Friday, March 16, 2007

What I Hate Part II

See, what I hate, what I really hate, for those of you out there who care, I hate ignorance.

If you're going to stay home and watch TV, then fine, believe what you want. Be ignorant. That is your right as an American and this here is a free country, yap yap yap.

On the other hand, if you are going to arm yourselves up and start laying about with laws, or social policy, or whatever, you know, if you are going to start involving yourself in this world and begin trying to shape how other folk should live our lives -- well, that is when your right to live in ignorance of actual fact and reality stops.

This comes to mind due to that previous post down there, those Quiverfull people, but I am surrounded by it -- this morning, for instance, another appearance of that statistic, the "half of all marriages end in divorce" nonsense. The same student also claimed that divorce rates were rising and had been for years. When I asked for a citation to support this, he gaped at me.

Then in class last week, when I asked my students, who were claiming that we needed to crack down on kids today, because of how "out of control" kids today were, and how crime rates and pregnancy rates were "soaring," if they had evidence to support that, I got the same stare.

You'll be interested and not surprised to know, of course, that divorce rates are nowhere near 50% of all marriages, that they never were that high, not even in the evil sixties, that they have been been dropping since 1980 (when they were at the all-time high of about 41%), and are at about 31% now and holding steady.

Also? Feminism is not a cause of divorce. College-educated women are less likely to be divorced. (Can I just add d'uh?)

Faith is not a substitute for knowledge.

What I've heard, what I'm told, what I believe, common sense, everybody knows, that just makes sense -- none of this is a substitute for finding out what is actually so. Thinking it is leads to error. When you create the world in your (wrong) image, that's an error. It's hubris. It's hamartia. The Greeks knew what that led to, and we'll find out.

1 comment:

Diane said...

Funny you should mention it. Just tonight, we we were talking about how difficult it is to talk for more than three seconds with family members who say "Oh, that's just politics" when they are presented with hard, cold, well-researched, proven facts. Surely there is no sin greater than willful ignorance. I do everything I can to avoid people who are willfully ignorant, but I am at my wit's end with a few whom I have not been able to avoid.

And I bet you've come across this one, too:

"Blah, blah (right-wing lies or distortions)"

"Actually, that isn't true" (followed by presentation of facts)

"Well, I don't know about that..."