Thursday, May 26, 2011

Tell Psychology Today: Apologize for "Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive?” article

A week ago, the magazine Psychology Today published an article titled "Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women?” on its website. Within hours, following widespread outrage and criticism, the post disappeared.

Colleagues and peers of Satoshi Kanazawa, the article's author, have since analyzed his same data and unanimously (and unsurprisingly) found his conclusions in error.

Yet Psychology Today has remained silent. They have refused to apologize or even explain why they published the article.

Articles like Kanazawa's are more than offensive or spurious—they're deeply harmful because they promote racist and sexist stereotypes as science.

That’s why documentary filmmaker Aishah Simmons and academic Alisa Bierria are leading a petition on to call on Psychology Today to apologize and take transparent steps to prevent the publication of racist and sexist material in the future. Click here to sign Aishah and Alisa's petition.

Kanazawa's article never would have survived a thorough and responsible editorial process. In fact, the author himself doesn't stand up to review.

Kanazawa has a history of pushing discredited research and is particularly notorious for making meritless claims about race and gender. (He is also known as the mind behind the much-mocked book Why Beautiful People Have More Daughters.)

In an attempt to defend previous publications, Kanazawa wrote, “If what I say is wrong (because it is illogical or lacks credible scientific evidence), then it is my problem. If what I say offends you, it is your problem.”

Well, as Khadijah Britton of Scientific American put it, “Satoshi Kanazawa has a problem.” So does Psychology Today.

Prominent women’s rights advocates, including Gloria Steinem and Beverly Guy Sheftall, former President of the National Women's Studies Association, have already declared their support for the campaign.

Please click here to add your name to theirs:

Thanks for taking action,

Shelby and the team

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