|American Renaissance magazine|
|Vol. 20, No. 1||January 2009|
The Unknown Martin Luther King, Jr.
King was hardly the greatest American.
Forty years after his death, the popularity of Martin Luther King remains extraordinary. He is perhaps the single most praised person in American history, and millions adore him as a hero and almost a saint. The federal government has made space available on the Mall in Washington for a national monument for King, not far from Lincoln’s. Only four men in American history have national monuments: Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt; and now King will make five.
King is the only American who enjoys the nation’s highest honor of having a national holiday on his birthday. There are other days of remembrance such as Presidents’ Day, but no one else but Jesus Christ is recognized with a similar holiday. Does King deserve such honors? Much that has been known to scholars for years — but largely unknown to most Americans — suggests otherwise.
As a young man, King started plagiarizing the work of others and he continued this practice throughout his career.
At Crozer Theological Seminary in Chester, Pennsylvania, where he received a bachelor of divinity degree in 1951, many of his papers contained material lifted verbatim and without acknowledgement from published sources. An extensive project started at Stanford University in 1984 to publish all of King’s papers tracked down the original sources for these early papers and concluded that his academic writings are “tragically flawed by numerous instances of plagiarism.” Journalist Theodore Pappas, who has also reviewed the collection, found one paper showing “verbatim theft” in 20 of a total of 24 paragraphs. He writes:
King’s plagiarisms are easy to detect because their style rises above the level of his pedestrian student prose. In general, if the sentences are eloquent, witty, insightful, or pithy, or contain allusions, analogies, metaphors, or similes, it is safe to assume that the section has been purloined.
King also plagiarized himself, recycling old term papers as new ones. Some of his professors complained about sloppy references, but they seem to have had no idea how extensively he was stealing material, and his habits were well established by the time he entered the PhD program at Boston University. King plagiarized one-third of his 343-page dissertation, the book-length project required to earn a PhD, leading some to say he should be stripped of his doctoral degree. Mr. Pappas explains that King’s plagiarism was a lifelong habit:
“King’s Nobel Prize Lecture was plagiarized extensively from works by Florida minister J. Wallace Hamilton; the sections on Gandhi and nonviolence in his ‘Pilgrimage’ speech were taken virtually verbatim from Harris Wofford’s speech on the same topic; the frequently replayed climax to the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech — the ‘from every mountainside, let freedom ring’ portion — came from a 1952 address to the Republican National Convention by a black preacher named Archibald Carey; and the 1968 sermon in which King prophesied his martyrdom was based on works by J. Wallace Hamilton and Methodist minister Harold Bosley.”
Perhaps King had no choice but to use the words of others. Mr. Pappas has found that on the Graduate Record Exam, King “scored in the second-lowest quartile in English and vocabulary, in the lowest ten percent in quantitative analysis, and in the lowest third on his advanced test in philosophy.”
King lived a double life. During the day, he would speak to large crowds, quoting Scripture and invoking God’s will, and at night he frequently had sex with women from the audience. “King’s habits of sexual adventure had been well established by the time he was married,” says Michael Eric Dyson of Georgetown University, a King admirer. He notes that King often “told lewd jokes,” “shared women with friends,” and was “sexually reckless.” According to King biographer Taylor Branch, during a long party on the night of January 6 and 7, 1964, an FBI bugging device recorded King’s “distinctive voice ring out above others with pulsating abandon, saying, ‘I’m f***ing for God!’”
Sex with single and married women continued after King married, and on the night before his death, King had two adulterous trysts. His first rendezvous was at a woman’s house, the second in a hotel room. The source for this was his best friend and second-in-command, Ralph Abernathy, who noted that the second woman was “a member of the Kentucky legislature,” now known to be Georgia Davis Powers.
Abernathy went on to say that a third woman was also looking for King that same night, but found his bed empty. She knew his habits and was angry when they met later that morning. In response, writes Abernathy, King “lost his temper” and “knocked her across the bed . . . She leapt up to fight back, and for a moment they were engaged in a full-blown fight, with [King] clearly winning.” A few hours later, King ate lunch with Abernathy and discussed the importance of nonviolence for their movement.
To other colleagues, King justified his adultery this way: “I’m away from home twenty-five to twenty-seven days a month. F***ing’s a form of anxiety reduction.” King had many one-night stands but also grew close to one of his girlfriends in a relationship that became, according to Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer David Garrow, “the emotional centerpiece of King’s life.” Still, sex with other women remained “a commonplace of King’s travels.”
In private, King could be extremely crude. On one FBI recording, King said to Abernathy in what was no doubt a teasing remark, “Come on over here, you big black motherf***er, and let me suck your d**k.” FBI sources told Taylor Branch about a surveillance tape of King watching a televised rerun of the Kennedy funeral. When he saw the famous moment when Jacqueline Kennedy knelt with her children before her dead husband’s coffin, King reportedly sneered, “Look at her. Sucking him off one last time.”
Despite his obsession with sex and his betrayal of his own wife and children, and despite Christianity’s call for fidelity, King continued to claim the moral authority of a Baptist minister.
King stated that the “vast majority of white Americans are racist” and that they refused to share power. His solution was to redistribute wealth and power through reparations for slavery and racial quotas:
“No amount of gold could provide an adequate compensation for the exploitation and humiliation of the Negro in America down through the centuries. Not all the wealth of this affluent society could meet the bill. Yet a price can be placed on unpaid wages . . . The payment should be in the form of a massive program by the government of special, compensatory measures which could be regarded as a settlement.” Continued King, “Moral justification for such measures for Negroes is rooted in the robberies inherent in the institution of slavery.” He named his plan the Bill of Rights for the Disadvantaged. Some poor whites would also receive compensation because they were “derivative victims of slavery,” but the welfare of blacks was his central focus.
King has been praised, even by conservatives, as the great advocate of color-blindness. They focus too narrowly on one sentence in his “I Have a Dream” speech, in which he said he wanted to live in a nation “where [my children] will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” The truth is that King wanted quotas for blacks. “[I]f a city has a 30 percent Negro population,” King reasoned, “then it is logical to assume that Negroes should have at least 30 percent of the jobs in any particular company, and jobs in all categories rather than only in menial areas.”
One of King’s greatest achievements is said to have been passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. At the signing ceremony on July 2, he stood directly behind President Lyndon Johnson as a key guest. The federal agency created by the act, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, now monitors hiring practices and ensures that King’s desires for racial preferences are met.
Like liberals today, King denied racial differences. In a reply to an interviewer who told him many Southern whites thought racial differences were a biological fact, he replied:
This utterly ignorant fallacy has been so thoroughly refuted by the social scientists, as well as by medical science, that any individual who goes on believing it is standing in an absolutely misguided and diminishing circle. The American Anthropological Association has unanimously adopted a resolution repudiating statements that Negroes are biologically, in innate mental ability or in any other way inferior to whites.
The conclusions to be drawn from his belief in across-the-board equality were clear: failure by blacks to achieve at the level of whites could be explained only by white oppression. As King explained in one interview, “I think we have to honestly admit that the problems in the world today, as they relate to the question of race, must be blamed on the whole doctrine of white supremacy, the whole doctrine of racism, and these doctrines came into being through the white race and the exploitation of the colored peoples of the world.” King predicted that “if the white world” does not stop this racism and oppression, “then we can end up in the world with a kind of race war.”
In his public speeches, King never called himself a communist, instead claiming to stand for a synthesis of capitalism and communism: “[C]apitalism fails to realize that life is social. Communism fails to realize that life is individual. Truth is found neither in the rugged individualism of capitalism nor in the impersonal collectivism of communism. The Kingdom of God is found in a synthesis that combines the truths of these two opposites.”
