Who Inspires Biden’s Science Advisor, Eric Lander? Renowned bigot, misogynist, homophobe & racist James Watson

Wednesday, March 17, 2021 // Research

Eric Lander May, 2018 Regarding James Watson:  …. Learning from each other, competing with each other, flawed but striving, and for all these ways, and more, inspiring all of us to push the frontiers of science to benefit humankind. Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Jim Watson.  

For those of you who are not aware, James Watson is one of the scientists who discovered the DNA double helix.  More importantly though, as it provides insight as to who Eric Lander is, James Watson is an unrepentant misogynist, racist, anti-Semite, and homophobe.  Eric Lander knew all these things and literally raised a glass to him, because Lander is a coward.   

It’s important to review some of Watson’s comments, comments which were widely publicized, to put into context how cowardly it was for Lander to not only salute the man but fail to criticize his comments until after he was caught.  Here’s just a sampling of James Watson’s widely known crazy ideas on race and gender.  

On Race: 

There’s a difference on the average between blacks and whites in IQ tests, I would say the difference is genetic.”

Regarding Africa: ““all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours — whereas all the testing says not really”.

Although he wished everyone were equal, “people who have to deal with black employees find this not true.”

On Women

Women at Oxford and Cambridge are better than Harvard and Yale because they know their job is to look pretty and get a rich husband”

On Killing Gay Boys & Girls

Mothers should be allowed to abort gay children because they’re gay, “If you could detect it pre-natally, could a woman abort a child who was homosexual? I said they should have the right to, because most women want to have grandchildren, period. We can’t do it, but it’s common sense. Anyways,”

On Jews:

“Should you be allowed to make an anti-Semitic remark?” He answered: “Yes, because some anti-Semitism is justified. Just like some anti-Irish feeling is justified. If you can’t be criticized, that’s very dangerous. You lose the concept of a free society.”

“The one aspect of the Jewish brain that is not first class is that Jews are said to be bad in thinking in three dimensions.. it is true

This are just a few in a history of racist, sexist, homophobic, and racist comments from Watson.   

Lander’s a Coward

In isolation, James Watson’s comments are problematic enough, and Lander toasting him doubly problematic.  But what makes Lander truly unqualified for a position in the Cabinet of the President of the United States is that by his own admission he lacked the fortitude to say no to some colleagues in the scientific community and stand with his fellow Jews.  Lander has stated: 

“is not secondhand. In addition to hearing him espouse these views, I have been the personal target of some of his anti-Semitic remarks.”

In the annals of moral courage, being a faithful Jew and declining to make a public toast to an anti-Semite is not the thing of high courage.  But Eric Lander could not even muster that modest level of moral courage. 

More importantly though this shows that Eric Lander is a spineless coward and we cannot expect him to rise to the occasion when it really matters. As a Cabinet member he could be faced with the toughest of decisions. Unfortunately, Eric Lander has shown himself to be a man who won’t be able to say, “No Mr. President” when the nation needs it because he could not even muster the courage to say no to a birthday party invitation for a notorious anti-Semite.