and many universities, the PC 'liberal'-left has completed its 'long
march through the institutions.' Communism has been seen off, but PC demands
reality-denying egalitarianism anyway. In cahoots with so-called 'postmodernism' and
'constructivism' which deny the existence of realities such as race, sex and IQ
differences, the PC proposition is that, even if there were such realities, it would be
impolite to speak about them -- and PC people will make it impolitic, as my own case
shows. Racism is to be challenged by the encouragement of ignorance - by 'ignoracism',
indeed. Weirdly, the years of rising 'anti-racism', 'ignoracism' and 'affirmative action'
have been a disaster for ordinary Black people. In the USA, one young Black man in three
is in jail at any given time, fifty per cent of the prison population is Black; and the
percentage of out-of-wedlock births has soared. No one even maintains there is any less
Tonight the eyes of a new authoritarianism are trained on this House. PC
has had a great year: it has suppressed two books and left academics afraid to discuss
race. Tonight, PC looks to this House to oppose this motion so it can continue its
despotic, self-serving work that is of no lasting use to either Blacks or Whites. There
are deep-seated racial differences in intelligence. There is no need to fear them. There
is every reason to acknowledge them in schools to the advantage of *all*. I thus urge this
House to reject PC hysteria, speak the truth and support the Motion.
END OF PROPOSING ADDRESS
Subsequently, Darcus Howe showed no sign of wishing to have his own talk
put up at this Website. Examples of his 'arguments' are as follows. (a) Whites have to
make up for slavery. (b) Nelson Mandela's university degrees and the recent award of Nobel
Prizes for Literature to Black men show that there can be no deep-seated Black-White
difference in intelligence. Mr Howe twice expressed the desire to murder me.
Students' questions were largely addressed to me. This allowed me to
provide coverage of arguments 5, 8 and 9 which had been omitted from the talk itself
because of time considerations. To an allegation that IQ tests were unreliable, I
explained that a 40-year follow-up of representative Canadian soldiers had found a
test-retest correlation of .78.11 To a suggestion that intelligence was multiple, not
unitary, I referred to the remarkable work of the leading follower of Louis Thurstone
(himself the first psychologist to argue for multiple, independent dimensions of mental
ability). In John Carroll's recent summary of his life's work, the 'g' factor emerges
supreme.12 To Darcus Howe's argument that Whites should continue to
beat their breasts about slavery, I pointed out (a) that the early slaves to the American
plantations were mainly white but do not seem to have nursed their wrath to keep it warm;
(b) that Blacks and Arabs were in their own way just as instrumental as Whites in
organizing the trade; (c) that Whites stopped the slave trade despite pleas from Black
countries for it to continue; (d) that at least one Black country, Mauritania, still has
half a million slaves (according to the British Anti-Slavery Society, 1991).13
There were no closing addresses, but something of my intended 'Finale'
was hopefully conveyed during questioning.
Mr President, all men are equal in three important senses -- before the
God of the Bible and the Koran, before Darwin (for we are all, equally, evolutionary
survivors) and before the law in Western societies. I have no wish to persuade this House
However, such overall equality does not mean that people are similar, or
even that they are similar in all the ways that really matter. Some men, are physically
puny; while others are athletic. Some girls are not blessed with good looks. Some people
'got rhythm' while others just haven't. The same is true of group differences: Black men
plainly excel at boxing, basketball and athletics generally; White men and women dominate
rowing and swimming; and neither Blacks nor Whites seem as yet to take on Sumo wrestlers
or to have much chance at table tennis.
Naturally, we all try to be sensitive in what we say about people's
differences. One doesn't talk about the splendid size of another man's sexual tackle when
one is with one's own indifferently equipped boyfriend. Some people even conspire to help
the disadvantaged believe that penis size doesn't matter, or that fat girls have more fun.
Nevertheless, we surely avoid outright lies if we can; and never more so
than when asked for serious advice as to a friend's prospects. We do not advise
fly-weights to argue about girlfriends with Mike Tyson. We do not advise girls to go in
for mountaineering or motor car racing. More particularly, few would formulate expensive
public policies on the basis of downright untruths.
Yet this is the position in which the West finds itself after thirty
years of increasing 'anti-racism', ignoracism and PC. The education system has been
'dumbed down' so that brighter children are held back and more people can appear to be
succeeding. Racial quotas in the USA discriminate heavily against Asian and Jewish
children. Racism itself remains undiminished even according to the architects of
'anti-racism.' Faced with such nonsense, it is time to return to respecting individuals,
practising colour-blindness and telling the truth. This is why this House should support
the Motion tonight.
