I was born and raised in the USA!
During a recent "street poll," the majority of people asked didn't know who the Vice President of the USA is.
I think most would not have been able to answer a much harder question: "Who is buried in George Washington's grave?"
En masse, why are we so damned dumb!
I dunno, qwark, they would probably get that confused with who's buried in Grant's Tomb. You never know.
I think mikelong, you're right. Pop culture is what really sells. Why do so many presidents appear on shows like Leno. Even coporate CEO's need to be entertained....
It has purposely been done, so as to keep and/or maintain, control. Stripping education resources and/or making them unattainable by the average person is always going to create an illiterate society, which would remain dependent on government power to provide alternative resources.
That doesn't mean they're unintelligent, just uninformed.
"During a recent "street poll," the majority of people asked didn't know who the Vice President of the USA is."
The guy isn't really all that memorable.
You have no idea how watered down education is...and young people are more interested in Paris Hilton's panties or The Situation's abs to have any space for "knowledge" that will enhance a lifetime of living.
My college-educated daughter once asked me where the Kentucky Derby was held.
I responded by asking her when the War of 1812 took place.
hahaha...and? Her answer was?.....a laugh?.. or did she think about that one before answering? :
I hate to say it, but she actually thought about for a few minutes before she realized what she had said. That's what happens when you choose your college based on where they rank on the party circuit rather than academic standings.
I don't think it is just a US problem qwark, the levels of ignorance about history and current affairs in Britain can be pretty appalling as well
Then we are dumbing down as a species!!!
I was going to say the same thing! It is more like the dumbing down of the world!
Americans are ignorant because they largely don't care about the inner workings of their country...
They, rather, would like to emmulate the lives spent by those on the "silver screen".... They follow and vote on American Idol....but pay little to no attention to their history or political processes...
I will say this....for the corporatocracy and their installed political cronies....it pays to have a misinformed/ignorant electorate...
Go Palin Go!
It's all about what's "for profit" instead of "for purpose"...
"who's buried in Grant's Tomb." The famous Groucho Marx, 'You Bet Your Life' consolation question.
....or what color was George Washington's white horse?
We are only as dumb as we wish to be.
One of the biggest problems is the schools focus more on social skills than basic education. A teacher friend of mine is so frustrated by the time she is required to spend teaching political correctness. Not enough time is allocated for teaching fundamentals of learning.
If you were to test politicians on some basic information, I'll guarantee you most of them don't have a clue.
You would think with all the information available on the internet, people would be more educated. Instead they focus on playing video games, chatting and texting. Most of the converstions have little or no intellectual content. Just "whatchadoin, whatsup, or some other airhead nonsense. People do not want to have intellectual discourse as they are afraid they might show their ignorance or upset some lunatic.
I feel I know too many politicians! I would almost call these people smart for not caring about politics, but the sad thing is they will vote their arses off!
There has been a mass dumbing down of Americans since the 70s.
Kids who were born in the late 40s/50s were raised 'scientifically' and because of the fear that the Russians would exceed, were pushed as hard as possible to achieve.
Children graduating Primary School at the age of 12 in 1960/61 had been subject to screening, Bright Class/Second Bright/Average/Average/Sub Average/Dunce so that the lesson need not be slowed down for the bright child. There were special programs for kids to skip grades, special schools...all to keep up with and exceed the Ruskees.
This resulted in an extremely bright young population; by the mid sixties to the mid seventies there were demonstrations and radicalisation because the kids were too bright to be fooled by political crap.
The result was a concerted effort to dumb down the population so that they would be easy to control.
This was done by causing permanent brain damage by poor nutrition in the 0 - 2 year age group, by no longer streaming children, so a kid with a 150 I.Q. is in class with a kid with an 80 I.Q. and if she shows any sign of boredom or disruption she's zapped with some drug, marked as having some kind of mental disorder, etc.
Raised without discipline; the child makes bad judgement calls. Science project or sex in the back seat?
Parents with money, of course, send their kids to real schools to get real education so as to gain the top end employement. Average folks send their kids to warehousing facilities where they are turned off on learning by the bullyism, the ridicule the press for sex and drugs, so that they will be at the lower levels.
