Saturday, January 20, 2018

Are humans getting dumber?


Mark Fraser

Dear Readers:

Last week's column (February 10), "Is this called having fun? Where is your dignity?" caused one negative, three positive telephone calls and the e-mail below. But first of all I need to apologise to my readers! An image was missing! Because of technical difficulties (over which nobody seemed to have any control), this image did not appear causing perhaps a little confusion.

I therefore intend to get back that image and I am reprinting right below this, the relevant parts of my column of February 10.

Are Humans getting dumber?

The question above, the picture below, and some quotes in this column are taken from Jedidiah Becker for – Your Universe Online.

Quote: "A professor of pathology and developmental biology at Stanford University's Crabtree Laboratory believes there's cause to suspect that humanity's intellectual prowess may actually be eroding, and at an astonishing rate. In a recent paper titled 'Our Fragile Intellect,' Professor Gerald Crabtree opens his discussion with an odd statement: 'I would be willing to wager that if an average citizen from Athens of 1000 BC were to appear suddenly among us, he or she would be among the brightest and most intellectually alive of our colleagues and companions. We would be surprised by our time-visitor's memory, broad range of ideas and clear-sighted view of important issues. I would also guess that he or she would be among the most emotionally stable of our friends and colleagues.'" End of quote.

Professor Crabtree feels that not only were the Greeks of the 1000 BC era more intelligent, but that all our ancestors wherever they came from, would be more emotionally stable than we are today.

If you look at the seven silhouettes above and number them (from the left), one to seven, we can see that the last one looks very much like the first, the only difference being the marvellous computer to which so many of us have become enslaved. This attachment to all things technical has caused many of us to stop using our brain." (End of quote from my column of February 10).

I stand by every word I wrote in that column, and to the upset gentleman who called saying that one of the pictures used (with faces blanked out), or with only backs of heads showing was his wife… ah well, no one I am sure Sir, knew it was your wife and yes, pictures can be used in the newspapers with blanked faces without permission. You were positively responsive to this information.

I am writing this column on Carnival Monday morning and have no idea how some women are going to "get on" late today or tomorrow, but I am pretty positive that many will not be using the left hemisphere of their brain that houses - amongst other "things"- logic and analysis, but will be fully engrossed with their right hemisphere that is in "charge" (again, amongst other functions) of all our emotions! I therefore am hoping that the behaviour on the streets by women young and not so young was more dignified than 2012.

Hello Marguerite:

I am a young woman in my mid-20s, and I would just like to thank you sincerely for writing your article "Is this called having fun? Where is your dignity?" which appeared in the Woman Express today (Sunday, Feb. 10th). I am often horrified at the behaviour of women at Carnival time; to me, many seem to have little respect for themselves or their bodies. Some of the outfits I have seen women boldly wearing in Carnival fetes belong in the bedroom and nowhere else. And don't get me started on the lewd behaviour!

I know many people will strongly disagree with your statements in your article, because the vulgar antics which occur at Carnival time often tend to be dismissed in the name of "culture". I want to thank you for being brave enough to pen and publish such an article; after weeks of being bombarded with images of half-naked women and ridiculously skimpy Carnival costumes, it really made for a refreshing read!



Dear R:

Thank you for your kind e-mail and I am very happy that you - in your mid-20s- recognize that women who behave in such a vulgar way can easily harm their reputations.

I know if you played, you had great fun without acting that way.

Next week will come a story about the after effects of Carnival 2012.