Over two hundred years ago, one of the most influential of the social critics that made the Enlightenment was Francois Marie Arouet. Even though Voltaire deemed it prudent to write anonymously under a pen name, still he was imprisoned for eleven months and spent years in exile. One of his most famous quotations became a central pillar of American freedom. It was in 1770 that Voltaire wrote, "Monsieur l'Abbe, I detest what you write, but I would give my life to make it possible for you to continue to write."
Now over two hundred and twenty five years later, with the great good fortune to be living in the "Land of the Free", under the protection of the First Amendment's guarantee of freedom of speech, and with the further umbrella of academic tenure -- an institution whose only purpose is to make possible the speaking of truth to power -- it is still with great trepidation that I pen this preface.
David Duke has the distinction of being the only American politician to be smeared more viciously than Patrick Buchanan. With the entire establishment against him: press, church and state, he won public office as a state representative. In a bid for Governor, he defeated in the first primary, the sitting republican Governor, and then lined up against a dubious democrat character with a reputation for graft and corruption. Vastly outspent, one of the prime slogans against Duke that appeared on bumper stickers throughout the state was "Vote for the Crook --It's Important." The crook won. Corruption was preferable to political apostasy. Even so, Duke won a landslide of more than 60 percent of European-American voters in each of two statewide races.
Duke has endured an intense and unrelenting smear campaign for decades. Once you read this book you will know why he has been attacked by those of immense power. He challenges all the sacred cows of modern life, and he does so with intelligence and emotion.
Voltaire and David Duke are warriors in a conflict that is as old as civilization. The Harvard biologist, historian and philosopher of science Ernst Mayr suggested that as human populations evolve from savagery to civilization their approach to knowledge takes one or another of two paths. One approach leads to modern rationality, including the values of post-Enlightenment free societies and the questing after truth that forms the basis of modern science. The other approach leads to totalitarianism based in dogmatic authority. The direction toward freedom, traceable back to the philosophies of ancient Greece, is unique to Western European Civilization.
The direction toward rationality and science traces to the first recorded Western philosopher, Thales of Miletus (c.636 --c. 546 BC). Thales maintained that to gain knowledge and understanding one should start with naturalistic observation, that is, descriptions of events as they exist in the real world. We should then seek natural explanations for natural phenomenon. A third major position was that it is acceptable, even encouraged, to question existing explanations, to entertain diverse viewpoints, to have the freedom to use criticism in order to improve knowledge and theories. These three principles, which trace to the beginnings of recorded Western thought, capture the essence of modern freedom and science. Alas, from Thales' time down to the David Duke of today, this approach has been a minority position under constant attack.
The road to dogma starts with assertions of knowledge based in authority. Marxian economics, Boasian egalitarianism, and Freudian psychoanalytic theory equally well illustrate dogmatic belief systems. Not only are criticism and questioning not encouraged, they are condemned. The questioner is shunned, outcast, outlawed and labeled a heretic, hater and evil sinner. David Duke is a questioner.
It is clear from David Duke's autobiography that he was an intelligent, indeed a precocious child, and much of a free-thinker from the beginning. An impartial clinical psychologist might detect elements of an oppositional personality in his self-description. An essential feature of such a child is a provocative opposition to authority figures. When told how things are, such a child asks "why" a bit more than is usual. If bright enough, the child might take great delight in checking the facts for himself. Rare is the student that digs in the library for the original sources. DSM-3, a now somewhat dated psychiatric diagnostic manual says, "The most striking feature is the persistence of the oppositional attitude even when it is destructive to the interests and well-being of the child or adolescent." Seekers of truth, shifters of paradigms, innovators in civilization, have shared such traits, and have often failed to outgrow them, whether they be Socrates, Thomas Aquinas, Martin Luther, Galileo Galilei, Isaac Newton, William Shockley or David Duke.
