The Atlas Society Asks Heather Mac Donald

August 30, 2023 00:58:29
The Atlas Society Asks Heather Mac Donald
The Atlas Society Presents - The Atlas Society Asks
The Atlas Society Asks Heather Mac Donald

Aug 30 2023 | 00:58:29

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Show Notes

Join CEO Jennifer Grossman on the 167th episode of The Atlas Society Asks, where she interviews critically acclaimed author Heather Mac Donald about her latest book "When Race Trumps Merit: How the Pursuit of Equity Sacrifices Excellence, Destroys Beauty, and Threatens Lives."

Heather Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a contributing editor at City Journal, and the 2005 recipient of the Bradley Prize. Mac Donald’s work covers a range of topics, from higher education and immigration to policing and race relations, with writings that have appeared in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and New York Times. 

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Episode Transcript

Speaker 0 00:00:00 Hello everyone, and welcome to the 167th episode of the Atlas Society asks, my name is Jennifer Anju Grossman. My friends call me Jag. I'm the c e o of the Atlas Society. We are the leading nonprofit organization introducing young people to the ideas of Ayn Rand in a variety ways, including graphic novels and animated videos. Today we are joined by Heather McDonald. Before I even begin to introduce our guest, I wanna remind all of you who are watching us on Zoom, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube. You can go ahead, get started, uh, use the comment bar to type in your questions that we're gonna try to get to as many of them as we can. Our guest, Heather McDonald, is the Thomas W. Smith fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a contributing editor at City Journal and the 2005 recipient of the Bradley Prize. Her work covers a range of topics from higher education and immigration to policing and race relations, um, with writings that have appeared in publications including the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and The New York Times. She is the author of six critically acclaimed books, including The Diversity Delusion, the War on Cops, and her latest book When Raised Trump's Merit, I'm feeling very van of white, so I'll put those down. Um, uh, Heather, thank you for joining us. Speaker 1 00:01:40 Jennifer, it is so great to be on Atlas Society asks. Thank you so much for having me on. Speaker 0 00:01:45 Well, it's a great honor for us too. Um, I would love to cover all of your books, but, uh, given that we've only got an hour, and I do wanna try to devote some of that to audience questions, uh, let's dive right in to your latest when race Trumps merit, how, how the pursuit of equity sacrifices excellence destroys beauty and threatens lives. Um, I thought this was just really a remarkable book. Um, and as the honor of a cardiologist and the sister of a gynecologist, I was particularly dismayed, uh, by the developments that you covered in your chapter Medicine's Racial Reckoning. You write that quote, the post George Floyd Racial Reckoning hit the Field of Medicine like an earthquake. Uh, the basic premise of the push appears to be that if 13% of the population is black, but only 5% or whatever percent of doctors is black, then the reason is racism. Am I, am I getting this right? I know I'm just incredibly oversimplifying it. Uh, but if so, what is being proposed to fix, uh, this disparity without compromising patient care, not to mention medical research, um, and all of the lifesaving advances that depend on it? Speaker 1 00:03:20 Well, I wish you were simplifying Jennifer, but you're not. You stated it absolutely accurately. This is the principle that is now taking down virtually all of Western civilization, which is that if any institution does not contain a proportional representation of blacks, whether it's, um, an, if it's an underrepresentation of blacks, in the case of meritocratic institutions like a medical school or a hospital, uh, medical staff or, or an overrepresentation of blacks, uh, in the prison system, then that institution is by definition racist. The only allowable explanation for that underrepresentation of blacks in meritocratic institutions or overrepresentation of blacks in the criminal justice system is racism. You are not allowed to talk about academic skills gaps and the massive behavioral disparities, criminal commission disparities that lead in a completely constitutional, colorblind fashion to the overrepresentation of blacks in prison. And the solutions that are being proposed for this is not to get rid of the academic skills gaps. It's not to, uh, have black gaps, have Speaker 0 00:04:30 School choice or, you know, address family breakdown. Speaker 1 00:04:34 No, it's to lower standards. It's to lower standards for admissions to meritocratic institutions, whether it's to medical school, uh, to receive a grant in oncology or neurology or in cardiology, or it's to lower standards or eviscerate standards for criminal offending. This is why prosecutors across the country, whether it's George Gascon, Los Angeles, uh, Pamela Price in in Oakland, California, Alvin Bragg in in New York City or Kim Fox in Chicago, have declared entire categories of crime off limits. They're simply not prosecuting crime because doing so in a colorblind manner will have a disparate impact on black criminals Speaker 0 00:05:15 When it comes to medicine. So what does that lowered standard approach look like? Are we talking about, uh, eliminating the MCATs because we just did have that Supreme Court decision? Of course, California had the proposition that, that these racial preferences, uh, were were not supposed to be legal. So, practically, what does it come down to? Speaker 1 00:05:38 Well, what it has come down to at this point, Jennifer, is completely different standards of admission for black medical student applicants and white and Asian student applicants. Black medical school applicants are admitted with MCAT scores that would be automatically disqualifying if presented by whites and Asians. And once in school with that vast academic skills gap, predictably and inevitably, uh, black medical students fall behind in their classes. Nobody is saying that black students should not go to college or should not go to medical school. What opponents of racial preferences, such as myself are saying, is that they should go to schools on the same basis as their peers, which is for schools to which they're academically qualified. So, if you're, if you're qualified to go to a state school medical, uh, school, that's where you should be admitted. You should not because you're black, be catapulted into Harvard Medical School because