Op-Ed

James Watson

James Watson has left his post as chancellor of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in disgrace. He's apologized for questioning the intelligence of Africans, and issued a statement saying that there "is no scientific basis for such a belief."

Apparently unsatisfied with his double-helix fame, the man who long occupied the pinnacle of scientific achievement has made repeated headlines with egregiously offensive pronouncements. Over the last decade, Watson has said that sunlight and darker skin is the source of more powerful libidos; that abortion to eliminate a fetus predisposed to be gay would be fine; that fat people are less ambitious than thin people; that children he considers "stupid" should be genetically treated; that we should pay rich people to have more children; and that we should do what we can to prevent the birth of "ugly girls."

That's not all. Watson has pursued an aggressive agenda to mobilize genetic science in the service of a renewed eugenics. That's right: Watson wants to genetically re-engineer the human species.

At a high-profile 1998 UCLA conference, Watson joined other well-known scientists and nearly...