Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Ten commandments in modern societies -9

"You can't stop everybody from being a jerk."

Knowledge has no boundary.  Neither does stupidity.

It is normal to feels ignorant once in a while.  But some people are jerks most of the time for the critical subjects in the societies, and there is simply no medicine for them.

This defeatism sounds harsh but is well rooted in reality and science.  See an earlier post "Ten commandments in modern societies -5: Keep in mind that everybody is a mutant".  If there are genetic defects for us all in physical health, there are bound to have defects in mental health, e.g., learning, appreciating, comparing, and judging.  The topic is not about autism etc, but about things we don't typically perceive yet know it immediately when a person opens his mouth.

There is absolutely no shortage of examples.  Like Todd Akin's 'legitimate rape' story in Sept 2012. Even though Akin tried to "clarify" the comment, he actually does believe in it, by his political history, and there is a significant populace embracing his ideas if not his exact words.  He is in Congress and remains in a close race for a MO senator.   

And here is another good one, the Paul Broun's evolution "lies straight from pit of hell" comment.  Broun's words could have been brushed aside except for the fact that he sits on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, and he is popular within his GA district.

A lot of the world's problems are because there are too many of these kinds and they are too many in power, on TV, radio, and the internet.  We'd like to think that modern societies are meritocracies, like in the US, but then how can one explain that the public figures we see and hear most of the time are usually the repeatedly proven, fake prophets, certified hypocrites, straight-faced liars, intellectually challenged, or war criminals.  An excuse is that even stupid people deserve a voice or freedom of expression.  Fine, until you realize that few truth-tellers are ever out there opposing those jerks.  They don't come straight to you from Sunday morning talkshows: you have to find them by googling.  

Solution?  Not much for the jerks, including regular guys you may bump into as well as public figures.  They have had plenty of time and opportunities to study instead of just "believe", learning from their mistakes instead of repeating.  But for others, verifiable facts and science are the best and only weapons.  It will be a long fight, as long as humans exist.

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