you're not gonna be able to catch up. Speaker 1 00:06:37 So what happens is the black medical students having been admitted with vastly lower academic skills fall behind in their classes, and they are now, uh, disproportionately we're at disproportionately the bottom of the scale. When it came to step one of the medical school licensing exam, this is an exam that comes at the end of the second year of loss of medical school that tests students basic knowledge of science, processes of anatomy, physiology, drug interactions, uh, and, and blacks were getting very poor grades on that step one of the licensing exam to become a doctor. Let's just, you know, remember what this is all about. And so the board that administers the exam said, okay, well, we'll throw out the scores, <laugh>. Well, no, that's Speaker 0 00:07:24 For it. That's, is that done or is that a proposal? No, Speaker 1 00:07:26 It's done, it happened in January of 2021. And so now it's just a pass fail. So you have no idea who's at the top of this class and who barely squeak through to pass the exam. The hospital residencies that are choosing residents have no idea, uh, who are the students that are barely hanging on in selecting who gets into the highly competitive residencies like orthopedic surgery. And the pressure is on throughout. I mean, we are now changing standards for medical honors societies. This, the pressure will be on to change the standards for step two of the licensing exam. And, and hospitals are under enormous pressure. Medical school faculties are under enormous pressure to hire, uh, black doctors to be there regardless of their qualifications. The science granting, uh, uh, agencies of the federal government, the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, they are now giving out scientific grants, not on the basis of whether this is the most accomplished neurologist who has the best hope of curing Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. They're giving out medical grants on the basis of race. Speaker 0 00:08:40 So, uh, you devote five chapters to how disparate impact analysis is also sweeping the arts from symphonies to operas, to ballet, to theater, to classical music. From the way, uh, that you write about classical music with, uh, such feeling and sophistication. I have to assume that it's a particular passion of yours. Speaker 1 00:09:04 It is, it is the most important thing in my life. I, um, I grew up playing the piano. My father played much better than I did. He's, he is, was able to play Chop s the scar sea things that he played, music minus one the Schumann piano Can concert or something. I would never in a billion years have been able to play. But, um, I was very lucky he took us to the La Philharmonic matinee concerts and Sunday when it was still at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in the downtown Los Angeles. Uh, and since then, uh, there's nothing that gives me more profound insight into human experience than classical music. Not that I don't adore the American songbook and, and jazz, and I had my stint in the sixties with acid rock and, and, uh, counter-cultural music. But I keep coming back again and again to classical music. Speaker 0 00:09:56 Favorite composer. Speaker 1 00:09:58 Oh, it's whatever I'm listening to at the time, really. I mean, I just, this is what's so astounding about classical music is that it is contains just more riches than one can ever hope to consume in one's lifetime. And I, I get very depressed that we perform the same limited number of great canonical works over and over again, ignoring the vast universe of classical music. But I mean, if you put a gun to my head, I may have to say that Mozart's deponte operas are, for me, the, the highest experience of, of sublimity and joy and pathos. Although the St. Matthew Passion by Bach comes in very close, the Schubert song cycle. So I i, I don't get me started, you know, solo piano music is about the most painful expression of arrows and longing that I know. So it's just, it's all too wonderful. Speaker 0 00:10:53 Uh, so you are describing how as a child, you were exposed to this, your father was playing the piano on a very, um, high level, uh, your home was infused with classical music. And one of the takeaways, I mean, teeing off what we were talking about before, which is that, you know, you just can't sort of go to the end and say, oh, there, there aren't enough, uh, blacks in the symphony, or there aren't enough. You have to kind of go back to the beginning and say, are we, are we actually creating the supply of candidates? And, um, you talk about sort of the cultural aspects of valuing, uh, academic achievement, but also just exposure to music. And, um, whether that comes in in the family or whether that comes in, um, school music instruction. You talk about how that's being, uh, cut back. So, um, if this disparate impact analysis is the driver, then what are, again, some of the recommendations and also even some of the things that have already been implemented to make orchestral composition more, uh, representative of blacks or blind auditions going by the wayside, or they gone, uh, the requirement to read musical scores. Speaker 0 00:12:17 What's go, what's going on? Speaker 1 00:12:19 Well, yes. There was a very significant proposal in the, in the summer of George Floyd Mass psychosis that gripped the country from the New York Times, uh, lead classical music critic at the time, Anthony Thomasine, saying that orchestra audition should be de blinded. That means, rather than having the identity of the person auditioning for that second violin seat, uh, concealed behind a screen, the screen should be removed so that the people choosing the, the performers for the oh empty seat in an orchestra can choose on the basis of race. Uh, one orchestra is moving in that direction. Whether this catches on, I, I don't know. Um, but the pressure is, again, it's on, it's on, it's on. And what the musical institutions have done, you know, they were all in absolute and remain in dire financial straits. During the absurd pandemic shutdowns, uh, Peter Gel, the general manager of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, was telling his, his orchestra musicians, his chorus, you're gonna have to basically not be paid for a year, because if we, if we put out any salary we'd go under, there will be no more Metropolitan Opera. Speaker 1 00:13:31 At the same time, Peter Gulp found the money to hire the first ever Chief Diversity Officer for the New York for the Metropolitan Opera to fight against systemic racism. This was a woman who came out of the Harvard Law School. She has no opera background, no musical background. She'll be paid in the high four figures because for, you know, 400,000 k