Contrary to all the traditions of academic freedom (“Academic won’t be muzzled”, The Australian April 5), after the publication of a letter to the editor in the Parramatta Sun on July 6, 2005 by Andrew Fraser of Macquarie University’s department of public law on race, IQ, crime, and immigration, his home university forbade him to teach in his subject area and Deakin University withdrew from publication an article already accepted in theDeakin Law Review.
Most threatening to all citizens, not just academicians, the AustralianHuman Rights Commission has declared the publication of the letter constituted an unlawful breach of Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act.
The research Fraser cited to support his arguments has been published in many peer-reviewed journal articles and scholarly books. It documents that blacks have, on average, lower IQ scores and poorer academic achievement than do whites. It also documents that Blacks have higher rates of crime and some other social dysfunctions. East Asians, on the other hand, tend to average higher than Whites on ability measures and lower in rate of crime and social dysfunction.
There is much solid research that makes a genetic contribution to these group differences more likely than not. Fraser has done no more than restate hypotheses offered for over half a century by eminent psychologists and anthropologists at leading universities.
Behavioural scientists have increasingly put evidence for a genetic component to those traits on the record. Many more agree but have been reluctant to go on the record for fear of the kind of intimidation Prof.Fraser is experiencing. There is an important and legitimate academic debate going on about race, intelligence, and genetics. It is a sad day when governments and universities once rooted in the traditions of British liberty muzzle academicians and public figures from engaging in open discussion.
J. Philippe Rushton, University of Western Ontario,
Richard Lynn,University of Ulster
Arthur R. Jensen, University of California, Berkeley
Charles Murray, American Enterprise InstituteWashington, DC
Christopher Brand, formerly University of Edinburgh
Helmuth Nyborg, Aarhus University, Denmark
Linda S. Gottfredson,U niversity of Delaware
Donald Templer, Alliant International University, Fresno