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Northern Harrier

Friday, December 16, 2022

Unbelievable!

I saw a statistic the other day that roughly 21% of adults believe that there is an actual Santa Claus

This is a bit sobering, most people figure the whole thing out by the time they are six or seven. Do these adults feverishly wait with their kids for Kringle to come down the chimney on Christmas Eve? Awesome.

But it got me thinking about just how stupid we humans are, one of my favorite topics of conversation and led me back to my favorite quote from Ken Kesey. 

This is a quote I was lucky enough to hear first hand; never forget that in any given situation there will be more stupid people around then smart ones. Helps to repeat that often when you are driving.

And it also led me down the "just how stupid are we?" rabbit hole.

And I came up with this:

Over one in four Americans (26%) thinks the sun orbits the Earth, according to a National Science Foundation study.

In the same survey, just 39 percent answered correctly (true) that "The universe began with a huge explosion" and only 48 percent said "Human beings, as we know them today, developed from earlier species of animals."

Just over half understood that antibiotics are not effective against viruses.

Forget the flat earthers for a moment. 34 percent of Americans reject evolution entirely and believe humans have existed in their present form for thousands or tens of thousands of years, according to a Pew Research Center Religious Landscape Study. Pew said 62 percent of U.S. adults believe humans evolved over time. 

40% believe that man is less than 10,000 years old in present form.

Furthermore, you would be astounded how many people think that humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time.

YouGov’s latest research shows that 41% of Americans think that dinosaurs and humans either ‘definitely’ (14%) or ‘probably’ (27%) once lived on the planet at the same time. 43% think that this is either ‘definitely’ (25%) or ‘probably’ (18%) not true while 16% aren’t sure. In reality the earliest ancestors of humans have only been on the planet for 6 million years, while the last dinosaurs died out 65 million years ago.

20% do not believe that climate change is occurring.

A YouGov survey showed 51 percent of Republicans still think Obama was born in Kenya, compared with just 14 percent of Democrats. Trump supporters were mostly likely to believe the false claim, with 57 percent saying it was “definitely true” or “probably true” that Obama was born in Kenya.

Some people apparently still believe that sex positions can determine a baby's gender. Or that condoms can be washed and re-used. 

And then there's geography.

In the midst of the Iraq war in 2006, six in 10 young adults couldn’t find Iraq on a map of a Middle East. The Roper survey also found that 75 percent of those surveyed could not identify Iran or Israel.They’re not much better at U.S. geography. Only about half could find New York State on a map.

From the National Geographic:

About 11 percent of young citizens of the U.S. couldn't even locate the U.S. on a map. The Pacific Ocean's location was a mystery to 29 percent; Japan, to 58 percent; France, to 65 percent; and the United Kingdom, to 69 percent. ...Particularly humiliating was that all countries were better able to identify the U.S. population than many young U.S. citizens. Within the U.S., almost one-third said that population was between one billion and two billion; the answer is 289 million.

Let that sink in. Over one in ten young Americans could not find the U.S. on a map. You are sharing the road with these people, breathing the same oxygen and interacting with them every day. Be careful.

Over at Psychology Today, they tell us that we should not equate stupidity with anti intellectualism. I still think there is a surfeit of stupid. Plenty to go around.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'm letting it sink in...with a martini. Monkeys. We are monkeys with a thin, thin layer of ability to reason, if we try hard. ~ Diane O

Scrota said...

A student raised his hand and asked why we don't land on the sun. The teacher laughed and said you can't land on the sun. The student answered 'We'll go at night!'

What happened BEFORE the 'huge explosion'? It's turtles all the way down.

Some humans developed...some are still Democrats.

Birds are dinosaurs.

We have climate change everyday...it's called sunrise and sunset (apologies to Chava)

Difference in mean temperature between cities and rural, about 3-5 degrees on average...resulting in no climate change.

Obama's aunt stated she was present at Barry's birth...in Kenya.

When you use a sock...it's washable.

I know Jack Shit.

[Name withheld by request]

idfishnguy said...

With all this said, never ever underestimate to power of large groups of stupid people to do great harm. By the way we're not monkeys, we're just apes with shoes on our feet.

Bruce.desertrat said...

34 percent of Americans reject evolution entirely and believe humans have existed in their present form for thousands or tens of thousands of years,

Technically correct...Homo sapiens sapiens (modern humans) arose between 160,000 to 90,000 years ago. according to current estimates. Fossils of Homo Sapiens (of which we are a sub-species) date back around 315,000 yearsso the species is older than that

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Homo-sapiens-sapiens

Blue Heron said...

You are hairsplitting, Desertrat. If you want to believe that tens of thousands encompasses 169kya, I suppose it is technically correct but a bit of a reach if you ask me. And understand that the question from Pew also said that the 34% rejected evolution entirely, it is not either/or.

Anonymous said...

"34 percent of Americans reject evolution entirely"

your "analysis" only makes any kind of sense, if you ignore the first part of it. kind of like the claim that 2A confers the right to own any kind of weapon and ammunition, on every individual citizen, with no restrictions, only works if you ignore the first part of the amendment, the whole "well regulated militia" part.