Invincible Ignorance

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Hattip to Ed Morrissey at Hot Air.  I hope that this blog as the years roll by will play a small role in battling  the growing ignorance among many American adults regarding the history of this country.  In the meantime, I can only repeat the sage piece of advice from the video clip below:

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  1. This is pretty bad, but think of how abysmal the average American’s knowledge of more recent history is. I mean, independence-era trivia is stuff they drum into you repeatedly, and people still can’t remember it!

  2. I’m somewhat skeptical that previous generations didn’t suffer from a similar lack of knowledge. I think we tend to compare ourselves to the best of previous generations. Had the same questions been asked of a busboy 100 years ago and we may have heard the same answers. On the other hand, the problem in past generations may have been more a lack of educational opportunities. Today, we have different problems. The plethora of entertainment options today may drive some people away from more educational media. Newspaper’s replacement isn’t only TV news or internet news, it’s also Desperate Housewives and Facebook.

  3. Restrainedradical I wish you were right, but I think you are wrong. I’ll use my own family as an example. My brother and I were the first family members to go to college. My paternal grandfather repaired shoes and my paternal grandmother cleaned houses. My parents were both factory workers. My mother read a lot, not so my Dad or his parents. All of them knew the basic history of the country. When I would bring up the subject of American history, they would all participate based upon what they had learned in school (Ironically, my mother, the Newfoundlander, due to her post school reading, knew the most about American history!) Neither of my paternal grandparents went past the Seventh grade. My father was a high school graduate. All of them would have been ashamed at the level of ignorance about American history displayed in the video.

  4. Zach, you have to remember two things about Jawywalking. One, it’s not live. They simply pick the funniest/dumbest answers and show those. The second thing is that it’s filmed in LA. That alone brings down the average IQ about 70 or 80 points. (No disrespect meant to LA, but c’mon, Hollywood).

  5. It is pretty amazing the level of ignorance you can run into talking to people about stuff they haven’t studied at all since school. Back when I lived in LA, I used to help out with telescope demonstrations for the general public, and the sorts of ignorance you’d run into about very basic astronomical topics (number of planets, does the earth go around the sun, etc.) was pretty impressive.

    Actually, the oddest one that I ran into a couple times was people who were convinced that the globe was hollow and that we lived on the inside of it. (The explanation: because if we lived on the outside we’d fall off.)

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