A significant social-science paper, co-authored by my casual friend Michael Bailey, Ph.D., a psychology professor at Northwestern, was just retracted by the prestigious Springer-network journal Archives of Sexual Behavior. It’s worth looking at exactly why this happened.
…All right: enough wordplay. In reality, anyone opening this article knew at once what had happened here. Almost immediately after the Archives of Sexual Behavior published the paper, frantic transgender activists started protesting the journal and threatening boycotts. A May 5 open letter signed by academics, including Marci Bowers of WPATH and What Is a Woman? fame, the director of the Gender and Life-Affirming (GLAM) medical program at Anchor Health, and a former board member of Health Professionals Advancing LGBTQ Equality, not only panned Bailey and Diaz’s article but also called for the removal of Archives editor Kenneth Zucker, in favor of “an editor who has a demonstrated record of integrity . . . on trans matters.”
In what would be a death knell for any scientific journal — if actually done, on scale — the scholar-activists threatened to “no longer submit to the journal, act as peer reviewers, or serve in an editorial capacity” until this replacement was implemented. The letter-writing was accompanied by a social-media campaign that the Tennessee Star accurately summed up as: “criticism from transgender activists and allies.” And the activism worked, at least in causing a quick retraction (and, who really knows how long the annoyed-looking Zucker will stick around?).
Wilfred Reilly | “Activists Now Have the Power to Spike Scientific Research They Don’t Like” | June 24, 2023
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