By Lawrence Auster
With the publication of The Bell Curve, we see the fascinating phenomenon of mainstream journalists and intellectuals wrestling, most of them for the first time, with the uncomfortable facts about race differences in intelligence. While this is a historic event, it can also seem rather disappointing. Apart from the writers who demonize the book’s co-authors, Charles Murray and Richard Herrnstein, which was to be expected, even those more thoughtful liberals and conservatives who (grudgingly) admit the subject of race and intelligence into discourse hedge it around with so many qualifications as to make it almost meaningless. Thus William Buckley acknowledged the reality of the racial IQ difference, but then quoted Murray and Herrnstein to the effect that it’s not important. Scott McConnell in the New York Post said that IQ can be changed. Jacob Weisberg of New York magazine, a true liberal die-hard, threw even more fences and evasions and escape hatches around the subject. Unfortunately, Murray and Herrnstein had already set the stage for this intellectually unserious treatment of their work by downplaying the idea of race differences even as they promoted it. Murray, in his many appearances on television, has been appallingly evasive about the true content and purport of his ideas. (Here is a letter I wrote to Murray about this.)
As disappointing as this hedging is, we need to recognize that it is a natural and predictable stage in an unfolding of thought that will take some time to reach clarity. It does not happen all at once, but necessarily goes through several stages. This is because the question of race and intelligence does not consist, as people seem to imagine, of just one idea, it consists of a constellation of ideas, which must be grasped one at a time until the larger scene comes into view. To illustrate this, I would like to tell the story of the involvement of one non-specialist—namely myself—with these ideas. The experience as I’ve lived through it can be compared to looking at the world through slightly out-of-focus lenses, then slowly sharpening the focus until what was hazy becomes clear. Or it is like something in the background of one’s field of vision slowly moving into the foreground.
In this process, rationalizations and evasions slip away, sometimes gradually, sometimes through startling insights that revolutionize one’s whole way of thinking. In telling about my own experience of these ideas as they came to me, one by one, I can perhaps give the reader a more comprehensive, if non- systematic, approach to understanding this subject.
IQ and Intelligence
1. In the mid 1980s, New York magazine had a cover story on the growing tensions between blacks and Jews. The article gave figures on black SAT scores that were absolutely stunning, for example, that in the entire U.S. only about 100 blacks in any given year scored over 700 in the verbal SATs. What this meant to me was that the number of blacks at the top level of academic abilities was virtually non-existent. So it was no longer a surprise that there were so few blacks in the intellectual professions.
However, at this time I did not draw any deeper conclusions from this with regard to black intelligence. The data did not suggest to me that differences in SAT scores related to something I would call “intelligence” or that such differences were permanent, but only that, as blacks were at this point, it was unrealistic to expect proportional equality in all professions, and in particular there was this shocking absence of blacks at the higher levels of verbal and logical ability.
2. In 1990, I met Michael Levin when he hosted a National Association of Scholars meeting at his apartment in Manhattan, around the time that he was first being attacked for his statements on black intelligence. I acquired a copy of Professor Levin’s controversial article in the Australian quarterly Proceedings which contained the sentence, “The average black is significantly less intelligent than the average white.” After reading it and also hearing him interviewed on a radio program, I wrote a letter to Levin in which, perhaps contradictorily, I expressed both admiration for his courage and concern that he was being too blunt; specifically, I suggested that instead of saying “blacks on average are less intelligent” he might say “blacks on average are less capable in the intellectual skills measured in I.Q. tests”—wording, I argued, that would be more precise and less demeaning to blacks.
At the same time, however, I conceded to Levin that blunt language might be the only way to get at these forbidden ideas. Experience in later years proved this to be correct. I came to feel that Levin, by stating the forbidden truth in plain English rather than in technical terms or euphemisms, had been a pioneer. The reason for this is that without that horrifying word “intelligence,” as in “blacks are on average less intelligent than whites,” the difficult truth of this matter does not get through to our minds. We can always evade the truth by imagining that the thing at issue is something secondary, like “the ability to take tests.”
