Thursday, October 18, 2007

Dr. James Watson and the IQ Flap

Well, there are the flat-Earth folks; the sun and stars revolve around the Earth folks; and the Earth revolves around the Sun folks. We know how that turned out. Dr. Watson estimates that the question of genetic codes and human intelligence will be identified in about a decade. Fury at DNA pioneer's theory: Africans are less intelligent than Westerners, Science Museum cancels talk by Watson after 'racist' comments, and The controversy of intelligence theories. These can be found also at Michael Savage. I have been an educator for a good portion of my career whether in public schools, in overseas dependent schools, at universities, and in nuclear power training departments. I have not held much truck with IQ as a determining factor in a student's achievement. I have always seen IQ as a projector of potential. But I have also seen one young white girl with a tested IQ of 110 +/- a few points beat the socks of fellow students with IQs testing in the 140 range. First, she didn't know the IQ score and she used her abilities and applied herself to her studies. The 'smarter' students took intelligence for granted and did not apply their abilities. They suffered and she soared academically. So while IQ may be a factor in reasoning or in potential, IQ is not the only determinate to success. Environment and early-training in the home are determining factors as well. But IQ alone does not determine anything other than the potential for xyz. It is what one does with his potential that matters. To be very clear, I readily accept that Asians from the Far East may be generally more intelligent than I am, they certainly have the potential to be very successful. For me, I'm not defensive about that. I don't consider comments that Asians generally score higher on IQ tests than Causasians as racist, just fact based upon the results of thousands of IQ tests. Why do blacks get so easily offended? Why not prove the "theories" wrong? A score on an IQ test is not the sole determining factor in one's live and on one's accomplishments. Is it?

16 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most Whites who make these
comments, make them very superficially, or from great distance.....they are not familiar with the minority cultures in depth. There are so many factors that go into why a person may perform well academically or just in life period.

Nutrition, education, money in the family can all play a part in why a person succeeds or is lost in life ........White people also live longer than blacks
on the average (about 10 years) does that mean that blacks have inferior bodies? Whats really the reason why whites and asians fare better ? You have to understand what is the UNDERLYING FACTOR. You have to look deep.

On the average, I feel whites for many years have had access to better nutrition (perhaps through education) and then have access to better medical care (based perhaps or better financial situations)They also have had better educations, this has had a trickle down effect.....in many areas blacks are still playing catch-up...or just learning what whites have taken for granted for many years.

If whites had all gone through slavery, then segregation, and then sharecropping, and civil rights rights struggles---would whites be in the same place that they are today? I doubt it. Overcoming and succeeding takes time....education and learning take time. Technically, racial groups cannot be compared---because their histories are all different. It's really not fair
to compare whites to native americans or asians to blacks.
Everybody started at a different place in the race. Some are ahead and some lag behind, all for different reasons..



Just looking at outcomes only or test results only, or performance only does not tell you whats going on internally or underneath. As a child growing up in the inner city, and going to school with other black children in the inner city....many of us ate poorly, and diet determines how you function in school and everywhere else, I had fainted frequently from eating so much junk, and had iron poor blood. Yet i was smart.
Though my mom was a librarian and we were exposed to a love of books and learning early, many of my friends did not, they thought my family was strange, we were "squares" Many times there are also "stressors" in minority cultures life that white people never even think about like having enough money. Many of the white friends that I have now have had money in their families for years and they all got to go to good colleges.......so you gotta get the roots of a problems and examine from there............ please stop making "off the cuff" comments without knowing anything about minority cultures, how they operate and function, how they survive and make-do and how they think, and what theyve had to deal with. I have asian and white friends, and after having observed some of them, I know that they are not "smarter" they are just driven, and performance oriented...that doesnt make you smarter, it just makes the outcomes different. You can have a better education,better GPA better house, better car if you are driven. Who can really measure intelligence....it could really be confidence.......or happiness,or high self esteem or strong family background.........so many things affect performance, how do you really know whats are work, without taking a deeper look?

