I’m reluctant to start a thread on this theme, but that’s precisely the point William Saletan makes in his two recent “Human Nature” columns in Slate. The first article is entitled “liberal creationism.” Here is a brief snippet:
“If this suggestion makes you angry—if you find the idea of genetic racial advantages outrageous, socially corrosive, and unthinkable—you’re not the first to feel that way. Many Christians are going through a similar struggle over evolution. Their faith in human dignity rests on a literal belief in Genesis. To them, evolution isn’t just another fact; it’s a threat to their whole value system. As William Jennings Bryan put it during the Scopes trial, evolution meant elevating “supposedly superior intellects,” “eliminating the weak,” “paralyzing the hope of reform,” jeopardizing “the doctrine of brotherhood,” and undermining “the sympathetic activities of a civilized society.”
The same values—equality, hope, and brotherhood—are under scientific threat today. But this time, the threat is racial genetics, and the people struggling with it are liberals.”
As much as I hate to admit it, Saletan has a point: liberals like me are inclined to dismiss any claims of genetically mediated differences in intelligence among racial groups, regardless of what the research shows. If the research seems not to support our settled convictions, we just dismiss it.
How is this different from the Biblical literalists’ repudiation of evolution?