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WHAT’S DAWKINS DONE NOW?

By Pete Moore On February 16th, 2020

Richard Dawkins is having a lively weekend. From what I can tell, it’s because of this tweet. At least it appears to be the one drawing ire, angst, sweary replies and abuse –

What’s the problem with this comment? I agree with it. Many blue ticks seem to think that Dawkins is endorsing eugenics. Of course he isn’t doing so. His meaning is plain and it takes no great effort to see that.

In fact eugenics, in a way, has been working for decades in the UK via abortion. Many who are outraged, because they think that Dawkins is promoting eugenics, would be equally horrified if alterations to the gene pool via abortion were outlawed.

27 Responses to “WHAT’S DAWKINS DONE NOW?”

  1. Dawkins is of course promoting Eugenics, but he seems to think he has created a plausible deniablity. He’s previously said it is immorality to bring a downs syndrome child into the world and said it should be aborted.

  2. The Patron Goddess of Abortion in the US was driven by Eugenics and the elimination of inferior humans.

  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=4&v=dPIl3XweeFY&feature=emb_title

  4. I am troubled by the phrase of his that “facts ignore ideology” as if the former is stronger than the latter. It’s as if Stalin is asking how many divisions does the Pope have?

    Yes, it is a fact that doctors with knives can rid us of citizens with Downs Syndrome via abortion (or infanticide at THIS POINT!), but it is ideology and morality which tell us if this is a good or not.

  5. //Yes, it is a fact that doctors with knives can rid us of citizens with Downs Syndrome via abortion //

    Charles, if they aren’t even born, they are hardly citizens.

    Ideology is just our way of dealing with facts. Facts exist a priori, and ideology and ethics and laws are introduced to control human interaction with them.

    BTW, I was amazed to read from Patrick’s link that contraception was banned in parts or all of US until relatively late. It was not until 1965 that the American Supreme Court ruled that birth control is legal for married women.

    Still, not as benighted as the Irish, where the ban on contraception wasn’t fully lifted till 1993.

  6. Still, not as benighted as the Irish, where the ban on contraception wasn’t fully lifted till 1993.

  7. I guess to answer the question “What has Dawkins done wrong Now” I would have to say that he has equated humans with pigs, dogs, and cows vis-à-vis the odious ideology of eugenics.

  8. Still, not as benighted as the Irish, where the ban on contraception wasn’t fully lifted till 1993.

    As we see, the Irish are now leading the charge into oblivion. Here are empowered, liberated women whooping and hollering for the right or possibly the duty to murder babies in their wombs…..

    https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6k9mer

  9. Charles –

    I don’t see how Dawkins is equating humans with animals.

  10. I was in the grocery last week and took note of a young mother with a Down’s toddler in the cart – it stood out because I realized I haven’t seen a Down’s child in many years. They don’t seem to exist anymore. As a child and young women I ran across Down’s people all the time, in school and across society.

    With the current availability of early testing for Down’s and other severe disabilities, I have zero judgement on parents who chose to terminate those pregnancies. Not everyone is equipped emotionally or financially to deal with the long term care of these children, especially in the US with our expensive, patchy system of medical care and meager social services.

    If this is eugenics, I’m at peace with it. If you’re talking about designer babies, I’m fine if it’s editing out inheritable genetic diseases.

  11. Something absolutely bizarre goes on in the minds of leftists. Whilst they wish abortion of babies with Down’s Syndrome, they want to import into their countries immigrants who perform less well than adults with Down’s Syndrome. Let’s check that statement as I’m sure that the usuals will be upset:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome

    Most individuals with Down syndrome have mild (IQ: 50–69) or moderate (IQ: 35–50) intellectual disability with some cases having severe (IQ: 20–35) difficulties.[1][30] Those with mosaic Down syndrome typically have IQ scores 10–30 points higher.[31]

    and the imported from, say, Ethiopia though I’m sure that the aspiring fizzy-cysts from Somalia are similar:
    https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2006/nov/05/highereducation.research

    The London School of Economics is embroiled in a row over academic freedom after one of its lecturers published a paper alleging that African states were poor and suffered chronic ill-health because their populations were less intelligent than people in richer countries.
    Satoshi Kanazawa, an evolutionary psychologist, is now accused of reviving the politics of eugenics by publishing the research which concludes that low IQ levels, rather than poverty and disease, are the reason why life expectancy is low and infant mortality high. His paper, published in the British Journal of Health Psychology, compares IQ scores with indicators of ill health in 126 countries and claims that nations at the top of the ill health league also have the lowest intelligence ratings.
    Kanazawa declined to comment on either War on Want or Atkinson’s allegations about reviving eugenics because, he said, other academics had come up with the national IQ scores that underpinned his analysis of 126 countries. In the paper he cites Ethiopia’s national IQ of 63, the world’s lowest, and the fact that men and women are only expected to live until their mid-40s as an example of his finding that intelligence is the main determinant of someone’s health.