It is easy to imagine how a brilliant child from a traditional Christian background, but with oppositional tendencies, might be profoundly affected by growing up in a southern city through the turmoil of the civil rights movement. Starting from an unquestioning acceptance of Christian and American ideals [and still a believer in both, I should add] as learned from home, church, school, and media: equality for all, loving brotherhood of all men, turn-the-other-cheek, the sermon-on-the-mount, and do unto others. Imagine the life-wrenching shock for such a precocious child who relates intellectually, as well as with deep emotion, to the inscription on the Jefferson Monument, "Nothing is more certainly written in the book of fate than that these people [Negroes] are to be free.", but then uncovers for himself the full context of the quote, the next sentence from which was taken the inscription: "Nor is it less certain that the two races, equally free, cannot live in the same government." But David Duke tells this tale of his awakening much better than I can paraphrase.
David Duke's awakening is presented here in three interconnected major themes of his discoveries of honest truths that are politically incorrect. One of his honest truths is that from a thorough immersion in modern science he became convinced that racial egalitarianism is the scientific equivalent of the flat-Earth theory. He rejects the smear of "racist" while maintaining that the true data are very different from those that most of us have been led to believe. A second of his sets of honest truths is that a powerful and cohesive self-serving group has promoted a dishonest and hypocritical version of egalitarianism that is inimical to the interests of Western Christian Civilization He rejects the smear of "anti-Semite" while maintaining that the true data are very different from those that most of us have encountered through the mass media.
In a style to be expected from a sincere oppositional who is truth-telling as best he can, David Duke's ultimate challenge to his reader not to take his word for it, but to check it out for yourself. Toward that end he provides on the order of a thousand references and footnotes. The gauntlet is clearly thrown down Here is the evidence, here are the sources: Check it out for yourself.
It is a powerful approach. It is the approach of Western Civilization traceable right back to Thales. No amount of dogmatic name-calling, no smear, no hate-speech laws, no internet filters, no criminalization of history, not even total quarantine and book-banning, can stand against a simple guide to where the truth is to be found. If read by his fellow citizens David Duke's story of his own awakening might awaken them as well, and in so doing rattle civilization to its very core.
How is it that I came to write this preface to a book written by a man that I have never met in person? David Duke tells us how he dreamed to become a scientist and instead, growing in the turbulent urban south, he was diverted into a life of politics. I, on the other hand, had the fortune, good or bad, to be born in Montana and raised in Minnesota. I was fully adult before I had many real encounters with racial or ethnic diversity and have never been into politics. Fascinated since childhood by animal diversity, and also an avid birdwatcher, I trained toward a scientific career at the interface of evolution, genetics, and psychology. Raised in Minnesota I became a Hubert Humphrey liberal - and remain one to this day. Equality of opportunity for each individual, equal treatment before the law, in an orderly society with rule-of-law, these are ideals I treasure.
The social disruptions of the middle and late 1960s that formed David Duke were never a real part of my personal experience. At Alamogordo New Mexico, just down the road from the Trinity Site and on the edge of the White Sands Missile Range, we were helping to reach for the Moon Research preparatory for the Apollo Missions was a heady assignment for a young scientist. By the time I returned to civilian life and to a position as a faculty member at a state university, the worst of the troubled times were over.
One of my favorite senior colleagues, a mentor at my new university, cautioned that although I was into behavior genetics, it would be prudent to avoid that "human business." He said that being at a southern university I would have no credibility, and that none of us needed the flak. He had once published a scholarly paper dealing with the tested intelligence of black and white school children - and had been savaged by vicious ad hominem attacks and personal threats. Those were hassles that I did not need, especially since there were so many other intellectually challenging research opportunities. It was easy to climb into the ivory tower of basic research.
