Two hundred years ago, 10 year old children were reading Plato and Aristotle in school and walking home with thick books under their arms that contained dense prose. Now they walk home barely able to look up from the latest images on their phones. A century ago this was an example of the final exam to pass 8th grade. How many of us would do well on that test today? How many of us would even pass? There are many and varying reasons why most of us wouldn’t; but some more glaring than others in my estimation. Despite the grade inflation that has occurred over the past decades, SAT scores are declining. For all of its vast increase in knowledge, humanity seems to be getting dumber.
Global IQ is dropping. In typical liberal fashion, school curriculum’s have been dumbed-down over time in order to help the less intelligent achieve passing grades, while not pushing the brighter students to achieve loftier heights of learning. The results are a generation who literally know next to nothing of the world around them. It’s shocking when talking to millennials how little they know. Until we raise the bar and make students aim higher and work harder, rather than lowering the bar so every kid gets a passing grade and a trophy, we will produce more morons whose only source of learning is Netflix, Facebook, and pop culture icons who might themselves be, functionally illiterate.
Modern adolescents (and many adults) do not have intellectual pursuits. They pursue pleasure over knowledge. They fill their minds with the equivalent of cognitive cotton candy and their brains are malnourished. They binge-watch shows rather than read a book in quiet. They listen to the derivative and uninventive music of hip hop which is the music of the low IQ; the music of degenerate and illiterate imbeciles. Or they gravitate towards EDM and the drug-addled stupor required to listen to a DJ play a computer. They hang off every word of social media stars who are themselves, air-brushed idiots. There is no yearning for the beautiful, the meaningful, or the virtuous. There is no pursuit of deeper learning or understanding.
This trend, as I see it, is irreversible. Mass addiction to the trite and banal cannot be undone in an environment of declining IQ’s because there is no drive or desire for meaning or something better. People are lazy and will continue to pursue passive entertainment to fill their dreary and unmotivated lives. Until people throw aside their vapid pursuits and truly want to better themselves, we will see a slow, incremental decline towards the primitive, even though our technological growth makes it seem as if we are ever-advancing.
As humanity’s collective intelligence continues to decline, so will our prosperity. A generation of morons will lead us into a new dark age of sorts where the acquisition of knowledge is replaced by progressive indoctrination. We need a rebirth of higher pursuits and a putting off of the cheap and easy entertainment fodder that is all around us. We must choose against what we most naturally want in order to stave off further decline. We will be, as a people, a reflection of what we ingest.