The journalist Valery Lebedev , who lives in the United States, published on his website a translation of an article from the influential American publication The Wall Street Journal with a very telling headline: “The ideological corruption of science. “The spirit of Trofim Lysenko suddenly woke up in American laboratories and universities.” Its author is a theoretical physicist, professor at the University of Arizona, the author of the book “The Universe from Nothing” by Lawrence Krauss. The article draws a striking conclusion: it turns out that out of fear of accusations of racism in America, whole areas of science begin to disappear, for example, the study of races and gender differences. Scientists in these areas are being dismissed, laboratories are closing down. But the matter goes further - ostracism threatens the natural sciences, such as physics, astronomy, and mathematics. Why? Because in these areas of knowledge there are almost no African-Americans. So what does this mean, the author asks, are these sciences themselves a manifestation of racism and how should they be banned?
“In the eighties, when I was a young professor of physics and astronomy at Yale University, deconstructivism was in fashion at the faculty of English. We, in our scientific faculties, at that time laughed at the humanities - they lacked objective intellectual standards, among them divorced movements that opposed the very existence of objective truth. They argued that any objective knowledge is only an appearance, and it is corrupted by ideological prejudices because of the race, gender, or economic dominance of one over the other. Such a phenomenon could never occur in the exact sciences. Of course, with the exception of situations under dictatorships such as Nazi, when “Jewish” science was condemned, or under such a dictatorship as Stalin, when thousands of geneticists were repressed in the framework of the campaign against genetics led by Trofim Lysenko any opposition to the main ideology of the state. Or we just thought that this could not happen in the exact sciences. In recent years, and especially since the assassination of George Floyd by the police, academics everywhere have begun to censor any dissent, and dismiss leading teachers if someone claims that their research supports unfair oppression.
In June, the American Physical Society (APS), which represents 55,000 physicists around the world, approved a “strike for the life of blacks” by “stopping the exact sciences” in academic institutions. They also closed their office - not in order to protest against violence or racism by the police, but to "eradicate racism and discrimination in the scientific community", saying that "physics is no exception".
Although racism is real in our society, no evidence has been provided to support the claim of systemic racism in science.
APS was not the only one. National laboratories and faculties of the exact sciences of universities have joined a one-day strike. The outstanding scientific journal Nature, which distributes on a daily newsletter what it considers most important in the scientific world, published an article entitled Ten Simple Rules for Creating an Anti-Racist Laboratory.
Michigan State went on strike against physicist Stephen Sui, vice president of research. His crimes consisted of conducting research in computational genomics - that is, studying how human genetics can be related to cognitive abilities. Protesters called it eugenics. He was also accused of supporting the university’s psychological research regarding the statistics of police executions - these statistics clearly denied allegations of racial prejudice. It took the university president just a week to force Stephen Sui to resign.
At Princeton on July 4, more than one hundred teachers, including more than forty in the field of science and technology, wrote an open letter to the president demanding "to destroy hierarchies that perpetuate inequality." This requirement included the creation of a commissariat that would “conduct investigations into racist behavior, as well as racist research and publications.” Each faculty, including the faculties of mathematics, physics, astronomy, and other sciences, was required to establish a prize for studies that in some way "are actively fighting racism in our society."
Shortly after Steven Sui resigned, the authors of a psychology study asked for their article to be withdrawn due to the “misuse” of their article, as journalists claim their article contradicts the widespread belief that police forces are racist. As a cosmologist, I can say that if we recalled all articles on cosmology that were distorted by journalists, we would be left without cosmology.
One distinguished chemist from Canada advocated for merit-based scientific achievement assessments, as well as against hiring scholars on an equal footing if that would result in “discrimination against the most worthy candidates.” For this, he was convicted by the university vice-rector, his article on research in the field of organic synthesis was removed from the journal's website, and the two editors who participated in this publication were suspended from work.
The Italian scientist from the international laboratory CERN, where the Large Hadron Collider is located, was forced to cancel his planned seminar on the statistical imbalance between male and female in physics, and was also forced to abandon his position in the laboratory because he made the assumption that there is a clear inequality between male and female in physics may not necessarily be related to sexism in physics.