However, David Garrow found that in private King “made it clear to close friends that economically speaking he considered himself what he termed a Marxist.” Mr. Garrow passes along an account of a conversation C.L.R. James, a Marxist intellectual, had with King: “King leaned over to me saying, ‘I don’t say such things from the pulpit, James, but that is what I really believe.’ . . . King wanted me to know that he understood and accepted, and in fact agreed with, the ideas that I was putting forward — ideas which were fundamentally Marxist-Leninist . . . I saw him as a man whose ideas were as advanced as any of us on the Left, but who, as he actually said to me, could not say such things from the pulpit . . . King was a man with clear ideas, but whose position as a churchman, etc. imposed on him the necessity of reserve.” J. Pius Barbour, a close friend of King’s at seminary, agreed that he “was economically a Marxist.”
Some of King’s most influential advisors were Communists with direct ties to the Soviet Union. One was Stanley Levison, whom Mr. Garrow called King’s “most important political counselor” and “at Martin Luther King’s elbow.” He organized fundraisers for King, counseled him on tax issues and political strategy, wrote fundraising letters and his United Packinghouse Workers Convention speech, edited parts of his books, advised him on his first major national address, and prepped King for questions from the media. Coretta Scott King said of Levison that he was “[a]lways working in the background, his contribution has been indispensable,” and Mr. Garrow says the association with Levison was “without a doubt King’s closest friendship with a white person.”
What were Levison’s political views? John Barron is the author of Operation SOLO, which is about “the most vital intelligence operation the FBI ever had sustained against the Soviet Union.” Part of its work was to track Levison who, according to Mr. Barron, “gained admission into the inner circle of the communist underground” in the US. Mr. Garrow, a strong defender of King, admits that Levison was “one of the two top financiers” of the Communist Party of the United States (CPUSA), which received about one million dollars a year from the Soviet Union. Mr. Garrow found that Levison was “directly involved in the Communist Party’s most sensitive financial dealings,” and acknowledged there was first-hand evidence of Levison’s “financial link to the Soviet Union.”
Hunter Pitts O’Dell, who was elected in 1959 to the national committee, the governing body for the CPUSA, was another party member who worked for King. According to FBI reports, Levison installed O’Dell as the head of King’s New York office, and later recommended that O’Dell be made King’s executive assistant in Atlanta.
King knew his associates were Communists. President Kennedy himself gave an “explicit personal order” to King advising against his “shocking association with Stanley Levison.” Once when he was walking privately with King in the White House Rose Garden, Kennedy also named O’Dell and said to King: “They’re Communists. You’ve got to get rid of them.”
The Communist connections help explain why Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy authorized the FBI to wiretap King’s home and office telephones in October 1963. Kennedy, like his brother John, was deeply sympathetic to King but also aware of the threat of communism.
Mr. Garrow tried to exonerate King of the charge of being a fellow traveler by arguing that Levison broke with the CPUSA while he worked for King, that is, from the time he met King in the summer of 1956 until King’s death in 1968. However, as historian Samuel Francis has pointed out, an official break with the CPUSA does not necessarily mean a break with the goals of communism or with the Soviet Union.
John Barron argues that if Levison had defected from the CPUSA and renounced communism, he would not have associated with former comrades, such as CP officials Lem Harris, Hunter Pitts O’Dell, and Roy Bennett (Levison’s twin brother who had changed his last name). He was also close to the highly placed KGB officer Victor Lessiovsky, who was an assistant to the head of the United Nations, U Thant.
Mr. Barron asks why Lessiovsky would “fritter away his time and risk his career . . . by repeatedly indulging himself in idle lunches or amusing cocktail conversation with an undistinguished lawyer [Levison] . . . who had nothing to offer the KGB, or with someone who had deserted the party and its discipline, or with someone about whom the KGB knew nothing? . . . And why would an ordinary American lawyer . . . meet, again and again, with a Soviet assistant to the boss of the United Nations?”
Other Communists who worked with King included Aubrey Williams, James Dombrowski, Carl Braden, William Melish, Ella J. Baker, Bayard Rustin, and Benjamin Smith. King also “associated and cooperated with a number of groups known to be CPUSA front organizations or to be heavily penetrated and influenced by members of the Communist Party” — for example, the Southern Conference Educational Fund; Committee to Secure Justice for Morton Sobell; the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America; the National Lawyers Guild; and the Highlander Folk School.
The CPUSA clearly tried to influence King and his movement. An FBI report of May 6, 1960 from Jack Childs, one of the FBI’s most accomplished spies and a winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom for Intelligence, said that the CP “feels that it is definitely to the Party’s advantage to assign outstanding Party members to work with the [Martin] Luther King group. CP policy at the moment is to concentrate upon Martin Luther King.”
As Republican Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina concluded in a Senate speech written by Francis, King’s alliance with Communists was evidence of “identified Communists . . . planning the influencing and manipulation of King for their own purposes.” At the same time, King relied on them for speech writing, fundraising, and raising public awareness. They, in turn, used his stature and fame to their own benefit. Senator Helms cited Congressman John M. Ashbrook, a ranking member of the House Committee on Un-American Activities, who said: “King has consistently worked with Communists and has helped give them a respectability they do not deserve. I believe he has done more for the Communist Party than any other person of this decade.”
King strongly doubted several core beliefs of Christianity. “I was ordained to the Christian ministry,” he claimed, but Stanford University’s online repository includes King’s seminary writings in which he disputed the full divinity of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, and the Resurrection, suggesting that we “strip them of their literal interpretation.”
Regarding the divine nature of Jesus, King wrote that Jesus was godlike, but not God. People called Jesus divine because they “found God in him” like a divinely inspired teacher, not because he literally was God, as Jesus himself claimed. On the Virgin Birth, King wrote:
First we must admit that the evidence for the tenability of this doctrine is to [sic] shallow to convince any objective thinker. How then did this doctrine arise? A clue to this inquiry may be found in a sentence from St. Justin’s First Apology. Here Justin states that the birth of Jesus is quite similar to the birth of the sons of Zeus. It was believed in Greek thought that an extraordinary person could only be explained by saying that he had a father who was more than human. It is probable that this Greek idea influenced Christian thought.
Concerning the Resurrection, King wrote: “In fact the external evidence for the authenticity of this doctrine is found wanting.” The early church, he says, formulated this doctrine because it “had been captivated by the magnetic power of his [Jesus’] personality. This basic experience led to the faith that he could never die. And so in the pre-scientific thought pattern of the first century, this inner faith took outward form.” Thus, in this view, Jesus’ body never rose from the dead, even though according to Scripture, “And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile.”
Two other essays show how King watered down Christianity. In one, he wrote that contemporary mystery religions influenced New Testament writers: “[A]fter being in contact with these surrounding religions and hearing certain doctrines expressed, it was only natural for some of these views to become part of their subconscious minds . . . That Christianity did copy and borrow from Mithraism cannot be denied, but it was generally a natural and unconscious process rather than a deliberate plan of action.” In another essay, King wrote that liberal theology “was an attempt to bring religion up intellectually,” and the introduction to the paper at the Stanford website says that King was “scornful of fundamentalism.” King wrote that in fundamentalism the Trinity, the Atonement, and the Second Coming are “quite prominent,” but again, these are defining beliefs of Christianity.
Known and unknown
King is both known and unknown. Millions worldwide see him as a moral messiah, and American schools teach young children to praise him. In the United States there are no fewer than 777 streets named for him. But King is also unknown because only a few people are aware of the unsavory aspects of his life. The image most people have of King is therefore cropped and incomplete.
In the minds of many, King towers above other Americans as a distinguished orator and writer, but this short, 5’6½” man often stole the words of others. People believe he was a Christian, but he doubted some of the fundamentals of the faith. Our country honors King, but he worked closely with Communists who aimed to destroy it. He denied racial differences, but fought for racial favoritism in the form of quotas. He claimed to be for freedom, but he wanted to force people to associate with each other and he promoted the redistribution of wealth in the form of reparations for slavery. He quoted the ringing words of the Bible and claimed, as a preacher, to be striving to be more like Jesus, but his colleagues knew better.
