'Forbidden thoughts'
0 comment Sunday, September 21, 2014 |
Almost Forbidden Thoughts
Clyde N. Wilson, Chronicles
"Without censorship in the West, fashionable trends of thought are fastidiously separated from those that are not fashionable, and the latter, without ever being forbidden, have little chance of finding their way. "
�Solzhenitsyn, Harvard Address
We all know that there are truths that are almost never stated publicly in the U.S.�truths that media, politicians, and "intelligentsia" pretend do not exist. Astute observers, Tocqueville and Solzhenitsyn among others, have noted that in "American democracy" public discourse tends to group-think and is neglectful or hostile to ideas lacking group-think respectability.
Some of these truths are things that absolutely everybody knows but may not be mentioned without penalty. Others have been so long buried under complacent or expedient denial that much effort is required to discern them.
Here are a few of my almost forbidden thoughts. Doubtless you will have some of your own.''
The first of Wilson's 'almost forbidden thoughts is this one:
Heredity has as much or more control over our individual fates as environment; i.e., intelligent children tend to come from intelligent parents.''
I agree with that thought, and it is amazing how unacceptable that thought is to most people, regardless of their political leanings. Many conservatives, or should I say 'conservatives' visibly chafe at the introduction of that idea into a conversation.
Why, I wonder? Because, possibly, egalitarianism is such a pervasive idea, accepted by many who consider themselves conservative as well as liberals. And to hint that intelligence may have a large hereditary or genetic component makes many people uncomfortable. I notice that a couple of the comments following Wilson's piece call this idea into question, because they see, implicit in Wilson's simple statement, an apologia for eugenics. I think that may be a twisting of what he has said, and a conclusion that is not warranted. He does not say that unintelligent people ought not to reproduce or that intelligent ones should have more children. He does not say that society should create incentives for intelligent people to have children or disincentives for the unintelligent. He simply says that heredity may be a large factor in intelligence.
I think it's an important idea because if it were ever to be accepted as true, it would largely discredit many of our educational policies, for instance, programs such as 'No Child Left Behind', the Bush-Kennedy effort at closing the so-called 'achievement gap.' Only the belief in the blank slate theory of child development and intelligence justifies efforts like this rather unsuccessful policy. And as long as people avoid facing the reality that children are not blank slates with equal potential from the git-go, we will be throwing good money after bad, trying to close the 'achievement gap.'
There is evidence of hereditary differences in IQ.
But because this is an idea that conflicts with our egalitarian ideology, the facts have to be buried, explained away, or discredited. So on and on we go, in a vain attempt to 'level the playing field.' As long as we deny facts and statistical evidence, we are doomed to repeat the same failed policies again and again. And what does the myth of the blank slate and equal potential do to race relations? It perpetuates anger and frustration and endless accusations of 'racism.' After all, if there are no heredity-based group differences in intelligence, then the 'achievement gap' must be the result of discrimination and 'racism', or malice on the part of the majority. And the racism implication also provides a built-in excuse for the achievement gap.
One of Wilson's other 'forbidden thoughts' had to do with the racial aspect of crime, to which a commenter takes exception, although not convincingly. However as another commenter notes in that thread, the exception taken by one commenter simply corroborates Wilson's description of the ideas as 'forbidden', since forbidden ideas will elicit exactly that kind of gainsaying response.
I agree to some extent with the truth of most of Wilson's 'forbidden thoughts', although I can't speak to the question of how corrupt the state of Massachusetts is.
I agree with him that Lincoln is not the saintly figure that popular history makes him out to be, but given my Southron roots, it's unlikely I would see Lincoln as a hero.
If I might add any forbidden thoughts of my own, I would repeat some of the 'forbidden thoughts' I have expressed so often here: like this thought: immigration, regardless of whether legal or illegal, has not been an unmixed blessing for America. In many cases it has not been a blessing at all, but a curse.
America is not a nation of immigrants.
The Statue of Liberty is not an advertisement for Open Borders.
Emma Lazarus's amateurish poetry on the Statue is not gospel, and it has no force of authority.
'Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses... the wretched refuse of your teeming shore...' was not part of our Founding documents or ideals; it was no more than the overwrought ramblings of one woman.
And here's a forbidden thought: 'wretched refuse' means... what? In modern colloquial English? Do the open borders cultists really want to call immigrants that?
Another forbidden thought: Ellis Island is not a holy shrine, and those who passed through it are not some kind of saints to whom the rest of us must make obeisance.
Legal immigration is not good in and of itself; it is good only in limited numbers, and as long as the immigrants themselves are people who can adapt and fit into our existing country, and contribute thereto.
Continual population growth is not a desirable thing for our country.
Our country will not become depopulated without constant immigration.
Concern for the environment is or should be a conservative principle.
Concern for overpopulation is NOT a leftist idea that should be scoffed at by 'conservatives.'
Our economy does NOT rely on immigrants, legal or illegal.
Immigrants did NOT build America.
Slaves, likewise, did not build America.
'Hard work' is not the only qualification for would-be immigrants. The world is full of 'hard-working people.' They are not all entitled to come here because they are 'hard-working.'
Mexicans are not starving.
Illegals are not 'forced' to come here.
Latinos or Hispanics are not necessarily 'hard workers', regardless of the positive stereotypes.
(How do I know this? Take a look at Latin America, or at your local colonia or barrio. I rest my case.)
Latinos or Hispanics are not necessarily 'devout Christians' with good 'family values.' That hype probably was hatched by the RNC, or La Raza, or both, working in collusion.
Stereotypes are stereotypes, and flattering stereotypes like the above are just as overgeneralized as negative stereotypes sometimes are.
Making up flattering falsehoods about races or ethnicities is dishonest, regardless of the 'good intentions' supposedly behind the flattery. A lie is a lie is a lie. Telling a lie often enough will not make it so, no matter how benevolent the intention is.
Many of the politically correct, multicultural and diverse commercials and movies and TV shows are lies, based on some kind of fantasy world bearing no resemblance to the actual world.
Stereotypes, although overgeneralized in some cases, generally reflect reality, to some extent. Stereotypes are often substantially true.
And here's one: if secession was wrong and if it constituted 'treason' then how do we justify the Revolution against British authority? If it was right to forcibly drag the South back into the Union, would the British not have the right to drag the American colonies back under the rule of the British Crown?
I could go on, but that's my list of forbidden thoughts.
Any contributions from my readers?

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