Visit ArabTopics.com

New York Times Cites White Nationalist Eugenicist in Piece Titled “the Secrets of Jewish Genius”

The paper of record is under fire again for publishing an unusual article promoting race science. In his column entitled “The Secrets of Jewish Genius,” Bret Stephens pondered the question: why have Jews achieved so much despite constituting such a small part of the world’s population?

For Stephens, the answer lay in their genetic superiority: “Jews are, or tend to be smart. When it comes to Ashkenazi Jews, it’s true,” he wrote, making sure to distinguish between white Ashkenazi Jews and other, darker-skinned groups such as Sephardic or Mizrahi Jews. Noting that Ashkenazis have won 27 percent of American Nobel prizes in science and account for more than half of world chess champions, he quoted one paper that claimed, “Ashkenazi Jews have the highest average I.Q. of any ethnic group for which there are reliable data.”

However, one of the paper’s authors, Henry Harpending, was a discredited race scientist with a history of promoting eugenics– and someone who had ties to white nationalist groups according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.  

The pushback to a Jewish person arguing that certain races are inherently superior to others was swift. Referencing the 7,800 layoffs across the media in 2019, The Nation’s Ben Ehrenreich quipped:

Even Fox News panned the column as racist, while Stephens’ New York Times colleagues hit back. Jody Rosen wrote, “Speaking as both an Ashkenazi Jew and a NYT contributor, I don’t think eugenicists should be op-ed columnists.”

Facing the backlash, the Times’ editors, who had previously tacitly endorsed the story by publishing it, added a lengthy note at the beginning of the article claiming that it was a “mistake” that Stephens cited the debunked, racist study. “The effect was to leave an impression with many readers that Mr. Stephens was arguing that Jews are genetically superior. That was not his intent,” it claimed.

 

Respectable Racism

The New York Times has a record of normalizing, if not subtly promoting, far-right racist ideology. It has published long and sympathetic portraits of American Nazis and given glowing endorsements to reactionary groups like the “Intellectual Dark Web,” glamorizing their boilerplate conservatism as a subversive anti-establishment movement. Despite claiming to be a liberal newspaper, the Times employs a stable of strongly conservative columnists, including Stephens, Bari Weiss, Ross Douthat and David Brooks. In contrast, there is a distinct lack of Sanders-supporting social democrats, let alone anything further to the left.

In the wake of the most recent Stephens controversy, many authors came forward with stories of Times’ editors suppressing stories that showed the political right in a negative light. For example, author Cari Luna was asked to write a story about white nationalism in Portland. While her editors loved the piece, it was killed by management, because, in her own words “it was too far left for their comfort.” Others also shared similar stories. 

In April 2017, the Times hired Stephens to fill one of its most prestigious posts as a regular columnist. By this time, he already had a long and well-publicized history of promoting racism and other reactionary views in print. While working for the Wall Street Journal he wrote of “the disease of the Arab mind” where Palestinians had been “seized” by a “blood lust” wanting to massacre Israelis. He had previously accused them of a “communal psychosis” that challenged the “comforting fiction” that all people were basically good and claimed they were, as a people, incapable of empathy.

His controversial views are not limited to the Middle East, however. In an interview with Vox’s Jeff Stein, he claimed that “Black Lives Matter has some really thuggish elements in it” and that the dramatic increase in police killings of black people is “connected with a culture of resistance to police.” Stephens is also a fervent climate change denier and an advocate of torture.

Earlier this year he went viral due to a very public online meltdown. After David Karpf, a George Washington University professor made a silly (and barely seen) joke on Twitter about news of a bedbug infestation at the New York Times’ offices being caused by him, Stephens reacted with outrage, sending an email in complaint to the professor’s superiors in a clear attempt to use his influence to have him dismissed. After this project failed, Stephens claimed in his column that the idea of “infestation” was an anti-Semitic trope comparing himself, as a Jew, to insects. He was unable to provide any adequate evidence of this. It was also widely publicized that he had called Palestinians mosquitos in a previous column. Stephens deleted his Twitter account during his meltdown, as public opinion sided with Karpf.

That Stephens could be so acutely conscious of non-existent racist tropes like bedbugs and yet not understand exactly what he was arguing for in his latest article, as the New York Times insists, stretches belief. Stephens is a canny actor and knows exactly what he is doing and what his role at the Times is. A study from YouGov found around a quarter of Americans, including 41 percent of Trump voters believe that the government is conspiring to make the U.S. a Muslim majority country– a key component of the white genocide theory of the far-right. It is exactly that constituency that has carried out genuine and shocking anti-Semitic attacks on Jews in America, including the recent synagogue shootings in San Diego and Pittsburgh. Even as he backs the state of Israel, President Trump continues to casually defame or insult American Jews by questioning their loyalty or presenting them as greedy. 

