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Young people and intelligence


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Oh, dear, I hope you peeps don't think I'm trying to take over the joint but I'm impressed with comments from younger people. Are they smarter than WE are/were? Or is it just the kind of peeps GA attracts to its forums? Keeping in mind what Isaac Newton said:

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Well OF COURSE we're smarter, I mean, REALLY!!

 

*cough* Actually, I think its just a difference of times. The younger generation has more resources, and was taught from a young age how to use it properly.

 

And maybe we're better at expressing ourselves?? I'm not sure.

 

I wish I could say that the fantastic people on this site represented society as a whole, but we don't...

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Young people being more intelligent - for the most part could be left to really think about. What makes younger people seem smarter in the first place? Is it because your expectations were set too low and the younger generations have exceeded them? Or is it because they've had better teachers, more resources, and higher levels of education being learned as the world advances? As for a young person's intelligence compared to the older generations - younger people are more stubborn when it comes to what an older generation tells them. I mean, I've always been skeptical of Mom's "hard lessons learned" lectures until one smacks me in the face. Then I hear her voice screaming, "Krista, I told you so."

 

There are two types of intelligence really, "educational" and "common sense" (maturity). Educationally young people are probably exceeding your expectations only because the younger generations are still living in their educational parts of their lives. Where they're still being taught in some school. The common sense is where you're probably being surprised. Maybe GA's younger generations that you've witnessed have had some difficult lessons to learn and some circumstances to adapt to. What you're seeing is the maturity from having to make a difficult decision or accept something larger than what they were at the time.

 

Now, don't think it doesn't happen both ways. When I talk and listen to someone much older than me I can appreciate their intelligence as well. Neither generation is better than the other.

 

So then, 1-10, I would give Knowledge a 7 over past experiences. Only because Knowledge can keep you from learning a hard lesson. So I think it is slightly more important.

 

Krista

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I actually disagree with anyone who says this current generation is smarter than the rpevious generation. Seriously, have you been in a high school today? Have you actually TALKED and made FRIENDS wiht the kids of today?

 

The kids today (for the most part) are dumb, if not the DUMBEST generation this world has ever seen. Seriously......ask your son or daughter (if your not in school) if the kids around them are smart. HELL NO the kids today arent as smart as previous generations. I mean yes, granted, there are always a few kids who have the genius IQ and go on to work for the government, or are bred into popularity (rich popularity) and are force fed all the bullshit they need to get into the Skull and Crossbones club.

 

Grades dont reflect intelligence. They dont. SO, dont bother looking at grades to see if the kids are smart, look at the test scores. Not the ACT or the SAT scores, but look at their history finals, or math test on chapter 9. None of the kids pay attention in classrooms. Now ask them how to use an iPod, thats a different story.

 

One of the reasons people say kids are smart, is because of the use of technology. But seriously, its all about the teaching. Most parents today cant use a computer as well as their kid, why? Because kids now a days are GROWING UP with technology. Did i know how to use an iPod when it first came out? HELL NO, i spent an hour figuring the damn thing out. Does my mom know how to use an iPod? No. Does that make me smarter than her? GOD no, i spent time to learn it. Did she? No. Technology was LEARNED by the kids of today through the schools and daily fun. My 10 year old neighbhor knows how to use a computer better than my dad. Why? Cus my dad doesnt NEED to use the computer 24/7. DO kids today NEED to use them? Not really. But they DO use them 24/7 (or just about). Older folks in today's world doesnt use (or keep up) with today's technology because they dont need to. Does your grandmother need to know how to use a computer? No. Do you? I can almost guaruntee you NEED to know how to use one (for bills, school work, job aplications....). Well, maybe you dont NEED to, but its the convenience of the future.

 

Drugs? No. I dont believe drugs cause stupidity in this world, at least not the stupidity of the kids in your schools today. Yea, they use them, who didnt/doesnt? The previous generation was the 60's, 70's, and 80's. ANYONE who grew up during that time (the previous generation) used drugs or was influenced by drugs. SO, i dont believe drugs has a matter in this argument.

 

Anyway, im rambling over nothing. But seriously, i wouldnt consider the population of today's youth to be "smarter" than any of the previous generations. If anything, they're about the same "smartness" as any other generation.

