Science does not need women

Science doesn’t need anyone except good scientists who actually understand and utilize scientage.

One of the main glories of science is that it is universal, or at least approaches universality as nearly as it is possible for a human activity to do. Within a few years of Commodore Perry’s opening up of Japan to the outside world, Japanese scientists were contributing to the (then) new science of bacteriology on an equal footing with Western scientists. But that is not at all the same as saying that science needed the Japanese. It could have got on very well without them.

It is true, of course, that women are demographically underrepresented in the ranks of scientists, but so are many other groups. (This means, of course, that others are overrepresented.) This may be for more than one reason: lack of aptitude or interest, for example, or deliberate or subtle obstructiveness. But historical attempts to recruit scientists according to some demographic criterion or other have not been met with success, even as far as the advancement of science itself is concerned, and have been made by the very worst dictatorships that in other respects have been abominable. Social engineering and engineering are two very different activities. It would be no consolation to know while on a collapsing bridge and about to plunge into the deep ravine below that it had been built by a truly representative sample of the population, and was therefore a monument to social justice.

If science needed more women, it would have more women. As it happens, science observably has far more women and more men than it needs, which is why more and more people are leaving science because they don’t wish to spend all their time playing the grant game rather than doing actual science. Science got along perfectly well for centuries without much in the way of female involvement, after all.

Every time – EVERY TIME – you hear someone say “X needs more Y”, you can be absolutely certain that they are useless parasites who are only capable of political activism and useless bureaucracy.