Perhaps he, too, knew better. His closest political advisor, Stanley Levison, said King was “an intensely guilt-ridden man” and his wife Coretta also called him “a guilt-ridden man.” Levison said that the praise heaped upon King was “a continual series of blows to his conscience” because he was such a humble man. If King was guilt-ridden might it have been because he knew better than anyone the wide gap between his popular image and his true character?
The FBI surveillance files could throw considerable light on his true character, but they will not be made public until 2027. On January 31, 1977, as a result of lawsuits by King’s allies against the FBI, a US district judge ordered the files sealed for 50 years. There are reportedly 56 feet of records — tapes, transcripts, and logs — in the custody of the National Archives and Record Service.
Meanwhile, for those who seek to know the real identity of this nearly untouchable icon, there is still plenty of evidence with which to answer the question: Was Martin Luther King, Jr. America’s best and greatest man?
Benjamin J. Ryan is working toward a PhD in Church-State Studies.
The Human Animal
What evolution says about race
Richard D. Fuerle, Erectus Walks Amongst Us, Spooner Press, 2008, 340 pp. (large-format soft cover), $45.95 at Amazon.com, free download at www.ErectusWalksAmongst.US
Over the past 10 or 15 years, it has become so much more difficult to find mainstream publishers for race-realist scholarship, that in retrospect the 1990s appear to be a period of great openness. That was when commercial and academic houses accepted the ground-breaking work of Arthur Jensen, Richard Lynn, Michael Levin, Phil Rushton, and Charles Murray. Libraries stocked their books and newspapers reviewed them. Today, there are still a few specialized journals that accept dissident scholarship but book publishers have grown markedly more timid, and in the new decade even Arthur Jensen — one of the most respected figures in the social sciences — has had trouble getting books published.
This does not mean race-realist scholarship has come to an end, only that there is more self-publishing and the use of small, specialty houses like Washington Summit Press. There may even be more good work than ever, and in increasingly broad areas. Richard Lynn continues to write seminal books on the role of IQ in the success and failure of nations, and Michael Hart recently wrote an illuminating account of human history that explicitly considers racial differences in average intelligence.
Richard D. Fuerle’s Erectus Walks Among Us is another example of race-realist scholarship that could not have found a place in today’s mainstream. It suffers from the short-comings of self-published books, but it is a remarkable excursion into some of the more obscure and taboo corners of the social sciences.
Erectus Walks Among Us is several books in one, all written from a firmly race-realist perspective. It is a primer on evolution and genetics, a catalog of how populations differ, an introduction to sociobiology and the concept of genetic interests, and a plea for white survival. At its core is a sustained argument against the now generally accepted theory that modern man appeared in Africa 50,000 to 90.000 years ago, and went on to replace the primitive humans then found on the other continents.
Mr. Fuerle is not a paleoanthropologist — he is a polymath with degrees in math, law, economics, physics and chemistry — but this may be an advantage. He does not share the anti-racist prejudices so common among social scientists, and he has written a clear and engaging book that benefits greatly from generous use of graphs and photographs, almost all in color.
Because this book is about the emergence of the races of man, it includes a good survey of what is known about our origins. Mr. Fuerle notes that according to surveys, only 40 percent of Americans accept the theory of evolution — a figure lower than in any European country — but evolution is the book’s fundamental perspective. Evolutionists generally accept that perhaps the single greatest step forward in our lineage — bipedalism — took place about 10 million years ago. When proto-humans started walking on their hind legs it freed their hands for investigating surroundings, making tools, and carrying things.
Australopithecus, who lived about four million years ago, is considered the last bipedal ape in our lineage, and he gave rise some two million years ago to Homo habilis, the first member of the genus Homo. Habilis made primitive tools and may have had rudimentary speech. He, in turn, evolved into Homo erectus, whose fossilized variants have been found in Africa, Europe, and Southeast Asia. What may be a local variant of erectus, the three-feet-tall Homo floriensis or “hobbit,” may have lived on some Pacific islands as recently as 18,000 years ago, overlapping with modern humans.
Mr. Fuerle takes a particular interest in the distant ancestors of whites, among whom he includes Neanderthal man, who lived in Europe from about 300,000 to 30,000 years ago. Neanderthal was adapted to the cold, with a stocky, heat-retaining build and short fingers and feet. He was also much stronger than modern man, and well adapted for hunting large animals. His skull capacity was greater than modern man, but he was less intelligent because he had a less efficient brain. His skin was white, and Mr. Fuerle argues that he could probably pass for a burly, rough-looking European if he were to appear today.
There is much debate as to whether there was intermixture between Neanderthals and Cro-Magnons, the immediate ancestors of Caucasians. The two groups coexisted in the same territory for thousands of years, and Mr. Fuerle marshals evidence to support the view that Neanderthal man contributed at least some alleles (distinctive forms of genes) to modern Europeans.
Mr. Fuerle suspects that the two groups may have managed to share territory for such a long time because their hunting strategies may have been different, with Neanderthal hunting by night and Cro-Magnon hunting the same animals by day. In a one-on-one fight, the more powerful Neanderthal would have routed the slighter Cro-Magnon, but the newcomers were smarter and more generalized: less adapted to the cold and for hunting. When the mammoths and other large animals went extinct, Neanderthal went extinct along with them while Cro-Magnon found other ways to survive.
This was a demonstration of one of a dozen or so rules of evolution, which Mr. Fuerle explains with considerable clarity: the significance of specialized vs. generalized populations. When an environment is stable for a long time, species tend to specialize, and when the environment is unstable they tend to stay general. A tropical environment is both rich in energy and stable throughout the year, and this encourages a large number of specialized, even bizarre plants and animals that exploit narrow niches. Temperate areas, where the seasonal differences in temperature are the greatest, pose the greatest challenge to survival, and animals tend to be generalists. Further north, the environment is harsh but also relatively stable because it is cold all the time. Here we find animals like the polar bear and arctic fox that are highly cold-adapted and much more specialized than their cousins in temperate regions.
Man is less specialized than his closest simian kin. He does not have the long arms or massive teeth and jaws of apes, is not covered with protective fur, nor can he swing through trees. His foot, however, has become specialized for support only, and has lost its ability to grasp things, which apes still retain.
Mr. Fuerle argues that human races also differ in levels of specialization, with Africans adapted to the heat, Asians adapted to the cold, and whites the most generalized. The skulls of Africans, for example, are narrow, front to back, which makes it easier to cool the brain whereas Asian skulls are more spherical, thus retaining heat by offering less surface area per unit volume. European skulls are intermediate. Africans have wooly hair that wicks sweat away from the head, also helping to cool the brain, and have dark skin to protect against the sun. They are also long-limbed, which makes for better cooling. Asians are stockier, for better heat retention, and have fat evenly distributed around their bodies, which protects against cold and gives them a “yellow” appearance. Again, Europeans are intermediate.
Mr. Fuerle cites the general rule that it is much easier for generalists to evolve into specialists than the other way around. He says it would take much longer to breed a wolf from a Chihuahua than a Chihuahua from a wolf. This is one of the arguments he makes later against the Out of Africa theory: that it would be unusual for heat-specialized Africans to have evolved into generalized Europeans or cold-specialized Asians.
Climate is undoubtedly the single most important environmental influence on evolution, and it is commonly argued that the races that evolved in the north were subjected to harsh requirements that put a premium on high intelligence. The two most recent ice ages were a particularly demanding test.
