Letter to the Editor: Arguing with Racists
The transformation of the Eugenics Education Society into the Galton Institute has not been as radical as the “political correction” of the Royal Anthropological Institute, let alone the Institute of Race Relations. Nevertheless, the latest issue of The Galton Review carries a surprisingly naïve endorsement of Adam Rutherford’s How to Argue with a Racist (2020), by Emeritus Professor Dallas Swallow of UCL, written with the BLM “demonstrations” in mind. It repeats the evasive semantic mantra that the “very concept” of “race” is a genetic “fallacy”, and states that every individual currently alive on earth shares ancestors in common with “all others” as recently as the 14th century.
Contextual clarity regarding umbrella words like “racism” and “racists” is urgently required, especially in view of a currently politicised focus on “definitions” confining responsibility to white-skinned people. The disputable allegation that “racial classification” arose as a superstructural “legitimisation” of Western imperialism is linked to the recent denunciation of (among others) James Watson, Tatu Vanhanen, Vincent Sarich, Garrett Hardin, Cyril Darlington, Carleton Coon, John Baker, Ruggles Gates, Ellsworth Huntington, Ronald Fisher, Joseph Deniker, Francis Galton, Thomas Malthus, Carl Linnaeus – and inevitably (notwithstanding his anti-slavery opinions) Charles Darwin himself. Continue reading