After years of debating and exploring “Human Biodiversity” (HBD), a.k.a. “Scientific” Racism, I thought it might be good for me to say my final word–much as I did with the Pick Up Artist debate. I’m under no illusions: I’m sure there are more words that people will share as the years go on. As long as there is an IR disparity, there will be PUA, and as long as there is racism, there will be scientific racists, so I know that this discussion will most likely continue long after this post. But it’s been some time since the HBDers have brought anything new to the table, so it’s unlikely that my views will change much on this topic in the future. It’s time to settle up.
In the following LONG blog post, you can read about my history with HBD, the full history of HBD, why there are so many Asian American male HBD proponents, and what we need to do going forward to deal with the HBD problem.
Here’s my brief history:
I first ran into scientific racism in the excellent book “The Closing of the American Mind” by Allan Bloom. Bloom was not a racist, but he was a strong advocate for open-mindedness towards people with different views, and he believed it was in our best interest to listen to those who believed in unpolitically correct theories, such as scientific racism. I ran into scientific racism again with the Bell Curve by Herrnstein and Murray. The Bell Curve wasn’t nearly as racist as people made it out–the race thing was only a small part of the book–but it was a turning point for the resurgence of the movement. Years later, I first saw the term “Human Biodiversity” years ago when I read Steve Sailer’s “Is Love Colorblind“–which pushed a common theory on why there are more AF/WM and WF/BM couples than WF/AM and BF/WM couples. I’d heard the theory before, but this was the first piece I’d seen on the web (although to be fair, it was my first time reading about the “long hair” theory which separated Asian women and black women.)
HBD is exactly the same thing as scientific racism, the key difference is the focus: HBDers push the ideas that black people will never be smart enough to run their own countries, and that while Asian people are smart, the men aren’t as “alpha” as other races. As one prominent young Asian American HBD proponent says:
I believe Asian females gravitate towards white males because of a combination of genetics and the natural laws of attraction. In a multicultural society, these two groups of individuals will come together, far more often than an Asian male with a white female. This is part of HBD [human biodiversity]. I accept it. Even with copious amounts of game, there is not much a 5-7 beta Asian can do when pitted in a fight for an Asian female with an Alpha Aryan. Hell, there’s not much he can do against a beta Jew (BTW,this is not me, I’m 6-1 and athletic). Additionally, Asian female visual-spatial IQ=white male visual-spatial IQ, another reason why the two groups are so compatible.
Of course, we’ve had our own talks about Human BioPerversity…er Biodiversity…on this site. We had an interesting podcast with an Asian American Human Bidiversisist (is that the word?), and during his time here, we had a few conversations online as well (see here and here). I had no idea that there were so many Asian American guys who were adherents of this internet HBD movement. Outside of the expected angry White dudes who perpetuate this stuff, there is a HUGE cohort of angry Asian American men who think like the gentleman above–blacks are mentally inferior, Asians are mentally superior, and Whites are comfortably in the middle. Blacks are physically more masculine, Asians are physically more feminine, and Whites are comfortably in the middle.
The Origins of Scientific Racism
As many have pointed out, HBD is similar to Intelligent Design in that it’s an old idea repackaged with a new name. Just as Intelligent Design IS Creationism, HBD IS scientific racism. There’s no difference. Which is why I cringe every time some Asian American male HBDer starts spouting off pseudo-scientific nonsense as if it were something brand new to the world. It’s like, “Dude, that’s so 1800′s.” Actually there is a difference between racists in the 1800′s and now, but we’ll get to that later.
Racism started in Europe, and actually began within the realm of science. In The End of Racism, Dinesh D’Souza writes (p.27 of the 1995 hardcover edition):
“Although it can be found in embryonic form among the Chinese and the Arabs in the late Middle Ages, racism is a modern and Western ideology. Racism developed prior to slavery although it was later reinforced by slavery. Far from being the product of irrationality, fear and hatred, racism developed in Europe as a prodcut of Enlightenment, part of a rational and scientific project to understand the world.”
Contrary to the oft-heard-but-incorrect HBD proponents’ claim that “Intellectuals have not attempted to embrace the idea of HBD,” intellectuals started “HBD.” Only it wasn’t called HBD back then, and most of them were simply playing with ideas which were not part of their main body of work. D’Souza later goes on to discuss how many scientists and scientific racists back then were the same people. Some of them were among
“…the greatest thinkers of the Enlightenment. Hume, Voltire, Montesquieu, Kant, and Hegel were among the many who entertained racist views, although these did not make up the main part of their philosophy.” (p.62-63)
Gobineau was the writer who most accurately expressed European racism with his book “The Inequality of Human Races.” From there we see that many intellectuals of that age began measuring heads and doing other “scientific” things to rate the races. Intellectuals did in fact embrace HBD–it just so happens that they ended up rejecting after generations of examination.