A group of linguistic students created a public petition demanding that psychologist Stephen Pinker be deprived of membership in the Linguistic Society of America for a crime such as tweeting an article from The New York Times that they did not approve of.
Since ideological invasion corrupts scientific institutions, the question arises - why more and more scientists do not protect exact sciences from this invasion? The answer is that scientists are afraid. They live in an atmosphere of fear, and not without reason. They do not dare to contradict the leaders of scientific groups. They see what happened to scientists who contradicted. They see how researchers lose funding if they cannot explain how their research will fight racism or sexism - this is the requirement that has now been put forward by grant agencies.
Whenever science is corrupted, becoming a victim of ideology, scientific progress suffers. This took place in Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, and also in the USA in the 19th century, when racist views dominated biology, or in the McCarthy era, when prominent scholars such as Robert Oppenheimer were repressed for their political views.
To keep this slide into the abyss, scientific leaders, scientific societies and senior academic administrators must publicly uphold freedom of speech in science, but do it in a quality manner, regardless of political doctrine and the demands of political movements ... ”
A reaction to this text from the Russian scientific community is curious.
So Boris Stern writes about his "racist" experience:
“Here are my 5 cents. Quote from a new book (the action takes place in the future, but in reality already now): In the filthy time we had to live. We must somehow rebel against universal asphyxiation, at least individually. I once tried - wrote about the effect of glaciation on the divergence of races. Wrote and published. He knew that I would get the label of a racist, he knew that no academy would shine after that, and he published it anyway, because this was an unkilled truth.
And the magazine, which had overlooked my article inadvertently, still gotten bogged down - the editorial board ran in fear. These politicking prudes have no races! This concept is forbidden, there is no such word. Ass - that is, race - is, but not a word. And while answering questions from the audience, I earned the status of a sexist, and also a plebsophobe (indeed, I can not stand goons). Earned - and I do not regret.
Then the “unfinished” anthropologists shook my hand and thanked: “You made a lightning rod, you moved the bar. Thank!"
Olga Korosteleva made an extremely interesting forecast:
“China applauds while standing! Now real scientists, not freaks or clicks, will go to where their jute is with open arms. And they will receive both financing and protection from the ignorant. And the rest of the world, if you don’t change your mind, are waiting for “dark times”»
Ivan Kositsky is our funny analogy of what is happening in America in the history of Russia:
“Herbert Wells, who visited Russia in 1919, in his book on the trip “Russia in the Darkness” wrote that among the Communist ideologists there are those stubborn, "who can prohibit the teaching of, say, chemistry, if they are not convinced that it something special, "proletarian" chemistry. And now the whole world is repeating, in the words of Solzhenitsyn, our defiled asses..."
And Roman Konstantinovsky rightly drew attention to the substitution when racist slogans try to hide socio-economic problems:
“Publicly advocating freedom of speech in science” is like quixoticism. Or does science exist in isolation from the rest of society? If not, then the phrase is completely hopeless - it’s as if the problem is beyond our control, it’s impossible to sort it out, and even if you do, you begin to doubt whether there is an objective truth regarding such a complex subject of study as society. But shouldn't science seek the root causes of the problems that confront us and the search for ways to solve them? Absolute truth may be unattainable, but something interesting on this issue can be noticed. For example, what is now revolting in the United States is not only black, but rather the poor. But how is it that black prevails among the poor? But the budget of American schools - in the "black" areas in terms of one student, it is statistically sharply lower than that of the "white" schools (five minutes in Google). Should I say here that lack of access to education reproduces poverty. And their government, instead of solving the main problem, is issuing laws prohibiting calling blacks black and introducing racial quotas that irritate many. This is clearly cheaper than fork out for schools for everyone. This example suggests that the racial agenda is an imposed, or even maliciously imposed, divide and rule policy. And that the real, not imaginary contradictions of American society lie in the economic plane - this is inequality and oppression of the poor by the rich, and not black and white. Further, it’s good to investigate, for example, American medicine...”