I have gone to inner city schools with blacks, gone to private schools with whites and asians, worked in inner city libraries with blacks, and worked affluent areas, like UCLA. I work there now and have seen some of the smartest people alive both white and black. I know several black people who are working on their Phd's at UCLA......you cannot be stupid and get into the Master's or Phd program here.....

Stop judging people superficially, as to why and how they succeed....and take each person case by case. I know some white people who went to really good colleges , have money in their families and after they graduated from college....they were as lost as could be......

Just having a great GPA or being book-smart does not mean you will a success. I see white and asian people every day who do not live up to their potential,who are brilliant, I have a great vantage point, in that I get to see the truth, I have seen both sides of the situation and know that some things that circulate about other races are total "myth"
.

My father is a black janitor with no college, he had to work 3 times harder than my mom who has a masters degree, yet he is landlord of nice property, and all his tenants are white,.....they like his apartment buildings. He has no education, but is not dumb, and yet he rents to people who are very educated and drive nice cars.......how did that happen????

IF YOU ARE GOING TO MEASURE A PERSONS LIFE, MEASURE THEIR WHOLE LIFE--............NOT JUST INTELLIGENCE. Look deep!

3:10 PM  
Anonymous Luther von Ruckerson said...

Your ties of "race" to IQ are simplistic. How do you define race? How do you differentiate between one race and another? Is it color of skin? Did you know that genetically speaking, "black" people and "white" people are more similar than "black" people and black-looking aboriginals from Australia. Or that there is more genetic variety among groups within Africa than anywhere else in the world?

The concept of "race" is largely a cultural construct. Genetic differences between populations sometimes do and sometimes don't follow the same lines as the ones we use to distinguish one "race" from another.

So my dear conservative beach girl, I suggest studying up a bit before you go blathering on about things you don't know much about. Maybe you should spend less time at the beach and more time studying...

5:23 PM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

Having the life experiences that I have, one cannot say that I do not have a good grasp on a variety of "cultures" but cultures are not "races". I believe there are only 6 races world-wide and a variety of ethnic groups which seem more intent on using ethnicity or skin color as the defining characteristic of themselves. Very shallow indeed and stifle conversation by saying, "It's a black thing." Well, no, we all have similar experiences in life and we handle them differently based upon our "culture" perhaps. I appreciated both of your comments - the issue is one that is very difficult to discuss because generalities often lead to simplistic responses.

If we could just appreciate that, as Americans we have an American culture - we are stronger together than we are separated by "differences." I hope that you - especially Anonymous, will return and re-read. Luther, sans name-calling, you are welcome as well for honest discussion.

7:52 PM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

Anonymous, I'm just curious. Do you study much about the culture of the fleeting "majority"? We have a "culture" too and it isn't all bad.

7:54 PM  
Blogger falcon_01 said...

Luther, again you, like so many other blinded sheep are projecting your negativity. She already stated that there are many other "determining factors" to consider. You just see what you want to see.

People need to disregard what limitations are placed on them by society.

Only by accepting personal responsibility over our lives can we truly become unfettered by ALL outside "determining factors."

Unless you move beyond your past, you dwell in a pit, wallowing in misery- and never standing on your own- it not only holds you back, but it destroys you inside and out.

Having grown up on welfare for a time, I saw what traumatic events can do to a person. You can either dwell on the tragedy or shortcomming, blaming everyone else for your lack of success- OR you can be motivated to overcome whatever challenge life has thrown your way by taking charge of your life and not accepting defeat. It can be a springboard, but people don't seem to use it as such because they get stuck in a pattern of failure and a horrible cycle of blame.

Once you determine to claw your way out of the pit, the next step is actually doing it. It's not always leaps and bounds, and sometimes you'll not make as much money working at first, as you would sitting back, and you may never be an astronaut, doctor, or whatever, but you can find success and contentment that even the most "wealthy" people lack just by being a responsible individual, cutting the bitterness from your life, and contributing to your community instead of just sucking down handouts and making a living off of your misery!

10:01 AM  
Blogger Hathor said...

They are a lot of intelligent black folks, the blogosphere is full of them. Visit. You don't have to visit political ones either.

8:07 PM  
Blogger Rich said...