Over the years I did my research and followed that of others, raised a family and had little or no interest in politics. Still, there were discussions of some pretty silly things. Like blatant racial discrimination under the label of "affirmative action" Embarrassingly unprepared and incapable people being cajoled into situations for which they were unsuitable while competent potentials were being turned away. As time went on, the public rhetoric became ever more distant from the scientific realities. The technical questions had always been why -- what were the reasons for the large intellectual gap between blacks and whites? As the hard scientific data came in, it became more certain that genetic differences (heredity) played a large role in the discrepancy. But in public it became politically incorrect to even acknowledge that there was a difference.
It was disturbing that some of my respected scientific colleagues seemed to be less than candid. The private discussions at scientific meetings became weirdly disjointed from public pronouncements. Simply, scientists lied by omission and by commission Some had a frankly elitist attitude, that "the masses" could not be trusted with the truth. The famous Richard Lewontin is quoted as having written "Sometimes even scientists tell conscious lies to make a point." He should know. Honesty had always been to me the first and the highest of scientific requirements. But some of my colleagues in science had a different agenda.
Completely separately from David Duke, my inquiries led to essentially the same places and some of the same conclusions, that he spells out in this book. My own "awakening" involved a second major wake-up call on that most forbidden of subjects. It resulted from a close friendship with an extended family, Americans of Christian Lebanese ancestry. Through long talks with "Uncle Mike", a kindly physician who was the family patriarch, I learned of the naked aggression of Israel against the Palestinian people. Slowly, my eyes were opened to an international racism that was at least as pernicious as that alleged against David Duke. At the same time, I discovered that Duke's "racism" was not born of hatred, but of science and of history.
At the present time in Western science, I believe that an important distinction must be acknowledged between individuals and Judaism as a group endeavor. As individuals, scientists of Jewish ancestry cover the entire spectrum of interpretations and approaches to race and heredity. To mention just two individuals, the late Richard Herrnstein was a co-author of The Bell Curve, (1994), while Michael Levin, author of Why Race Matters, (1997), has withstood much wrath for his truth telling. From personal experience in academia, it is sometimes hard to believe that Jews constitute only 2% or 3% of the general population Individuals of Jewish ancestry are vastly overrepresented in the ranks of highly successful scientists. They are among my best students and closest friends.
Organized Jewry, on the other hand, dogmatically attempts to keep the general population from awareness of the findings of modern science. The Anti-Defamation League [ADL] of B'nai B'rith [BB] was founded in 1913 from its father organization the B'nai B'rith. The B'nai B'rith promoted socialist and egalitarian revolution It was founded in the decade of The Communist Manifesto amid widespread unrest throughout Europe. From that time Jewish chauvinism, communism and Zionism were all intertwined.
The confounding and confusion of Semitism and socialism that occurred at the beginning continues to the present day. Anti-liberalism is apparently often confused with anti-Semitism within the present-day Jewish community. To illustrate, in the newsletter Details for July 1997, published by "The Jewish Policy Center", Rabbi Daniel Lapin explained why he thought anti-Semitism and Jewish liberalism are intertwined: "They realize that liberalism . . . is largely responsible for the fact that life in America has become more squalid, more expensive and more dangerous over the past 30 years. Thus, many decent Americans are disturbed by Jewish support for liberalism and liberal causes. Though virtually all Americans are too decent to let this blossom into full-fledged anti-Semitism, there is always that threat. We can 'tweak the lion's tail' only so long." (p.1-2).
Early on, Jewish intellectual leaders boasted of the racial distinctiveness and superiority of the Jewish people. Only later did the strange strategy evolve that Jewish distinctiveness could only be preserved by eliminating distinctiveness among non-Jews. Franz Boas and other Jewish intellectuals believed that the Jewish people would only be safe with the elimination of all vestiges of racism among the Gentiles. From there, it was a short step to using other groups in furtherance of the Jewish agenda, such as founding the NAACP, and adopting cryptic "behind the scenes" financing and control of Black and Gentile front organizations. David Duke provides many of the references, in the Jewish triumphalist literature.
