Bret Stephens' latest think piece is called "The Secrets of Jewish Genius"—and, as you might imagine, some people are a little upset. "How is it that a people who never amounted even to one-third of 1 percent of the world’s population contributed so seminally to so many of its most pathbreaking ideas and innovations?" writes the conservative New York Times columnist, who cites such Jewish luminaries as Franz Kafka, Albert Einstein, and Karl Marx. "The common answer is that Jews are, or tend to be, smart." Twitter users are accusing Stephens, who is himself Jewish, of embracing eugenics or claiming Jews possess genetic superiority. The Times quickly cut part of the op-ed, so let's start there:
- Deleted study: The paper deleted Stephens' mention of a 2005 study saying Ashkenazi Jews have the best average IQ of all ethnic groups, per the Daily Beast. One of the study's authors was considered a "white nationalist" by the Southern Poverty Law Center, while another has written that from a "biological perspective," homosexuality is "surely a disease." Says the Times: "Mr. Stephens was not endorsing the study or its authors' views, but it was a mistake to cite it uncritically."