Having grown up in NYC and a product of the public schools there, intellegence has nothing to do with race. It is all about your upbringing, opportunities, and lack there of, that determine intellegence.

I am white and went to a majority black/hispanic high school and there was evidence everywhere supporting my theory. To say skin color is an intellegence determinate factor is ludicrous! This is the type of "research" that perpetuates racism... There are so many factors that determine our "smarts" and race on its own is not one of those factors...

11:25 PM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

Hathor and Rich, I personally have never given any weight to the color of a person's skin; I tend to look at a person's character and how a person uses the gifts they have been given. I am distressed at the victimology that has grown up in our nation because I tend to see that as demeaning to all of us, each and every one of us.

While I do not adhere to all of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s tenets, and I have heard all of his speeches, I do think he hit it right on the head when he spoke to all of us being judged by our character, not the color of our skin. I think he would be distressed about the skin-color "diversity" quotas on our college campuses and even more saddened by the "minority" students who do not have the grades being taken into major universities where they are doomed to fail, as would most "white-skinned" students, I might add - all in the name of "diversity". It is not our skin that makes us diverse, it is our experiences and our ideas. We need the free exchange of these ideas and the respect that accompanies the sharing of these ideas.

I have been blessed to have lived in the Far East and to have taught Chinese, Koreans, Japanese as well as a myriad of American ethnic groups such as Pueblo Indians, black Americans, white Americans, and all mixtures in between. And I found that all people of variuos backgrounds accepted me because I readily accepted them based upon our mutual respect for each other at a personal level. I could go on but you both know, as an American, where my heart is.

I do not ususally publish hate-filled comments but here is one you might find interesting. I wonder if this person danced when the Twin Towers came down. See Luther's comment:

Tax Dollars being sent to Mexico, redux

Speaking of the Twin Towers, on that fateful day, I was driving back from Barnes and Nobel to a 7-11 close to the offices of a doctor who was running for public office and for whom I volunteered much time. He did not object that my skin color was not the same as his.

Anyway, at the 7-11, I learned more of what had happened. Two black ladies were working the counter. A cluster of American men and women were talking about what had happened. I took my coffee up to the cash register. I spoke to the young woman taking my money - "These terrorists don't know what they've done that can unite us. Right?" The young woman looked at me and said, "You are my sister and I won't let anyone hurt you..." I suspect she does not remember me but I remember her. Together, as Americans, we can accomplish anything. For the race-baiters, I trust there will be a special place for them as the rest of us join together and move on.

We just cannot allow those who live off of preaching our differences to weaken us and divide us when it is our strengths that will allow us to face the many threats aligned against us.

When black Americans cheered when OJ Simpson was not held responsible for the murders of Nicole and Ron, I had to step back and take a look at that. Were they cheering because they believed he was innocent (DNA proved only 1 person in 1 trillion could have committed those murders) or because, with his white lawyers plus Johnny Cochran, OJ had beat the "white man"?

Well, I have veered off subject here. IQ scores only measure intelligence for that day and that time. And they are only one indicator of possible success. It all boils down to one thing really, what we do with the gifts and the chances we are given. We can always stay where we are or we can take the brave step of moving out of an environment that is stifling us.

When we were Americans, we had a strong black American culture. When the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed, it was designed for black Americans. All of us were betrayed the next year when the Immigration Bill of 1965 was passed, increasing the number of non-black residents who easily applied the Civil Rights Act to their purposes, diluting the opportunities designed for black Americans.

We have bright and not so bright folks across the spectrum of intelligence. To me, we must decide whether to swallow the hpye of the multiculturalists or to be Americans. We can stand together as American or we will surely fall separately.

Thank you for stopping by.

11:22 AM  
Blogger Bobillw said...

Beach Girl,

I find the comments (pro and con)about this piece interesting, and your responses reveal more about who you are than about your views on race. I especially take note of your reaction to Luther's comments. Whereas, he merely questions your knowledge on the subject of race, you refer to his comments as hate-filled,(though there's no evidence of that)and suggest that he might be a terrorist. Therein, Beach Girl, is the difference between you and me. I don't smear a person simply because he disagrees with me and I don't discrdit a person's views, simply because I don't like the person. It's not a matter of different world views, it's a matter of tolerance and respect.