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As for a young person's intelligence compared to the older generations - younger people are more stubborn when it comes to what an older generation tells them.

Welcome to the club :) It was the same in my generation and I'm sure it was the same in my parent's generation. There is a natural tendency to think the lessons of the previous generation don't apply to the current one. Sometimes that's true, but sometimes it isn't. The trick is knowing which is which...

 

There are two types of intelligence really, "educational" and "common sense" (maturity). Educationally young people are probably exceeding your expectations only because the younger generations are still living in their educational parts of their lives. Where they're still being taught in some school. The common sense is where you're probably being surprised. Maybe GA's younger generations that you've witnessed have had some difficult lessons to learn and some circumstances to adapt to. What you're seeing is the maturity from having to make a difficult decision or accept something larger than what they were at the time.

:worship: Very well said!

 

One of the reasons people say kids are smart, is because of the use of technology. But seriously, its all about the teaching. Most parents today cant use a computer as well as their kid, why? Because kids now a days are GROWING UP with technology. Did i know how to use an iPod when it first came out? HELL NO, i spent an hour figuring the damn thing out. Does my mom know how to use an iPod? No. Does that make me smarter than her? GOD no, i spent time to learn it. Did she? No. Technology was LEARNED by the kids of today through the schools and daily fun. My 10 year old neighbhor knows how to use a computer better than my dad. Why? Cus my dad doesnt NEED to use the computer 24/7. DO kids today NEED to use them? Not really. But they DO use them 24/7 (or just about). Older folks in today's world doesnt use (or keep up) with today's technology because they dont need to. Does your grandmother need to know how to use a computer? No. Do you? I can almost guaruntee you NEED to know how to use one (for bills, school work, job aplications....). Well, maybe you dont NEED to, but its the convenience of the future.

You've raised a very good point. I know my way around a computer and the internet, but I'm an IT professional. Having said that, I know that there are people who know a lot more than me because I'm naturally conservative -- I don't learn something unless I'm really interested or have to learn it for work. There are websites out there that could probably make my life easier, but I'm not motivated to find them because I'm happy muddling my way through things, and I don't have a peer group to teach me.

 

Skills don't equate to intelligence.

 

Anyway, im rambling over nothing. But seriously, i wouldnt consider the population of today's youth to be "smarter" than any of the previous generations. If anything, they're about the same "smartness" as any other generation.
*cough* Actually, I think its just a difference of times. The younger generation has more resources, and was taught from a young age how to use it properly.

While the "young people" above have, to my mind, adequately responded, I'll add one more thing.

 

The members of GA (and other similar sites) are not a representative group of today's society. They are a subset that:

 

1. Have relatively free access to computers. This is not true for everyone. I have two nephews who have only very limited access at home (dial-up access only, which means they can only use it if no one wants to make a phone call). I wouldn't be surprised if there are students in Australia who they don't have ANY internet access at home.

 

2. Have searched for and found this site for some reason. Few members would have been referred here by their local peers -- most would find it by themselves, or from referral from similar sites or from online referrals. This indicates a desire or interest that lifts them from an apathy about other things (you try starting a discussion about the merits of the different breeds of horses for use in dressage, and see what sort of intelligent response you get :P ). The topics put forward are ones that people on this site are interested in, and hence have a comment to make.

 

I have encountered some exceptional people on the internet. Some of them I would consider to be in or near the "genius" category. I think that the number I have encountered is more a consequence of the filtering effect on how I encountered them in the first place -- the "dumber" ones are not interested in the internet or in being interested in a site like GA.

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I actually always made the assumption that my generation was not quite as smart as previous generations. Then I realized that I was just surrounded by the wrong group of kids. There are smart people out there, and they are just as capable as their elder counterparts. I think it all balances out. While it may be said that there are more resources available, that could be a hindrance as much as a commodity. It places more reliance on certain things that previous generations didn't take for granted (graphing calculator, anyone?).

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Today's generation is most decidedly not more intelligent that previous generations. I've encountered this apparent phenomenon on other forums and I believe that only the more intelligent youth take the time to participate in discussion forums such as this one.

 

I am finished my first degree, and even now most of the people around me are morons. I dislike people my own age (although as I age, this diminishes) because I find the vast majority of them to be uneducated, disinterested people who look for the easy way out of solutions. I could go on for ages about the state of today's youth (myself excluded, of course :P )

 

Also, arrogance and slipping educational standards make people appear smarter than they are. An 'A' now just means you show up to class and have a reasonable capacity for thought.