whatever, because coming from Harvard Law School as an administrator there, she would've had very, very high salary. Orchestras are hiring these people that are completely useless. Here's what they should be doing. If you want to create the pipeline, recreate musical education, one of the privileges I had in writing this book was talking to some black, uh, orchestral musicians and conductors. One guy, John McLaughlin Williams, who I just adore, he's, he's made a career out of, of, of conducting and recording really, really obscure early 20th century American composers. Speaker 1 00:14:28 I, I have to say, Jennifer, I do know a lot of music. <laugh>. I had heard of none of these people, you know, whether it's Nicholas Flag, Celo, uh, Hadley, these are people that have been completely disappeared. He records them, he's black. These are white composers, and he recorded them, like in the early 1990s with the Ukrainian National Symphony. He was raised by parents that had both gone, gone to Howard University. They had classical music in the home. Uh, and, and they taught him that all music is good. You have as much right to access Bach as you do, uh, William Grant still, or Joplin, all of it is available to you. I talked to Joseph Striplin, a black violinist to grew up in Detroit in the 1940s. He said, I grew up with a classic single mother home, but he went to a great Detroit public school, cast technical that had like three different orchestras. Speaker 1 00:15:22 And so he was learning to play the violin, and he heard the people in the violin section of his school orchestra that were getting private lessons. He said, whoa, they're really good. I better practice a lot harder. But he said, we grew up in a world where classical music was in the culture. Now it's completely vacant. It's, it is a alien idiom. It is in fact, sadly repellent to many people, these classical music organizations, rather than nattering on about their specious, phony, non-existent racism, because it does not exist, Jennifer, there is no classical music organization today that is discriminating against blacks. The opposite is true. What they should be doing is saying, we're going into the schools. We are going to make our music available to create an audience and create people who want to become classical music organizations, part of an organization. Instead, all they're doing is the same preposterous virtue signaling that we saw out of college presidents, that we saw out of heads of banks, out of heads of corporations, um, you know, uh, the Speaker 0 00:16:31 Scientific, and then yeah, also the, the, the, the just complete silence and cowardice when, uh, cancel culture comes from for, um, teachers and people who try to, you know, actually do their job and, um, do the right thing. Uh, one more question on, on music, because it is a passion of yours and mine, Beethoven appears to have been singled out for particular scrutiny, uh, with one critic saying that his ninth symphony is no more a masterpiece than Esperanza Spalding's, 12 little spells, uh, which I guess is a jazz composition about body parts. Um, I'm not sure how familiar you are with Ayn Rand's work, or the fountain head in particular, uh, in which critics conspire actually to promote a play titled No Skin Off Your Nose, even though they actually know that it's terrible. Uh, is there a similar sort of Ellsworth two e esque dynamic going on here to assault, uh, artistic excellence and beauty? Speaker 1 00:17:45 Yeah, I think there's a definite hatred for greatness. And, and sublimity, there's hatred for a Western civilization deemed too white and too male. And this quote that you gave is, is not from a critic. He's actually a, an academic. He's a, he's a musicologist at Hunter College that is now se celebrated and heralded across the music profession. Alex Ross has, has lauded this guy. He's got this most insane theory about a, uh, music theorist, Heinrich Schenker, and, and he's this, the, the, the musicologist. Philip Ell has whiteness on his brain. The guy is absolutely obsessed. Uh, and to, for him to make that statement about Beethoven, it's absurd. I'm sorry. I know we're all supposed to be sort of relativistic about musical taste, and I'm not allowed to say that there is more depth and sorrow and human experience in in the Bach tatas than there is in gangster rap. Speaker 1 00:18:45 I'm not allowed to say that, but I'm sorry. There are. You can say it here, <laugh>. Okay. Thank you. Thank you. There are objective in this. Yeah. To dismiss Beethoven and to say you can't compare him to Esmeralda Spalding, who is a lightweight is absurd. It is, it is literally absurd. Uh, and yet that is going on. Now, there is, you know, a lot of programming of black composers. I reviewed a, an a, a concert at the New York Philharmonic that was on explicitly black liberation themes. And I went, I'll be honest, Jennifer, uh, with a predisposition, assuming that I would pan the, the concert, but I actually enjoyed it. And there was a wonderful symphony number two by William Price still that, that, um, had in its second movement. It, it's, it sounds like it's right out of, uh, one of the great American classic songbook tunes. Speaker 1 00:19:38 And, uh, and there was another oratorio, um, by hail stork that was very good. But there's also some mediocrities that are getting programmed, both contemporary and in the past. And the two that drive me the most insane is Joseph Bologna in 18th century French, uh, composer in the, in the court of Marie Antoinette and, and Louis the 16th. Uh, and I just have written a devastating review, I have to say, of the, of the, of the completely specious movie about 'em that came out early this year. And then Florence Price, she was a black composer of the 1930s. Her music is so banal, it is so repetitive, and students are being taught that there is no difference between her or Joseph Bologna and, and Schubert or, uh, you know, Stravinsky or, or, uh, rov, I'm sorry. One of the roles of artists and the people who run artistic organizations is connoisseurship. They cannot be relativists. They have to say no. There are actual differences in achievement and in merit and in excellence. And now if you're gonna do that, and what you're talking about is white achievers and creators, that is racist according to the dominant narrative. Speaker 0 00:21:01 Before moving on for, from the arts, you covered how the diversity agenda is affecting philanthropy and volunteering in the arts. And there was one example that you shared that I found particularly kind of heart wrenching, and that was the Chicago Art Institute's abolishing of its docent program. 