3. Then there was the question of whether IQ tests measure something real. While this is amply demonstrated in the literature and I don’t want to go into it much here, a key finding that proved to my satisfaction the validity of IQ is its predictability—a point well established by Murray and Herrnstein in The Bell Curve. You can make all kinds of metaphysical arguments that IQ is just the “ability to take IQ tests,” or that it “does not measure creativity,” and so on. But as Murray and Herrnstein demonstrate in exhaustive detail based on the data from National Longitudinal Study of Youth, if you give a large sampling of fourteen year olds an IQ test, while controlling for socioeconomic background, ten or twenty years later their life achievement will correlate very strongly with the results of those tests. This, I think, is the definitive argument for the validity of IQ. [Note: A couple of years after this was written, Murray demonstrated that siblings with different IQs—who of course share exactly the same socioeconomic status and home environment—differ markedly in their later success and income. This was absolute proof of the reality and importance of IQ.]
4. In 1991, when the New York Post condemned Levin as a racist, I wrote a letter to the Post defending Levin’s ideas. It was the first time I had addressed the issue in print.
In that letter, I saw the significance of the IQ difference in that it meant blacks could not be expected to have equal intellectual achievement with whites, and that lower black representation in the professions was not due to racism. However, I still thought that the lower black achievement might be due to “cultural” factors and therefore could potentially be raised up to equal that of whites. The main point for me was that, as blacks are now, they could not be expected to achieve equally with whites, and that affirmative action was therefore based on wrong premises. I was not particularly interested in the great debate over “environment versus genetics,” since the topic seemed metaphysical to me. I was, and am, also offended by the constant references to “genes” as causal in human life, which I think is a materialistic, reductionist concept. I felt we should stay with the things we know, such as the concrete fact that black do perform differently, without worrying ourselves to death over the hidden ultimate causes that we cannot know.
5. However, the problem with the above view is that it leaves open a huge escape hatch for the supporters of affirmative action. They can concede that blacks are less intelligent now, but still insist that if we push blacks artificially into higher socioeconomic levels through massive affirmative action, then black intelligence will be equalized with that of whites. Or, if it’s too late for this generation of blacks to improve, then their children will grow up with a better environment (created through affirmative action) and will be more intelligent. Liberals are constantly looking for ways to keep the egalitarian social engineering project alive; and as long as that project is alive, any failure by society to achieve complete racial equality of outcomes will continue to be falsely blamed on “white racism,” with all the divisive, demoralizing, and destructive effects that charge has on society. For these reasons, it’s not enough to know about the existence of racial differences in intelligence without also grasping the fact that these differences are not amenable to elimination by any known means. Of course, black intellectual performance could be improved, perhaps significantly in some cases, if society brought back real standards and discipline and if black illegitimacy were reduced. But that’s not the same as eliminating the racial gap, which is the aim and demand of our ruling ideology.
6. Richard Lynn’s and Michael Levin’s articles on the Scarr-Weinberg cross-racial adoption study in the March 1994 American Renaissance settled these questions for me. The adoption study, which followed until adulthood black children adopted as babies by college educated whites, showed that even with a totally “white” upper middle-class environment and upbringing, the large black-white IQ gap remained; at best it was slightly narrowed. As Levin pointed out, this was a definitive demonstration of a hereditary racial difference in IQ.
7. Then there was the assertion of cultural bias in mental tests, meaning that blacks did worse on IQ tests because the tests emphasized “white” cultural knowledge. Jared Taylor’s interview with Arthur Jensen, published in the August and September 1992 American Renaissance (and even more, the unabridged, 36-page typescript of this interview) blew that notion out of the water. Jensen made the point that in test questions that involved no cultural background at all, such as the ability to see similarities in geometric shapes, blacks actually did worse than in questions that used “white” cultural references.
Differences in Style of Thought
8. So far, I’ve been speaking of intelligence as something that can be measured scientifically by a number. But in recent years I’ve also come to believe there are differences in black and white styles of thinking. Race differences are not limited to numerical differences on a single scale like IQ (which itself is an aggregate of several different abilities). Race differences also take in different types of mentality, which we can see more readily by commonsense observation than by scientific tests.
Personal observation is of course subjective and may be erroneous and unfair. Nonetheless, it is a necessary part of understanding the world in which we live. Further, I am attempting to describe the whole journey of my change of attitude regarding race, a journey that has included (possibly unfair) generalizations from personal experience as well as the cognition of more objective facts. In the next few paragraphs, therefore, I will state my subjective impressions and conclusions as such, without claiming objective validity for them and without attempting to document or prove them beyond telling the experiences that led to them.
