John Brockman at Edge.org:
In the early ’90s, I was visiting Cambridge and went out to dinner with the late Stephen Jay Gould. During a long evening of conversation we talked about his ideas concerning race, racial racial differences, racial equality, including his well-known writings on the use and misuse of IQ tests and other such measures. I came away from the conversation with the distinct sense that he believed there were some things better left unsaid, some areas of investigation that were out of bounds if he wanted to have a just society. Nothing strange here. His views were, and still are, consistent with the daily fare of the editorial pages of many of our important newspapers and magazines.
Armand Leroi, a biologist at Imperial College, feels differently. He loves what he calls “the problem of normal human variety”…
“Of course, there will be people who object. There will be people who will say that this is a revival of racial science”. Leroi argues that “there will always be people who wish to construct socially unjust theories about racial differences. And though it is true that science can be bent to evil ends, it is more often the case that injustice creeps in through the cracks of our ignorance than anything else. It is to finally close off those cracks that we should be studying the genetic basis of human variety.”