 

Now I'm all worked up...grrr!

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I have some thoughts on this matter, all just my opinion of course.

 

First off, I would speculate that the GA population in general is smarter than your average random sampling of people. We're a literary community after all. It requires at least some degree of proficiency, creativity, and focus to be able to read and enjoy the stories, then come and discuss them here in the forums. Many of our members are also writers, or at least interested in writing in some way, this also likely bodes well for their intelligence.

 

That said, the "younger generation" that is here, is not only naturally likely to be part of the "smarter than the general population" sample, but also is probably a highly competent, insightful group of people from among their age brackett, since they've already spent considerable time and thought dealing with their sexuality, coming to terms with it, and then actively seeking to engage in the society/culture in a positive way. That all speaks positively about them both in terms of life experiences and natural predilections.

 

So basically, what I'd conclude based on those two theories is that if you're observing GA youth and concluding that they're smarter than the previous generation, what you're most likely dealing with is a sampling error.

 

As far as young people in general seeming more intelligent I've got some theories on that as well. First off "young people" are still in high school/college and thus are still learning, or have been learning quite recently. If they can produce some kind of scientific/historic/literary knowledge that makes you pause and say to yourself: "WOW! I didn't know that, or I'm certainly surprised that someone so young did." IMO, it's most likely do to the fact that they're currently learning about said topic, or recently have. Knowledge is forgotten over time. I used to know lots of things when I was in school that I don't remember anymore. The other day I heard a child that couldn't have been more than 7 or 8 telling his dad what the difference between a centaur and a minotaur is. Now I undoubtedly used to know that, and I probably still should, but I simply don't deal with centaur/minotaur related mythology in my day to day life and I'd completely forgotten. Sure it's easy to say "What a smart kid!", but if you get right down to it, let's wait 20 years and ask the same young man again what the difference between a centaur and a minotaur is and see if he remembers.

 

Secondly, and this pretty much identically mirrors Ian's comments, the "younger generation" simply has different knowledge than the previous generation. It's easiest to learn something, and the knowledge/skill is most enduring, if you learn it when you're young. Thus computers, ipods, video games, etc. are all 2nd nature to kids, but confound adults because 1) they likely haven't taken the time to learn and 2) even if they have it simply will be harder for them to learn it as thoroughly. Undoubtedly there was just as many things that each generation learned in their youth that their parents didn't, or didn't learn as well. It's like reading, the first generation that was mostly literate seemed wildly intelligent to their parents, but it was simply because they had the time, and opportunity to learn at the right age. So each generation has different knowledge, and it often falls such that the youngest generation's knowledge is the most current.

 

Finally, "knowledge" is simply one component of intelligence. Another huge factor is wisdom, skill, and general life experience, and those things are only gained through time and...experience.

 

So that's my thoughts on it anyway, but yes, I definitely think the GA youth are very bright :)

 

Take care all and have an awesome day!

Kevin

 

Edited to add: I crossed posted with Graeme, Raz, and Menzo, and obviously we share many of the same view points :P

Edited by AFriendlyFace
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Finally, "knowledge" is simply one component of intelligence. Another huge factor is wisdom, skill, and general life experience, and those things are only gained through time and...experience.

 

Kevin

 

Neither wisdom nor knowledge has anything to do with intelligence. A poor child in india might have the potential to be the next Einstein. The fact that he is not wise (because of his age) and has no knowledge (because he hasn't had access to education) doesn't diminish his intelligence. As a matter of fact, one of the most brilliant mathematicians of the 20th centry (Srinivasa Ramanujan) was not well educated and had little formal training.

 

Wisdom is arguably more important than intelligence, but the two are not the same. Wisdom, as you said, is accquired while intelligence is inherent.

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My 2 cents: kids today are no smarter or dumber than previous generations.

 

This generation has some rather unique advantages and disadvantages. On the positive side, computers and the internet contribute BUT we all know that there is no better media for wasting time [other than television]. Good nutrition is available and it is useful from a developmental standpoint but many kids/families don't eat well because of economics and/or ignorance. Medical knowlege is also a big positive for this generation- if they can afford health care which is by no means a given. As easy as it is to bad mouth education today, if you apply yourself a decent education can be had with some effort.

