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Psychology Today: Stop Publishing Racist & Sexist Articles

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Mya Symons, May 29, 2011.

  1. Mya Symons

    Mya Symons Mya Symons

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    There is a petition on Change.org regarding a racist article written and published on psychology today. I thought since ME/CFS seems to affect more women then men, and Psychology Today tends to write articles on CFS being a disease that is "in our head", it would be a good idea for us to sign this petition.

    Please go to this link to sign the petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/psychology-today-stop-publishing-racist-sexist-articles

    PS I was not sure under what category to post this. Moderators, sorry if you have to move it.

    On May 15, 2011, Psychology Today contributor, Satoshi Kanazawa posted an article entitled "Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women?". We demand that the Psychology Today editorial board publicly account for how and why this racist and sexist article was allowed to be published on the Psychology Today website, and take transparent steps to prevent this from happening in the future.

    Kanazawa's article is nothing more than a vile regurgitation of racist and sexist beliefs about black women disguised as "objective" and "scientific" research findings, and contributes to a historical legacy of using distorted "science" as a tool to justify violent ideas about and treatment of black women. Kanazawa has a history of writing biased and error-ridden articles that attempt to justify racist beliefs. Other scientists have discredited his research and his legitimacy as a social scientist has been called into question. That Psychology Today publishes Kanazawa's often problematic articles casts serious doubt about the trustworthiness of their publications as well as the rigor of their editorial process.

    Psychology Today is not just a magazine and website, but it's also a site that people access resources for mental health services for their well being. Publishing damaging and crude articles such as Kanazawa's demonstrates a profound disrespect for anyone who turns to Psychology Today for these resources.

    Though Psychology Today has removed the article from their website without explanation, the editors have not acknowledged or taken responsibility for publishing the article, discussed the editorial standards they require from their contributors and whether this article satisfied those standards, or explained why Kanazawa remains as a contributor, despite being discredited by other social scientists. Psychology Today editors have a journalistic and ethical duty to be both transparent about how this article was published and accountable for this failure in public trust.

    Because of the damage that this kind of misinformation creates for both the public and Psychology Today, we demand the following:

    1) a public statement from Psychology Today editors demonstrating accountability for the article itself and the editorial conditions that allowed this article to be published on your website,

    2) the removal of Satoshi Kanazawa as a contributor to your website, magazine, and any other Psychology Today publications based on his history of discredited research and repeatedly submitting racially biased articles to Psychology Today, including this most recent disturbing article that your editors chose to abruptly scrub from your website,

    3) and the development of more thoughtful and sophisticated strategies for identifying how racism, sexism, homophobia/transphobia, and other oppressions and biases shape any so-called "objective" scientific inquiries, methodologies, and findings that your contributors examine in your publications. These strategies should be communicated to the public in an effort to be more transparent about how you are disrupting bias in your reporting.

    Also, please visit this additional important change.org petition demanding that "psychological professional associations to devise a formal statement alerting the public that, given their track record, Psychology Today should not be considered a reliable source of psychological knowledge."





    HERE IS THE LINK AND INFORMATION ON THE OTHER PETITION:
    http://www.change.org/petitions/hol...le?utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=email


    On May 16, 2011, Psychology Today published an article on attractiveness that contradicted the basic tenets of scientific rigor and exhibited pure irresponsibility on behalf of the Psychology Today editorial staff. [PLEASE NOTE: THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE HAS BEEN REMOVED. IT HAS BEEN RE-BLOGGED AT:http://blackgirlsguidetoweightloss....r-more-manly-and-less-attractive-than-others/ ). Numerous psychologists have sent letters expressing disappointment and concern at the publication's recent decision. Psychology Today's response has been to pull the article. This superficial band-aid, however, only hides the wound's surface. The carelessness of the recent article marks a trend by Psychology Today to publish unreliable, pseudo-scientific content in the name of "science." This poor standard for presenting research is particularly concerning given the national popularity of publications such as Psychology Today, which are seen by many members of the general public as credible representations of psychological research.

    Accordingly, we petition psychological professional associations to devise a formal statement alerting the public that given their track record Psychology Today should not be considered a reliable source of psychological knowledge. We also encourage the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science to devise mechanisms that may help to hold popular media sources, such as Psychology Today, accountable for the research they present to the public. The misuse and misrepresentation of psychological science, such as what has been seen today requires clear distancing from these types of publications.

    Thank you for your attention to this matter.

    Sincerely,

    Concerned Citizens

    Note: If you are a psychologist, please indicate this in the comments section of the petition.
     
  2. maddietod

    maddietod Senior Member

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    Thanks for posting a link to the article; it's appalling.
     
  3. Angela Kennedy

    Angela Kennedy

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    This may sound perverse - but I'm sorry the article has gone now. It provided evidence of the ludicrous sexist and racist ideology still informing psychological 'science' - which also manifests of course in the 'women are hysterical' meme that dogs psychogenic explanations for ME/CFS and other illnesses. They took it down in a hurry!

    Go and look up 'beauty; and 'universal beauty' on wikipedia if you want to be appalled further! Amazing in this day and age...
     
  4. Mya Symons

    Mya Symons Mya Symons

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    You can read a copy of the original article here:
    http://blackgirlsguidetoweightloss....r-more-manly-and-less-attractive-than-others/

    It is a shame, however, that Psychology Today deleted the article off their website and made no comment on why they did (and left no evidence of the article).

    I couldn't find universal beauty but I found physical attractiveness, and the first sentence pissed me off!:Retro mad
     
  5. Mya Symons

    Mya Symons Mya Symons

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    Here are some statements HE made that are quite appalling:

    Africans have more mutations in their genomes than other races. And the mutation loads significantly decrease physical attractiveness (because physical attractiveness is a measure of genetic and developmental health). But since both black women and black men have higher mutation loads, it cannot explain why only black women are less physically attractive, while black men are, if anything, more attractive.

    The only thing I can think of that might potentially explain the lower average level of physical attractiveness among black women is testosterone. Africans on average have higher levels of testosterone than other races, and testosterone, being an androgen (male hormone), affects the physical attractiveness of men and women differently. Men with higher levels of testosterone have more masculine features and are therefore more physically attractive.
     
  6. Angela Kennedy

    Angela Kennedy

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    OMG - what a load of codswallop.

    Conversely - a Channel 4 documentary a few months ago was claiming mixed race people were better in some way than other humans and more attractive because they had so much heterogenous genes etc. It's all racist and harks back to the days of sociobiology and social Darwinism, and is creepy to see back in play in academia I must say!
     
  7. Angela Kennedy

    Angela Kennedy

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    thanks for that Mya. Another one for the 'crap' library! : )
     
  8. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    Wow.. im so shocked they published that in todays day and age.
     
  9. biophile

    biophile Places I'd rather be.

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    Recruiting staff for an up coming paper on CBT/GET

    Dubious use of statistics on dubious subjective measures, asked from a biased sample on issues which are heavily subjected to fickle psychological and social trends, which just happened to coincide with the author's beliefs prior to the study? Check. Presenting unimpressive statistical differences as more significant than they really are and building a house of cards hypothesis on it? Check. This man should work for the PACE trial management team, he should feel right at home.

    I found this (bold added):

    Wow. Although people may have a problem comparing this dubious study to the PACE trial, just imagine what would happen if Richard Horton got 75,000 emails etc about the PACE trial instead of the "dozens of letters" that he indignantly complained about. Diddums anyone?
     

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