'cause it was deemed too white. Can you share with our viewers a little bit about what happened? Speaker 1 00:21:30 Well, I'm gonna speak very frankly here, Jennifer. We are living through a period of white calling. I'm sorry, that's it. And whites just take it. I mean, it is just amazing the suicidal quality of Western civilization. Every single day we hear about white supremacy, which is not true. We were a white supremacist country. I have no problem admitting that we were an apartheid country. We treated blacks, appallingly, cruelly, gratuitously, cruelly nastily up until very recently. But the opposite is the case. Now, the reality is, is black privilege not white privilege and whites are being removed. I mean, this is what racial preference is all about. Finally, the Supreme Court acknowledged that racial preferences are always a zero sum game. It, there's no way for it not to be a zero sum game for every quarterly qualified racial preference, so-called beneficiary that you're nominating and elevating, you're keeping out more objectively qualified white and Asian applicants. Speaker 1 00:22:34 And so what's going on? What went on at the Art Institute of Chicago, which is one of the greatest museums in the world, and I often tell people, if you visit, go to the little corridor of French 18th century CIE regime, pastel portraits by, by D by Shada. They're just amazing. Um, and yet, the Art Institute of Chicago, under its completely foolish idiot head, James Rondo, canceled its entire docent program of, of almost a hundred volunteer educators who, who spent years getting what was in the essence in MA education, studying diversity up the gazoo so they could bring Chicago school children into the Art Institute and teach them about art. So what's their problem? They were white being female in this case, wasn't intersectional enough. It didn't save them from getting asked. So, so Rondo acts, the entire docent program, they were getting free labor, labor of love, and replaced them, said he replaced them with six paid, uh, part-time volunteers chosen on the basis of racial equity. So we know what that means. Uh, and, and the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento has also bragged about getting rid of its white docents, not entirely, but lowering the number. Uh, and basically this is just a metaphor syne for what's going on across our institutions and why people are so well-meaning and so passive before all of this. They just sort of turn their eyes away. Speaker 0 00:24:18 I think that's true. But I think at, you know, what's also happening is that when you continue to accuse people of white supremacy where no one exists, uh, so first of all, there's sort of a hyperinflation of all of these terms. Um, when you, you know, like during the Tea Party, you, uh, would accuse people who were protesting against higher taxes and, you know, socialized medicine that, that they're racist. Uh, you, you drive people underground. And yes, I think that they can come back in a more radicalized form, and you actually might end up with a, uh, renaissance or resurgence of, um, of white supremacy or na white nationalism or what have you, because it's just gone so overboard. Speaker 1 00:25:13 It's absolutely the case. And to be perfectly honest, Jennifer, it would be a logical conclusion. I don't see why every other group gets white, gets identity politics, but not whites. Uh, there's, you know, there's no rational basis for excluding them so well. Speaker 0 00:25:30 I think a much better model is individualism and merit, um, and objectivity. Uh, our philosophy is objectivism so that the relative standards and the relative judgements have gotta go. All right. Part three of when race trump's merit covers, how, uh, it, the, in, in your book, you cover how disparate impact analysis has its most concrete impact on the criminal justice system where every disparity in arrest or incarceration rates is now attributed to racism. Um, in the chapter on double standards, you mentioned that despite all of the attention to officers killing unarmed blacks, this was eye-opening to me, a police officer is 400 times as likely to be killed by a black suspect as an unarmed black is to be killed by a police officer. Uh, talk a little bit more about this double standard, and what are the implications if, uh, society looks away when law enforcement is tacked? Speaker 1 00:26:40 Well, we've seen it, uh, 2020 was the, the largest single increase in homicide in this nation's history, 29%. Uh, that's an astounding one year leap. And that's all because of the George Floyd demonization of the police. The police backed off of policing, you know, they were being shot at with laser guns and, and, and cop cars destroyed, precincts burned down to the ground, uh, the object of, of constant vicious attacks and, and insult and, and attacks rhetorical attacks as well. Uh, president Biden, when he was running for president the first time around and and throughout his presidency, continues to say that black parents are right to fear that their children will be killed by a cop every time they step outside. That's completely wrong. Yes. Uh, it is dangerous to, as, as the Kansas City Mayor said recently existing, while black is dangerous in this country, what the Kansas City Mayor meant was, oh, because white people are gunning black people down all the time. Speaker 1 00:27:37 No, a, a a apart from this tragic recent shooting in Jacksonville, Florida, which is horrible and sickening. Uh, but that is, sorry, it's not the way black people are dying. Black juveniles in the post George Floyd era are being shot at 100 times the rate of white juveniles 100 times, Jennifer, who's shooting them other blacks, other blacks. They're not being killed by whites. If they're being killed by whites. We would've heard about every single one of those shootings, and they're not being shot by the cops. You know, we hear about white supremacy. Here's another statistic we all hear, oh, hate crimes against, against blacks by whites. If you look at the entire universe of interracial violence between blacks and whites, and whites and blacks, blacks commit 87% of all interracial violence between blacks and whites and whites and blacks. A black is 35 times more likely to commit an act of violence against a white person, as a white person is to commit an act of violence against a black person. Speaker 1 00:28:37 And we've all seen the videos of the flash mobs on the Magnificent Mile in Chicago, uh, people getting beaten up. We've seen the videos of these frail elderly Asian people in the Bay Area and other, other places in California getting beaten up. And we all pretend we're not seeing it. It's all black people <laugh>. It's not white. And yet, when the one, there was the one spa shooting in Atlanta, Georgia by a tormented, uh, Christian Young man who, who could not, he felt