Following the arguments and actions of black leaders, listening to black callers on talk radio, led me over several years to an increasingly bleak view of black thinking styles. For one thing, it seemed to me that many blacks have a marked tendency to pick up some slogan and then just use it without much logical connection to the subject at hand. I also became increasingly aware of the “hustle,” the way many blacks at all levels—from street people and politicians to celebrated “intellectuals” like Cornel West—did not use ideas as ideas, but as a hustle, as a way of manipulating people’s feelings. Suggestibility and the substitution of rhetoric for reason are general human weaknesses, but it seemed to me that these failings were noticeably more pronounced among blacks. Of course there are many blacks who are rational and logical and intellectually competent. But the proponderance of irrationality among the black population is hard to ignore.
9. I was also impressed by Gedalia Braun’s fascinating manuscript, Racism, Guilt and Self-Deceit, based on his many years of close personal observation of blacks in Africa, an excellent review of which appeared in American Renaissance in 1993.
According to Braun, African blacks have a wholly different kind of mentality from whites. He pointed to Africans’ inability to understand cause-and-effect relationships, as seen in the magical mode of thinking observed among Pacific Islanders and known as the “cargo cult” syndrome, and which Braun also saw evidenced among black Africans. For example, as Braun described it, Africans seem to see Western development aid as a magical process that will automatically make all the appurtenances of a modern society appear. This way of thinking leads African blacks to see whites as magical beings who could, if they wanted, do everything for blacks. To the extent that this attitude carries over to blacks outside of Africa, it would explain their belief in (white) government as the answer to all their needs, and their growing rage at whites for not giving blacks the vast range of goodies that blacks believe is within whites’ (magical) power to give.
Another of Braun’s provocative observations was that African blacks (at least those who have not come under the influence of Western liberalism) have no hang-ups about the notion that whites are smarter. In fact, they take it for granted and, he pointed out, are eager to talk about the subject with him because it’s so rare for them to find a white who will speak honestly about race. They prefer such honesty to the racial guilt, the pious lies about equality, and the hypocrisy that they normally get from whites. These observations suggest that white liberal attitudes have done more to harm race relations than any other factor.
10. I also began to think about differences in black and white attitudes and outlook on the world, particularly in relation to the capacity for objectivity. Through numerous experiences and observations, I started to have the sense that blacks are more “non-objective,” they understand things in a much more personal, subjective way than whites. They seem to have much less interest in knowledge or beauty for its own sake. For example, I repeatedly had the following experience. Whenever I would turn on C-SPAN and the conference being broadcast consisted of black people, literally five seconds would not pass before the speaker would say the word “black.” In other words, blackness itself was the topic of the conference. When whites get together at an academic or other type of meeting, it’s to talk about some objective area of shared interest, whether science or literature or history or politics. But, at least as far as one can judge from C-SPAN, when blacks get together to talk in a formal public setting it’s almost always to talk about themselves.
Many blacks believe that there is such a difference of intellectual orientation between blacks and whites. Black multiculturalists say that whites are more interested in “things” (or, as the multiculturalists charmingly put it, whites are more interested in “manipulating” things), while blacks are more interested in “relationships.” Of course, the multiculturalists put this in such a way as to make whites look cold and mean, blacks warm and empathetic. In any case, the multiculturalists do not seem to realize that to the extent such a difference in orientation toward external reality does exist, it means that blacks are in fact less endowed with the qualities that make civilization possible, particularly Western civilization. What distinguishes Western from non-Western cultures is the capacity for objectivity, the ability to recognize a truth beyond one’s own immediate impulses or family and tribal loyalties.
11. A corollary of this lack of orientation toward objective facts and ideas is the relative intellectual and moral passivity of blacks. While there are many decent, upright black people, there is a notable failure on the part of blacks effectively to resist the bad people in their communities. The result is that the bad people—the orators, the hustlers, the corrupt, the despots—always seem to rise to the top. That is why black countries, and black-run cities in America, are the way they are. There are good people living in those places, but for the most part they are only good in their private, familial sphere. They are not actively good in the social and political sense and thus rarely take leadership or succeed in creating a civilized political order. The number of morally courageous and principled blacks who actively resist the corruption and racialist conformism around them is very limited; in fact, such upright and intelligent blacks often separate themselves from the black community when they recognize how unwelcome they are in it.
