“Do conservatives tend to be less intelligent?”

“Are racists dumb? Do conservatives tend to be less intelligent than liberals?” Short commentary on the dangers of oversimplifying the oversimplifiers.

See: Huffington: Intelligence Study Links Low I.Q. To Prejudice, Racism, Conservatism

Looking at the archive photo of the racist Klansmen, the article is provocative, interesting, even mildly amusing. But I think this study begs the point. The study’s lead author did acknowledge that “less intelligent types might be attracted to liberal ‘simplifying ideologies’ as well as conservative ones.” For every conservative who’s stuck in the rut of social Darwinism, we can also find some other liberal who sounds like a broken record. I think the real point is that (1) thinking isn’t the exclusive domain of hi-IQ types, and (2) embracing ideological principles is never an acceptable substitute for doing our own thinking.

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