he could not control his sexual urges, and he'd been using prostitutes. So he shot some of the prostitutes that he'd been using in Atlanta, and this was immediately turned into an anti-white, anti-Asian hate crime. It was not, it was not about race. He was on his way to go, go to Florida Porn Studios to shoot them up down there. Those were not Asians, but the only, the only anti-Asian crimes we were talking about at the time was this one committed by a white guy. Speaker 1 00:29:38 Uh, so everything we're saying about our criminal justice system today is completely the opposite. The, the police are actually the government agency that most cares about black lives. The Black Lives Matter activists don't give a damn. There are dozens of black children that are being gunned down every year, toddlers in their beds, on their front porches, in their parents' cars. They're being shot through the head, shot through the lungs, shot through the pancreas by black thugs committing drive-by shootings. We have never been urged to say their names, because the black activists don't give a damn about black victims, except in the exceedingly rare instance when a, a cop or a white person shoots a black. Speaker 0 00:30:26 So, uh, let's mix it up. As previously mentioned, we're not gonna be able to talk about all of your books, but, uh, and I wish I really had more time to cover the War on Cops. Um, one of my main takeaways is that at the end of the day, the biggest casualties, as you were saying, are the inner city blacks who bear the brunt of violent crime when proactive policing is curtailed. Um, I did notice that the book attracted some criticism in libertarian circles, uh, including the Cato Institute. Among other things, they take issue with your, uh, calling Black Lives Matter a fraud. I don't know if they might be willing to reconsider that criticism. Uh, and you're characterizing the New York Times as serving up anti-police propaganda. I think the most, uh, substantive criticism appears to be your defense of stop and frisk. Uh, have you seen that criticism any defense, uh, or thoughts on it? Speaker 1 00:31:31 Well, the Cato Institute adopts the usual species benchmark for analyzing criminal police activity. Uh, and this is the benchmark used by the mainstream media and every anti-cop activist, which is to compare police data to population data. So let's look at New York City. Uh, blacks are about 22% of the population, and they make up about 53% of all police pedestrian stops. So yes, there's a disparity there. Blacks are stopped at, at at least twice the rate of the representation of the population. So Al Sharpton and, and Cato say, okay, the police are racist, but the police are not developing their, their deployment tactics and deciding where to go after drive-by shootings based on population ratios. They go where crime is happening and where, where people are being victimized. Here's the relevant statistic for determining whether that stop rate is racially disproportionate. Who's committing the drive-by shootings in New York? And though blacks are 22% of the population, they commit up to three quarters of all drive-by shootings in New York. If you add Hispanic shootings to black shootings, you account for about a hundred percent of all drive-by shootings. And that is true in every big American city, the Speaker 0 00:32:48 Face. Yeah, I mean, I, in fairness, I do think that Cato, what did acknowledge that, uh, there, there are these, uh, really dramatic disparities, um, their push seemed to be more on the constitutional aspect. And whether this was, um, someone who was suspicious or someone, or was this a pretext of someone acting suspiciously? So, well, Speaker 1 00:33:16 I I'm not gonna justify unconstitutional stops, but the technique is constitutional as Cato well knows, and I'm not saying it does, is claimed otherwise, but it is a constitutional power that, that police have to, uh, stop somebody custodial so that you're not free to leave based on reasonable suspicion that there's suspicious, you know, crime be behavior in the works. Uh, so one can debate empirically, uh, whether there were too many stops and whether they were being done unconstitutionally. I would say that the police expert, that the plaintiffs funded by massive pro bono efforts against the N Y P D by the most elite law firms in the, in the city, Paul Weiss and, and, you know, Covington and Burling against the overstaffed Overmatched police attorneys, um, Jeffrey Fagan of a law professor at Columbia, his, his statistical techniques were, were lousy. It was, it was absurd. Speaker 1 00:34:17 He was not using the right type of data. Um, but what we see, what happens when the police back off of proactive policing is criminals get emboldened and crime goes up. We saw that after the Michael Brown shooting, uh, in August of 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri. I called it the Ferguson Effect. You had the largest two year increase in homicide in the nation's history, and then you had the George Floyd or the Minneapolis effect, which was even worse. Um, so it is incredibly humiliating, scary, uncomfortable to be stopped when you are innocent of a crime. That is no question, that is the case. Uh, but it is sadly a crime tax that blacks face. As long as the crime rate is so exponentially higher in the black population, there is a, a greater chance, statistically that a law abiding black guy is gonna be stopped at some point in his life because he matches the suspect description. The solution to that is not to say to the police back off of proactive stops, it's to say, you know, who somebody, we've gotta get this crime rate down. Speaker 0 00:35:24 Right? And I, I think you also pointed out that one of the barriers to that is a, is a cultural factor that, uh, there is an unwillingness to, to work with the police and to, um, to give them information that would help them solve these crimes and get people off the streets. Okay. We are overloaded with questions. I'm not gonna say overloaded, because we love our questions. It makes my job easier. Uh, so we'll try to get to as many of them as we can. Maybe we'll kind of keep it more rapid fire. Um, my modern goal on Instagram was first to the gate, and he wants to know your thoughts on the recent ruling in the Harvard admission scandal. Do you think the schools are just gonna fund workarounds? Speaker 1 00:36:08 Yes, I do. <laugh>, I absolute do. A there are, and the process, they're renaming all their diversity, uh, and inclusion sinecure non-entities, you know, to something that doesn't so immediately suggest this is race. And, uh, you know, I'm, I'm a pessimist and a skeptic by heart, so take that into account. Um, but obviously the Roberts majority opinion did leave open