I have a T-Shirt that says "Never Underestimate the Power of Stupid People in Large Groups."
In a way, I find stupidity amusing - it's one of the reasons I love my job. Drunk people get really stupid, and it's an endless source of fun for me to watch and be amazed by.
On the other hand, sober stupidity is less fun.
We live in a democracy (kinda - technically, it's a republic; a representative democracy, and even that's somewhat questionable these days). Which means if the masses are stupid, they put stupid people in power. Not that our choices have been all that great the last few years; Gore, Kerry, Bush... I wouldn't really vote for any of these guys for President of the Bingo Club, much less of the United States (is there a President of the Bingo Club? I need to look into that).
In fact, I didn't vote for any of them. I vote Libertarian, which means I will never, ever see anybody I vote for get into office. But at least I vote for what I believe, not "the lesser of two evils," which I think means you need to find another choice.
However, the majority of the United States put Bush into office. And every time I think I can like him less, I find myself to be mistaken. I've seen bumper stickers that say "He's not MY president," but that's bullshit. I'm American, and I'm proud to be so, even when we're doing something really, really stupid. So he's my president. And he's a moron.
Now he's pushing for "Intelligent Design" to be taught in the classrooms. Bad enough that "Abstinence Only" education has made strides; we all know that teenagers only want to have sex if they're well-educated about it. Keep 'em ignorant, and there won't be ANY premarital sex! And we'll win this War On Drugs any day now, too.
But "Intelligent Design" is worse - it's faith masquerading as science. It's completely lacking in objectivity and rational thought. It's taking a foregone conclusion, and altering the facts (and ignoring others) to achieve that conclusion. It's the opposite of science. It's the opposite of logical and critical thinking, and it's exactly what we SHOULDN'T be teaching in schools.
If your faith requires you to lie to yourself and your children, to ignore what truth is, you need to find another faith. The God I believe in said "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free."
I don't need to believe that Noah put 5,000 species of mammal onto a boat to believe that God saves us. I don't need to believe that you have to pluck out your eye and cut off your hand if you need to stop sinning. There are stories in the Bible meant to prove a point. And if you take them and try to force reality around them, you're in for a world of confusion, and ultimately, deception. And I can't handle a religion that seeks truth through deceiving yourself. That's not the God I believe in.
For more info on the whole Bush and "Intelligent Design" topic, visit
It's much like Astrology. Everybody down here believes in and swears by Astrology. I've already offended one friend by saying in my blog I don't believe in it. It's hard not to email Phil Plait's complete debunking of it to everybody I've met since moving here
( http://www.badastronomy.com/bad/misc/astrology.html )
It's hard not to challenge them to come up with one credible shred of evidence for it, or to give them a complete description of one of my siblings, down to every personality trait, and tell them to come up with his or her sign. It should be obvious, right?
But critical thinking is not taught anywhere. I don't know whether that's new, or it's always been this bad. I'm not old enough to know. I know it seems as bad with the people in their 50s as it does with the people in their 20s. Everybody seems to go for the easy answer. His/her/my flaws are all based on my Astrological Sign. I can't help it.
Bullshit. My flaws are mine. Not my sign's. Not my parents'. Not my upbringing's.
Your faults are yours. You have no excuses, and neither do I.
Unless you're drunk. In which case, hey, I understand. It's how I make my living, and how I get most of my fun.
But if you're sober; I challenge you to do what I've been struggling all my life to do (and often failing) - think about it. Whatever it is. Don't go with the easy answer. Really, really, really think about it.
I'm going to go think about lunch now.