A huge eruption some 73,000 years ago of a volcano now known as Toba on the island of Sumatra sent so much ash into the air that it blocked out the sun and caused a sharp drop in temperature. Evaporating sea water fell as snow that remained on land, and this lowered sea levels. The resulting land bridges made it possible for early man to migrate to areas now cut off by the sea. The sudden drop in temperature also killed many inhabitants of the Northern Hemisphere, especially in Europe, but had much less effect on the tropics. This lead to a considerable boost in the intelligence of the surviving northern populations.
Another ice age that lasted from about 30,000 to 12,000 years ago had a similar effect: opening land bridges and severely winnowing northern populations for intelligence. The effects may not have been so catastrophic as the earlier ice age, however, because by this time humans could control fire and make clothing.
Mr. Fuerle points out that evolution — whether for intelligence or for any other trait — is not a continual process. An organism can evolve to a more or less optimal state, and if the environment holds steady it need not change. Sharks, for example, evolved into very efficient, even optimal predators, and have remained essentially unchanged for millions of years.
Why don’t animals constantly improve? Because improvements are not without costs. More of one trait means less of something else. More fast-twitch muscle means more speed and power but less slow-twitch muscle, which means less endurance.
Greater intelligence comes at a particularly high price; the brain is metabolically the most expensive part of the human body. Although it accounts for only two percent of adult body weight, it uses 20 percent of the body’s energy, making it 22 times more costly than skeletal muscle. In an infant, whose brain is already 25 percent of its adult size even though its body is only 5 percent of its adult size, the brain consumes an astonishing 75 percent of the entire body’s energy. Evolution does not care about intelligence per se; only reproduction. It gave humans enough intelligence to reproduce successfully, but — within the broad limits of natural variation — no more than necessary.
This is why other animals did not evolve huge, expensive brains. A lion needs no more intelligence than it already has to catch prey. Greater intelligence would mean a sacrifice in speed or some other quality that is more important to lions than intelligence.
Mr. Fuerle points out that intelligence can decline if the environment changes in ways that make it less necessary. This is thought to have happened to humans 12,000 years ago with the beginning of agriculture. Hunters need cunning and prowess whereas farmers need only steady effort, so although the transition to agriculture led to a huge increase in population, human intelligence and physical stature declined.
The same thing can happen in other species. When wild dogs were domesticated their brains shrank because they could depend on humans to feed them. Wolves and foxes, which must hunt for a living, are smarter than domesticated dogs, and when cats go feral they develop larger brains to cope with the challenges of fending for themselves.
There is another reason why improvement is slow or even comes to a stop in an ancient species in a stable environment. As Mr. Fuerle explains, beneficial mutations are increasingly unlikely because most of them have already been tried and retained. Harmful mutations drop out of the population because their carriers are less likely to survive and reproduce, but this means they can keep recurring.
It is therefore the different environments in which the races evolved that gave rise to racial differences in both physiology and behavior. Mr. Fuerle has probably collected the most extensive catalog of physical racial differences since Prof. John Baker of Oxford wrote his magisterial work Race in 1974, and some of the most interesting have to do with the skull. Africans tend to have heavy jaws and exhibit prognathism, which means their jaws protrude forward. This is considered a primitive trait left over from when our most effective weapon was our teeth, which, in order to be effective, had to be able to cut a swath that extended out in front of the face. Apes, for example, have extended jaws that let them meet an enemy with their teeth rather than their faces.
Africans also have a larger post-orbital constriction than whites, and that of Asians is smaller. The constriction is a pair of left-right dents in the skull just behind the eyes that leave room for jaw muscles. The larger the constriction, the larger the chewing muscles and the more powerful the bite, but less room is left for the forebrain. Africans also have eyes set wider apart than Europeans or Asians.
Another racial difference is in the location of the foramen magnum, the large hole in the skull, through which the spinal cord attaches to the brain. Since man walks upright, the hole is at the base of the skull, whereas in animals that go on all fours the hole is at the back. Apes therefore have the foramen magnum farther back in the skull than humans, and in Africans, it is slightly farther back than in Eurasians.
The skull is made up of several large bones that join along lines called sutures. At birth the sutures are not fully closed, and they close earlier in blacks than in Eurasians.
There are important racial differences in soft tissue as well as bone. The three outer layers of the brain are called the supragranular layers, and they increase in thickness from the lower to the higher animals. Mr. Fuerle reports that the supragranular layers are 15 percent thinner in blacks than in whites.
One important human characteristic is that the sclera of the eyes (the area around the pupils) is white. This contrasts with dark pupils and makes it easy to tell where a person is looking, and eye contact is a subtle and important form of human communication. Non-human primates have dark sclera. Some African and Australian aboriginal populations are reported to have yellowish sclera due to the presence of melanin.
High levels of melanin in tropical peoples are usually attributed to the need to block harmful radiation from the sun, but it may serve another purpose. It appears to act as a bacteriocide and fungicide, which may have been particularly useful in the damp of the tropics, and blacks are more resistant than whites to skin diseases.
The light skin of Europeans is generally explained by the need to process sunlight — which would be blocked by dark skin — to produce vitamin D. Why, in that case, do Eskimos not have the lightest skin? Mr. Fuerle explains that they get vitamin D from fish, and that slightly darker skin protects from cosmic radiation in the Arctic and from ultraviolet rays reflected from snow.
One of the most obvious racial differences is in shape of the nose. Narrow, long noses evolved where the air was cold or dry, so that it could be warmed or moistened before it entered the lungs. Asian noses are flatter to the face than European noses as a protection against the cold. Apes have little of what could be called a nose, and the nostrils open almost directly onto the muzzle.
Mr. Fuerle points out that Somalis and Ethiopians are the most Caucasian-looking of sub-Saharan Africans, and explains that this is because the horn of Africa has long been easily accessible to populations from outside the continent. He argues that non-Africans entering from Asia mixed with the most easily-contacted Africans, giving them less typically African features.
Although this book is primarily concerned with differences between the major races of man, Mr. Fuerle has interesting observations about the traits of such sub-groups as Australian Aborigines, Andaman Islanders, and Bushmen, including speculation as to how those traits might have arisen.
Mr. Fuerle has compiled a tremendous amount of racial/anthropological data but believes there is much more: “Because research on racial differences, except where they are medically important, has been effectively outlawed for at least the last 50 years, there are no doubt thousands of other racial differences that have not been discovered or published.”
Mr. Fuerle notes that despite the popular contention that race is a myth, there is a magazine called Ethnicity and Health that is devoted to racial differences in medicine. It has been found, for example, that blacks get lung cancer at far higher rates than whites even when they smoke the same amount. Mr. Fuerle speculates that this may be because whites spent many thousands of years living in smoky caves, whereas Africans either did not need fire or could make fires in the open air and therefore did not build up a tolerance for smoke.
One of the chapters of Erectus Walks Amongst Us is devoted to racial differences in intelligence and behavior. Mr. Fuerle covers this ground capably and thoroughly, including such details as the fact that American whites save 20 percent more than blacks even when they have the same incomes.
Some of this book’s most provocative observations, however, are about mating. An essential difference in the environments in which blacks and whites evolved, writes Mr. Fuerle, is that in the tropics there was so much food that a woman could, if necessary, rear a child to maturity without the help of a man. In the harsher north, a woman needed a hunter — a man — to provide for her and her children. This led to pair bonding, because children could not survive without it, and the tendency to bond was passed to future generations. Africans, on the other hand, evolved less pair bonding because it was less necessary.
In primates with little pair bonding, there can be much promiscuity. Males therefore compete with each other not only in the number of females they mate with but in the amount of sperm they produce, because if a female has mated with several males, the one that deposits the most sperm has an advantage. When chimpanzee females are in heat they are extremely promiscuous. As a consequence, male chimpanzees have evolved the largest ratio of testicle weight to body weight of any primate.
