Anti-Intellectualism Is Hitting the American Mainstream

Anti-intellectualism is hostility towards and mistrust of intellect, intellectuals, and intellectual pursuits, usually expressed as the derision of education, philosophy, literature, art, and science, as impractical and contemptible.

Don’t be a sheep. 

How refreshing is it that we have people not blindly accepting everything they’re told, right? Look, we are not debating astrology or marxism; we are debating a basic fact of the universe: the earth is round.

Referring to facts as “alternative,” believing the earth is flat, discrediting basic sources of facts: this is now becoming a part of American culture.

Dismiss any event as a conspiracy theory

“I will not let you down.” That is what the President of the United States told Alex Jones, host of infowars. Alex Jones believes that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are literal Demons. He also believes that the Sandy Hook Massacre was a government conspiracy.

Intellectually, claiming those who have differing opinions than yourself to be demons is similar to the course of action taken by those who accused people they disliked of being witches during the Salem Witch Trials. 

*accusations of witchcraft was not limited to the female gender; John Proctor was the first male to get accused of witchcraft during the Salem Witch Trials*

I get it. If you do not want to trust mainstream media, that is understandable. CNN, The Washington Post, and other news outlets have their obvious bias as do most news organizations.

A Gallup poll conducted Septemeber 14, 2016
But please be aware of independent news sources that spew blatant lies. Otherwise, you end with a President vouching for a man that believes in psyche vampires and interdimensional beings.

It is important to note that there is a difference between intellectual curiosity minded and intellectual honesty.

*Link to interview with Donald trump*


So, what is there to draw from this? Is the media to blame for this rise of anti-intellectualism? Or how about our educational system? This topic is too complex and should be left for future discussion. But ask yourself, how further can we go down this road of rejecting the realities of the world?

 

Or, has this level of ignorance always been around? It is just that we are able to see everyone’s opinion on topics they have no business discussing? 20 years ago, no one really knew the extent of their grandma’s political view. Now, your grandma has facebook and can send you stuff like this:

 


Believing conspiracy theories is not a new phenomenon

Here is an excerpt from a study on the belief of conspiracy theories in America in 1994:

 Belief in the Kennedy conspiracy has always been strong but seems to have increased as the event became more distant. In 1966, 36% of the respondents in a Gallup poll believed that Oswald acted alone. The percent was 11% in both the 1976 and 1983 Gallup polls and 13% in a 1988 CBS poll (Times, 1992). This increase in belief in the conspiracy has taken place despite the fact that the accumulation of evidence has increasingly supported the lone assassin theory (Moore, 1991). *link to study*

Has the belief in conspiracy theories gotten out of hand? David Seaman, a leader in the #pizzagate conspiracy theory, which, to this point, has zero amount of evidence, tweeted this last week:

Where does one go from here?

 

 

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