12:49 PM  
Blogger Hathor said...

There is the twist.

While I do not adhere to all of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s tenets, and I have heard all of his speeches, I do think he hit it right on the head when he spoke to all of us being judged by our character, not the color of our skin. I think he would be distressed about the skin-color "diversity" quotas on our college campuses and even more saddened by the "minority" students who do not have the grades being taken into major universities where they are doomed to fail, as would most "white-skinned" students, I might add - all in the name of "diversity". It is not our skin that makes us diverse, it is our experiences and our ideas. We need the free exchange of these ideas and the respect that accompanies the sharing of these ideas.

There are no quotas, even though there might be an underlying admissions policy. "They don't have the grades" has long been a myth. I do not think test score are merit devices. Especially when I here someone quibble over 50 points, and many forget that you score not depends on how many you get right but if you have gotten wrong answers. The amount of money which goes into tutoring white kids just so they can pass the test. I have always said that white people would still have to compete unfairly with other whites if there were no blacks. They don't know if the legacy and other privileged admissions out weigh the socalled affirmative action admissions. But it so easy for the white student to play the victim and say that they have been reversed discrimated against. Give me a break.

For the record I was raise in the South during Jim Crow, and seen many ambitions of blacks defeated. We were so ready, so that when that playing field leveled, we could participate. Well guess what, that didn't happen. That generation best aspirations was lost. You may not see color, but many do. It is still a struggle to find jobs when you are educated, in the private sector. I recently went to a job fair and had this younger white woman question my abilities. Did I really want her to submit my resume for a certain position? I think she could see the change in my face and voice, so my resume may have gone to file 13.

I have had enough experience to know when I am treated differently. So this level playing field has yet to come. Blacks aren't taking all the choice positions in college, I wish they were taking up 12%. It is funny how, it is OK for Asians to do so. You know they are also a minority and substitute for blacks and Hispanics, when the FEDs are questioning companies about their hiring practices. I have worked at companies where Asians could do no wrong, because of the management's prejudices. They perceived Asians to be perfect, therefore they were. I was really pissed off when I had to correct their mistakes and was compared to them, as me not doing my job as well as them. I was not competing against college educated Asians, this was manufacturing grunt work.

You are welcome to your myths.

1:22 PM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

Hathor - I suppose we are both welcome to our respective myths. I do believe we will get beyond them but there are myths and then there are myths. As to the quotas - I am intimately familiar with them. I worked for a rather large company for some time. They "got" points for hiring women (black and white) and more points for hiring black women and black men. I know how many points they "earned" or were credited with for hiring me and my colleagues.

Hathor, if you are interested, take a look at a book called Collision Course, The Strange Convergence of Affirmative Action and Immigration Policy in America, by Hugh Graham. Graham, a professor from Vanderbilt devoted his entire life to studying the impact of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Immigration Relaxation (?) Act of 1965. (Graham passed away from cancer, I think, shortly before his book was published.) He believed that the 1965 act was designed to under-cut the opportunities of young black Americans by pulling all so-called "people of color" under the 1964 act thereby diluting the opportunities for young black Americans.

By including all "people of color" into the quota system - and it did and does exist, Hathor, it is no myth - then schools and businesses could "hire" anyone designated a "minority" and meet their quota.

Because of the invasion from Mexico by ILLEGAL aliens, and the "rights" their illegal children are given in some states, these children get spots in some colleges that decrease the spots for our black and white students.

Now, the following is a problem that bothers me. Go to World Factbook. If the link does not work, just search The World Factbook.

Search United States. Then go down to Ethnic Groups. There is no category for Hispanic although that is considered the largest minority right now for a variety of reasons. Hispanics are separated into "ethnic" group by their nation of origin and thereby the white population in the United States is considered to be 81%, yet we know that all "Hispanics" fall under the "people of color" benefits of the 1964 bill and thereby continue to dilute the opportunities of black Americans, and to some extent, American Indians.