Humans pursue similar strategies. In the promiscuous tropics, men competed by producing more sperm. Africans, therefore, have the largest testicles and Asians have the smallest. Mr. Fuerle notes that testicles, like brains, are very costly, and increased size in either leaves fewer resources for other organs.
The fact that women in the tropics could support themselves and their young may have had the sinister effect of making rape more biologically adaptive. In cold climates, where women and children could not survive without a man, the impulse to rape was seldom passed on because any resulting child was likely to die. In the tropics, where mother and child had a better chance of surviving, it would have been maladaptive not to rape. This may explain high rates of rape among African populations.
Self-supporting females in the tropics also meant that dominant men could maintain more than one woman, whereas in the north, it was beyond the abilities of most men to support more than one woman and her children. In the north, because it was the sex that hunts that could offer or withhold meat, it was men, rather than the women, who were in a better bargaining position for choosing mates. They selected for beauty, which is a good proxy for health and fertility and this, according to Mr. Fuerle, led to increased beauty in Eurasian women.
African men, on the other hand, chose multiple wives on the basis of their ability to gather food or raise crops rather than beauty. At the same time, polygamy meant that some men had no wives at all, and the remaining, smaller number of women were in a position to take their pick from among the men. Since African women, unlike northern women, could support themselves, they chose men, not according to whether they were “good providers,” but according to their beauty. Thus, writes Mr. Fuerle, African men are more handsome than African women. This may also explain data that suggest African women have higher IQs than African men: Since women selected men for beauty rather than ability, there was not as much of a premium on intelligence.
Mr. Fuerle points out that Eurasian women who live in advanced societies can now support themselves, and need not mate with the men who can best provide food and shelter. This means they can choose according to appearance — which means future generations of Eurasian men may be more handsome but less intelligent.
Another racial trait that may have been influenced by environment is the willingness to cooperate. In the north, men had to work together to bring down big game and to establish rules for sharing meat. Cooperation and respect for rules were less necessary closer to the equator, and this may explain high rates of crime and sociopathy among Africans.
All these racial traits add up to considerable genetic distance between Africans and other populations. Mr. Fuerle cites Frank Salter [see “What We Owe Our People,” Jan. 2005.], who points out some of the surprising consequences of this genetic distance. The members of stable breeding populations are genetically close to each other and have many alleles in common. They are even closer to their immediate family members, but this relation can be reversed by hybrid crosses between parents from groups that are genetically far apart. Bantus, for example, are so genetically distant from East Asians that the Asian father of an Asian/Bantu mulatto would be genetically closer to a random Asian stranger than to his own child. That is to say, he would have more alleles in common with any member of his own people than with his own hybrid child.
This is not good for such children. Studies have shown that parents are more attached to children who look like them and with whom they share the most genes. Abuse and neglect are more likely when it is obvious that parent and child come from dissimilar stock, which is usually the case with hybrids. A preference for mates from one’s own stock may also protect from infection, because genetically similar people are likely to have the same antibodies and not carry exotic diseases.
Mr. Fuerle points out that the physical differences between human races are, in many cases, vastly greater than the physical differences between animals that are classified as separate species. There are species of birds, for example, that look so similar they can be distinguished only by experts. They could produce fertile young if they mated but in the wild they never do. Chimps and bonobos are easier to tell apart, as are the two species of gorilla, yet these pairs of species are closer to each other genetically and physically than are the more distant races of humans. It is not scientifically consistent to classify gorillas into two species but lump all living humans into just one. Mr. Fuerle makes the provocative argument that if there were no living Africans — only their bones and DNA — scientists would classify them as a separate species from Eurasians.
Mr. Fuerle argues that Africans and Eurasians are not only genetically distant from each other but that the distance runs in a consistent direction:
[V]irtually all of the racial differences between Africans and Eurasians are in traits that are primitive; there are few, if any, African traits that are more modern than Eurasian traits. The evidence comes from a large variety of very different traits: hard tissue, soft tissue, physiology, behavior, intelligence, accomplishments, and genes. And most importantly, all of the evidence is consistent. It is not the case that genes are saying blacks are modern and bones are saying they are primitive. All of the evidence is saying the same thing . . .
It is often argued that crosses between genetically distant groups result in an advantage called “hybrid vigor.” Mr. Fuerle devotes a chapter to this question, in which he explains how this works. When populations are thoroughly inbred, they have similar sets of alleles, meaning that recessive traits — both positive and negative — are likely to appear. Crossing with another inbred population can mix up the alleles in a way that is beneficial, but the effect lasts for only one or two generations. It is because the benefit is short-lived that farmers have to buy new kinds of hybrid seeds every year.
Hybrid vigor is almost never found in humans because the major races are not nearly inbred enough to benefit from distant crosses. On the contrary, genetically distant matches can result in health problems due to subtle genetic incompatibilities that stable breeding populations ironed out long ago. In the case of black-white mixes, regression towards the mean draws hybrid children’s IQs toward a point mid-way between the black and white average IQs. Thus, the children of two white parents with IQs of 100 will, on average, be smarter than the children of one black and one white parent, even if they, too, have IQs of 100.
Out of Africa or Asia?
The central question raised in this book is whether the Out of Africa theory is correct. Most scholars now agree that Homo sapiens sapiens evolved in Africa about 150,000 years ago and began to migrate out of Africa some 90,000 to 60,000 years ago. He then spread to all corners of the globe, replacing the variants of erectus that had arisen on different continents. Racial differences therefore appeared after modern man evolved, and the most recent common ancestor of all humans would have lived 150,000 years or so ago. Mr. Fuerle argues strongly that race began with Australopithecus and that racial differences even predate the genus Homo. The most recent common ancestor of all men would therefore have lived some three million years ago, and modern man first evolved in Eurasia.
Readers will have to judge Mr. Fuerle’s many arguments for themselves, but here is a sample. He finds it improbable that modern man would have evolved in the least demanding environment, namely the African tropics. He also doubts that the migration out of Africa — 60,000 to 70,000 years ago — would have begun just at the time of the Toba-eruption-induced ice age, when northern populations were heading south, fleeing the cold. Mr. Fuerle also emphasizes that Out of Africa appears to violate one of the general laws of evolution: Heat-adapted Africans would have been unlikely to become generalized, like Europeans, and even less likely to lose their heat-adaptive traits and evolve the cold-adaptive traits characteristic of Asians.
Furthermore, modern humans coming from Africa are supposed to have replaced erectus populations that had been developing in their specialized environments for, in some cases, a million years. Neanderthal man, for example, had been in Europe for approximately 300,000 years and was well adapted to his niche. Mr. Fuerle finds it hard to believe that Africans could have displaced him, and points out that remains of early European man show no characteristics that appear African or heat-adapted. In any case, Mr. Fuerle does not believe that the innumerable differences found in modern human populations could have arisen in 60,000 to 90,000 years.
Mr. Fuerle also wonders how Africans managed to get all around the world when they were unable to get to some of the islands off the coast of Africa. Madagascar, for example, is less than 300 miles from Africa but it was first settled by Indonesians, who had to sail thousands of miles to reach it.
Another well-known difficulty for Out of Africa is the fact that Asian Homo erectus had incisor teeth of a distinct “shovel shape,” and some modern Asians still have similarly-shaped teeth. Mr. Fuerle finds it improbable that Africans would have displaced Asian erectus and then evolved their own shovel-shaped incisors. He considers it more likely that Asian erectus evolved into modern Asians.
It is often pointed out that modern Africans have the most genetic variety, which suggests they are the oldest human population, since older populations have had more time to accumulate mutations. Mr. Fuerle argues that the great genetic variation of Africans is due to repeated incursions into Africa of more modern lineages that evolved outside the continent, leading him to conclude that “the African lineage did not so much evolve as it did acquire.” He also argues that the ice ages killed huge numbers in the north and that this artificially reduced the genetic variation in some non-African populations.
