How to produce racists

When some regrettable behavior of mine became known and widespread, I was called various names.  The names included:
1. Hebe
2. Jew,
3. Swine,
4. filthy A-rab,

5. faggot  (etc)
The word “Hebe”, even though its one syllable and uttered with great conviction, is really a set of assertions that can be unpacked and examined.  In effect these people were saying:

  • your regrettable behavior is due to the fact that you are of the Hebrew race
  • This behavior is due to a character flaw that is genetic, and common to most or all members of the Hebrew race.

Obviously, I personally would like to believe that my regrettable behavior was not due to some genes that run in my family, let along all “Hebrews”, but that’s just my bias.  What if its true?
After all, the people who say it believe its true.  And they say it with conviction.  Its a simple direct explanation, and so what if I don’t like it?
However, simplicity and conviction are not everything:
We should be aware of the statement by the influential satirical writer Henry Louis Mencken.  He said this:

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.

If we go by pure reason, then becoming aware that some Jew acted in what I euphemistically call “regrettable” fashion does not prove much.  It doesn’t take much searching to locate non-Jews of all races and religions who have committed evil acts, or disgusting acts, or hilariously foolish acts.
On the other hand, the idea that character is partly genetic is backed up by research.
For instance:
Researchers from Edinburgh University studied more than 800 sets of identical and non-identical twins to learn whether genetics or upbringing has a greater effect on how successful people are in life.
Twins are useful in such studies because almost all twins share the same home environment as each other, but only identical twins share exactly the same genetics.

Prof Timothy Bates, who led the study, said: “Previously, the role of family and the environment around the home often dominated people’s ideas about what affected psychological wellbeing. However, this work highlights a much more powerful influence from genetics.”
The study was focused on personality traits which contribute to our chances of success in life by dictating whether, for example, how determined we are to overcome challenges.
Prof Bates said: “If you think of things that people are born with you think of social status or virtuoso talent, but this is looking at what we do with what we’ve got.
“The biggest factor we found was self control. There was a big genetic difference in [people’s ability to] restrain themselves and persist with things when they got difficult and react to challenges in a positive way.
Interestingly, my own problems started as a teen, with a total lack of self-control in many domains.
But again, presumably Prof Bates was studying Scotsmen, and these Scotsmen differed in the amount of self-control they had.  They were not all the same.  You could not tar all Scotsmen with the features of one egregiously out-of-control type.
Criminality is partly genetic, but interestingly, sometimes a particular environment will bring out the criminality in susceptible individuals.  If genes affect the brain, and the brain affects behavior, then this is not so surprising. To take just one example, research has shown that criminality is strongly correlated with low arousal levels in the brain.
Even political attitudes are correlated with genes, to some extent.  This is hard to believe – we like to think our beliefs come from reasoned consideration of evidence.
But lets look at the second assertion that comes out of “Hebe”.  And that is, that most or all members of an entire group (or race) could share genes for a particular obnoxious character trait.  After all, we see that most people below the Sahara have a gene for lots of melanin, which protects them from sunburn, while most people in Northern Europe have much less melanin.  So if that particular trait can be selected for, why not character traits?  Or if, as happens in some cases, a few people give rise to a huge number of descendants, then you might expect certain character traits to become common.
This might not mean the racism directed at me is correct in a strong sense – but it might be correct in a weaker sense – that the distribution of character traits is different in different groups of genetically related people.  This could result in the average behavior being different.
To test this assertion you would have to do statistical studies of behavior across groups, controlling for environment.   Or you would have to show that gene X affects character trait A, and that group 1 has a more common incidence of X than does group 2.
I’ve seen minorities criticized for
1. having high crime rates
2. having low IQs
3. being slobs and inherently filthy
4. hating white people, or Christian people
5. being treacherous
6. being deceitful and being conspiratorial
and so forth.
I haven’t seen criticisms on some other traits (such as being prone to conspiracy theories, or to acceptance of ideologies without thinking)
Here are some racist quotes from surprising sources:
“Mexicans are a rabble of illiterate indians.” (Ernesto “Che” Guevara, June 1956.)
I might note that Che loved to execute Cubans, and believed in the Marxist nonsense that has killed tens of millions of people throughout the world)
Communist North Korean Central News said this about President Obama.  They said he is a “dirty fellow” who “still has the figure of a monkey while the human race has evolved through millions of years,” and declares that he should “live with a group of monkeys in the world’s largest African natural zoo and lick the breadcrumbs thrown by spectators.”
I might note that the theory of evolution says that North Koreans are descended from apes.
The Daily Stormer, a white supremacist site that supports Donald Trump says this about (filthy Jew) Mark Levin, a conservative talk show host who criticized Mr. Trump.
You might say that anyone who would trust a Jew gets what they deserve. But this guy’s listeners don’t even know that he’s a Jew. He pretends to be one of them. That has long been the top Jew stratagem.
And a positive quote from Winston Churchill on the Jews:
the most formidable and the most remarkable race which has ever appeared in the world.
If you do not want to manufacture racists, you have to avoid certain policies.

In this country, we have had a federal lawsuit to prevent companies from discriminating in hiring on the basis of an applicant having a criminal record.  Why?  Because this discriminates against Blacks, who have a higher crime rate.

We have an initiative now to bring low income people into higher income areas, and house them there with government housing.  Why?  Because there are more whites in prosperous suburbs than blacks, and that is not fair.