a very large loophole. Excuse me. Schools are already doing so-called holistic admissions, which is to say, we're gonna read your essay and you're gonna tell us about how oppressed you are as a black person and black student in America. And we're not gonna say that's why we're admitting you, but that is why we're admitting you. And that's going, that's going to go even more, uh, aggressively in the future. So it's gonna be a very interesting thing. And I haven't really been able to game theory it out because the schools don't want to leave any tracks. And to the extent that they still use academic test scores like the SATs, and if a plaintiff can get his hands on those and still show these massive gaps in the scores that are being used to admit blacks versus whites and Asians, that will suggest ongoing racial preferences. Speaker 1 00:37:32 But if the schools get rid of them entirely, and some systems have, university of California has actually banned the submission of SATs, they won't have any ability to rank their students, which they want to do. They may claim that these test scores don't measure anything, but they use them to have a degree of precision out to 0.001%. So it puts the schools up to a very difficult choice, which I've personally really relish and, and, and will enjoy watching how they twist in the wind to try to figure this thing out. Speaker 0 00:38:03 All right. Uh, Jackie Ada on Twitter says, uh, what's the purpose behind race-based admissions? It cannot be to promote minorities because Asian Americans are also discriminated against. Speaker 1 00:38:20 Well, it's to, it's because we are worried that there's not enough blacks. There's a, a term in the academic world and beyond underrepresented minorities that gets, Speaker 0 00:38:32 I see Speaker 1 00:38:33 To U R M. So Asians are now seen as white adjacent be, but they're, they're not underrepresented. They're overrepresented. Here's what it means. Here's a little translation key. What students of color means is underperforming students, <laugh>, and all these Asians that wanna be part of the elite, they hand up their, put up their hands, say, please, please circle, we be a student of color. And the the administrator says, no, no, no. You are not a student of color because you are whooping everybody's ass on campus. So the purpose is not to get in any old minority, it's to get in blacks into a lesser extent. Hispanics and the elites are terrified that the academic skills gap is never gonna close. They're preemptively putting out the only allowable explanation for the academic skills or for lack of racial proportionality, which is racism because they're terrified of a cultural explanation, and they're sure as hell terrified of a heritability explanation. Speaker 0 00:39:24 Well, they're working pretty hard to, uh, make sure that the skill gap doesn't close by, um, trying to thwart all attempts of, uh, offering school choice and competition and education at every turn. Okay. Um, Raj Raja para Ms. Warren asks suggestions on the next book, when gender trump's merit, have you considered this disparity? We're probably not gonna get to this, but actually you talk about it a lot here. Speaker 1 00:39:57 Yeah. Um, white females are an absolute scorch, you know, the, the university now, one of the reasons the university is just going downhill so much is the domination. It's feminized, uh, poll after poll shows that females are the ones that are pushing for the restrictions on free speech. They're the ones who think it's more important to take into account alleged harm, psychological harm from harmful words, or something makes you wanna throw up. Uh, there's the idea that these students are actually at risk from hearing about, you know, a, a different non non-orthodox explanation for racial disparity, say, is completely specious. And any adult that goes along with it is just enabling, uh, self, self regarded narcissism and whining ness. Uh, but, but the, but the more that the universities become feminized, the more they trend left, the more they hate objectivity, free discourse, scholarly, uh, discovery, no matter where it takes. So yeah, females, white females in particular, there, there are total scourge and there are obviously exceptions, uh, but the few remaining dis Speaker 0 00:41:08 Hopefully present company, the two of us Speaker 1 00:41:10 <laugh>. Yes, absolutely. I will, I will include you and we'll hope that I get nominated too, Jennifer. Yes. But, um, but you know, I'm gonna, economics is still male dominated, so it's still a little more rational philosophy. The feminists are all complaining that philosophy is too male dominated, but you know, so you can, you can sort of predict which way a discipline is going by looking at the demographic shift. Speaker 0 00:41:30 Well, if they wanted philosophy to be a little, a little less male dominated, maybe they'll give Ayn Rand a second. Look, I'm not gonna hold my breath. Um, but your, your answer on, uh, on gender actually is gonna inspire me to jump back into one of the questions that I had for you. Uh, Greg ov, co-author of The Coddling of the American Mind, previous guest on this show, he and Jonathan Haight, uh, advanced the idea that overprotective parenting has contributed to this very fragile, um, culture on campus where students prioritize safety over free speech. I thought that the argument was pretty compelling, but you take issue with it and saying that, uh, campus intolerance is not, is, is that root not a psychological phenomenon, but an ideological one. Speaker 1 00:42:23 Well, first of all, um, his as, uh, I respect Jonathan ha very much and, and Greg Luciano, but it doesn't comport with the facts. Uh, despite, you know, my recent diatribe against white females, uh, let's be honest, blacks on campuses are pretty damn expert as well in leveraging the, you know, harm card and playing the victim card. And let's be honest, Jennifer, they are not, uh, subject to over parenting. We wish they had more parenting. Uh, that is not their problem. And as far as white students go, uh, white males have the same parents as white females, but the call for shutdown of free speech is overwhelmingly coming from the white females, not the white males. So I, yes, Speaker 0 00:43:11 But the, but white males and the white females are both subject to this same indoctrination. So why is it not affecting the guys or affecting the girls more? Speaker 1 00:43:21 Well, exactly, but that's my point. It's not the parenting, it's the ideology that is celebrating victimhood. If it was just a function of having, being over parented, you would expect white males on campus to be as vocal in calling for excluding, uh, speech they don't like, but they're not, this is, but they have the same parents