 

 

On the negative side of the ledger, this generation has some very serious problems. Television is worthless and worse, it is getting young people out of the habit of reading. With a near 60% divorce rate, that translates into over half of kids coming from single parent homes. Youth culture is at a low ebb: hip-hop/gansta rap are spreading wothless values. Gone are the idealistic values fostered by the artists of the sixties and seventies. They have been replaced by a constant barrage of filth that encourages young people to get strapped, get rich selling drugs, slapping hoes around and popping any fool in the head with your 9 that disrespects you. Higher education is problematic and is getting prohibitively expensive even to middle class families. Drugs have become a pervasive part of society and by attempting to control them with increasingly punative laws, a great many of todays young people, as many as 1 in 10 by some projections, can look forward to spending at least some time in jail. There has been a steady erosion of civil liberties over the last 20 years which means that this may be the first generation to grow up not knowing anything different than the current police state.

 

At this point, I am drifting dangerously towards politics so I will simply leave my analysis as is and see if it lands anywhere close to the mark.

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Neither wisdom nor knowledge has anything to do with intelligence.

Of course they do. Even if intelligence is not contingent upon wisdom and knowledge, wisdom and knowledge are most certainly contingent upon intelligence (try teaching someone who's dumb as a brick anything). In any case I do most definitely agree with your assertion that intelligence itself reflects a seperate, innate capacity/ability. However, to my understanding, that was most certainly not the "intelligence" being discussed above. It seems to me that thus far this discussion has focused more on "wisdom" and/or "knowledge" and/or "skill". I readily admit that these may not be "intelligence" in the strictest sense, but since they were being used as a handy substitute for the term I was/am happy to go along with it. Obviously "intelligence" is neither increasing nor decreasing unless something like more radiation is causing stupider children (birth defects) or better nutrition is causing smater ones (or some other random, unlikely possibility). Rates of pure "intelligence" in the strictest sense almost certainly remain stable over time.

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You raise a valid point. I most certainly didn't mean to imply that wisdom and knowledge have nothing to do with intelligence. I meant only to state that knowledge and wisdom do not equate to intelligence (I expressed myself poorly, I admit.)

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I just got back from the senior awards ceremony at my high school. We had 167 seniors who graduated with honors and/or received scholarships who were feted tonight. Me, too, I'm graduating with honors. That's over 1/3 of the senior class. Our school district is rated #2 in California based on criteria including number of students completing Advanced Placement courses and their AP scores, number of students taking the SAT and their SAT scores, percent graduating, percent who drop out, STAR test scores, and others.

 

I came home and read this thread. Then I went downstairs and talked to my mom and dad about this topic to get their opinion. They said we can't compare kids today with when they were in school. Things are too different, and school districts and schools vary wildly in whether they and their students are successful. I'm lucky that I've gone to a great high school, that I've had great teachers, that I've had access to a wide variety of courses including Advanced Placement and specialized classes, that most of the kids in my high school have the attitude that education is important, and that my folks made sure I learned to pay attention to my studies.

 

My conclusion is that none of this means that I'm more, or less, intelligent than my parents or my grandparents.

 

Colin :boy:

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It's unlikely that people are innately smarter of dumber than they have been for 10,000 years or more.

 

Actually there are some differences.

 

In pre-industrial revolution societies, diets were limited to what could be grown in the general area. Foodstuffs, with the exception of some luxury foods, were rarely shipped because it was difficult to transport any distance and get it there unspoiled. Technological advances in transportation and refrigeration made it possible to distribute foods like we know them today. Once a fruit or vegetable that was out of season was impossible to get. Now we just ship it in from California or South America where everything is in season.

 

In rich agricultural areas, this wasn't much of a problem. For the most part however, places like Europe and Russian Asia that had rough winters, this caused some serious dietary deficiencies. As a result, children raised on this diet had developmental problems that led to a generalized lowering of IQs.

 

In many ways this accounted for the difference in peasants and the growth of the middle class and the sociological changes that occured with the industrial revolution.

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I actually disagree with anyone who says this current generation is smarter than the rpevious generation. Seriously, have you been in a high school today? Have you actually TALKED and made FRIENDS wiht the kids of today?

