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Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Don't Know Much About History...

Everyone gets down on Americans for being ignorant about history and such but Kid Various suspects that nobody else in the world has a particulary firm grip on important world events either. Certainly not the Brits, if a new study commissioned by BBC 2 is to be believed. Check out the following question:

Q3 Which of the following fought men in the English fleet against the Spanish Armada?
a) Horatio Hornblower; b) Christopher Columbus; c) Francis Drake; d) Gandalf; e) Don't know

5% of British 16 to 24 year olds answered the Grey Wizard protected the English against the armada sent to conquer the islands by the Spanish King Sauron.

Kid Various knew the answer to this one and he's not even British! In fact, he knew the answer to all the questions in the survey, but that's because he's a genius.

The Kid has never been particularly disturbed by lack of historical knowledge by Americans or otherwise. Ideally, people would have a good knowledge base of historical events because it is helpful in putting present day events into context. But it is not the end all and be all of political thought.

Kid Various has much more trust in the general pragmatic common sense of the average American and faith in the system that aggregates such disparate views and opinions, shakes them up and then sifts out the outlandish junk (which the Euros aren't nearly as good at doing, nee - what was that whole communism thing about?)

But, to everyone out there, it wouldn't kill you to pick up a book either.

However, as long as you know that one and one is two,

And you know that if they say they love you too,

Then you know what a wonderful world this can be.

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