The only time when there was a relatively high quality black leadership in America was when America was under the influence of a white bourgeois Christian elite who set decent standards for the whole society including whites and blacks. Black communities and churches (just like white ethnic minority communities) tended to replicate the authoritative moral standards of the larger society. Thus the upright black leaders of the mid-twentieth century were themselves indirect products of a virtuous white majority culture. But as blacks have thrown off white influence and cultural standards (and as whites have cast off their own standards), black public society, as everyone is painfully aware, has become radically cruder and less ethical.
12. What really convinced me of an inherent, dangerous weakness in black ways of thought, however, was their widespread belief in Afrocentrism and the notion that whites were committing “genocide” against blacks. In September 1989, ABC News did a program on the condition of blacks in America, followed by a special edition of “Nightline” with a panel consisting of several of ABC’s black correspondents and other noted blacks. With the exception of Professor Shelby Steele, these accomplished, successful blacks all endorsed the notion of a white conspiracy to commit “genocide” against blacks. The discovery that it was not just ignorant street people, but successful, articulate black professionals who believed these insane and wicked conspiracy theories, made a devastating impression on me. Indeed, with the exception of the 1992 Los Angeles riots, I was more traumatized by this program than by any other public event in recent history. It shook my former belief that blacks and whites could more or less get along in the same society. (I wrote an article about this program, saying the same things I’ve said in the present paragraph, which New York Newsday rejected because, as the editor put it, it showed an “odd lack of compassion.”)
The wide acceptance of Afrocentrism had a similar effect on my views of blacks. I was appalled when I heard commentator Tony Brown, a reasonable and intelligent black (who moreover had just joined the Republican Party), say in a speech to the Heritage Foundation that, given the fact that mankind began in Africa, “all civilizations are African.” More than anything else, Afrocentrism, with its claims that European civilization was “stolen” from Africa and that people like Hannibal and Cleopatra were black because they lived on the African continent, confirmed my growing conviction that blacks were often incapable of distinguishing their wishes, feelings and resentments from objective reality. There is also the growing “black Bible” movement, which teaches that the main figures in the Bible, including Abraham, Moses, Mary, Jesus and Paul, were black—a truth which (naturally) those tricky whites have systematically hidden from blacks so as to maintain their dominance over them. As far as I can see, the blackness of the people in the Bible constitutes the sole teaching of this sect. Their interest in the Bible is exclusively racialist. (Once again, the fact that a large number of blacks do not believe in Afrocentrism does not change the fact that a large number of them do, and are acting on it and spreading it and institutionalizing it through the whole society.)
The most extreme form of black conspiracy thinking is the Nation of Islam claim that whites are demons who were created by a mad scientist 5,000 years ago, and who ever since then have robbed blacks of their birthright. Whether blacks believe in that myth, or are just fixated in a general feeling of historic grievance, the notion of their historic victimhood tends to justify in their minds every crime and injustice that they might now commit against whites. Over and over, polls and statements reveal that blacks feel they should not be held to moral standards for the crimes of blacks against whites, because blacks have been the victims of this vast and still unacknowledged evil by whites for several thousands of years. Blacks thus tend to see every issue in purely racialist terms—as we can see when black juries excuse black killers of whites, or when a great majority of blacks say that O.J. Simpson is innocent, or when a high percentage of blacks agree that Colin Ferguson’s mass murder on the Long Island Rail Road was a justified act of rage against white racism. The above attitudes all increasingly suggest that blacks and whites cannot truly live as equal co-citizens in the same society.
It is hard to forget Jefferson’s chilling premonitions in this regard:
Why not retain and incorporate the blacks into the State, and thus save the expense of supplying by importation of white settlers, the vacancies they will leave? Deep-rooted prejudices entertained by the whites; ten thousand recollections, by the blacks, of the injuries they have sustained; new provocations; the real distinctions which nature has made; and many other circumstances, will divide us into parties, and produce convulsions, which will probably never end but in the extermination of the one or the other race. [Italics added]. [Notes on Virginia, Query XIV, 1782].
Of course, blacks have suffered real historic crimes at the hands of whites. But that does not explain the contemporary, intensifying sense of black grievance, which finds its most flagrant expression in fantasies of white devils and 5,000-year-old conspiracies. Most importantly, the fact that the black feeling of grievance is augmenting, rather than diminishing, as slavery and legal discrimination recede into the distant past, suggests that the grievance has little to do with any actual crimes committed by whites. As I suggested in my American Renaissance speech, even in the complete absence of any racial oppression, blacks with their lower abilities will still tend to end up at the bottom of any biracial or multiracial society, a condition blacks and white liberals can only explain by saying that whites are keeping the blacks down. In other words, so long as the truth of racial differences is not recognized, whites will always end up being blamed—by both blacks and whites—for a black inferiority that is not whites’ fault.