The Anti-Defamation League may have been founded to counter bigotry, sadly it has transformed into one of the most bigoted of organizations. Wielding the two mega-smears of "racist" and "anti-Semitic" it attacks whomsoever it dislikes. Just as Peter Brimelow (in Alien Nation) pointed out that the new definition of "racist" is anyone who is winning an argument with a liberal," so an "anti-Semite" has become anyone out of favor with the ADL.
One of the most chilling documents that I have encountered in many years is B'NAI B'RITH Reports and Analyses (available on the Internet at bnaibrith.org). It goes on for page after page listing legislative initiatives in many countries to criminalize -- whatever they dislike! Much of what Voltaire and the American First Amendment is dedicated to, as well as Thales' approach to civilization, are completely alien to this mindset. Dislike a book (there are quite a few titles that are disliked), criminalize its distribution. Go to jail for possession Speech -- say something insensitive or unpopular, go to jail and pay a fine. Newspaper--shut it down, go to jail, pay a fine, for possession or distribution Question a "sacred truth" of History --don't you dare, go to jail, pay a fine, lose your passport, no visa. Distasteful symbols, flags, jewelry --go to jail, etc. etc. What they have not yet managed to have outlawed, they say they are now "monitoring." And these same people are avidly pushing for federalization of newly invented crimes and "hate offenses" in the United States. The activities listed in this document, if nothing else, would induce me to heartily recommend the book written by David Duke.
As we approach the beginning of the third millennium from the birth of Jesus, western society is poised on a cusp. We are toying with a path that leads to another Dark Age; a possible millennium of censorship, speech codes and hate thought laws. Blasphemers, free thinkers and honest people could be suppressed. Thought-crime and hate-speech law advocates are substituting ideological suppression for honest science. We could fall into another totalitarian Dark Age, or rational freedom could prevail. The balance of past history does not encourage blind optimism. Alternatively, the path from ancient Greek philosophy to freedom and modern science, which is unique to Western Christian Civilization, could lead to a greater Golden Age.
As a scientist who specializes in the field of Behavioral Genetics, I must tell you that I have gone over David Duke's considerable data on genetics and race and find it in line with the latest scientific discoveries and knowledge in this area. His grasp of this area of research is quite remarkable for having a degree in History rather a doctorate in the biological disciplines. As to the meaning he poses for the racial truth he tells, politics is his realm, not mine. But, it is fascinating to see how his political life has been an outgrowth of an intimate relationship with the natural world as a child, and then later his study of it in scientific books and extracts.
As I read this book and prepared for this preface, one word kept coming to my mind: powerful. Indeed, even though I know that contributing this preface could lead to some discomfort from those who hate free speech, it seemed to me that this book was more than just a book. It is a painstakingly documented, academically excellent work of sociobiological-political history that has the potential to raise tremendous controversy and change the very course of history. My Awakening has the prospect of becoming to the race issue, what Wealth of Nations is to capitalism or Das Kapital is to Marxism. Moreover, David Duke's notoriety gives this book the chance to be read. It will not easily be hidden away.
What of politics, and what of David Duke? About the path of politics from the cusp on which we are perched, I cannot say. Scientists have never been particularly adept at politics. History could come to treat David Duke in many different ways. Perhaps he will be remembered as a Moses-like prophet who upon awakening them, led his people out of bondage. Perhaps he will be remembered not at all: down George Orwell's memory hole as civilization sinks into another Dark Age. Perhaps he will be remembered as a John-the-Baptist, a wee bit too early, one who awakened his people and paved the way for the future.
"Stand Up and Tell the Truth," a line from this book, could just as well be the title of this remarkable autobiography from a remarkable man. He has had the courage to live it and to write it, to lay down on paper the results of a lifetime of study, reflection and activism. We can only hope that many of his fellow citizens will have the courage to read and discuss it.
Glayde Whitney, Tallahassee, August 1998 (Glayde Whitney is a past president of the Behavior Genetics Association).