Is It True?
Now you will hear many times how scientific racists say that we don’t know that the races are equal. You’ll often hear the strawman argument of:
“Well, if we tested people across different populations, I really doubt you’d get equal results! You’re just afraid to test!”
Indeed, it’s impossible to test across different populations fairly, as one would have to compare populations of equal wealth, education, etc. But even if it were possible…few people think that the results would be equal. If I compared population heights, vertical jumps, IQ, bowling scores, head sizes, or whatever, it’s highly unlikely that I’d get the exact same results. It’s a strawman.
Another common diversionary tactic is the assertion that IQ is genetic:
“Look at these twins studies. IQ is heritable!”
Well…hardly anyone is arguing with that. Some may claim that IQ is totally not heritable, but most people accept that there is at least some genetic component to intelligence. I don’t know of many people making the argument that intelligence is 100% environmental. More likely it’s a combination of environment and genetics.
The real question is whether these tiny differences mean anything. If my IQ is 125 and yours is 123, does that mean I’m gunning for success and you’re doomed to failure? What if I come from a poor family and had no school…if I have an IQ of 90 as a result of malnutrition, is it fair to say that it’s genetic? Also, the skills that are important for survival change from one generation to the next. They change depending on where you live. The ability to have strong gaman and to take nonsense is great if you’re a Japanese or American government bureaucrat, but it’ll tank your career if you’re an American or Chinese entrepreneur, or it could get you killed if you’re a Chinese entrepreneur against the Communist party. Populations and power also swing from one period to another–at one time Europeans looked up to Arabs as men of learning, and Europe has only be ascendant for the last 500 years or so–before that, the Chinese dominated in technology and culture.
It’s especially hard to get an unbiased view these days with the mass media. The mass media tells our stories. As Noam Chomsky wrote, it “manufactures consent.” As any political strategist will tell you, you can change the world with 30 second commercials and sound bites. With the influence of Hollywood, even intellectuals fall under the sway of the mass media. It’s easy for the media to get persuade people that dumb black men and weak Asian men are the norm, that it’s somehow genetic.
We can’t prove the nonexistence of genetic limits, but given the existence of the media and culture surrounding the decisions of those studying HBD and our population, it’s hard to deny the effect of culture. There is more evidence that indicates that we are limited more by a toxic past and present culture than by genetics.
For example, we know that IQ is malleable–people can study for such tests. As the one HBD proponent acknowledged (and actually told us) in our podcast, the IQ gap between Whites and Blacks has in fact narrowed over time. We know that perceptions of masculinity and beauty change over time–there have been times in the past when fat women were glorified, whereas many (but not all!) men now prefer thin.
Just look at how the races have grown closer in the last 200 years. In 1811, was it even feasible that there would be a black man who could be editor of the Harvard Law Review and then become President? Was it feasible that the 2012 ticket might see this man run against another black man, a former CEO of a huge pizza chain? We’ve narrowed the gap.
Furthermore, we know that belief is a reflexive property. Sports psychologists will tell you that believing you can succeed can often create success. People who believe they are less capable may fail because of that belief. As of yet, no one has successfully used science to prescribe the limits of race. There have been great Asian athletes such as Liu Xiang and Manny Pacquiao, and there have been great black intellectuals like Thomas Sowell and Claude Steele. There has so far been NO indication that most black people cannot succeed in school, or that most Asian people cannot train to be decent athletes, or that they cannot be on par with one another. Liu Xiang is a perfect example. Who would’ve thought that the top hurdler in the world would be a Chinese man?
It’s easier to believe in limits because it’s a lazier way of thinking. It’s easier to believe that stereotypes are true, and that the future will always be the same as the past. But history proves change can happen. My MacBook didn’t exist before Steve Jobs and Apple created it, and the U.S. didn’t exist before people decided that they would make it exist. Slavery had never been abolished before countries abolished it. No one was able to run a four minute mile before Roger Bannister broke the four minute mark, and now ALL elite middle-distance runners can break it. No one punched like Tyson before Tyson. It takes imagination and hard work for any change. If you lack either imagination or the ability to work hard, it’s easier to believe in a retroactive system like HBD.
