American newspapers are hardly saints. Just this week, readers of the venerable Washington Post got in a huff over the newspaper's flirtation with lowbrow voyeurism. But unlike British newspapers, says London evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa, they care about the facts.
In a brutal takedown at Psychology Today, Kanazawa accuses even the best British papers of willfully distorting scientific research to conjure up edgy, wrongheaded headlines like "Low IQs are Africa's curse" or "Blonde women born to be warrior princesses." Fed up, Kanazawa exhorts scientists and professors to boycott British reporters:
I hope American and British readers (and readers throughout the world) will finally wake up to the reality of British journalism: You just cannot believe what you read in British newspapers. I'd further call on my academic colleagues on both sides of the Atlantic never to speak to British reporters.
Kanazawa doesn't pull any punches. He says it's about as useless to convince a British journalist to tell the truth as reasoning with tabloid reporters:
They don't care if it's true or not. It's like telling reporters from the National Enquirer, "No, there are actually no medical records to show that Britney Spears gave birth to a three-headed cow-baby fathered by the ghost of Michael Jackson. That would be biologically impossible, for a couple of reasons." They simply don't care; it's their job to make things up.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.