Tuesday, February 19, 2008

"Are Americans hostile to knowledge?"


ThomasLB said...

I think people make up their minds pretty early on, then seek out facts to support their positions. If the facts violate their preconceived notion, they simply ignore them; that's why we have people who deny the holocaust, global warming, and evolution.

The internet is making the problem even worse.


I saw that episode of "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?" (mentioned in the article). I couldn't believe my ears....I thought she must be joking (playing a role). I have talked about it several times since.

The sad thing is that I meet people that have actual scorn for knowledge on a frequent basis. Having an education makes you "weird" or you get told that they have never heard of whatever you are talking about (with scorn and the implication that this is just another one of your "weird bumblings).

I never ram my own interests down the throats of others. However, in certain company, I have learned not to mention anything that I would have to explain in detail. It just causes hostility among people who have decided not to let their minds grow anymore.

This workplace is not as bad but I have actually had workplaces where I was detested at lunch because I read books that others didn't understand or find normal. We are talking basic computer books,business textbooks for my schooling or self-help titles.

Each of the sexes has a list of approved topics with little straying allowed. For me, I am allowed to talk about decorating,hairstyles,shopping,cell phones,possibly sewing or baking. Nothing too complicated in any of the areas allowed. Maybe I can talk about the weather,childhood memory comparisons or some experience at a store.

Well...that is the end of my tirade...for now. I must stop before I depress myself.

Sleepypete said...

Unwillingness to know more - or even just reluctance to challenge pre-conceived ideas, is one thing that annoys me ...

So many people are quite happy to accept what they're told at face value, without stopping to think that they might well be the victims of a con artist ... Or that they're being manipulated by the media or other self-interested people.

Always challenge what people tell you :-) And you'll often learn more along the way from completely coincidental information :-)


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