Out of Africa theorists have replies to these arguments but Mr. Fuerle is so convinced they are wrong that he accuses them of bowing to egalitarian pressures to describe different populations as more similar than they really are. This is not altogether fair. Vincent Sarich of Berkeley and his occasional co-author Frank Miele [see “Science Strikes Back,” AR, April 2004] are hardly egalitarian pushovers, nor are Richard Lynn and Phil Rushton. They are well aware of the arguments, pro and con, for Out of Africa, and conclude that it is the theory that best fits the facts.
One’s position on Out of Africa need not detract from the appreciation of this or any other section of Erectus Walks Amongst Us. Indeed, whether the evolution of racial differences took three million years or just 65,000 does not reduce their number or significance — which is the question of greatest concern.
Separation and survival
Naturalists appreciate nature’s diversity and go to great lengths to preserve it. They separate animals in zoos so as to avoid hybrids that would not occur in nature, and rejoice at the rediscovery of any species that was thought to be extinct. They show no such concern about humans, however, and condemn parents as bigots — especially if they are white — if they want their children to marry within their race.
The final section of Erectus Walks Amongst Us is a plea to cherish human variation as much as plant or animal variation. Mr. Fuerle writes of the unique alleles that have been sorted out among the different races:
“[I]t takes only an instant of miscegenation to scramble them up again. The selection of some of those alleles required the suffering and death of hundreds of thousands of people who did not have them, so the creation of racial differences was not without great cost. To destroy this monumental natural creation — us — so thoughtlessly and permanently, is akin to desecrating graves, dynamiting ancient statues, bombing cathedrals, and burning the library at Alexandria. What is the most valuable possession populations have that they can pass on to the next generation? It is not wealth or even knowledge. It is their genome, their ability to reproduce themselves as the unique people that they are. To squander that by miscegenation is the ultimate betrayal of one’s heritage.”
Today, whites are the only major racial group that faces oblivion through miscegenation and sub-replacement fertility, yet whites are also the only race that welcomes racial aliens into their homelands. This is a new phenomenon in human evolution because, as Mr. Fuerle points out, it has always been the rule that “a homeland is so vital to survival that an ethnic group will go to almost any length to have and hold one.” He adds that “if whites do not defend their homelands, they will soon have no homelands, and not long after that, there will be no more whites.”
As he explains: “The carrying capacity of the earth will eventually be reached, and it has probably already been reached in some countries. When that happens in white countries, our descendants will be in a life-and-death struggle for survival with the descendants of the non-whites that whites foolishly let into their homelands . . .”
What is more, most of the newcomers have relatively low IQs. Mr. Fuerle writes that their arrival in large numbers will eventually make it impossible to maintain modern civilization and that the West will be hopelessly outstripped by East Asian nations that have carefully limited immigration.
Today, any white who speaks out for the preservation of his people or race is condemned as a “racist,” but it is only by putting its interests first that any group survives. Mr. Fuerle marvels at the mentality of whites who think it virtuous to decline in numbers while others take their lands and inherit what their ancestors built: “These white anti-racists don’t like what they are. How could creatures evolve who are capable of not liking themselves? Surely, such creatures would have been driven extinct long ago by others of their kind who do like themselves.” He adds: “Why so many whites eagerly embrace white-hating, however, remains to be explained.”
Mr. Fuerle suspects the problem may be altruism run amok. Whites rose to the top, not only through high intelligence but through cooperation with and even sacrifice for others. When whites sacrificed for other whites it promoted their genetic interests, but today’s “promiscuous altruism” means sacrificing for non-whites.
At the same time, aside from a few groups such as the Mormons, whites have become unable or unwilling to reproduce themselves: “Caucasians may be good at making discoveries in math and science and at creating great works of art, but they aren’t so good at making more Caucasians which, as far as evolution is concerned, is all that matters.” Mr. Fuerle clearly cares deeply about the fate of his people, and this book concludes with a strong appeal to racial consciousness, without which whites will disappear.
Erectus Walks Amongst Us is stuffed with so much information and so many good arguments it is a pity it suffers from several flaws. First and worst, the title and cover illustration are so insulting to blacks — implying that they are primitives just down from the trees — that one can hardly carry this book around in public. The writing can also be contemptuous of blacks and of people who accept the Out of Africa theory. No book that flouts as many orthodoxies as this one does can afford to aid its critics by indulging in intemperate language.
Erectus Walks Amongst Us also has an irritating stylistic peculiarity. It has more than 1,200 footnotes, most of which include additional information rather than just a reference. The reader must constantly look back and forth between the text and notes (which are mercifully at the bottom of the page rather than at the back). Most of the material in the notes should have been worked into the text.
These are some of the consequences of foregoing the help of professional publishing, but these defects do not detract from the vast collection of eye-opening information Mr. Fuerle has gathered. “This book contains material I find absolutely fascinating,” he writes in the Acknowledgements. Open-minded readers will certainly agree.
|IN THE NEWS|
O Tempora, O Mores!
Hail to the Chief
It used to be bad form to name a school or public building after a living person. Not now; many politicians have government buildings and highways that bear their names. Usually, presidents have had to wait at least until their terms were over before having things named for them, but not Barack Obama. One Long Island school has already changed its name to Barack Obama Elementary — before Mr. Obama has even been sworn in. The former Ludlum Elementary School in Hempstead, New York, is nearly all black and Hispanic, with many children from Africa and the Caribbean. During the campaign, students held a mock presidential debate and election, and asked the district superintendent if they could change the school’s name if Mr. Obama won. On November 20, just two weeks after the election, the change was official, and a photo of Mr. Obama now hangs in the school office. “For me, we made history,” says Teonte Jackson, 11, a fifth-grader who played Mr. Obama in the debate. “I feel really proud to have an African-American president. I don’t think it’s a racial thing. I think he will bring everybody together.”
Ludlum is only the first school to be named for Mr. Obama. Clear Stream Avenue School in Valley Stream, New York, plans to take Mr. Obama’s name, as does a school in Portland, Oregon. The Tacoma, Washington, school board changed its naming policy to permit naming a school after a president who has not yet served. In heavily-black Opa-locka, Florida, the city council is considering naming a street after Mr. Obama, and the prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda says the country will have its highest mountain, Boggy Peak, renamed Mount Obama. [Christina Hernandez, Long Island School Renamed for Barack Obama, Newsday, Nov. 21, 2008. School Changes Name to Barack Obama Elementary, McClatchey News Service, Nov. 22, 2008. Tacoma School May be Named for Obama, AP, Nov. 25, 2008.]
According to the National Statistics and Geography Institute in Mexico City, the number of Mexicans heading north has dropped by 42 percent over the last two years, from 1.2 million in 2006 to 814,000. The study does not differentiate between legal and illegal immigration and claims that by the end of 2007, more Mexicans were going home than were leaving the country.
The decline is due to hard times in the United States and stepped up enforcement. “There is no longer an American dream, at least for the moment with the economic situation,” says Victor Clark, director of the Tijuana-based Binational Center for Human Rights. “In small northern towns, the news is that there is no work for Mexicans in the United States.” He also adds that “news of mass raids snowballs through towns that send a lot of migrants.” The Border Patrol also says fewer illegals are coming in, and that the number of apprehensions on the border has dropped 39 percent since 2005.
Fewer Mexicans means fewer remittances, which are Mexico’s second largest source of foreign exchange after oil. The Mexican central bank says monthly remittances fell 12 percent to $1.9 billion in August, the biggest drop since record-keeping began 12 years ago. [Mexican Immigration to US Cut Nearly in Half, AP, Nov. 20, 2008.]