As racist attitudes in the U.S. again begin to gain currency, there are those in the media that promote them back into respectable conversation.

Feature photo | The New York Times Building in New York City. Torrenegra | Flickr

Alan MacLeod is a MintPress Staff Writer as well as an academic and writer for Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. His book, Bad News From Venezuela: Twenty Years of Fake News and Misreporting was published in April.

The post New York Times Cites White Nationalist Eugenicist in Piece Titled “the Secrets of Jewish Genius” appeared first on MintPress News.

Source: 
MintPress

Dear friends of this aggregator

  • Yes, I intentionally removed Newsbud from the aggregator on Mar 22.
  • Newsbud did not block the aggregator, although their editor blocked me on twitter after a comment I made to her
  • As far as I know, the only site that blocks this aggregator is Global Research. I have no idea why!!
  • Please stop recommending Newsbud and Global Research to be added to the aggregator.

Support this site

News Sources

Source Items
WWI Hidden History 51
Grayzone Project 340
Pass Blue 304
Dilyana Gaytandzhieva 16
John Pilger 423
The Real News 367
Scrutinised Minds 29
Need To Know News 3072
FEE 5143
Marine Le Pen 396
Francois Asselineau 25
Opassande 53
HAX on 5July 220
Henrik Alexandersson 1125
Mohamed Omar 403
Professors Blog 10
Arg Blatte Talar 40
Angry Foreigner 18
Fritte Fritzson 12
Teologiska rummet 32
Filosofiska rummet 132
Vetenskapsradion Historia 182
Snedtänkt (Kalle Lind) 246
Les Crises 3345
Richard Falk 202
Ian Sinclair 125
SpinWatch 61
Counter Currents 11233
Kafila 570
Gail Malone 43
Transnational Foundation 221
Rick Falkvinge 95
The Duran 10664
Vanessa Beeley 187
Nina Kouprianova 9
MintPress 5881
Paul Craig Roberts 2246
News Junkie Post 60
Nomi Prins 27
Kurt Nimmo 191
Strategic Culture 5680
Sir Ken Robinson 25
Stephan Kinsella 109
Liberty Blitzkrieg 875
Sami Bedouin 65
Consortium News 2685
21 Century Wire 3917
Burning Blogger 324
Stephen Gowans 98
David D. Friedman 159
Anarchist Standard 16
The BRICS Post 1531
Tom Dispatch 590
Levant Report 18
The Saker 4828
The Barnes Review 569
John Friend 514
Psyche Truth 160
Jonathan Cook 162
New Eastern Outlook 4620
School Sucks Project 1800
Giza Death Star 2081
Andrew Gavin Marshall 15
Red Ice Radio 652
GMWatch 2503
Robert Faurisson 150
Espionage History Archive 35
Jay's Analysis 1105
Le 4ème singe 90
Jacob Cohen 219
Agora Vox 18087
Cercle Des Volontaires 447
Panamza 2451
Fairewinds 118
Project Censored 1086
Spy Culture 599
Conspiracy Archive 82
Crystal Clark 11
Timothy Kelly 618
PINAC 1482
The Conscious Resistance 946
Independent Science News 87
The Anti Media 6877
Positive News 820
Brandon Martinez 30
Steven Chovanec 61
Lionel 305
The Mind renewed 454
Natural Society 2627
Yanis Varoufakis 1068
Tragedy & Hope 122
Dr. Tim Ball 114
Web of Debt 159
Porkins Policy Review 450
Conspiracy Watch 174
Eva Bartlett 635
Libyan War Truth 357
DeadLine Live 1916
Kevin Ryan 66
BSNEWS 2107
Aaron Franz 260
Traces of Reality 166
Revelations Radio News 121
Dr. Bruce Levine 155
Peter B Collins 1711
Faux Capitalism 205
Dissident Voice 11510
Climate Audit 226
Donna Laframboise 489
Judith Curry 1167
Geneva Business Insider 40
Media Monarchy 2592
Syria Report 78
Human Rights Investigation 93
Intifada (Voice of Palestine) 1685
Down With Tyranny 13026
Laura Wells Solutions 46
Video Rebel's Blog 459
Revisionist Review 485
Aletho News 22135
ضد العولمة 27
Penny for your thoughts 3233
Northerntruthseeker 2630
كساريات 37
Color Revolutions and Geopolitics 27
Stop Nato 4835
AntiWar.com Blog 3331
AntiWar.com Original Content 7435
Corbett Report 2543
Stop Imperialism 491
Land Destroyer 1260
Webster Tarpley Website 1143

Compiled Feeds

Public Lists

Title Visibility
Funny Public