 

Most of the kids who I meet on a day to day basis (shoppers at Kohl's) are one brain cell away from mental retardation. On the other side of the coin, I have noticed that the kids of GA are highly intelligible and wise. I'll get into wisdom later... for now, let's examine the variables in the two examples I mentioned already. For starters, most of the shoppers at my store (inclusive to young people) are not of the highest caliber in terms of intelligence in today's society. I've seen people get excited over being approved for a charge card and immediately going to spend the $1000 that it lends to them, just because they view it as an extension of their bank account. Additionally, I've seen and heard of people who get themselves and their loved ones into financial trouble in this way. Most of the shoppers that I see day-to-day (again, inclusive of those under 30 years of age) are ditzy, dull, empty, void of conscience, dumb as a box of rocks, you name it -- mostly high-school girls equipped with the iPod, little convertible, and credit cards that daddy gave them. They are, to me, the lowest of the low in academia. If we were to include anyone who is not considered young, then my conclusions remain unfazed. One woman even looked at me while I was standing beside the register, waiting for customers who were ready to check out, and asked me if I worked there. The only reason I did not beat her senseless with the scanner was because she was outside the strike-radius of the scanner. If she was foolish enough to step ten feet closer, then she would have been fair game.

 

Now then, let us turn our attention to the youngsters of GayAuthors.org. It is quite clear that most, if not all of us are quite intelligent. However, I believe we are no less intelligent than our over-the-hill crowd (said with love!). I have read comments from the younger crowd that are of the same quality as the comments from our more seasoned members of society (tryin' not to call ya'll old farts, so bear with me :P ). I believe there is a very real reason for this, which will be brought to light at the end of this post.

 

I have come to the conclusion that these two far-ends of the spectrum are entirely the product of exposure, experience, and state-of-mind. The wonderful customers of Kohl's and like retailers are void of intelligence and are fascinated by shiny things. The members of GA are entirely open-minded in their beliefs and have plenty of experience which they lend to our less-experienced members in selfless attempts to give advice to common everyday problems (everyday for the gay community, anyway). GA is chock full of intelligent people because the vast majority of us are here because we want to be here, and because our life experiences and desires brought us here.

 

The members of GA (and other similar sites) are not a representative group of today's society. They are a subset that:

 

1. Have relatively free access to computers. This is not true for everyone. I have two nephews who have only very limited access at home (dial-up access only, which means they can only use it if no one wants to make a phone call). I wouldn't be surprised if there are students in Australia who they don't have ANY internet access at home.

 

2. Have searched for and found this site for some reason. Few members would have been referred here by their local peers -- most would find it by themselves, or from referral from similar sites or from online referrals. This indicates a desire or interest that lifts them from an apathy about other things (you try starting a discussion about the merits of the different breeds of horses for use in dressage, and see what sort of intelligent response you get :P ). The topics put forward are ones that people on this site are interested in, and hence have a comment to make.

 

I have encountered some exceptional people on the internet. Some of them I would consider to be in or near the "genius" category. I think that the number I have encountered is more a consequence of the filtering effect on how I encountered them in the first place -- the "dumber" ones are not interested in the internet or in being interested in a site like GA.

 

Additionally, see above conclusions.

 

On the negative side of the ledger, this generation has some very serious problems. Television is worthless and worse, it is getting young people out of the habit of reading. With a near 60% divorce rate, that translates into over half of kids coming from single parent homes. Youth culture is at a low ebb: hip-hop/gansta rap are spreading wothless values. Gone are the idealistic values fostered by the artists of the sixties and seventies. They have been replaced by a constant barrage of filth that encourages young people to get strapped, get rich selling drugs, slapping hoes around and popping any fool in the head with your 9 that disrespects you. Higher education is problematic and is getting prohibitively expensive even to middle class families. Drugs have become a pervasive part of society and by attempting to control them with increasingly punative laws, a great many of todays young people, as many as 1 in 10 by some projections, can look forward to spending at least some time in jail. There has been a steady erosion of civil liberties over the last 20 years which means that this may be the first generation to grow up not knowing anything different than the current police state.

 

At this point, I am drifting dangerously towards politics so I will simply leave my analysis as is and see if it lands anywhere close to the mark.

