I post because...some might feel that treading in the scientific field should be left to scientists, the rest blindly accepting their theories... but what happens when non-scientists don't question?
this is from watson the other half of Francis Crick english biochemists who (in 1953) helped discover the helical structure of DNA (1916-2004)
DNA pioneer attacked over black intelligence claim
Thursday October 18, 2007
The DNA pioneer James Watson came under fire today from a government minister and his own research laboratory, as they rushed to condemn his claim that black people are less intelligent than whites.
As the furore over his assertions intensified, senior representatives of Dr Watson's US research centre, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, sought to distance themselves from his claims.
He made the controversial comments in a Sunday Times interview, reportedly saying he was "inherently gloomy about the prospect of Africa" because "all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours - whereas all the testing says not really".
Dr Watson was quoted as saying he hoped everyone was equal, but that "people who have to deal with black employees find this is not true".
The lab's trustees and its president, Bruce Stillman, said in a statement: "(These) are his own personal statements and in no way reflect the mission, goals, or principles of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory's Board, administration or faculty.
"(We) vehemently disagree with these statements and are bewildered and saddened if he indeed made such comments.
"Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory does not engage in any research that could even form the basis of the statements attributed to Dr Watson."
Britain's most senior black MP and skills minister, David Lammy, said the 79-year-old's comments were "deeply offensive" and would "succeed only in providing oxygen for the BNP".
"It is a shame that a man with a record of scientific distinction should see his work overshadowed by his own irrational prejudices," he said.
"It is no surprise to me that the scientific community has condemned this outburst and I think people will recognise these comments for what they are."
Dr Watson was due to speak at London's Science Museum tomorrow, but directors called off the event last night after the comments were made public.
A spokesman said he had "gone beyond the point of acceptable debate".
The geneticist made his name as one half of science's most famous double act, when he and scientist Francis Crick cracked the code for DNA.
Dr Watson is in Britain to promote his latest book, Avoid Boring People: Lessons from a Life in Science, published this week.
He is still due to speak at five engagements, including events at the Oxford and Cambridge universities.
He is also booked in to speak at Bristol's Festival of Ideas, hosted by Bristol University's vice-chancellor, Eric Watson.
A spokesman for the university said it respected "freedom of speech and the right of people to express their views" but expected "robust questioning of Dr Watson on his ideas".
The newly-formed Equality and Human Rights Commission, which succeeded from the Commission for Racial Equality, said it was studying the comments "in full".
Dr Watson won the 1962 Nobel Prize in Medicine with Mr Crick for their role in discovering the structure of DNA, one of the most significant scientific events of the 20th century.
But he has since regularly courted controversy, reportedly saying that a woman should have the right to abort her child if tests were able to determine it would be homosexual.
He has also suggested a link between skin colour and sex drive, proposing that black people have higher libidos, and claimed that beauty could be genetically manufactured.
Dr Watson has said: "People say it would be terrible if we made all girls pretty. I think it would be great."
He was born in Chicago and studied in the USA and Denmark, before moving to Cambridge University, where he met Mr Crick as a student in 1951.