Tuesday, October 2, 2007

American Idiocy

CNN recently posted a Mental Floss article on Seven presidents nobody remembers and it got me thinking. First, thinking what an awesome site Mental Floss is and second, it got me wondering: How stupid are we? I ask this as an American, talking about Americans. We all laughed and laughed at Miss Teen USA Lauren Caitlin Upton's ridiculous response to why 1/5 of Americans could not locate the United States on a World Map:




I'll admit. It is hilarious. And embarrassing (for everyone, really), but shouldn't the real question be what the hell is this poll? Who are these Americans? 1/5?!?


According to Nationmaster.com the United States Population, as of July 2007, was 301,139,947. So, 1/5 of that is 60,227,989.


Are there really more than 60,000,000 people in this country who can’t find the United States on a map?


This brings me back to the Mental Floss article. Although I think locating the country in which we live on a map is essential, I can admit don’t actually know a lot of things about the United States. Maybe sleeping through AP US history in high school really has affected my mind...and maybe my sense of national pride, too. For instance, I don't know all of the presidents of the United States. Not even close. I barely know who the president of the United States is now--but that's because he rarely makes an appearance here in the District. Reading the Mental Floss article, which included some supposed presidents named Chester Arthur and John Tyler, among other names that rang a very faint bell in my ear (like the guy the giant dam near Vegas was named after and another who reminded me of the catchy chorus repeat “This D.J. be Warren G”), really made me think about how far removed I am from our nation's history, and how poorly I would do on the worst, most addictive television show ever, Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader. Fifth graders wipe the floor with us on US History.

1 comment:

courtney said...

ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5TH GRADER? ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5TH GRADER? ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5TH GRADER?

Thanks for getting that annoying song in my head, yo.