Born to missionary parents in Japan, Taylor lived in that country until he was 16 years old. His parents were conventional liberals, and so was he until the age of 30.He graduated from Yale University in 1973 with a BA in Philosophy, and graduated from Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po) in 1978 with a MA in International economics. Taylor speaks fluent English, Japanese and French. In the 1980s, Taylor was West Coast editor of PC Magazine and a consultant before founding the American Renaissance periodical in 1990. Taylor has taught Japanese to summer school students at Harvard University.
He is the author of Shadows of the Rising Sun: A Critical View of the Japanese Miracle (1983), in which he wrote that Japan was not an appropriate economic or social model for the United States, and criticized the Japanese for excessive preoccupation with their own uniqueness.
Taylor first turned to race in Paved With Good Intentions: The Failure of Race Relations in Contemporary America (1993), in which he argued that racism is no longer a convincing excuse for high black rates of crime, poverty, and school failure. He also edited The Real American Dilemma: Race, Immigration, and the Future of America, (1998).
Taylor supervised preparation of the New Century Foundation monograph, The Color of Crime (1998, 2005), which cites government statistics showing that blacks and Hispanics in America commit violent crimes at considerably higher rates than whites, and Asians at lower rates than whites.He is the main contributor to a collection of articles from American Renaissance magazine called A Race Against Time: Racial Heresies for the 21st Century, (2003) and editor of a collection of essays by the late Samuel Francis entitled Essential Writings on Race, (2007).
Taylor has questioned the capacity of blacks to live successfully in a civilized society. In an article on the chaos in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, Taylor wrote “when blacks are left entirely to their own devices, Western Civilization — any kind of civilization — disappears. And in a crisis, civilization disappears overnight.” Taylor believes in The Bell Curve theory of correlation between race and intelligence, where Blacks are generally less intelligent than Whites, and Whites are generally less intelligent than East Asians. Taylor has said in an interview:
I think Asians are objectively superior to Whites by just about any measure that you can come up with in terms of what are the ingredients for a successful society. This doesn’t mean that I want America to become Asian. I think every people has a right to be itself, and this becomes clear whether we’re talking about Irian Jaya or Tibet, for that matter.
Taylor espouses a doctrine of “race realism.” In a 2003 interview with Phil Donahue, Taylor claimed that Central Americans are organizing en masse and invading the rest of North America. He has described himself as a “racialist.”
Taylor has made remarks on the presence of non-whites in Europe and America. On the greater number of non-whites in Holland compared with Denmark, Taylor has commented; “Europeans travel a lot within Europe, and they see dark-skinned bums sleeping on the streets on Rotterdam. In Denmark they don’t see dark-skinned bums sleeping on the streets, and they are not so stupid as to be unable to understand that immigration has something to do with this.”
In January 2005, Taylor reviewed a book by Frank Salter, On Genetic Interests: Family, Ethnicity and Humanity in an Age of Mass Migration, and agreed with Salter that, from an exclusively genetic point of view, an Englishman would be better off resisting the immigration of two hypothetical Bantu immigrants, than he would be to rescue one of his own children from drowning. He also noted that this was an “extreme” conclusion. Taylor has also given support to Hans Hoppe’s attempts to persuade libertarians to oppose immigration; he generally approves of Hoppe’s work, although he sees the pursuit of a society with no government at all to be “the sort of experiment one might prefer to watch in a foreign country before attempting it oneself.”
Taylor has argued that American support for Israel is the main reason for the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York City. Taylor wrote “…they kill us because we support and finance a country they see as having been illegitimately carved out of the very flesh of their Islamic kinsmen.”
Former associates of Taylor such as former American Renaissance webmaster Ian Jobling and well-known paleoconservative commentator Lawrence Auster (who spoke at the first American Renaissance conference in 1994) have spoken out against Taylor’s refusal to condemn anti-semitism. At the February, 2006 American Renaissance conference, many of the attendees applauded enthusiastically when a speaker said that Israel would not survive its first 100 years. In addition to this, David Duke provoked a Jewish participant into walking out of the conference. Auster responded by saying that Taylor was allowing American Renaissance to be “a home to extreme anti-Semites.”
Taylor refused to permit David Duke to attend the February 2008 American Renaissance conference.
Taylor himself sees Jews as full participants in the work of “race realism:” “It should be clear to anyone that Jews have, from the outset, been welcome and equal participants in our efforts.”
The Anti-Defamation League writes: “Taylor eschews anti-Semitism. Seeing Jews as white, greatly influential and the “conscience of society,” Taylor rather seeks to partner with Jews who share his views on race and racial diversity.”
Critics have described Taylor as a racist and an advocate of white supremacy. Mark Potok, editor of the Southern Poverty Law Center’s “Intelligence Report”, said “Jared Taylor is the cultivated, cosmopolitan face of white supremacy. He is the guy who is providing the intellectual heft, in effect, to modern-day Klansmen.”
In response to charges of “white supremacy,” Taylor has written: “There is no scale on which racial differences can all be ranked so as to draw across-the-board conclusions about racial ‘superiority’ or ‘inferiority’ … It is certainly true that in some important traits — intelligence, law-abidingness, sexual restraint, academic performance, resistance to disease — whites can be considered ‘superior’ to blacks. At the same time, in exactly these same traits, North Asians appear to be ‘superior’ to whites.”
In a speech delivered on 28 May 2005, to a British far right group, Taylor made clear his feelings on the offspring of interracial marriages when he said “I want my grandchildren to look like my grandparents. I don’t want them to look like Anwar Sadat or Fu Manchu or Whoopi Goldberg.”
Taylor praised the “high average level of attractiveness” of Japanese women, saying few resemble the “waddling colossi one finds among the American lower classes of all races.”