Chinese-made condoms too small, Zimbabwe’s health minister complains: Rushton vindicated
This report may seem to have humorous value only but it does in fact have a bearing on a substantial academic theory. J.P Rushton's r/K theory proposes that penis size is one of a set of covarying characteristics that differentiate blacks, whites and Asians, with blacks having the largest endowments and Chinese the smallest.
Rushton's claim that blacks have larger penises is not at all original. Knowledge of the difference existed in ancient times -- going as far back as Greek physician Galen. Africa has never been far from Europe. And in the contemporary world there is much talk of white women liking black men for their larger endowment. I have myself heard women praise bigger penises.
Most academics furiously reject the theory (e.g. here). All men are equal, don't you know? But their principal objection is about Rushton's data quality. Measurements not reported in peer-reviewed academic journals are scorned. But academic journals in the social sciences are famous for using non-samples as their databases. The data underlying academic journal articles is rarely a representative sample of any known population. So criticizing Rushton for his data quality is a case of the pot calling the kettle black.
As is constantly borne upon us in sociology, there is no such thing as a perfect dataset and the very act of doing sociology is a claim that we can feel a way through what data we do have to arrive at useful conclusions. And Rushton's theory is well within that conventional category of an interesting theory based on imperfect data.
But the theory clearly needs more evidence before it becomes widely persuasive and the report below is surely just what is needed: A clear statement from an authoritative source. Black penises ARE larger than Asian ones. Rushton was clearly a good sociologist in that he threaded his way through imperfect data to arrive at a correct conclusion. He stands vindicated.
In thinking about Rushton's theory I am reminded of the late Napoleon Chagnon, a leading anthropologist who was in the beginning widely mocked for his accounts of primitive people. In the end it is his critics who have fallen by the wayside and he is seen as having made an important and correct contribution
A Chinese condom manufacturer says it is considering making its products in different sizes after Zimbabwe’s health minister complained that contraceptives made in China and exported to the African nation were too small for its men.
Health Minister David Parirenyatwa made the comments at an event in the capital Harare last week to promote HIV/Aids prevention, according to the website New Zimbabwe.com.
“The southern African region has the highest incidence of HIV and we are promoting the use of condoms,” Parirenyatwa was quoted as saying. “Youths now have a particular condom that they like, but we don’t manufacture them. We import condoms from China and some men complain they are too small.”
Zhao Chuan, the chief executive of the condom manufacturer Beijing Daxiang and His Friends Technology Co, told the South China Morning Post the firm was planning to make contraceptives in different sizes.
“As to the different demands from customers such as in Zimbabwe, Daxiang, as a Chinese manufacturer, has the ability and the obligation to make a contribution, so we have started to do some surveys on users’ data in the region to make preparations for future products with different sizes,” Zhao said in an email.
Zhao said that customers around the world had different requirements, with Chinese men preferring thinner condoms while not worrying about the size, while customers in North America liked a softer contraceptive.
Zimbabwe is one of the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa worst affected by HIV/Aids, with an estimated 13.5 per cent of its adult population infected with the virus.
The use of condoms is a key way to limit the spread of infection. The country has become one of the top five condom importers in the world, according to local media reports.
China is one of the world’s largest condoms producers, according to National Health and Family Planning Commission.
The nation has about 300 condom manufacturers producing about 3 billion of the contraceptives each year.