Friday, March 14, 2008
This guy spoke at W&M today. While his speech didn't even approach the sensationalism and radicalism that he apparently embraces (seriously, read the Wikipedia article). He talked about how diversity is not a good thing; how diverse nations rate lower in studies on happiness; how historically integration hasn't worked; how it's natural to want to be with people of your own race. He clearly stated that he's anti-immigration (well, if those immigrants aren't white, that is). He had a couple of half-intelligent points based on shoddy, problematic arguments. He said race is biological (not true). He completely dismissed studies that have shown diversity to be positive. He ignored the fact that concepts of race and the reactions to it are directly linked to how we are socialized to see it, and the fact that there is evidence that those views can be changed. The overwhelming reaction was disgust and outrage. There were a few legitimate, respectful questions: he responded by repeating himself and respected no one else's opinion. It was really interesting that he was there at all. It was interesting to see a radically different viewpoint than my own at work. But his defense was not appropriate; his main argument was that he was right and that's all there is to it. Ah, the things people believe. Plus he founded and edits this lovely publication.