Before I'm hopped all over as anti-Hispanic, that is not the case. Legal immigrants who are following the laws and working hard as we are all expected to do are not "illegal". Of course, now laugh with me a second, Hathor - "white" folks have a difficult time getting into the United States these days. Well, with 81% of the population as recounted in the Factbook, hmm...

I think you and I both have some good points and would talk about issues you have raised over coffee at the local Starbucks or local diner and find that we have many points of agreement. [Please don't hold to the myth that all "white" people are brought up the same and have the same opportunities. That is not so. When I was a child, I had no idea how poor we were. And please don't have the idea that we are not discriminated against. White women especially and many white men are discriminated against as well. I know I don't "know" the black experience but there is a lower-class/middle-class white experience as well.

You might want to read a the column by Walter Williams - Academic Cesspools.

There is something to be gained by knowing the past and there is something to be gained by having a broader worldview of that past. I just learned of the 1.3 million "white" people captured and enslaved by the slave traders, see The brainwashing of minds in the Multicultural totalitarian state.

Hathor, injustices to ethnic groups go back for thousands of years. You know this and this knowledge does not right any wrong. My question is, as Americans, how do we move beyond "a dwelling on the past" mindset into a future together because we are together and we are "all" threatened by the same things. Jobs being sent overseas take jobs away from all of us; jobs being taken by any illegals are entry level jobs and these jobs are taken from our young people who need entry level jobs to learn many skills they will need later.

How do we end any student being graduated from high school who cannot read his diploma or cannot write a short paper or letter? A friend of mine who happens to be a black American, Vietnam vet, told me his daughter (1/2 black, 1/2 white) told him she couldn't even write a simple letter. She is bright and smart. And before anyone hops on the bandwagon that I am condescending to her, forget it. I had to help a white student learn basic grammar so that he could pass his 11th grade English class. No one had taught him either.

I am as disgusted as I can be that the public schools are turning out any students who cannot accomplish simple, necessary skills. This young woman has been robbed but she would not have been had she been one of my students. I am now and have been furious at our public schools generally for under-cutting our students. At least, they seem to be indiscriminately robbing many students regardless of ethnicity of their best hope for success.

When I worked at a major black university - I was a grants writer and researcher - my colleagues sent their children to a good private school where all of the students learned basic academic skills.

Oh, about this young woman's dad - the Vietnam Vet - he retired as a Major and happens to be a talented writer. So something happened in the education of our youth and it has not been good.

I'm reading Genghis Khan by Jack Weatherford right now. In it, he points out that Kublilia Khan - who controlled China and made China into the naiton it is today, worked to educated the "common" people because "knowledge is power". He took the power away from the upper class elite.

Although I have been called a racist - I don't see it that way. I'm furious that the youth and enthusiasm of so many of our students has been robbed from them because many are not prepared with basic writing skills among other things that they need simply to survive and the myths you mention are perpetuated.

So, agreeing that we cannot know the past experiences of each other in our childhoods, how do we move forward honestly for our younger generations? I don't know how everyone hopped on the "victim" train but that is a slow train to nowhere...for anyone on it. And it is designed to drive us farther apart. It is also designed to get a segment of our population on government rolls, at subsistance levels and to keep them there. I don't call that fair to them or to our nation. We are throwing away many of our human resources.

As for denouncing the "cult of victimology", also designed to keep people down, I find the work of Shelby Steele, Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, Ward Connerly (sp), and Justice Clarence Thomas quite interesting and uplifting. I also have a great deal of respect and admiration for the late Shirley Chisholm. Of course, she jumped all over black men for kicking women, black and white, to the curb over what she considered the Civil Rights sell-out. Her perspective - she said black men took the bait and didn't seek opportunities for black and white women as well - that came later.

Oh, I do support school vouchers because if the public school is not doing its job, parents need to be able to send their children to schools that will do the job of educating the students. Students are only young once. There are no second chances here and, by the way, I'm happy to pay my federal or state taxes to support a good voucher system.

You might like this one - a lady from South Africa who had become an American citizen called into a radio show. I heard her. She said she was a real African American in that she was born in South Africa, not America, and she was white but she found black Americans she knew took exception with her characterization of herself as African American.

How do we get to be Americans, not hyphens or identified by ancestry?

