There’s a guy on the Latin lists who regularly defends the validity of IQ score as a reflection of ability. The fact is, IQ does vary according to social group. Unfortunately, many people have not got the message that “race” is not a biological fact but what is called a social construct. As usual, this observation gets pulled into the quicksand of the culture wars. But even this guy on the Latin lists, a very sharp person, had to admit having a jolt when I pointed out that people identified as African-Americans do not make up a homogeneous gene pool by any means (Henry Louis Gates has had a couple of programs on PBS – yes, that liberal, commie tv network – showing the immense diversity of the Af-Am gene pool). The so-called “test score gap” between Whites and Blacks in this country is due to social factors. Attempts to base it in biology is so fraught with problems that most people doing so have an agenda in terms of restructuring the society so that Blacks are kept in a secondary position, e.g. Charles Murray. My view of voucher programs is jaundiced, to say the least, since I see this sudden concern for minorities on the part of conservatives as being a ploy to get money for private schools so as to escape the restrictions on religious indoctrination in public schools. Poor minorities will not be able to afford private schooling even with vouchers, so it’s all a sham and a stalking horse.
Amy Chu wrote a book called World on Fire about the covert nature of foreign societies in Asia and Africa where certain groups like Chinese, Jews, Indians, and Anglos make up a substantial proportion of the entrepreneurial class in those societies. So when someone is referred to as Philippino, Malay, Indonesian, Kenyan or such and mentioned as owning hotels and so on, they are often only Philippino, etc. by nationality, not by ethnicity. They are Chinese or Pakistani or some such by ethnicity and maintain themselves quite separate from the indigenous population.
When you get to Whites in Africa, you run into a similar situation. I used to laugh at people who would exclaim how they flew to Nairobi and realized how advanced Africa was, never mentioned that everything then was controlled by Whites under British rule.
The “gap” between social groups, BTW, disappears when the social distinction disappears e.g. the Eta of Japan, a despised class heavily restricted and discriminated against who, when they migrated to the U.S. and concealed their identity, immediately wiped out the ’test score gap’, IQ gap seen in Japan and began scoring at the same level as other Japanese-Americans.
I’ll post this to my blog. I really don’t feel like editing myself so as not to raise the demons of flteach.
Pat Barrett firstname.lastname@example.org
I played with google to get some answers, and think I stumbled upon a
reference, might well be rker’s comment, referring to this:
cited by irouti below:
By the way, what a rash of nativism has come out with Obama’s
statement. No one of that group probably ever read Paul Simon’s book–
and would be scandalized that the title could be seen as Anti-
American. Who says we’re tongue-tied!?!
’Tis silly season, perhaps? Or do we need a chill pill?
In response to Rker’s comment: “Malay kids: The Chinese have
higher IQs. That is the biggest reason why the Chinese in Malaysian do
better than the Malays.” Are you saying that the Chinese race is
superior (in IQ) to the Malay race? I’d think very carefully before
saying such things. Environmental factors play a great role in shaping
a human being.
Learning languages does not only give you the ability to say words in
different languages. It enables you to understand the various cultures
and peoples around you. The United States is made up of immigrants and
therefore various cultures, knowing different languages lets you
understand your neighbors.
In addition, the United States have fought wars all over the world. If
you look back in time, the US has made many mistakes in their
strategies to spread democracy across different nations, mainly
because they did not understand the peoples and their cultures.
Common Americans vote for presidents that decide to fight these wars
using the same common Americans that voted for them. If these
Americans understood the different cultures around them, perhaps they
can make better decisions when voting.
(Names excised to protect privacy. If anyone objects to having their post quoted, should they recognize it, let me know)