1/ The are several ways cancel culture erodes academia:

1. Directly getting people fired for their heterodox views.
2. Getting other academics to stay silent &/or avoid certain questions/topics out of fear.
3. Causing heterodox students to avoid going into academia altogether.
2/ I've seen & received many emails from all of these groups.

This not only puts suffocating limits on the idea space academics are allowed to explore, but also creates a feedback loop that leads to more & more ideological skew over time.

It's an epistemological death spiral.
3/ Before social media/internet university search committees had very limited information about a candidate's political views. Asking such superfluous questions is, rightfully, considered taboo during an interview. If you're hiring a microbiologist, their politics don't matter.
4/ But now search committees can just hop on social media and obtain the very information they'd consider inappropriate to ask for in person.

If it's inappropriate to ask in person, it's inappropriate to obtain through other means. Ease of access shouldn't change anything.
5/ So now search committees know a lot of information about applicants that's irrelevant to their ability to be competent scientists, but relevant to people's social lives. People are homophilic: they like to associate with like-minded people.
6/ But while homophily can be desirable in many social contexts such as friend your circles, D&D groups, or who you invite over for a dinner party, this instinct is to be suppressed in contexts where diversity of thought and perspective is vital, such as in universities.
7/ Diverse perspectives among colleagues help cover for others' ideological blind spots. It is essential for producing reliable knowledge.

While it's nice if you get along with your colleagues, hiring based on friendship potential greatly weakens the university.
8/ I don't see a way to pull out of the current death spiral apart from severe top-down enforcement of an anonymized hiring process. CVs stripped of all identifying information. In place of your name you get a number. Publications reduced to journal names and author rank.
9/ But I don't really see that happening anytime soon. If you have any other ideas on how to right the ship, please comment below.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Colin Wright

Colin Wright Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @SwipeWright

17 Oct
People aren't talking nearly enough about the Equality Act that Biden says he'll enact within 100 days of taking office.

This act changes the definition of "sex" in the 1964 Civil Rights Act to include "gender identity." This will make all sex-based rights impossible to enforce.
Read the whole Equality Act for yourself below. It is pretty nightmarish. congress.gov/bill/116th-con…
By including "gender identity" WITHIN the definition of "sex", as opposed to making gender identity a separate protected category, all sex-based rights and protections will be based solely on the sex someone merely "identifies" with, regardless of their actual biological sex.
Read 5 tweets
17 Oct
This "study" looked at whether external qigong, an Ancient Chinese practice involving waving your hands over someone to guide "qi energy" through them, could reduce chronic pain.

Might be good to have a sham control, right? Nope! That would impose "Western biomedical concepts"!
What the hell is the point of even doing a study and submitting it to a journal if you refuse to use the methods that would enable you to determine whether or not the effects were real and infer a causal relationship between treatment and outcome?

By the way, their EAT treatment they used as a "control" (it's not) stands for "equal attention time" and consisted of someone just chatting with the participant for 30 mins.
Read 5 tweets
6 Oct
In humans, as in most animals or plants, an individual’s biological sex corresponds to one of two distinct types of reproductive anatomy that develop for the production of sperm or egg cells and associated biological functions in sexual reproduction.
See my @WSJ essay with developmental biologist @FondOfBeetles below.

This is our plea to the scientific community to "stand up for the empirical reality of biological sex", for denying biology is harmful to those most vulnerable in our society. wsj.com/articles/the-d…
And see my @Quillette essay below that explores in more detail the science of biological sex and exposes the pseudoscience behind "sex spectrum" ideology. quillette.com/2020/06/07/jk-…
Read 5 tweets
4 Oct
Get 'em while they're young.

"It’s an uncomfortable conversation, but you have to start somewhere. For Gladwyne Elementary School, it’s starting in the fourth and fifth grades."

Some Amazon reviews of the book:

"As I finished reading the story, I wondered if I should apologize for being white."

"I think any caucasian child would genuinely feel bad after reading this—or having it read to them." ImageImage
Here's a 5-Star review: Image
Read 5 tweets
24 Sep
1/ ATTENTION: I posted this tweet following the publication of @AsraNomani's article in Quillette where she first broke news of Kendi's contract. I made a very significant mistake in not allowing Asra to break news of this contract herself on Twitter. She deserves all the credit.
2/ Please read her fantastic essay below where she details the current admissions situation developing at Thomas Jefferson High School, and where she broke the news of Kendi's $20K contract. quillette.com/2020/09/23/ral…
3/ My sincerest apologies to Asra for stealing her thunder on this. She has put in so much work on this project, and deserves 100% of the credit.

To anyone following the story of Thomas Jefferson High that may have new info or leads, please contact @AsraNomani directly!
Read 4 tweets
24 Sep
Fairfax County Public Schools paid Ibram X. Kendi $20,000 for a 45 minute presentation with 15 minutes of Q&A.

Critical Race Theory is an incredibly lucrative industry.
As @razibkhan told me, don't hate the player, hate the game. We need expose the vacuousness of CRT so that schools/companies/institutions are no longer willing to fork over $20K to have a snake-oil salesman like Kendi indoctrinate people over Zoom for 45 minutes.
For more on this, see the latest by @AsraNomani and Glenn Miller in @Quillette:

Read 4 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!