It does seem as if ignorance has become a valid point of view in the America of the 21st century. I don't mean the ignorance of the uneducated or unintelligent. I mean regular everyday Americans...bright people, many of them. Graduates of at least high school and more often, products of some type of higher learning. People who operate, or at least work for, successful businesses.
These are people who are ignorant by choice, people who will go to tortured lengths to cling to their ignorance in spite of all evidence to the contrary.
You say that the vast majority of scientists believe in climate change? Over 90 percent? Well, don't you know, they are all paid off by the opposition. Who is the opposition, you ask? Who would pay what would have to be billions upon billions of dollars to get scientists across the world to lie? And what would these people receive in return for their enormous investment? Who benefits from saying that climate change exists when it doesn't? No climate change denier has yet been able to tell me.
We do know who benefits if climate change is ignored. The current energy giants who have a vested interest in keeping our focus on fossil fuels rather than alternate energy sources. Aren't they the ones who are more likely to be lying?
And what does it say about our faith in humanity if we prefer to believe that most scientists are motivated by greed rather than a thirst for knowledge...this, although we know that scientists through the centuries have been excommunicated, tortured and killed for insisting on truth their leaders didn't want to hear.
To the deliberately ignorant, statistics and even empirical proof is so much nonsense. We embarked on an economic experiment under Ronald Reagan 40 years ago - trickle-down economics. It posited that if we simply gave our wealth to the rich, jobs and prosperity would trickle down to the rest of us. The working class would actually be better off without unions because the overflow from the elites would automatically raise our boats too. Why pay union dues when we could have better wages and benefits for free?
Trickle-down economics stated that we could give away our income by means of lower taxes but our national income wouldn't go down, it would go up! Two minus two no longer equals zero, we were told, it actually equals nine! Wow....cool, huh?
Except it wasn't true and has never been true. Four decades of experience and evidence later, we know for sure it isn't true although we are still bound by those bogus claims because we have one political party and the people who vote for them who want so badly to believe.
We have lately had a plethora of our political representatives say, "I am not a scientist". Normally, you'd think, "well, great, they're finally going to recommend that we put our faith in those who are," but nope, what they mean is, they are not scientists but we should trust them on issues dealing with history and science and women's reproductive systems rather than actual scientists and doctors and historians.
Sadly, much of the misinformation disseminated by the non-scientist true believers is rooted in religion. The earth is 6,000 years old. Men and dinosaurs walked the planet together. Women rarely get pregnant from rape. I.U.D's cause abortion. Our Founding Fathers intended America to be a Christian nation. Slavery wasn't really all that bad for black people. Somehow, all this is what they get from their Bible. That poor book has been used to promote every kind of theory under the sun....often theories that completely contradict one another.
The election of our first African-American presidents seems to have exacerbated the amount of voluntary ignorance in the country today because, of course, ignorance and conspiracy and paranoia usually walk hand in hand.
When people post some of the things they do on Facebook - that Obama isn't an American, that he isn't a Christian (and if he is, he is the most virulent Bill Ayres kind of Christian - take your pick), that there are student i.d.'s floating around the internet that prove he was a foreign student if he even attended college here at all (which we don't know for sure because he's had his records sealed!), that he has packed his administration with followers of Islam, that's he's gone around the world apologizing for America, that he either refuses to wear an American flag pin or he wears it upside down as a gesture of contempt, that he doesn't salute the flag....Geez, I could go on forever....I ask them where they are getting their information and it is invariably websites like Barack Obama's Dead Fly or Red State or Wing-Nuts 'r' Us (as well as Fox News, of course), all of which they believe are more legitimate than the Christian Science Monitor or CNN or the New York Times.
I ask them if they have a clue how many hundreds and thousands of people would have to be in on such a conspiracy in order for it to happen.
I ask them when they think all their fears are going to come to fruition - the FEMA camps and the Death Squads and the confiscation of their guns - I mean, its been six years and Obama only has a couple left to bring his nefarious plot to destroy America to completion.
"Don't you know," they say, "he's going to suspend the 22nd Amendment and run again." And they don't quite say it but I know they're implying that stupid, brainwashed sheeple like me will fall for it. (Google it, if you don't believe me).
I ask them if they will be willing to admit they are wrong if Obama leaves when he is supposed to and none of their phobic worries have come to pass? They brush me off. Even without Obama, the agenda has been set in motion and will continue unless vigilant Americans like them can wrest it to a stop.
Because facts aren't really facts anymore, they are simply opinions that back up whatever you choose to believe.