The “Optical Illusion”
13. But there was still a major objection in my mind to the idea of an intractable racial difference in intelligence or civilizational capacities. It was the thought that, after all, most blacks seem normally intelligent, so how could there be so big a racial difference in overall intellectual abilities? It didn’t make sense. I then realized that this confusion stemmed from the mistaken assumption that intelligence is a single ability measured along a single continuum. In fact, intelligence consists of a set of several different abilities at different levels. People who may be equal to each other at one level may be vastly unequal at another level. As I was reading Daniel Seligman’s useful book, A Question of Intelligence, published in 1992, the following occurred to me, based on an experience that many people have probably had:
You’re speaking to an intelligent skilled worker, say a carpenter who is doing renovations on your house. He can speak about the job with great knowledgeability and intelligence. But the moment the conversation strays to an abstract or conceptual subject, he is uncomprehending. At one level of intelligence two people may be more or less equal, but at a higher level of intelligence there may be significant difference between them.
The carpenter idea helped me conceptualize the group difference between blacks and whites. For example, blacks do virtually as well as whites in reciting a list of numbers from memory, but they do much worse than whites when the test calls for them to recite a list backwards. In other words, at the level of ordinary abilities, the racial difference is small, but at a higher order of abilities, the difference is large.
This insight explained for me the “optical illusion” of racial equality. I realized that the reason whites do not automatically become aware of the large differences in average intellectual ability between whites and blacks is that whites often deal with blacks on a superficial level where only the ordinary levels of intelligence are brought into play.
In the fall of 1993 I had a kind of epiphany in which all these thoughts crystallized into a new paradigm concerning racial differences. It happened like this. I recalled an uncle of mine, one of my father’s brothers, who died about 10 years ago. He was a tall, handsome man, a natty dresser, a golfer, socially popular, a tough guy with an authoritative air, a bit irascible at times but not unkind. It never occurred to me in my youth there was anything wrong with him. It wasn’t until I grew older that I realized his entire conversation was limited to saying things like “Not too bad,” or “How about that,” or “You don’t say.” That’s an exaggeration, but not by much. My uncle, a year older than my father, worked with him in their business, in which they were partners, but I gradually realized my uncle did little except answer the phone and take in receipts. It was my father who actually ran the business and who had basically supported my uncle through his entire life, all the while keeping up the amiable front that my uncle was a partner in fact as well as in name. My mother told me that before she married my father, he told her that he would always have to take care of his brother. In fact, my uncle was of very limited intelligence, perhaps even borderline retarded, but it wasn’t something you automatically noticed because of the way he carried himself, his almost kingly manner and leonine appearance.
As I thought about my uncle in this light, I began to see through the “optical illusion” of racial equality. I realized how in ordinary interactions and behavior blacks seem on the whole like ourselves, indeed, often more vital than ourselves, with warm and vivid personalities, so we assume that any intellectual differences must be insignificant. It is only when we go beyond superficial contact and get to know them better, or when we observe them in a position requiring intelligence, that we see that, much more often than whites or Asians, they are unable to deal with more rigorous tasks. In undemanding, routine affairs they are, more or less, intellectually equal to whites. In more demanding settings they are not.
It was this insight that, by revealing and removing the “optical illusion,” brought all my ideas into a new pattern and gave me the conviction that there is a substantial, real difference in intelligence between blacks and whites, and that the difference is not just quantitative, but qualitative.
The optical illusion applies to political morality as well as to intelligence. I discussed earlier the question of passive and private goodness versus active and social goodness. Now, since we experience many blacks as good people, we naturally assume that blacks are equal to whites in the larger sense of being able to maintain a decent, humane, lawful society. But this is an illusion. The personal decency, goodness, and humanity of individual blacks does not translate into the ability to resist public evil, the aspiration to enforce social order. Those things require a degree of moral will, intelligence, and organizing energy that blacks, collectively, do not seem to possess. In any black-run society we can think of, from Washington, D.C. to Haiti to the Congo, good people end up suffering under the rule of despots, crooks, and incompetents.
