Craven silence will get you no where. The “anti-racist” tyranny will not end until you force a truly open conversation about race. It will only get worse. Comments in a recent journal article by University of London critical race professor David Gillborn demonstrate this point well:
This Article examines the costs of so-called “free speech” in relation to race, particularly with reference to debates about a supposed link between race and intelligence/educability. Drawing on an analysis of media coverage in the United Kingdom, I show how Whiteness (a regime of beliefs and attitudes that embodies the interests and assumptions of White people) operates to privilege racist assumptions and silence minoritized voices despite the presence of formal restrictions and editorial controls similar to those once associated with the Fairness Doctrine in the United States. Under the guise of “free speech,” White people are free to engage in speculation about the nature of intelligence, without risk to themselves, in a situation where the costs are borne entirely by minoritized groups. These debates continually reinstate the possibility of a race/educability link (despite its debunking in the natural and social sciences) and reinforce common racist stereotypes that can be seen at work in the racial disparities associated with hierarchical educational grouping practices (such as tracking in the united States and England’s “gifted and talented” initiative) which systematically advantage White young people while disadvantaging their African-American and Black-British counterparts
Gillborn would see to it that discussions of hate facts, such as the known association between race and intelligence in the UK (let alone the US), are outlawed. Under the tyranny of those of his ilk, one could do a PsychNet search and look up studies such as “Frederickson and Petrides, 2010.Ethnic, gender, and socio-economic group differences in academic performance and secondary school selection: A longitudinal analysis” and read them, but one could not discuss the findings, let alone speculate about the causes of the found differences. Apparently, White people would not be even be allowed to speculate “about the nature of intelligence” (or, presumably, criminality and beauty).
To appreciate the radicalness of Gillborn’s position, it’s important to make clear what he’s saying. He is not merely saying that speculations about the cause of racial differences in intelligence should be criminalized. He’s arguing that even discussions of the reality of racial intelligence differences should be criminalized. (Of course, he contends that the reality of such differences have been debunked in the “social sciences” — but this is demonstrably false). Why? Because the reality of intelligence differences undermines the narrative of institutional racism and white iniquity.