The Corner

Politics & Policy

‘Why Claims of Unconscious Racism Fall Flat’

That’s the title of a panel discussion this Thursday, December 14, at noon at the Heritage Foundation. The subtitle is “Debunking the Implicit Association Test,” and the occasion is the publication by Heritage of a paper by Center for Equal Opportunity research fellow Althea Nagai on this topic.

Claims of “unconscious racism” and for the validity of the implicit-association test (IAT) have become commonplace on the Left in recent years, of course — but they should not be accepted. From the Heritage description of the panel: “Supposedly tapping into the subconscious, the [IAT] measures disparities in millisecond response times on a computer. While it has been hailed as ‘proof’ of deeply seeded racism in American society, policymakers should consider the growing body of research suggesting the test cannot predict real-world behavior before enacting policies to counterbalance so-called unconscious bias.” Accordingly, while “academia, police departments, and corporate America are seeking to root out unconscious racism,” and while “the IAT has started popping up in employment discrimination lawsuits,” “policymakers and employers should think twice before embracing these dubious claims of racism.”

On the panel will be Dr. Nagai, the Manhattan Institute’s Heather Mac Donald, and yours truly. To RSVP or livestream the event, click here.

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