Bias Against Tests
One hundred and forty-four police officers in Chesapeake, Virginia, took exams in October to qualify for promotion to lieutenant and sergeant. Thirty-two blacks and women took the tests but none scored high enough for promotion. The 30 officers who did were are all white men. The city said it would throw out the test results, but backed off after lawyers for two police organizations threatened to sue. Instead, the city hired a consultant to review the tests for fairness. Michael Imprevento, a lawyer with the Fraternal Order of Police, says that is not necessary. “This test involved knowledge of policies and procedures necessary to become a supervisor,” he says. “The same policies and procedures are available for all to review as police officers. It is my view that any invalidation of these results would be based strictly on race.”
Last year, Chesapeake settled a lawsuit brought by the US Department of Justice, which accused it of using a math test that supposedly discriminated against blacks and Hispanics. [Kristin Davis, Police Groups Say They’ll Sue if the City Tosses Out Tests, Virginian-Pilot (Hampton Roads), Oct. 23, 2008.]
Ideology vs. Reality
One of the first things Lynne Johnson did when she became police chief of tony, mostly-white Palo Alto, California, in 2003 was to start a community outreach program to reassure blacks that her officers never profile by race. She also had video cameras installed in all patrol cars after an incident in which two white officers were prosecuted for beating a black driver.
There has been a rash of street robberies by blacks in Palo Alto, and in October, Chief Johnson explained at a public forum how the department planned to solve those crimes. In remarks that were recorded, she said she had told her officers that if they were in an area where there had been a robbery, “and they see an African American, you know in a congenial way we want to find out who they are.” She also told officers to be on the lookout for blacks wearing do-rags because one of the robbers wore one.
The screeching started immediately. California state representative Anna Eshoo said Chief Johnson had “demonstrated a profound lack of judgment and leadership.” Palo Alto Mayor Larry Klein said her remarks were “unacceptable, unconstitutional and un-American.” Jeff Moore, president of the San Jose-Silicon Valley branch of the NAACP, said, “This whole thing has just exposed something we’ve been saying has been happening for years, and her comments were hurtful and frightening. Racial profiling happens to young blacks and Latinos all day long, all over Northern California . . .”
The chief apologized and claimed she was misunderstood. City manager James Keene suggested she might keep her job if she groveled: “The next steps for her are to work at repairing the damage done by the misstatements. She needs to focus on reclaiming the confidence of the community.” Chief Johnson duly prostrated herself before the congregation of the black Jerusalem Baptist Church but it was not enough. On November 20, she announced her resignation, after five years on the job and 34 years on the force. Her critics aren’t satisfied. “The department still has a lot of work to do,” says East Palo Alto Mayor Patricia Foster. “We need to see the practice of racial profiling by police stopped, please.” [Kevin Fagan, Police Chief Denies Racial Profiling, Calls it ‘Immoral,’ San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 1, 2008. Jessie Mangaliman, Palo Alto Police Chief Retires after Firestorm on Racial Profiling Remarks, Mercury News (San Jose), Nov. 20, 2008.]
The Facts Don’t Change
CQ Press used to publish lists of the “safest” and “most dangerous” cities in America but stopped because cities didn’t like being called “dangerous.” Now it publishes a list of cities with highest and lowest crime rates. After adding up cases of murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft, CQ Press figured out the most crime-ridden city: New Orleans, with 19,000 of the six crimes (including 209 murders) for a population of 250,000. It was followed by Camden, New Jersey; Detroit; St. Louis; and Oakland, California. Needless to say, CQ Press refrained from pointing out what all these places have in common.
The least dangerous cities with populations over 75,000 are Ramapo, New York (about 40 miles northwest of New York City) — with only 688 crimes and no reported killings in a population of about 113,000 — followed by Mission Viejo, California (in Orange County); O’Fallon, Missouri (outside St. Louis); Newton, Massachusetts (west of Boston); and Brick Township on the New Jersey coast. [New Orleans Ranks Highest in Crime, Survey Finds, CNN, Nov. 24, 2008.]
Last summer, ten of California’s largest foundations agreed to hand over millions of dollars to so-called “minority-led” non-profits. This was the price they paid to stop state legislation that would have required them to disclose the racial composition of their boards, staffs and grant recipients. This shakedown was so successful that the group behind it, the Greenlining Institute, is looking outside the state. In October, the institute invited representatives from America’s top 50 foundations to a meeting at its offices in Berkeley to discuss “diversity in philanthropy.” It hoped to find out such things as how much of the foundations’ money was in the hands of minority-owned money managers. Not one foundation showed up.
Undeterred, Greenlining now has its sights on Pennsylvania. It lined up Pennsylvania State Rep. Jake Wheatley, a black Democrat from Pittsburgh, as its front man to send letters to eight Pennsylvania foundations, including Heinz Endowments and the William Penn Foundation. “I believe that it is important to start conversations early on what philanthropy is doing to empower minority communities,” he wrote, and went on to ask for “demographic” — i.e., racial — information on grant recipients. Not one gave in. “We left blank the column they were really looking for,” says Brent Thompson of the William Penn Foundation, “and we have no plans to keep that data going forward.” [The Latest Charity Shakedown, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 5, 2008.]
On April 9, Connecticut state police arrested a black Norwalk resident, Tyrone Brown, for drunk driving. A breath analysis test determined that Mr. Brown had a blood alcohol level of 0.188 percent, well over the state’s limit of 0.08. In November, Mr. Brown’s lawyer, James O. Ruane, filed a motion to suppress the breathalyzer results, claiming that the device used, the Intoxilyzer 5000, discriminates against blacks. Mr. Ruane claims blacks have 3 percent less lung capacity than whites, and that research from Dr. Michael Hlastala, a lung physiologist at the University of Washington, shows that the Intoxilyzer 5000 does not accurately test the blood-alcohol levels of black men. “They are KKK in a box,” he says. “We really have some racist machines here.” [Daniel Tepper, Lawyer: Alcohol Testing Device is Racist, Connecticut Post, Nov. 20, 2008.]
On November 4, 58 percent of Nebraska voters approved a measure to end racial preferences in public employment, education, and contracting, in yet another victory for black businessman Ward Connerly’s Civil Rights Initiative.
In the run up to the vote, Linda Chavez’s Center for Equal Opportunity released a study of discrimination against whites at the University of Nebraska Law School. It found the school rejected 389 white applicants to the entering classes of 2006 and 2007 even though they had LSATs and undergraduate GPAs higher than those of the average black. Over all, blacks were an astonishing 442 times more likely than whites to be admitted with the same qualifications. “[T]he extremely heavy weight given to race by the University of Nebraska College of Law is off the charts,” says Miss Chavez.
Nebraska Law School Dean Steven Willborn says there is nothing wrong with admitting non-white students if they have lower test scores than whites, because they help add “diverse opinions to classroom discussions.” [Nebraska Civil Rights Initiative Passes Overwhelmingly, Center for Equal Opportunity, Nov. 10, 2008. Nebraska Law School Dean Says OK to Admit Minorities with Lower Test Scores, Fox News, Oct. 9, 2008.]
European lefties continue to fight nationalists in their usual craven way by charging them with “racism” when they cannot defeat them at the ballot box. The current number-one target is Frank Vanhecke, former president of the Vlaams Belang (VB) and member of the European Parliament. In 2005, the local VB publication in the Flemish town of Sint-Niklaas published a 130-word article claiming that Muslims were vandalizing town graves and that Islam was “a culture that has no respect for the dead or for the symbols of a different faith.” The vandals were later identified as Belgians, and the VB publication immediately issued a correction, but the authorities still pronounced the article “racist.” Mr. Vanhecke did not write the article, nor did he see it before it was published, but the Socialist mayor of Sint-Niklass brought charges of “racism” against him because he was then head of the party.