It is deliberate.
This is an insightful response, and I'm certain there is a lot of truth in your observation. Children aren't being taught how to think. They're more or less being taught what to think. Parents do kids homework, even at the college level. We have a young workforce emerging that does not know how to think and solve problems.
Any proof of any of that being "deliberate"? A secret memo from some shadowy figure saying "Now ve begin ze prozess of ze dumbing down of ze peoples!" or something? No? Ok then.
"It is deliberate." Would agree. Another problem with public schools is so many kids have english as a second language, problems at home, malnutrition, bad food,
and on. The whole class is captive of these slow learners.
I grew up with little to eat, problems between my parents etc. That gave me motivation to learn more and work harder so I would not be in the same situation. I did not give up or in. Which is not the case most times with children of today.
...sadly true, logic.
I was a "foster" kid.
Never knew "family," yet, with inner strength, gained by being self sufficient, I gained a wonderful education and have lived a very good/happy life.
I raised my son as a single Dad. He is strong, independent and owns a business.
All this is proof to me that one can be what one desires to be even without guidance in early life.
I am a "willful" creature!
So in other words the 'good old days' of segregation and exclusion produced brilliance, and their opposite is part of some vast conspiracy to make everyone stupid?
Hmmm...maybe it's working...
Gettin' some good responses on this thread!
It's restoring my respect for "hubbers." lol :
It would be nice to wake up every individual, so they can see it, recognize "who" is doing it, where it comes from and what kind of tactics are being used, so it can be dealt with.
Students today have many more learning resources available to them but there is less and less parental involvement in their activities. Kids should be read to from a very early age. Time spent with a child, even doing some type of recreation, will stimulate her/him to be curious and involved with their surroundings.
Learning spelling and math isn't always interesting or fun and parental oversight and guidance can help keep them focused. If a teen is allowed to use every free minute for socializing, a McJob or playing video games, the bad effect on learning is predictable.
We should provide job skills training for the kids who won't be going on to higher education and more time needs to be spent on basic math skills. The kids aren't dumber today, but they are less under parental influence.
Good thread Qwark.
Expectations for what kids are capable of learning have gone way down. There is a huge amount of opposition to early learning in the home among educators and child development specialists. The idea seems to be that learning will harm children. This is an extremely dangerous idea because our children are increasingly being taught at a level that is far below their capability.
There is no doubt that the mind of a child is capable of far more than we give it credit for.
How long is it going to take for us to understand that?
There is a common misconception of what learning truly means. It doesn't necessarily involve sitting a 3 year old down and making him write letters which he has no understanding of their purpose. Early literacy encompasses much more than memory and learning to write. The important part of early learning is getting the child to think and not simply to passively sit and listen/do. I just recently wrote a hub about the topic.
Early childhood educators are not against learning at all. It's defining 'learning', and using the best methods for learning to take place. A classroom is going to have different kinds of learners.
My daughter started teaching herself to write at the age of 3. She did understand the purpose of the letters. This is my point. In America, we really do underestimate how much children are capable of learning. We don't teach them things they are capable of understanding because too many adults just assume that they aren't capable of understanding or will be damaged.
Short Story....for someone who criticizes others for posting off-topic, I don't see the correlation between what you quoted and what you wrote...
Please do explain...
Try to put it in one post, as well.. You aren't trying to work your way up the Political Forums ranking list, are you?
I dated a man who was mad that I knew who the Governor of my state was! We were sitting in first class and he was in front of us. The flight attendant stated she knew he was a VIP but didn't know the reason.
Needless to say, that date and I lasted until I unpacked.
I still wish I had said hello and expressed my appreciation to him.
Who was he? The last Governor of Illinois who was not sent to jail - yes, Illinois did have a honest Governor - Jim Edgar.
I still feel guilty for not expressing my gratitude - especially in the light of the ugly politics in recent years.
Jim Edgar - I appreciate your efforts - wish you were still in public office.
When asked to name a country that begins with the letter "U", over 30% of Americans replied: Ugoslavia!!!!
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