END OF CRB FINALE
The result of the Debate, by a public show of hands, was that the Motion
was overwhelmingly defeated. (One hand went up in favour, then many went up against. No
one remembered to count the abstentions, but they probably numbered about 35.)
Whether the 98-strong audience was at all 'rigged' is not known. It
subsequently came to light that the Debate had not been advertised in 'Varsity' (the
newspaper for Cambridge University students).
My own reaction was one of relief at having held my ground in all the
arguments in which I engaged - though in truth my opponents were, surprisingly, so
ill-informed that this turned out to be easy. On the other hand, it is horrifying to see
the spread of emotional and downright irrational 'anti-racism' even to such a respectable
university as Cambridge. No doubt many in the audience wished to advertise their sympathy
for Black people as 'underdogs'; but I maintain that underdogs as well as overdogs deserve
to be handled realistically, not patronized. In the absence of realism, we *all* suffer --
notably in the educational arena, but also more widely in that 'anti-racism' will reliably
fuel 'racism' (currently mainly Black racism, but real White racism will return in time if
Perhaps worst of all, the Debate revealed starkly the unwillingness of
psychologists and biologists to take any part at all in public debates on race and IQ:
hardly any member of staff at Cambridge showed up for the Debate, and none supported me or
voted for the Motion. Here the 'Anti-Nazi League' can congratulate itself: it has not
frightened off Gonville & Caius College, the Cambridge police or me; but it has
frightened off virtually all those who are paid by the British taxpayer to tell the truth
about human psychology.
I will try to deal with genuine questions and criticisms from people who
show familiarity with this talk and with relevant references which are listed below in
'Endnotes'. (All these references are readily accessible. The list is not intended to be
complete but rather to indicate key starting points for anyone trying to follow the race
& IQ controversy today.)
As a final note to this episode, let me announce a happy development for
supporters of The g Factor. The problem of terminology for the position of Phil Rushton,
Richard Lynn and myself has now reached a solution. We now all three agree to describe
ourselves as race realists - while of course stressing that we are not racially prejudiced
and do not propose any form of racial discrimination and are thus not racists in the
everyday understanding of that term (see NewsLetters for May, 1996).
ENDNOTES / REFERENCES
1 JENSEN, A.. R. (1980). Bias in Mental Testing, pp.
42-3, 57-9. London : Methuen.
(Or see BRAND, C. R., 1996, 'The 'g' Factor', Chapter 1, pp. 38-9.
Chichester, UK : Wiley DePublisher.)
2 MONTIE, Jeanne E. & FAGAN, J.F., III (1988).
'Racial differences in IQ: item analysis of the Stanford-Binet at 3 years.' Intelligence
3 HERMAN, Ellen (1995). The Romance of American
Psychology: Political Culture in the Age of Experts. Berkeley, CA : University of
4 VERNON, P.E. (1982). The Abilities and Achievements
of Orientals in North America. New York : Academic.
5 REYNOLDS, C. R. & BROWN, R. T. (eds) (1984).
'Perspectives on Bias in Mental Testing.' New York : Plenum. (Or see BLINKHORN, S. (1985).
'Dispatched from the trenches.' Nature 313, 24 i, 328-329.)
6 SPITZ, H. (1986). The Raising of Intelligence: A
Selected History of Attempts to Raise Retarded Intelligence. Hillsdale, NJ : Lawrence
Erlbaum Associates. (And BRAND, C. R., 1996, 'The 'g' Factor', Chapter 4, pp. 129-134.
Chichester, UK : Wiley DePublisher.)
7 OWEN, K. (1992). 'The suitability of Raven's
Standard Progressive Matrices for various groups in South Africa.' Personality &
Individual Differences 13, 149-160.
8 ZINDI, F. (1994). 'Differences in psychometric
performance.' 'The Psychologist 7', xii, 549-552.
9 RUSHTON, J. P. (1996). Review of The Bell Curve.
Personality & Individual Differences, c. ix.
10 See LYNN, R. (1994). 'Some reinterpretations of
the Minnesota transracial adoption study.' Intelligence 19, 1, 21-27.
11 SCHWARTZMAN, A.E., GOLD, D., ANDRES, D. ARBUCKLE,
T.Y. & CHAIKELSON, J. (1987). 'Stability of intelligence: a forty-year follow-up.'
Canadian Journal of Psychology 41, 244-256.
12 CARROLL, J.B. (1993). Human Cognitive Abilities: A
Survey of Factor-Analytic Studies. Cambridge, UK : Cambridge University Press. (Or see
BRAND, C. R., 1993, 'The importance of the g factor.' Times Higher Educational Supplement,
1094, 22 x, p. 22.)
13 D'SOUZA, Dinesh (1995). The End of Racism:
Principles for a Multiracial Society, pp. 111-2. New York : Free Press.
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