According to some people, the United States is involved in a race war. Riots have been raging in numerous cities for several months. The social justice warriors want our nation to have diversity and inclusion, and they are willing to tear down the country to achieve it. However, they do not insist on diversity in all areas of our lives.
Walter E. Williams, one of my favorite authors and a black professor of economics at George Mason University, wrote about this lack of diversity in numerous areas of the nation. According to Williams, 80 percent of “any professional and most college basketball teams” are black. According to Williams, the starting five players on most teams and most of the other players are black.
The coaches of such teams are not looking for diversity and inclusion because they are searching for winning teams. The same thing goes for football teams – about 70 percent of their players are black. The coaches want the best players that they can find regardless of the color of their skin – and the social justice warriors do not seem to be concerned. Williams gave some examples of other places where the people in charge do not look for diversity and inclusion.
Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (National Accelerator Laboratory) is home to the world’s most powerful experiments, fastest supercomputers, and top-notch physics researchers. Much of SLAC’s research is on particle accelerators that are complicated machines that are designed, engineered, and operated to produce high-quality particle beams and develop clues to the fundamental structure of matter and the forces between subatomic particles....The bulk of their scientists is not only Americans of European and Asian ancestry, but mostly men….
There are relatively few black fighter-jet pilots. There are stringent physical, character, and mental requirements, which many black applicants could meet. But fighter pilots must also have a strong knowledge of air navigation, aircraft operating procedures, flight theory, fluid mechanics, meteorology, and engineering.
Can we assume that basketball and football coaches, officials at the SLAC, and military officers are racists because these organizations do not have diversity and inclusion? We cannot make such an assumption because we know that they are all looking for the best in their fields without consideration of skin color.
I believe that it is fair to ask why there is so little diversity and inclusion in the above noted areas. Why are there so many outstanding black basketball and football players and so few black scientists and fighter-jet pilots? Williams gave some possible answers.
In the hard sciences, one will find black Americans underrepresented. For example, a 2018 survey of the American Astronomical Society, which includes undergraduates, graduate students, faculty members, and retired astronomers, found that 82% of members identified as white and only 2% as black or African American.
Only 3% of bachelor’s degrees in physics go to black students. In 2017, some fields, such as structural engineering and atmospheric physics, graduated not a single black Ph.D. The conspicuous absence of black Americans in the sciences has little or nothing to do with racism. It has to do with academic preparation.
If one graduates from high school and has not mastered a minimum proficiency in high school algebra, geometry, and precalculus, it’s likely that high-paying careers, such as engineering, medicine, physics, and computer technology, are hermetically sealed off for life….
At many predominantly black high schools, not a single black student tests proficient in math and a very low percentage test proficient in reading; however, these schools confer a diploma that attests that the students can read, write, and compute at a 12th-grade level, and these schools often boast that they have a 70% and higher graduation rate.
Williams continued by explaining that “the fact that over 80% of professional basketball players are black, as are about 70% of professional football players” is because of excellence. Excellence is also the reason why certain scientists are recruited to work at the SLAC and certain men and women achieve the status of pilots of fighter-jets.
Dr. Ben Carson is one example of many black professionals who are successful. He wanted to become a brain surgeon, and he worked for it – just like professionals of all races. Williams ended his article with another example of a group of Americans that has little diversity and inclusion. Just 3% of our population are Jewish Americans. Yet, Jewish Americans “win over 35% of the Nobel prizes in science that are awarded to Americans.” This disproportionality is again explained by excellence rather than diversity and inclusion.
It would be interesting to know the reasons why blacks are exceptional in basketball and football and Jewish Americans are excellent in science. However, it all boils down to what Williams learned from his stepfather: “To do well in this world, you have to come early and stay late.”