Hathor, I believe you have been open and honest in your discussion and points. I appreciate that. Thank you... Now, how do we get around the folks who are working to keep us apart? We are Americans and we are in the same boat.

Don't be too hard on me; it is early and I've been writing this response since around 4:30AM.

Have a good day... Come back any time.

7:06 AM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:42 AM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

These are Luther's comments sent with love, tolerance, and respect found at the link to an earlier post, Tax Dollars sent to Mexico, redux:

Luther von Ruckerson said...
Ah, yes...the old "multitude against us"...by "us" I assume you mean good middle class white people?

The dominance of white people on the continent of North America is a tiny aberration in the history of human population of this continent. And guess what? It isn't going to last much longer. Be afraid, whitey, be very afraid.

Go back to the beach, little girl. And don't forget the sunblock, because you are genetically unfit for survival without it.
~~~~~~~
And of course he got it wrong - "us" means "We American citizens". Good grief! Poor little white girl can't say nothing right. Where's all that tolerance and love?

On a much higher note,

I just re-read the comments by Anonymous. Very good and thought-provoking comments. I have tried to make some of the same points albeit from my personal knowledge of the cultures with whom I have lived in the Far East and among American Pueblo Indians, as well as Hispanics and of course white and black Americans.

So, what we do with what we have counts? I might add had I made some of the statements what Anonymous makes rightly from experience, I would have been called a "racist." But Anonymous is right - and I have stated this - many things contribute to a person's success and IQ or standardized test scores can be very misleading indicators of potential, also, being driven either from inherent cultural values or peer pressure has a lot to do with success.

Thank the Lord for all of that "tolerance" and "respect" but none for me, one who has devoted much of my life to the education of all of my students. My students learned to read, to write, to do research so that no matter what - they would have the tools to succeed. We didn't have to agree on much of anything but we discussed issues openly and for grades, well - students earned more for disagreeing with the me than for agreeing, earned more for honest effort and nothing for looks.

The level playing field can be reached in different ways but education, a real education, is a good leveler. If schools would teach basics of reading, writing, history, math, the sciences, world history, government, geography, etc and stay out of "brain-washing", our students can do the research and form their own opinions.

I like the father Anonymous described. He's like the Rich Dad in "Rich Dad, Poor Dad".

Have a good Sunday and it's off to church for me...

8:34 AM  
Blogger Hathor said...

My comment has nothing to do with immigration or really quotas or if black people are getting educated as they should; It had to do with the perception of white people about blacks. I know there were no immigrants or other people of color in the area in the south, competing for those jobs in the sixties. You were either black or white. What I said about the Asian had nothing to do with immigration. I had a job, so did other black people at this manufacturer, I was speaking of how I was treated by the white people there. It is personal, to be thought as and treated as inferior, especially in the light of reality.
I was trying to show how white people play the system, and how they justify it.

Read this post, you will know why I do not refer to myself as Afro-American and my thoughts about Walter Williams.

10:03 AM  
Blogger Beach Girl said...

Hathor, thanks for clarification. I'll read your/the linked post.

It is personal. Playing the system has evolved into an art form.

Have a good week...

4:19 PM  
Blogger falcon_01 said...

There are people of every shape, size, and color who play the system- it is quite an art! I, of a younger generation, feel sick every time I see someone play the system.

I had an overweight boss in the military who bragged to a group, "I've been working for white men my whole life, and now I got one working for me!" She proceeded to dump the majority of the work on me, take plenty of time off, and then not take my wife's medical condition seriously- which wound up with me being needlessly sent away at a critical point in medication balancing, resulting in her hospitalization and near death experience (which could have been prevented if I was in the local area to monitor). Everything was well documented, yet I got transferred and my boss got a promotion! There are nasty people everywhere, and that one happened to be black. I don't let that shape my opinions of other people- because I know many more people of all "races" who have served honorably as Americans first.
I suffered, and my wife nearly died from someone gaming the system.
It's time to move forward and accept personal responsibility and treat everyone as a unique individual. There are bad people everywhere, but it's got more to do with them being bad than it does with what coler skin they wear.

3:08 PM  

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