Muslim refugees are being settled in small towns and rural areas and inner cities across the country, and opponents  of this policy, who cite fears of terrorism or anti-Democratic attitudes by the new arrivals are told they are “racist”.  And yet, if you look at France and Sweden and Germany, the record on the behavior of the new arrivals is often very bad.
If you want to make good-natured people into racists, make them feel unsafe.  Make them feel that they have to work alongside a guy with a criminal record who has a history of petty theft and violence, and tell them to complain would be racist.
Tell them that the random residents from low income areas with a high number of shootings every night will be coming, in public housing projects, into their suburb.
To make people feel even more insecure, tell them that you are bringing in large numbers of neighbors from the Middle East, people who it is impossible to do background checks on, because the place is such a war-zone.
The issues come together in ironic ways.
After escaping war in their homeland, some Syrian refugees are afraid of getting shot in their new home – in north St. Louis.
[They complain of]  gunfire in the night, roaches, mice, and rats.
One Syrian woman, speaking through a translator, says it’s so bad she phoned friends at a refugee camp in Jordan to warn them not to come to St. Louis.
If you have a new phenomenon of economic stagnation, especially for the less educated, and you then tell them that the large welfare state that their taxes pay for will also subsidize costs of illegal immigrants, then you will get objections.  You cannot have a welfare state with unlimited immigration.  You end up going bankrupt.
Having said all this, I must be a closet racist, right?  Well, unlike racists, I have noticed that every group I’ve seen has good-natured, honorable, admirable people.  On the other hand, I have an open-mind as far as whether different groups could vary (on the average) by character due to genetic influence and/or environmental influences.   I’ve seen both blacks and whites say they are prejudiced against Jews, so implicitly, members of both groups can believe this.
I’ve been called a racist by a liberal relative of mine (who actually is quite admirable), because I have doubts on Muslim immigration.  That is silly, because the Jews are related to various peoples in the Middle East, including the Syrians, and the Kurds and the Armenians and the Anatolian Turks.  The Biblical Abraham came from Ur, which is in Southeast Iraq.
However, even if we should all be one happy family, we get tweets like this in Muslim Turkey (after a Jewish leader, Shimon Peres, died).

“Shimon Peres died, there is now one fewer Jew. I wish the same for other Jews and their sperm…”
“Shimon Peres died. One fewer Jew. The world has got rid of one more piece of dirt.”
“Shimon Peres, you’ll get a nice tan there. May your hellfire be fierce. Jewish dog.”

There is a big difference between Islam and Judaism, and each religion in turn has affected the history, and possibly, if you want to bring in evolution, the “selection process” of its adherents.   Its also silly, to call me a “Hebe” because I truly doubt I am the typical Jew – I’m not religious, and my behavior has been downright weird – you name it – eating disorders, compulsive behaviors (like Bulimia), excessive fatigue with freezing extremities,  a few months where I had a mysterious desire to act as bizarrely as I could (I succeeded, unfortunately)  – plus being treated with shock treatments, anti-depressants, Zyprexa, Thorazine, Imipramine, imprisonment in a mental ward (for believing there was a movie of me loose in the land), and so forth.  And on top of this, I currently believe I’ve been targeted by a Mafia – despite my admitting that for a few months I so deviated from reality that the temp “delusional paranoid” was accurate.  How many Jews do you know that fill that description?.  Plus, I hate gefilte fish.
Of course looking at people as products of genes and brains is distasteful, we want to look at them as friends, as team-mates, as companions.  But having been called “Hebe” by a fair number of people, (years ago) I feel that some kind of effort to take the issue head-on is reasonable.  If people believe something is true, but just are too nice to discuss it in public, or are intimidated from discussing it in public, they still believe it.  Discussion is better than suppression.


3 thoughts on “How to produce racists

  1. What actually interested me about this post is not so much the central issue but that research pointing at a genetic component in behaviour was regarded as surprising or in some way unexpected. Years ago, when I was studying psychology in the 60s, it was a commonplace that many traits have a strong genetic component. For example, one of the most strongly inherited mental factors was actually spelling ability. For many decades it was accepted that intelligence was mostly inherited, but in more recent years politically correct critics have claimed that social and family factors were more important. Actually the relationship between these variables is important and needs to be studied, but it does not alter the fact that twin studies have shown consistently that identical siblings reared apart tend to have a similar IQ, despite variations in other factors. A bright child reared in poor, understimulated conditions will have a somewhat smaller IQ as a result, but unfortunately little IQ increase has been observed in less intelligent children reared in good, stimulating circumstances.

    It would be very interesting if someone did do a serious study of racist attitudes. “Race” actually isn’t a scientific concept — ethnicity is.

    So far as I know Jewish people tend to score higher on IQ and maybe the biggest single personality trait characteristic of them came out in studies of shyness. It was difficult to find any Jewish subjects with significant levels of shyness at all. Maybe the hatred aimed at Jews stems from these two characteristics, which obviously play a big part in worldy success. Simple envy?

  2. Carl: I found an interesting article on shyness (in Psychology Today) that does say the Israelis are the least shy of the groups looked at (30%). The P.T. theory is that the Jewish Mother praises any effort, no matter how incompetent, of her child, thus instilling self confidence! The Japanese mother, on the other hand, expects success.
    But shyness, the article says, has its good points:

    “Yet shy people are often gifted listeners. If they can get over their self-induced pressures for witty repartee, shy people can be great at conversation because they may actually be paying attention. (The hard part comes when a response is expected.) According to Harvard’s Doreen Arcus, shy kids are apt to be especially empathic. Parents of the children she studies tell her that “even in infancy, the shy child seemed to be sensitive, empathic, and a good listener. They seem to make really good friends and their friends are very loyal to them and value them quite a bit.”

    The link is at:

    1. Thanks for that reference, I have downloaded it and it seems very good. I am surprised at how many Americans see themselves as shy; the view most of us elsewhere in the world have is that most of you are anything but! I remember reading Zimbardo’s first book on the subject in the 80s, that’s probably where I saw the findings about Israelis.

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