Monday, May 23, 2022

Court Thought that Black Kids Prefer White dolls

With Supreme Court decisions being reconsidered, it is worth reviewing the basis for one of the most famous and revered one, Brown v Board of Education. The reasoning was phony doll studies:
Even with doctored evidence there was no Constitutional basis for the Justices’ ambitions, so they skipped the Constitution entirely and based their ruling on social science. This “science” was mainly black sociologist Kenneth Clark’s notorious doll studies.

Clark claimed that when black students in segregated schools were shown two dolls — one black, the other white — and asked which one they liked better, a substantial number chose the white doll. He claimed this meant segregation instilled feelings of inferiority. What he failed to say — but what was known to the lawyers arguing the case for segregation — was that his own research contradicted that claim. He had run the same experiment with children in integrated schools in Massachusetts and had found that even more of them preferred the white doll. If his research showed anything about feelings of inferiority, it was that integration made them worse. His evidence before the Supreme Court was deceitful.

Got that? One of the most radical and consequential Supreme Court decisions of the XX century was based on silly claims that Black kids prefer White dolls. The decision was unanimous, and hardly anyone questions it, even today.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When I was little, I really wanted a black doll (white here btw) my dad bought me one.
I loved that dolly (Sara). 🥰