 

While I agree with your comments here 100%, it should also be noted that your parents could just as easily say the same of your generation. Your grand-parents could say the same of theirs, and so on up the family tree.

 

 

Of course they do. Even if intelligence is not contingent upon wisdom and knowledge, wisdom and knowledge are most certainly contingent upon intelligence (try teaching someone who's dumb as a brick anything). In any case I do most definitely agree with your assertion that intelligence itself reflects a seperate, innate capacity/ability. However, to my understanding, that was most certainly not the "intelligence" being discussed above. It seems to me that thus far this discussion has focused more on "wisdom" and/or "knowledge" and/or "skill". I readily admit that these may not be "intelligence" in the strictest sense, but since they were being used as a handy substitute for the term I was/am happy to go along with it. Obviously "intelligence" is neither increasing nor decreasing unless something like more radiation is causing stupider children (birth defects) or better nutrition is causing smater ones (or some other random, unlikely possibility). Rates of pure "intelligence" in the strictest sense almost certainly remain stable over time.

 

Personally I do feel that while intelligence and wisdom are in some ways connected, they are by no means dependent on one another. The old term "wizened old fool" comes to mind. Personally, I feel that this situation can be broken down into simple variables of "book smart" and "street smart". Everyone has certain levels of both, such that someone can have all of the knowledge that time has to offer, and they could never survive alone in the real world. Likewise, someone can have no education whatsoever and be dumb as a Paris Hilton, but also can know the ins and outs of everyday life and be best suited for natural selection (the film The Day After Tomorrow shows this, as academics were really going to be quite useless in the world following the destruction global storms). As my example I will introduce to you three friends of mine. They all share an apartment together (will be living across the hall from us next year, in fact). One is a business major, and the other two are science geeks. All these have excellent GPA's, yet not a single one of them knows what to do in the event the toilet overflows. Guess what happened when the toilet actually did overflow? Yeah, the boys got some frantic phone calls and some excellent footage (I made sure to grab my digital camera for that one LOL).

 

To break it all down into simple terms, the geeks (intelligence) did not know what to do when something very ordinary happened. While picking up a plunger doesn't necessarily suggest vast wisdom, experience does. We had the experience to know what the big rubber thing with a stick in it does and how to use it, and IMHO, experience begets wisdom.

 

BTW, my description of a plunger was in no way intended to be a sexual remark... I would say to get your minds out of the gutter, but I suppose I should be the point-man in that expedition LOL.

 

-----------------------------------------------

 

Now then, for my own personal observations with respect to generational intelligence. This is all tied in with my previous comments on the open-mindedness of the fine members of GA.

 

Look at a time line of American society, beginning with the year 1692 and running all the way to 2007. In 1692, the Salem witch hunts occurred and some innocent people were burned/hung or in some way humiliated and/or destroyed because they were accused of practicing witchcraft. Not long after these abominable trials, witch hunts and such trials were outlawed, suggesting a great shift in the minds of American society. Fast forward to 1776, several generations later we see yet another shift in society as the American people grow rebellious and overthrow British rule in colonial America. Fast forward again almost a century to 1864. Several generations later we see yet another monumental shift in society as the Civil War ensues and slavery comes to an end in America. Move now to a period between the roaring '20s, the depression, the war, and the '50s. Women gain prominence in society such that we have women's suffrage, the right to vote, and a hearty workforce. Moving another generation to the 1960's and '70s we see the human rights campaign gaining thunder as colored people get the right to vote and laws are passed to secure places for minorities and women in schools and the workforce. Now, let us return to present day, in the present generation, where gay rights have become a very real issue for nearly all of American society.

 

Gathering this historical data, and noting that each event is marked with a new generation, it is easy to see that the largest difference between generations is the level open-mindedness and the desire to set forth the ideals that our founding fathers had wanted when crashing upon Plymouth Rock. These ideals are freedom from religious persecution and (probably later, near the drafting of the constitution) the idea that every man was created equal. Each generation has driven to further these ideals in their own unique way.

