Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Are Black Women Genetically Predisposed To Being Ugly?!?

I know, already. I know I'm using a purposely infuriating title for this post. I know that photo doesn't seem to make any sense. And I know I'm also a day late and a few nickles short on this one. Bear with me anyway.

I suppose I'm obligated to address this latest racial internet outrage. I've only had the Color of Change petition emailed to me by, ohhh, about 1,235 of you in the past week alone. So here goes.
Readers of popular magazine Psychology Today were in for a grim surprise when they stumbled across the latest post by London School of Economics' evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa, titled “Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women?”

The article, based on data from a separate study on subjective ratings of physical attractiveness, made the following points (among others):

It is very interesting to note that, even though black women are objectively less physically attractive than other women, black women (and men) subjectively consider themselves to be far more physically attractive than others… Nor can the race difference in intelligence [...] account for the race difference in physical attractiveness among women.

The reaction to the piece was widespread outrage. Academics questioned the dubious method by which Kanazawa drew his conclusions from the data: PZ Myers, Associate Professor at the University of Minnesota, noted that the article "looks at such shaky subjective evaluations ... without even considering the biases of these self-appointed judges". And the blogosphere was even more aghast: The Root commented that the post "struck us as so outrageous that we almost thought it was a hoax of some sort.

Psychology Today ended up pulling the post from its website altogether, reported Adweek. (It is still available here.) But the controversy is far from over. Kanazawa has been known for presenting controversial theories in the past, but this time he may have gone too far. Guardian reports that students at LSE are calling for his dismissal. The University of London Union Senate, which represents more than 120,000 students, voted unanimously for Kanazawa to lose his job.
I guess I'm supposed to be outraged about this one, given the fact that I'm married to a black woman and was birthed by one. But seriously, this guy's "science" is so full of bunk and devoid of objectivity that going after him is like shooting fish in a barrel.[1] Kanazawa probably deserves to lose his day job for espousing personal biases and passing them along as scientific research. This sort of "study" is probably more of an affront to science than it is to black women. He'd just better hope the person signing him up for benefits at the unemployment office isn't a sista. That could get ugly.

Besides, it's hard to get too worked up about this sorta nonsense when you've got plenty of black men doing a number of the black female image themselves.

"Beautiful Black Woman, I Bet That B*tch Look Better Red", anybody?

I'm just sayin'. Let's not be so selective in our outrage. If some anonymous d-bag professor deserves criticism, then so should rapidly impregnating gremlins.

No matter how much you liked "Right Above It".

Question: What do you think about this controversy? Is it much ado about nothing, or do people like Kanazawa need to be shut down? How about that Lil' Wayne lyric?

[1] Speaking of which, is that the stupidest cliche or what? Why would you shoot a fish once you've already caught him?

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