Megan McArdle has a great post up about bias in academia, which is a problem that most academics would like to pretend doesn’t exist. The whole article is worth reading, but here’s the money quote:
One of the things the legacy of racism has taught us is just how good dominant groups are at constructing narratives that justify their dominance. Somehow, the problem is never them. It’s always the out group. Maybe the out group has some special characteristic that makes them not want to be admitted to the circle–blacks are happy-go-lucky and don’t want the responsibility of management, women wouldn’t deign to sully themselves in commerce, Jews are too interested in money to want to attend Harvard or go into public service. These explanations always oddly ignore the fact that many members of the out-group are complaining about being excluded.
Think about that the next time someone tells you there aren’t any conservatives in academia because they’re “more interested in making money” or “would rather join the military” or, as some studies would have it, are simply too stupid and closed-minded to make the cut.