as their sisters, if it's their sisters that are engaged in this. So I see this as more, it's an ideology that is based on hatred, as I said before, of a civilization deemed too white and too male. Speaker 0 00:43:56 All right, we're gonna jump back into these many, many questions, and I am just going to let you guys know in advance, there's no way that we're going to get to all of these in the last, uh, 12 minutes or so that we have. Um, George, Alex Olis on Facebook asks, do you believe there is currently a competency crisis? Is there a single source or multiple factors? Speaker 1 00:44:24 Well, yeah, I, I think that we're, we're inevitably going to be facing the deterioration of public service, of the services we can expect from corporations. There will be more errors made because we are determined to promote people again on the basis of skin color, uh, not on the basis of competence. And it's happening everywhere. I'm particularly worried about the judiciary. Biden announced at the start of his presidency that he was not going to be submitting his judicial appointments to the a b A for pre-clearance because the A b A, according to Biden's spokesman, didn't care enough about diversity. Well, this is an absurd claim. The A B A is obsessed with diversity. It's all it talks about. And so what Biden was signaling was my, my judicial nominees, yes, they're gonna be diverse, but they're gonna be so mediocre that even the diversity obsessed a b a will not give them that it's rubber stamp. Speaker 1 00:45:18 So he's putting people on the bench that are not the best choices in the country. And this matters, the quality of our jurisprudence matters to private parties and being able to plan commercial transactions based on clear legal rules set down in the case law, it matters to the constitutional integrity of our country. And we're gonna see this in in medicine. We've already, uh, there's a few studies that I've been told about that are actually trying to empirically measure what happens when you, uh, promote doctors in hospitals on the basis of race. And as you can expect, it's not a pretty picture. Uh, so yes, China is not obsessed with identity politics. It obviously has its massive economic and political problems, but in the field of education and technology, all it caress about is competence. Meanwhile, we are tearing down gifted and talented programs across the country, uh, preventing gifted students from advancing, accelerating in math for one reason and one reason only. There's not enough blacks in those programs. Everything is coming down. If we are not prepared to say that the reason for our racial disparities is not racism, it's the skills gap and behaviors gap. I can tell you, George, it is all coming down. And yes, we will have a complete competency crisis. Speaker 0 00:46:44 All right. Uh, we've been talking about various forms of privilege. I'm going to assert some family privilege. There is a questioner on Zoom, Melanie Grossman, as you might imagine. She is related. And, uh, she says, I am familiar with the academic community, and I would say there are many top-notch doctors coming through the system. Now, I would also say that some of the training programs, um, offer summer internships in minority neighborhoods. All of this is good. We need to hear about some of the positive ways in which this is working in medicine. Are there any positive aspects of these, um, initiatives to try to offer additional training or mentoring or what have you? Speaker 1 00:47:38 Well, that's fine. I don't object to outreach in, in communities, but I can tell you it's been going on for a long time. And I would also say that a doctors comparative advantage is not social justice work. Uh, I think that doctors should be involved in applying their medical knowledge to solving the problems of biology and on, and our, you know, the, the terrible diseases that we have conquered so extraordinarily thanks to the scientific method, but they continue to afflict us. So to the extent that doctors are being told, you know, they, they have to spend time on their diversity, equity, inclusion statements to get promoted, uh, I think that's a complete waste of time. And yes, of course there's still good doctors coming through, but I hear from doctors all the time, uh, people working on in cancer labs at, at ivy League schools that are saying, I'm spending more time trying to explain how my work on cell signaling and nematodes has a diversity upside to it than I am actually doing basic research. So, of course, there's still good things happening, but the scientific journals are completely captured by the idea that science is racist, that medicine is racist. They are selecting articles to publish based on the race of the, of the authors who, who's being cited, are you citing enough black articles? So it's, it's, uh, I I am not at all sanguine about what's happening as, as is obvious by now, <laugh>. Speaker 0 00:49:08 Alright. So, uh, Robert bid Anado, I see you there, but your questions are a little long, so I'm not gonna be able to, um, to get to them. Uh, I am actually gonna jump back into, uh, some of the questions that I had prepared for you that I wanted to be able to try to, um, get to, maybe to just kind of, uh, wrap things up. Well, oh no, this one, one of our big themes at the Owl Society is postmodernism, uh, which we try to make accessible with our pocket guide to postmodernism our animated video. My name is Postmodernism. You mentioned Michelle Fuko dis discipline and punish, uh, as academia's most celebrated book on incarceration. I was not familiar with it. So how have Fuko and others influenced modern incarceration theory? Speaker 1 00:50:04 Well, Fuko is a strange character. I mean, his, that book was actually, Speaker 0 00:50:09 That's an understatement. <laugh>, yeah. Speaker 1 00:50:11 Um, it, it, it, it had, I'm told that actually he is not at all trustworthy as a historian, and I do not have the historical knowledge to be able to test, uh, what he's claiming. But he starts out with an extremely vivid, uh, juxtaposition. He describes an absolutely gruesome, uh, act of torture in early Renaissance Europe. I don't think it may be the 15th century, but it's completely grotesque and, and chilling and, and, you know, nauseating the, the, the vivid destruction of the bones and the flesh and the, and the infliction of pain. Um, and he contrasts that to our modern, uh, punitive system, which is a, it's sort of off limits. It's not a public display and it's all just, it's incarceration. Um, you, we don't, we don't use physical abuse any longer. And he calls it the panopticon. He says that these, our modern penitentiaries are based on a surveillance system where, you know, you have the ability. Speaker 1 00:51:20 