Dec 9, 2006

Stupid is as stupid does?

This could be an infinitely long post, because there is no shortage of stupidity. But I can't help but wonder if the world isn't in fact dumber now than it used to be. This is what I've come across recently in forehead-slapping idiocy (the last three just today).

I read this as a factual practical joke in a family. Now, I always thought that school, no matter how much it currently sucks, managed to teach kids that birds come from eggs. All birds hatch out of eggs. How can an adult not know this?

Innumerable calls to some helpdesk stating the computer won't come on, and the call comes during a local power outage. Or: Customer: "If I unplug my computer, will it shut off?" That baffles me. We in the west have all been raised with electricity. We know that to get something working, it has to be plugged in and switched on. We know that things like lightning or electrical errors can knock out the power or a fuse and therefore electrical things won't work. A computer uses electricity. We know this. Don't we? tells of a customer who was quoted a price of .002 cents per kilobyte and got billed .002 dollars per kilobyte. A 22 minute phone call did nothing but prove that people apparantly forget that a cent is still 1/100 of a dollar, even when you introduce a decimal point.

Via the I also learn of shoppers refusing to leave a shopping mall that was on fire. "Mentor fire Battalion Chief Joe Busher says shoppers wanted to stay and buy even as smoke filled the store. He says firefighters had to block the door so customers didn't come in." This I can somewhat understand, as I have myself tried to enter a smoke-filled stairway during a fire drill at work. I was stopped by the fire guard and at first tried to pass him, then I noticed the smoke. We all act on auto-pilot, I believe, but when something does happen, we should have enough sense to stop ourselves from routine habit and consider our own (or someone else's) safety for the moment. One time the fire alarm went in our local shopping center and nobody made a move to leave - not the shoppers, the employees, or mall security. I did leave.

Finally (for today), is a statement (via Archer) so utterly devoid of the use of brain cells, it's almost worth a Nobel prize in its own right. "Just because you can conceive a child outside a one-woman, one-man marriage doesn't mean it's a good idea," [Carrie Gordon Earll] said. "Love can't replace a mother and a father." (From Yahoo's report on Mary Cheney's baby.) There are a number of arguments used by those against gays having kids, like Earll's above, the worry about not having an opposite sex parent or being bullied, and some others. If you want to make a case against gay parents, the above won't cut it. They don't reflect common sense nor actual experience. Kids of heteros often grow up without a father, for example. Kids of heteros get bullied. Kids of heteros manage to grow up without love. What else are kids of heteros subjected to? Drug and alcohol abuse, parental promiscuity, divorce, instability, poverty, violence, sexual abuse - you name it. Any number of things can happen to a kid, even if that kid's parents are straight. Being straight guarantees nothing, not even a relationship with God. You know this. It is stupid to think otherwise.


Sravana said...

on the computer bit - if I unplug mine, and the battery is charged, it won't turn off...


Keera Ann Fox said...

So you're the one who confused this poor computer user. ;-)

Paula said...

People were always dumb, I think, but the internet wasn't around to disseminate their stupidity to the rest of the world. Now, the second you do something dumb, everyone knows. OTOH, it all slides down into the intermuck and is forgotten the next day. Erm, unless Sylvia digs it back up! ;)

Keera Ann Fox said...

Aye, people were always dumb, but it strikes me that people's dumbness more and more is based on oblivion about their surroundings, not from actually being dropped on their heads as babies. And I'm speaking of situations I've observed, not read, right down to the insistance of entering an elevator while other people are trying to exit it.