We live in a world where articles promoting critical thinking fail to use proper grammar.
However, if you do not have a knowledge base from which to consider a situation, it is hard think critically about it.
Apart from the appalling self-referential glitch, some of the numbers stunned me.
Take for example the facts that polls show over half of American adults don’t know which country dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, or that 30 percent don’t know what the Holocaust was.
I am not concerned about individuals not knowing names, dates, places, capitals. I am concerned about lack of understanding the difference between Republican and Democratic principles ... if there are any. Or don't recognize role pollution plays in climate change, or understand why putting aquifers at risk is a public health issue. Why do people not understand the unintended effects of fracking? Many don't know the long term effects of paying money for money, or how to budget to include saving and investments for education and retirement. With advertising offering all kinds of STUFF, people often fall for the latest gimmick. Many people look only at profit and ignore the health of living things and the planet. Weapons of mass distraction pull people away from information they need to make informed choices. The hardest one of all for me to swallow is the myth that USA is the "greatest". Oh dear! Since when?
Thanks to Loren Miller for leading me to this series.
We were able to be all these things and do all these things because we were informed.
-- Will McAvoy, News anchor, Atlantis Cable News [the HBO series, The Newsroom]
Also, back in the day, apparently we WANTED to be informed ... but then too, back in the day, we didn't have a thousand different distractions emanating from everything from the TV to our telephone. Being competent, being intelligent and taking a degree of pride in those qualities may have been more important, rather than having the latest widget and an opinion on what Oprah said last night.
Priorities have shifted among some people, in some cases shifted radically, and being informed and educated about the current day seems to have slipped down the ladder, whether it regards political principles or those who espouse them. Personally, I think both are important, but that's another matter.
We need to recognize that we're distracted and get our heads, individually and collectively, back in the game.
... back in the day, apparently we WANTED to be informed ... Priorities have shifted among some people, in some cases shifted radically ... we're distracted ...
I find this true even for myself. Despite wanting to keep up to date on climate change and political/financial realities, I spend an inordinate time with TV fiction and LOLcats. The scarier reality gets the more I feel a psychological need for temporary escape.
A lot of people believe that the daily newsprogram keeps them informed, and on the way to work they read the free tabloids. But what is in the news?
When there's an item on a conference, the news hardly tells what the conference is about, but focusses on showy items. On politics: showy items. A lot of attention is given to football players, wellknown criminals and their stupid blond girlfriends, etc. etc. Science is considered to be too difficult, but there's a weather forecast.
I can't prove it, but it feels like a well thought out program to keep us stupid and to distract us from the things we should know.
I don't often take the trouble to watch the news... try to educate myself by reading books and the internet.
Your kids have what it takes, curious, informed, and hopefully they will be a good source of leadership for their generation.
@Loren Miller, I made a playlist of Newsroom, however, it was clips. I have not been able to find whole shows. I very mucy like what I have seen. Do you have any idea how I can get HBO's whole shows?
Newsroom Playlist by Joan Denoo