Wednesday, January 14, 2015

A tale of two Jared's

Both Jared Taylor and Jared Diamond, born to immigrant parents attended Ivy league colleges, wrote many books about humans. Specifically about the explanations for the differences between Eurasian people and other populations they conquered or displaced. These differences have shaped human history almost as much as the atom bomb or the motor car. Even today, study and discussion of such differences are very emotional issues.

While Taylor "eloquently" argues for a biological and genetic basis for these differences, Diamond has written books that provide an elaborate non-genetic explanation that invokes ecology to explain these differences. Diamond, argues that differences in the success of different populations could be attributed to prevalence of very different species of plants and animals in the continents inhabited by these populations. 

Although they share their first names, they are atleast as different as Paris and London. The demoralizing situation of the French peasantry is similar to situation faced by members of certain ethnic groups who happen to listen to Taylor speak. Availability of these videos on youtube makes it rather easy for any casual internet user to stumble upon it. 

The question is can one draw unflattering parallels to the explanation provided by Diamond? For instance it might not be possible to accept the explanation provided by Jared Diamond while still believing in some sort of concept of a benevolent god. Diamond provides arguably the best non-genetic explanation for the differences between human populations. Unfortunately, it fails to explain numerous inconsistencies. Lack of numerous more convincing explanations definitely needs to be remedied.

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