    We know that those affected by Down’s Syndrome have genetic problems, yet inbreds from Pakistan consume 30% of the UK’s budget for such conditions – and the ‘liberals’ really do love pakis.

  12. “Dawkins is of course promoting Eugenics”

    Basic reading comprehension says otherwise. His remarks are no different than separating the question of whether one should kill someone with a gun, to whether a gun does in fact kill someone. It takes an extremely uncharitable and/or ignorant reading to come to any other conclusion.

    “He’s previously said it is immorality to bring a downs syndrome child into the world and said it should be aborted.”

    Down’s syndrome is not heritable, for a kick off, so clearly has nothing to do with eugenics.

    But even more obvious is that abortion is no more eugenics than consensual sex is rape.

  13. One thing though (as some wag pointed out) Dawkins tweet works even better if you add “, Mr Bond” at the end, which is not great 🙂

  14. Dawkins is pointing out that eugenics works. He’s not saying that we should do it.
    And I personally agree with him on aborting a foetus if the child would be born with down syndrome.

  15. And I personally agree with him on aborting a foetus if the child would be born with down syndrome.

    Dave.

    Down Syndrome children are wonderful loving human beings.

    Any Downs Syndrome person i have come across are full of joy and happiness.

    At our local ASDA, a Downs Syndrome lad works the tills, he is always full of the joys of life at its very best. he makes everyone smile he seems to come into contact with.

  16. Harri.

    I think life is difficult enough without parents and the child having to deal with downs syndrome. But to be fair Harri that’s my personal opinion. I’m not saying that it should be compulsory to have a foetus aborted if downs is detected.
    And yes I agree with you that some children with down syndrome can still live decent lives.

  17. Frank – I’ve got pretty good reading comprehension. And I can read between the lines. And I recognize when someone wants to signal something while keeping some plausible deniability in case of a backlash.

  18. Dawkins is trying to avoid the legacy of Eugenics as if it was as neutral a thing in the third Reich as the volkswagon. He reserves for himself the decision on what makes a better human. Yet we know where eugenics has gained political strongholds it has always been. The politically, racially and economically undesirable who have been it’s victims.

  19. Tend to agree with Mahons on this one.

  20. I tend to disagree with Mahons this one. And I’m not even a Dawkins fan.
    I think Dawkins is just putting this into a coldly scientific perspective.

  21. To what end Dave?

  22. To be honest I’ve read a lot of Dawkins’s books, and I’ve listened to a lot of his lectures while doing my carpentry, so I think I understand to a reasonable degree his method of thinking. He’s a bit of an oddball. I think he puts his mouth into gear without thinking, which is evident from the number of times he has to make apologies the things he said, sometimes justifiably and sometimes not.
    I personally don’t think he’s got any sinister reasons behind it. But that’s just my opinion.

  23. Mahons,

    You sound more like you are snorting the lines than reading between them.

    https://twitter.com/richarddawkins/status/1229060502984306689?s=21

    There and in the tweet following it is made even more clear than it was already. And that was clear enough.

    But sure, let’s go with your theory that Dawkins must have been floating a trial balloon to see if he could get the world on board with a eugenics program that he very plainly deplores.

  24. I think bypassing the legacy of something and going right into a theory blithely and without context might be sinister in and of itself. But let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. It doesn’t mean he’said not giving support to sinister things or people.

  25. “ He reserves for himself the decision on what makes a better human.”

    Nope – you made that up.

    So far there’s more evidence in this thread that you think that than there is Dawkins does.

    The truth is that you cannot read minds (and apparently not the written word either).

  26. I think eugenics as an issue is sadly coming back into vogue. At it is heart it is about controlling human reproduction in order to produce (in the eye of the beholder) a more positive outcome. Hell even calls for greater population control to combat climate change and other environmental damage have eugenic undertones.

    I would agree with those above that Dawkins is not advocating for eugenics. But one question I would ask is there anyone suggesting that eugenics won’t work? Is anyone debating this as a practical and not moral or ethical matter? Dawkins seems to be making a rebuttal for an argument that hasn’t actually been made.

  27. Seamus,

    “But one question I would ask is there anyone suggesting that eugenics won’t work? Is anyone debating this as a practical and not moral or ethical matter?”

    Yes, a lot of them in Dawkin’s replies, some of the arguments are pretty good too.

    I think that Dawkin’s point was more along the lines of we shouldn’t hang our hat on the idea that it can’t work. There’s reason to believe it “works”, for some value of “works” (i.e. achieve some intended purpose). He’s saying that we shouldn’t do it because we shouldn’t do it, not because it doesn’t work.