And, and Jeremy Bentham, the utilitarian philosopher of, of the 18th, 19th century, designed some of these where the guards can sort of observe the entire penitentiary from one spot. He analogized that to all of modern society, which is trying to control behavior through a sort of invisible state. Um, and you know, it, that one contrast between the idea of punishment as a public display versus what we have now, which is more of sort of a surveillance state. It's interesting, of course, we were also back in the 15th and 16th, 17th century, before we had habeas corpus, people were being thrown away into the dungeon moat and not being seen for the next 30 years until they died, if, if they lived that long. So again, these are not really perfect. Uh, comparison was drawing what, how Fuko has influenced now in a very, uh, bad way. Speaker 1 00:52:20 There's a, a, a law professor at Columbia Bernard Harcourt, and he has used fuco to completely attack something known as broken windows policing, which is the idea that public order matters. That people in communities want orderly communities. They don't want litter, they don't want people loitering, they don't want kids hanging out by hundreds fighting with each other, smoking, weeded, trespassing, uh, and that, that the police should pay attention to this. They shouldn't necessarily arrest everybody, but public order matters. Har court, har court says that is racially oppressive. It's just another way of, of, uh, criminalizing non-conformity. And that's just not the case. I've spent so much time, Jennifer, in inner city police community meetings in Har Harlem and the Bronx and South side of Chicago, far, far west side of Chicago. What those good law abiding people yearn for is a safe, orderly environment that is not taken over by thugs. Speaker 0 00:53:22 We didn't have much time to talk about this excellent book, the Diversity Delusion. And I also wanna just commend for all three of these. Um, the narrators that you've selected are really excellent and just make it an enjoyable, um, experience. But you provide an example of hysterics taking place on campus, um, your own harrowing experience at Claremont College. Uh, what happened briefly? Speaker 1 00:53:50 Well, uh, this was with the War on Cops. I was supposed to talk there in I think, maybe 2016, I can't remember May, 2017, um, on policing and the Black Lives Matter narrative. And I was gonna argue that no, the police are not systemically racist. There's not an epidemic of racially biased police shootings of black men. That's an optical illusion created by selective press coverage. Um, and so the students there decided that I was simply a black, a fascist homophobe, trans phobe, Islamophobe, I don't know. They came up with these, um, and that I was not allowed to speak. So they shut down the auditorium. They wouldn't allow anybody in to hear me. So I spoke to an empty hall, and then eventually the police decided it wasn't safe for me to be there. 'cause the students were all on the outside banging on the glass panels and stuff. Speaker 1 00:54:41 So I was escorted out through the kitchen <laugh>. Um, but it was, you know, it's just, it's just simply depressing Jennifer, to experience the campus mob up close to hear the level of hysteria. These are the most privileged individuals in human history, simply by virtue of being on an American college campus and having access to the thing that faus sold his soul for, which is knowledge. And, and yet they all think of themselves as victims and oppressed. It's, it's absolutely disgusting. And what's even more disgusting is that the campus faculty and administrators and presidents encourage them in that fantastical delusion, which will only handicap them from the rest of, for the rest of their lives. Speaker 0 00:55:22 Well, as Ayin Rand says, you can evade reality, but you cannot evade the consequences of evading reality. So we shall see how all of this, uh, plays out. Heather, I admire your, um, remarkably prolific ability to, uh, publish, uh, on a annual every other year, all of your articles. Uh, what is next for you? What's the best way to keep track of your work and what can our audience do to support you? Oh, Speaker 1 00:55:56 Thank you so much. Well, you know, I hate this, but it would be great. Buy the book, my most recent book when we definitely what? Speaker 0 00:56:03 Definitely buy these books. These were, these were excellent. Oh, Speaker 1 00:56:07 Well thank you. So that's, that's the number one. Bye race, perhaps merit. Um, and they can follow me I think most easily. I have a Twitter account, although I confess I don't run it. It really is basically just posting all my recent articles, writings and appearances and stuff. So that's probably the easy, and I so not run it that I can't even tell you what the damn Twitter handle is. It's some weird acronym or, you know, um, shortening of my name. If you just Google Heather McDonald and I think it Twitter, if you use, that's probably still pulls things up. I don't, I don't know when this full x transition is gonna happen, but that you can get me that way. There's also Manhattan Institute website, uh, that also <crosstalk>. All Speaker 0 00:56:45 Good. Well, we will, um, one of our gremlins will pull that, put it in the threads. Uh, thank you Heather. Again, that invitation stands. Hope to get you up to Malibu one of these days. I am Speaker 1 00:56:57 There, Jennifer, you don't have to. Alright, thank you. Speaker 0 00:57:02 And I wanna thank all of you who joined us. Apologies for not being able to get to all of your excellent questions. As you can see, I'm quite a fan of these books and, uh, I had taken a lot of notes and I wanted to ask a lot of questions. Special shout out to some of the newcomers who have started to, uh, watch us and join us every Wednesday afternoon. And a particular thank you to those of you who are just watching, who aren't just partaking, who are just consuming, but have actually stepped up and made tax deductible donation, uh, to support our work to be able to bring you more of this. So I know there aren't a lot of freeloaders in our community, so, uh, maybe you've just forgotten. If you haven't yet stepped up and made that donation, you can do [email protected]. And if you're new, that will be matched and that support is what is enabling us to bring you again, another great episode. Next week I'm gonna be joined by former sportscaster Michelle Tafoya. She's gonna share her, um, increasing, uh, disenchantment with, uh, the advance of wokeness in the sports world and why that got her to leave that, um, field and create her. Let's get same CK and Sidelined Sanity podcast. So hope to see you guys there. Thanks.

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