Belgian authorities could not prosecute Mr. Vanhecke immediately because of his immunity as a member of the European Parliament. The Belgian justice minister therefore lobbied the Euro-parliament to strip him of immunity, which it did in an overwhelming vote on November 18. Mr. Vanhecke can now be tried, and faces up to two years in prison if found guilty of “racism.” He could also be stripped of civil rights for five years, during which time he would be barred from elective office. This would be a great victory for the Belgian establishment; Mr. Vanhecke was to be the lead candidate on the VB list for Euro-parliament elections in June, in which nationalist parties across the continent are expected to make solid gains.
Mr. Vanhecke can fight the charges on several grounds. Bruno Valkeniers, current head of the party, points out that according to the law, if the author of an offending text is known he must be prosecuted before charges can be filed against a supervisor. There is no secret about who wrote the article, and Mr. Valkeniers also notes that Belgian prosecutors have admitted that if the attempt to lift Mr. Vanhecke’s immunity had failed they would not have charged the author. Their motives are openly political. [Baron Bodissey, Open Season on Frank Vanhecke, Gates of Vienna blog, Nov. 19, 2008. Racisme: Immunité Parlementaire Levée Pour Frank Vanhecke, Nov. 18, actu24.be]
Austria is putting a dissident politician through the same tyrannical procedure. Suzanne Winter represents the Austrian Freedom Party — one of Europe’s most dynamic nationalist parties — in parliament (see “What Happened in Austria” in the previous issue). During municipal elections in Graz last January, she said that Islam was “a totalitarian system of domination that should be cast back to its birthplace on the other side of the Mediterranean,” that Mohammed had written the Koran during a series of “epileptic fits,” and that by today’s standards he was a child molester because he married a six-year-old. The president of the Islamic Communities of Austria, Anas Schakfeh, warned that Miss Winter had stirred up a “wrathful mood” among Muslims and that he could not rule out violence. Indeed, Miss Winter had to hire bodyguards when a threatening video appeared on YouTube.
Miss Winter, who won her city council election, only grew in popularity, and she won a seat in the Austrian parliament in September. However, on November 26, under pressure from prosecutors, her fellow members voted to lift immunity so she could be charged with incitement, degradation of religious symbols, and religious agitation. Miss Winter met the vote with her head held high. She welcomed a trial, she said, because “only through the considerations of an independent court can clarification be obtained on this issue.” She denounced the charges against her as “political hatred by confused, self-proclaimed thought-guards,” and said that such a prosecution could take place only under a “dictatorship of conscience.” She faces up to two year in prison if convicted. [Baron Bodissey, Susanne Winter Loses Her Parliamentary Immunity, Gates of Vienna blog, November 27, 2008. Austrian Politician Faces Jail for Remarks About Islam, MilitantIslamMonitor.org, January 15, 2008.]
Wale of Tears
The Valley Race Equality Council (Valrec) in Wales wants to protect the public from words it may find offensive. Forbidden terms include “half-caste,” “Negro” and “British.” Why British? “The idea of ‘British’ implies a false sense of unity — many Scots, Welsh, and Irish resist being called British and the land denoted by the term contains a wide variety of cultures, languages, and religions,” say Valrec’s guidelines. The city council in Caerphilly, South Wales, has accepted the guidelines and no longer uses “British.” Tory MP David Davies accuses Valrec of propagating “narrow, nationalistic ideas,” adding, “There is absolutely nothing offensive about describing people as British. This is political correctness gone mad.” [Neil Sears, Council Ranks Term ‘British’ with ‘Negroes’ and Bans It in Case It Upsets Scots, Welsh and Minorities, Daily Mail (London), Nov. 11, 2008.]
|LETTERS FROM READERS|
Sir — The November issue printed three thought-provoking articles on the presidential election. They do not, however, mention the crucial role legalized abortion has played in slowing the growth of the non-white population of the United States and the world. Mr. Smith commends Gov. Palin for “her muscular evangelical faith,” which is manifested, inter alia, in her refusal to abort her Down-Syndrome child and her daughter’s refusal to abort her illegitimate child. He quotes with approval Pat Buchanan’s observation that Mrs. Palin’s power base is among “lifers, evangelicals . . .”
But black and Hispanic American women have abortions at five times and three times the rate, respectively, of white American women. Fully 43 percent of black American pregnancies end in abortion. The availability of abortion is undoubtedly the main (and maybe the only) reason why the fertility rate of black American women between the ages of 15 and 44 declined between 1980 and 2005 from 91 to 67 births per 1,000 women while the fertility rate of white American women declined during the same period only from 62 to 58 births per 1,000 women. The availability of abortion is also the main reason why the fertility rate of Puerto Rican women is now lower (1.83) than that of white American women (1.86).
Indeed, John Donohue and Steven Levitt have argued in a series of persuasive articles that the availability of abortion “and the resulting radical decline in the birth rate of poor, unmarried, teenage girls” has been a crucial factor in the decline in the American crime rate over the past several decades. Palin-supporting Republicans want to criminalize abortion. Their hold on the Republican Party is so strong that when socially liberal Rudolph Giuliani entered the race for the Republican nomination, he felt compelled to say that he supported the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits Medicaid from funding abortions for women who are too poor to afford them. I have qualms about government-enforced eugenics, but it is obscene for the government to force black and Hispanic women to have children they do not want.
Palin-supporting Republicans also insist that abstinence should be the preferred means of birth control in the United States and the rest of the world. In view of the inability of most blacks to think in terms of long-term consequences, abstinence as a means of limiting the population growth of Africa is no more than a bad joke.
Professor Steven Farron, Johannesburg, South Africa
Sir — Kudos for Jared Taylor’s criticism of Reilly Smith’s enthusiasm over Sarah Palin. I voted for John McCain with gritted teeth, but I tried for two months to get the party to dump Gov. Palin from the ticket.
Sarah Palin is lovely and apparently a good mother, but it is astonishing that “conservative” Republicans have attempted to transform her into a great leader before she’s done any actual leading. They’ve been duped by her siren song of “pro-life,” “family,” “small-town values” into thinking that these mere slogans will somehow make her a great “conservative” president. I hope Mr. Smith will come to realize he’s been gulled — like almost all of the political class — into thinking women are no different from men. It’s all about getting women’s votes, and hardly any so-called conservatives had the guts to point that out.
Mr. Smith needs to ask himself this question: Why was Sarah Palin a better choice than a good conservative man?
W. Edward Chynoweth, Sanger, Calif.
Sir — Congratulations to Gregory Hood for his very perceptive December article about the false appeal of Ron Paul. Your readers may be interested to know that in his most recent “Straight Talk,” Dr. Paul wrote the following:
I congratulate our first African-American president-elect. Martin Luther King, Jr. certainly would be proud to see this day. We are stronger for embracing diversity, and I am hopeful that we can continue working through the tensions and wrongs of the past and become a more just and colorblind society . . . A free society emphasizes the importance of individuals, and not because they are part of a certain group. That’s the only way equal justice can be achieved.
Peter Curtis, Reading, Penn.
Sir — Thank you for your marvelous coverage of the Austrian elections in your December issue. I do not believe such a careful and complete analysis could be found in any other publication in the English language.
Harper McAlister, Montreal, Canada
Sir — European nationalists generally have an unfavorable view of the United States, and it isn’t hard to figure out why. Your article on Austria in the December issue lists a number of things the nationalists are against: NATO membership; Turkish membership in the EU, the EU itself, and Muslim immigration. The US government supports every single one, especially Turkish membership in the Union, which it sees as some sort of ridiculous fantasy of Western-Muslim reconciliation. If Austria or any European country ever dared cut off Muslim or non-white immigration, the US would be the first to impose economic sanctions. Our government is no more a friend to the native peoples of Europe than it is to the whites of the United States.
Jim Marshall, Orlando, Fla.