Ugly face of racism alive and well


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Posted Thursday, October 6, 2005 - 12:00am

It is more than being an American, Republican, conservative, former education secretary or drug czar. It is more than the first amendment. It is about civil rights in 2005.

How does former U.S. education secretary – turned talk-show host have the intelligence to say, "if you wanted to reduce the crime, you could, if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country and your crime rate would go down."

William J. Bennett suggested this on his syndicated talk show last week. After saying to abort black babies, he added that such an idea would be an "impossible, ridiculous and morally reprehensible thing to do." But he said, "your crime rate would go down."

Bennett, the education secretary under then Pres. Ronald Regan and director of drug policy during George H.W. Bush's administration, has written a number of books stressing the importance of traditional values, including the 1993 best-seller, "The Book of Values."

Since when did his personal values mean aborting black babies to curb crime, or being a racist, bigot, or whatever else you call a man who says one race is superior to another and the scourge of America's crime problems?

Racial differentiation only serves the purpose of justifying oppression and superexploitation.

A century ago, pseudo-scientific arguments developed to justify oppression by showing that there is a genetically superior white race during the Jim Crow law days of racism and prejudice.

The race debate continued throughout the 20th Century. However, in 1964, Ashley Montague edited a book called "The Concept of Race" containing a series of articles by anthropologists and biologists rejecting the concept of race.

The same year he gave a series of lectures published in a book, "The Idea of Race" noting: "All human beings and all human groups differ from one another in one or more genes. That is a fact, and it is also a fact that when such individuals or groups are classed into arbitrary subdivisions called 'races,' no matter what the criteria for such subdivisions may be, these classifications are arbitrary and correspond to nothing in reality.

"What is more important, such arbitrary subdivisions cannot be regarded as units of evolution either in space or in time.

"In the particular case of man, the 'races' that have been arbitrarily recognized are from a few. What is obscured by such arbitrary definitions of 'race' are the facts.

"First, that the very idea of 'race' exists only in the mind of the definer, that it is an abstraction; second, that it in fact corresponds to nothing in reality; and third, that it obscures the real meaning of population variability."

Even Adolf Hitler, who wrote and spoke about the virtues of the Aryan race, admitted in 1930 "I know perfectly well that in the scientific sense there is no such thing as race."

There is no scientific study established that persons with a particular physical characteristic are mentally or physically more limited than other humans. All the measurements of brain size, IQ tests and intelligence have not shown this. Stephan Jay Gould's "The Mismea-sure of Man," effectively debunks this notion that there is any relationship between brain size and intelligence or IQ tests and intelligence in human beings.

Anti-hate ordinances have been tested by the U.S. Supreme Court since the 1970s. Their alleged aim is to generally outline expressions of hate. Bennett's statements border on being hateful, resentful and in violation of civil rights laws. His statements go after the crucial foundation of a fair and race-neutral meritocracy. Racial prejudice is not some innate part of human nature. Bennett's remarks simply encouraged the basis for enduring the scourge of racism again.

If he feels that way about blacks, what is he saying about homophobia, heterosexism, ageism, anti-Semitism, and so on.

Filed under: viewpoints