Category Archives: race

Endangered Lincoln statue isn’t what it seems

I guess statue destruction is the topic du jour, but do read about this one, as it raises some conflicts for protestors. About ten days ago, I reported about a statue of Abraham Lincoln that might be pulled down or replaced. The original is The Emancipation Memorial (sculptor: Thomas Ball, erected in 1876) on Capitol […]

McWhorter on police violence

Although John McWhorter, a professor of English and linguistics at Columbia University, is also a contributing editor at The Atlantic, his new essay on police violence was not published there. Rather, it’s in Quillette. Given that in length, style, and quality (it’s very well written and makes cogent points) it would be suitable for The […]

The “Shut down STEM” initiative

Several days ago I got an email that yesterday there was going to be a #ShutDownScience and Shut Down STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) initiative, in which the organizers called for “no research, no meetings, no classes, no business as usual in order to challenge and address anti-Black racism. This initiative is a small […]

Glenn Loury: A Quillette piece and a Quillette podcast

Yesterday I featured a provocative discussion with Glenn Loury and John McWhorter, both of whom issued some opinions that would be condemned as racist if coming from white people. But one opinion, which is not that controversial but does have its critics, is that the violence and looting accompanying the George Floyd protests should […]

McWhorter and Loury on The Glenn Show: cops and race

Here’s the latest episode of The Glenn Show on, featuring Glenn Loury, a professor of economics at Brown University, talking to  John Whorter, a professor of English and linguistics at Columbia University. The subject is “Cops and Race”, and they voice some sentiments that wouldn’t be tolerated if mouthed by white people. Yet both […]

Glenn Loury calls out his university for an official letter on racism that, he says traffics in “sophomoric nostrums.”

Glenn Loury is a well-known American author and economist, and you might have seen his hard-hitting “The Glenn Show” on  Loury was the first tenured black professor of economics at Harvard, but left for Brown University—where he’s now the Merton P. Stoltz Professor of the Social Sciences and Professor of Economics—because he said his […]

A unifying speech by Obama on the George Floyd situation and its consequences

In these days when merely seeing Trump on television—before he even speaks—is cringeworthy, it’s salutary to remember how a smart and thoughtful leader looks and speaks. Here are 15 minutes from a town hall meeting Barack Obama hosted two days ago on C-SPAN. (You can see the whole meeting here.) The C-SPAN notes include these: […]

The riots redux

Yesterday’s post, “When both sides are wrong: George Floyd’s death and the violent responses,” seems to have inspired a lot of discussion, which is good, though I disagree with a fair few of the comments. I’ll reiterate my main points: 1.) The death of George Floyd was, according to the tapes that show it, absolutely […]

When both sides are wrong: George Floyd’s death and the violent responses

Let me state at the outset that I am not equating what the police did to George Floyd with the violence of the rioters responding to his murder. Looting, burning, and breaking into stores is not as horrible as murder, and of course most of the protestors against Floyd’s murder were peaceful. But violent protest […]

Angela Saini misrepresents Galton kerfuffle at University College London; fails to see the beam in her own eye

Angela Saini is a British science writer who has two degrees: in Engineering from the University of Oxford and in Science and Security from King’s College London. She’s written three books: Saini, Angela (2011). Geek Nation: How Indian Science is Taking Over the World. Hodder Paperbacks. ISBN 978-1444710168. Saini, Angela (2018). Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong – and the New Research […]