 

It is from these conclusions that I have come to believe that the only generational differences that we can ever see lie within the achievements of each generation. Short answer to the original question: No, we youngsters are NOT smarter than our fore bearers. We simply have differences in achievement, coupled with their experience/wisdom passed unto us. The one notation is that, as has been pointed out, the youngsters of GA are of a higher educational and experience level than our peers, and therefore only maintain an appearance of intelligence that might have mistaken produced this thread as a result of meetings with our lesser-educated counterparts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I'll stfu now. I'm not even making sense to myself anymore :wacko:

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One thing I think everyone is neglecting is that the older people on this site are quite inteligent too. I agrea that this site atracts a group of people who are interested in learning, reading, and writing. So generaly, we probably have more people who are actualy engaged in some kind of thinking here. People who don't want to think are much happier at the shoping mall or infront of the TV. (By the way, there are still a few informative chanels left on the air like the Discovey network.)

 

I have my doubts about the younger generation. I was still at school a few years ago and even there I found plenty of morrons arround me. My mother works with some people in their early twenties. Most of them need a calculator to figure out what 10% of $100 is. They lack both education and common sense. Worst of all, many of them refuse to think. They seem to regard computers and calculators as substitutes for their brains. Once they are cured of this delusion they start thinking on thier own.

 

Another point about education and inteligence has to do with memory. If a young child can recite all the names of the American presidents in order every one is impressed. Sometimes the child even gets on TV. While I find this sort of performance entertaining, it is not as intelectualy demanding as it seems. It requires memmory and nothing more. I think creativity and problem solving skills are more impressive. Many kids get through school almost entierly on their memmory these days. They memorize dates of historical events, scientific laws, capitals of countries, etc. and everything is fine ...at least until they get to math class.

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Most of the kids who I meet on a day to day basis (shoppers at Kohl's) are one brain cell away from mental retardation. I'll stfu now. I'm not even making sense to myself anymore :wacko:

 

Whoa! When you run for president, lemme know.

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Actually there are some differences.

 

 

Not to split hairs too finely, but I purposely used the word "innately" to speak of persons' potential without regard to environmental and cultural factors such as malnutrition and the difficulty that cave men had in finding a telephone to use to call for car insurance rate quotations.

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Not to split hairs too finely, but I purposely used the word "innately" to speak of persons' potential without regard to environmental and cultural factors such as malnutrition and the difficulty that cave men had in finding a telephone to use to call for car insurance rate quotations.

 

LOL- ok I'll grant you that point.

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I have my doubts about the younger generation. I was still at school a few years ago and even there I found plenty of morrons arround me. My mother works with some people in their early twenties. Most of them need a calculator to figure out what 10% of $100 is. They lack both education and common sense. Worst of all, many of them refuse to think. They seem to regard computers and calculators as substitutes for their brains. Once they are cured of this delusion they start thinking on thier own.

 

Another point about education and inteligence has to do with memory. If a young child can recite all the names of the American presidents in order every one is impressed. Sometimes the child even gets on TV. While I find this sort of performance entertaining, it is not as intelectualy demanding as it seems. It requires memmory and nothing more. I think creativity and problem solving skills are more impressive. Many kids get through school almost entierly on their memmory these days. They memorize dates of historical events, scientific laws, capitals of countries, etc. and everything is fine ...at least until they get to math class.

When I was in university, I learnt a very important fact -- people are different.

*pauses to wait for the snickers at my naivety to die down*

 

I was doing first year computer programming, which I found easy. I had the sort of mind that was able to think in the logical manner required to implement algorithms.

 

It was when I was helping one of my classmates that I learnt this lesson. He was intelligent, but his mind didn't work that way. He couldn't think in the sequential, logical sequence required for computer programming. His mind would jump ahead and skip steps. That didn't make him stupid -- just not suited for computer programming.

 

I have two sons, ages six and eight. Both of them are reading at the same level, but the way they read is very different. One boy has memorised lots of words and reads confidently. The other one works out words phonetically and will often repeat that analysis on the same word several times in the same story. They think differently. The first boy is going to do well academically because he has the skills required for school, but it his brother who leads their play because he has the stronger and more active imagination. He's not stupid -- he just doesn't think in the optimal way required to find school easy.

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It's true that there are different types of intelligence, but it is also true that 'different learning' styles can only explain so much. At some point we must recognize it in ourselves and in others when someone is not 'smart.' Not being smart doesn't make someone stupid which is an important distinction to make. Graeme, you are right when you say that thinking differently doesn't make one son stupid, but the converse is also true: it doesn't make him smart.

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