June 22, 2015
Theodore Dalrymple on the forced resignation of Nobelist Dr. Timothy Hunt
It is not truth that is usually the aim of such discussions, but power. Few of those who were outraged (and were delighted to be outraged) by Professor Hunt’s remarks bothered to consider, not even for a fraction of a moment, whether there might be some element of truth in them. After all, Professor Hunt’s experience of work in laboratories was greater than theirs; he might merely have been alluding to his own experience, from which he generalized. To demand that he should not do so, on pain of excommunication, is to demand that he deny his own experience. That, of course, is the purpose of propaganda in the worst totalitarian regimes: to force starving people to acquiesce to the proposition that they have never eaten so well.