Today I’ve got Bret Weinstein and Heather Heying on the show, and I couldn’t be more excited. Both evolutionary biologists (and a husband and wife team), they’ve spent their careers studying things like tropical biology, behavior, evolution of behavior, and sexual selection. Their book, A Hunter-Gatherer’s Guide to the 21st Century, became a New York Times bestseller almost instantly, and yet it’s received almost no mainstream press.
Bret and Heather were both popular professors at Evergreen State College for 15 years, teaching students how to think evolutionarily. That all changed in 2017—when 50 students (whom Bret had never met) showed up at his classroom and demanded his firing and resignation over claims that he was a racist. This led to protests and eventually riots. Bret and Heather found themselves dragged into a very public fight at the college over diversity, equity, and inclusion measures. They left the college and are now reaching a much larger audience.
In search of the truth, I had to interview them. In today’s episode, we discuss:
- How the free speech crisis on college campuses isn’t really a “free speech” crisis—but a crisis of a much different nature (and it’s not limited to college campuses)
- How we all function by heuristics, which leads us to making all kinds of assumptions about what we see
- Why resorting to heuristics is leading many people to see a very compelling, but false, picture—and why seemingly intelligent individuals can’t see what’s actually taking place in the world
- Science is supposed to be based on challenging the status quo and letting the data prove what the answer (or truth) is—but what we’re seeing is, in fact, an anti-scientific approach
- Why massive protests are taking place all around the world in countries where the people understand what tyranny is and are standing up against it—yet we’re not seeing any of that in the US
- Why people who were raised in the “WEIRD world” (Western, educated, industrialized, rich, democratic) are susceptible to certain optical illusions, while other people aren’t
Bret and Heather say the rate of change in our world is outpacing our ability to keep up with it—as well as our ability to understand what is true. From an evolutionary perspective, if we can’t keep up with the rate of change, we will perish. And that’s the whole point.
This is a fascinating interview you don’t want to miss!
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