It was all the above thoughts that led me to conclude, in my speech at the 1994 American Renaissance conference, that “the large and enduring differences in average intelligence between blacks and whites mean … that blacks on their own” cannot be expected in the foreseeable future “to be able to maintain a modern, civilized, democratic society.” That may sound needlessly harsh, but I think all the evidence points, tragically, to its truth. Here, once again, the thought will crop up that many blacks in America perform quite well in modern civilized institutions, that there are many individual blacks who are smarter and more competent and have better characters than many whites, and that some blacks have made distinguished contribution at a very high level, all of which would seem to disprove what I’ve just said about an overall black deficiency. But that is another example of the optical illusion. Such competent or even highly talented blacks are functioning within a white-majority society in which there are expectations and standards and a general level of skills and wealth created and maintained by whites. In a society without whites, the small number of intelligent blacks combined with the very large number of unintelligent blacks would make a high or even middling level of civilization impossible. The question, once again, is not one of individual blacks, many of whom are as capable as whites; the question is one of the civilizational character of the whole black community.
The above also means that to the extent blacks gain power in an institution or community, that institution will begin to undergo a decline, in some cases, a catastrophic decline. This is the unspoken argument against affirmative action. The spoken argument against affirmative action is that it’s unjust, which is of course true. The unspoken—and far graver—concern is that by bringing blacks on a racially proportional basis into occupations for which many of them are not qualified, we are dragging down every institution and profession, with incompetent teachers, incompetent doctors and nurses, incompetent airline pilots, incompetent and corrupt police officers and office holders and all the rest of it.
Even more alarming, the more blacks advance, the more—not less—they resent whites. The more America does to overcome its “racism,” the more “racist” America appears. The reason for this is built into the dynamics of human nature. Very simply, the more equal blacks become with whites, the more unbearable and unjust seem the remaining differences. Thus what started as a demand for basic civil rights mutated into a demand to overturn the whole society, along with its traditions and norms, its standards and laws, its history and heroes, since in all these things blacks are still not “equal.”
An example of what happens when blacks gain power can be seen in the current imbroglio at Rutgers University, where President Francis Lawrence, through his own affirmative action policies, created the very student body that is now trying to destroy him. When blacks gain numbers and power, they inevitably subject whites to intimidation and tyranny, just as they do to their own people.
The insights that came to me on this personal journey of discovery accumulated through several distinct stages.
First I learned that blacks on average score much less well on achievement tests, which explained why there were so few blacks in intellectual professions, but I didn’t associate these facts with a black deficit in “intelligence” as such.
Then that pioneer Michael Levin came along and tactlessly used the forbidden word “intelligence” to describe the quality in which blacks differ from whites. I was disturbed by this, wishing he would speak of a “difference in test-taking ability” rather than of a difference in intelligence. Yet at the same time I seemed to recognize that intelligence was, in fact, the issue at hand.
Then I came to understand that the quality measured by intelligence tests is something real, as proved by the fact that the results of IQ tests performed in childhood correlate highly with achievement in later life.
At this point, however, I still accepted the conventional view that group deficits in intelligence, even if real, were to a large degree determined by inferior cultural circumstances, and therefore could be eliminated by improvements in behavioral standards, socio-economic status, home environment, and so on. My inchoate belief in environmentalism was decisively refuted by the Scarr-Weinberg study showing that black children raised from infancy by white middle-class parents still were about 15 IQ points behind whites. This proved that IQ was determined by heredity, not culture.
But even if IQ itself was not cultural but genetic, there was the objection that the IQ tests themselves were culturally biased. This was thrown out by the discovery that blacks did worse in questions involving pure cognitive ability than in questions using white cultural references.
Then there was the growing awareness of the markedly different styles of thought between the races including blacks’ much greater suggestibility and reliance on rhetoric and emotional manipulation; their relative lack of ability to think in objective, cause-and-effect terms, their noticeably lesser orientation toward objective things and ideas outside the self; and their demonstrably lesser orientation toward the common political good and a moral and stable social order. There was, finally, the pronounced orientation of many blacks toward paranoid conspiracy theories, their tendency to see every issue in terms of race and to blame all their problems on whites.
And finally, drawing all these thoughts together into a new paradigm, there was the discovery of the “optical illusion” of racial sameness. This experience convinced me that the intellectual differences between blacks and whites are both substantive and qualitative—in short, that there are instrinsic racial differences in civilizational abilities.