Most teachers who teach in Africa believe in the African people. They’ve been there. Anyone who goes to Asia can see that despite the fact that Asians still suffer from a cultural inferiority complex, Asian women in Asia still like and often prefer Asian men, rejecting the trajectory of the Asian Female Celebrity Club. It will take imagination and hard work to raise the test scores of African Americans. It will take imagination and hard work to raise the cultural/masculine capital of Asian men. Just because it didn’t exist before doesn’t mean it can’t happen.
Why So Many Asian American Male HBD Proponents?
It’s somewhat unbelievable, given the information that I just presented above, that there are so many Asian American men who believe in HBD. We’ve seen historically how better living conditions yields better opportunities for everyone, we’ve seen things change drastically for black people between the 1800s and now. The gap hasn’t closed, of course, but the path of history has yielded enormous gains for all minorities, relative to where we were before. Accepting HBD requires a renunciation of equality, an acceptance of the status quo where White people lead and minorities follow. So why do so many Asian American men, despite all evidence that contradicts the hierarchical racial theories, accept scientific racism?
My theory is that that the AM acceptance of HBD is a form of little man complex. Admittedly, we’ve been crushed in the whole IR marketplace–an Asian dude has to make $24k more than a White dude to be viewed as equally attractive among Asian women. The AFCC and the American media have beaten us worse than those cops beat Rodney King. Because it’s easier to get stuck in the past, a lot of Asian men live neither in the present nor see the future. Many of our Asian brothers are therefore seeking to boost their self-esteem by focusing on what even White racists will acknowledge–that we’re smart. It’s much easier to roll with the punches–“You say my race is smart but feminine? Fine, I agree! (Except for me, since I’m 6’1 and athletic and deserve to be the superintendent of minorities.).” It’s easier to think retroactively than to see possibility. It’s a lazy man’s way of thinking, a defensive way of thinking, and with the power of the Ku Klux Klan and White supremacist institutionalized racism behind them, these HBD supporting Asian men think they can win. They don’t realize that they’re being used. They don’t realize that they’re capable of much more than what White racists have defined as Asian limitations.
Think about it–have any of you ever met an Asian guy with a high emotional EQ, who expresses himself freely, who has an entrepreneurial mind, and who also believes that groups of people face limits because of their race? No. Most HBD people hide behind the anonymous internet, scared of the light of day.
Indeed, no one ever got ahead by believing in limitations. We’ve seen limits crushed throughout time. And in almost all cases, these limits usually get knocked down by people who didn’t believe in them. Believing in racial limitations is a lazy man’s way of thinking. Believing in HBD makes you a worse person. We’ve seen the Asian American HBD believers on this site. They have little faith in humans, little in the way of dreams, and little in the way of proactive creative thinking. They’re victims of emotion. And unless they push themselves to think outside of a box created by 19th century racist European guys, they’ll be stuck there forever.
For Asian American men, it’s especially important that we see possibility. There are a lot of areas where we can improve–the arts, politics, dealing with the Asian American Female Celebrity Club--and we’re not going to get there if we’re mentally stuck in the past. We also won’t get there if we’re not open to learning from the world, if we let our little man insecurities get in the way of our developing intelligence.
We’ve been co-opted by racists. If you look at history, it’s a classic strategy of appointing a house slave to oversee and keep the rest of the minorities in check. The racists find vulnerable high-IQ Asian men to be their stooges, convincing them to deny the effect of institutional racism and mass media on our minority populations, convincing them that sexual equality is out of their reach, ascribing their failures in life to genes rather than circumstance. The irony is that these racist ideas have been within the culture for the last 200 years, and minorities as a whole have improved a lot since then, far past the limits that the enlightened racists of the nineteenth century ascribed to us.
Then and Now
In closing, there is a difference between racists of the 19th century and racists today. Racists of the 19th century never had the opportunity to see what we know today–that education and media could change the world for people of all races. There is no evidence that people have genetic limitations. Most people who believe in limitations do have limitations–for themselves.
There is perversity in Human Biodiversity–it kills the soul and cuts off a proponent’s ability to think. Already we’ve seen the low EQ and desperation morals of some of their proponents. With a full historical perspective, it’s impossible to say that one group has limitations while another doesn’t. People who don’t believe in limitations are often those who defeat limitations. To prepare ourselves to defeat limitations–both for ourselves personally and for those who we lead and inspire–it’s important that we cast aside the fictions of the racist past. Scientific racism has no basis in fact, no basis in reason. While it’s fine for people to explore scientific racism, as Allan Bloom recommended, it’s equally important that we keep our eyes on the future rather than getting mired in ideas of the past.
Now let’s put this topic to rest.