A few observations: (i) we’re so far from a meritocracy, particularly in the USA, that it seems charmingly naive to worry about whether or not any innate abilities of any sort would be a problem; (ii) it’s apparent that we are all born with a certain set of genetic predispositions. The socialist desire for a tabula rasa is a political, not a biological, error. Some of us are (with adequate nutrition) destined to be very tall, some are born with musical tendencies that can be nurtured, some are more adept at conceptual reasoning, and frankly a lot of people are born with limited cognitive abilities that no amount of nurture can compensate for. But because mental characteristics are invisible (as opposed to height, which is impossible to deny) we pretend we believe that “everyone is equal” and we get into trouble. What we should be looking for is initial equality of opportunity, and that requires adequate schools with adequate curriculae. In the USA we’re very, very far from even this most basic of necessities. Worrying about whether or not everyone can be a STEM student and if so whether or not they’d be paid fairly (hint: pay and fairness and social value are utterly unconnected for basic economic reasons) is so far removed from any quotidian reality that perhaps we should be focusing on more germane matters.

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Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

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