In the midst of an otherwise bland Chronicle of Higher Education essay by Peter Wood (8 August issue) about why there are more foreign-born graduate students in science and engineering than there are US students, were these amazing statements:
The science "problems" we now ask students to think about aren't really science problems at all. Instead we have the National Science Foundation vexed about the need for more women and minorities in the sciences. President Lawrence H. Summers was pushed out of Harvard University for speculating (in league with a great deal of neurological evidence) that innate difference might have something to do with the disparity in numbers of men and women at the highest levels of those fields.
A society that worries itself about which chromosomes scientists have isn't a society that takes science education seriously.
.. a statement that is backed up with this example of awesome logic:
In 1900 the mathematician David Hilbert famously drew up a list of 23 unsolved problems in mathematics .. Notably, Hilbert didn't write down problem No. 24: "Make sure half the preceding 23 problems are solved by female mathematicians."
Presumably these views are why P. Woods is the executive director of the National Association of Scholars, whose website proclaims that the association strives to
.. uphold the principle of individual merit and oppose racial, gender, and other group preferences.
where "group" = any group comprised of people other than neurologically superior white men.
A society that systematically discriminates against people owing to their chromosomes or other irrelevant characteristics, genetic or otherwise, is corrupt.
If the National Science Foundation and other agencies, institutions, and people with power to change things are "vexed" about the lack of some "groups" in science, engineering, and math fields, maybe smart people who don't happen to be male and white will enter these fields in increasing numbers and, in league with a great deal of neurological evidence, make the significant contributions of which we are more than capable if given a fair chance.
And then, if the day comes when the chromosomes of scientists truly don't matter, maybe sad little essays by men clinging to questionable studies showing their neurological superiority will only be published on their own webpages and not in mainstream academic publications.
6 months ago