I am from Mexico and moved to America and what I found is that the normal in America is to be stupid. The grand majority are just plain stupid, now I compared it to Mexico (I lived in city and in 'high/educated' people (I put it in ' ' because the reality is that is relative) and the normal was to be stupid too, now don't get me started in the 'poor' areas). So, my question is: Are people stupid in general or culture, nationality, social class, play a bigger role? If so, why are there more stupid than intelligent?

*Note: When I refer to stupid or intelligent I am refering to the kind that Socrates meant, that the wise men were the ones who accepted ignorance and worked on it, the stupid were the ones who didn't care or thought they were intelligent.

** I don't feel intelligent or superior, but I try to be reasonable always.

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Everyone has the faculty of reason. The problem is it's easily overshadowed by emotional thinking and when group-think is in action, it doesn't stand a chance. 

"Think how stupid the average person is and realise half the people are even stupider than that" - George Carlin.

George Carlin is the best when it comes to looking at life and making a joke regarding ignorance and religion in general. One of my favs! Great atheist mind at work.

Elon, I lived in Mexico for a number of years myself, and have a lifelong history of observing people of every culture with which I come in contact, and I don't find people in general to be stupid at all. Mostly, they differ in intelligence, as predicted by the graph known as the bell-shaped curve, but these are variables that can't be changed - inherited qualities. They also differ in degrees of education, but this is often the result of economic opportunity, with the "haves" having more ready access to education than the "have-nots."

Basically, I believe we are a "need-driven" species, and if we don't see an immediate need for physics, for example, in order to put food on our tables, we don't make an effort to learn physics. That means that those are ignorant of the principles, but not necessarily stupid, as they may possess information about their own particular lines of work, with which those with doctorates in physics, are also ignorant.

Also, there's the matter of how much or how little the priority of learning is stressed within the family. Some parents will encourage a child to learn, while others may see no need, and still others may feel threatened by a child that learns so much more than they have, that they feel their authority may be eclipsed by the child's superior knowledge, and actually move to discourage learning beyond a certain level. While in other, low-income families, the parents may insist the child end his education in favor of a paying job that will help the family economically.

A few of us are driven to learn for the sake of learning, with no goal of any return on our investment of time and effort, other than the simple accumulation of knowledge.

I'm not really clear on your definition of stupidity, but it shouldn't be confused with ignorance.

I agree with you, but could you give me an example in where an uneducated 'pragmatic' person has knowledge of something that a physics doctorate is ignorant of?

How to attract hot chicks?

Richard Feynman would disagree.

could hug you for that. Feynman knew how to live.

Mostly, I would say, in terms of wisdom, which is separate from knowledge and doesn't necessarily require an advanced degree to possess. My father wasn't a highly-educated man. Never got a college degree, but more like a few continuing education courses to help him with his job. No liberal arts classes and certainly no highly technical science or engineering courses. 

That said, my dad was one of the wisest people I've ever known. He knew when to get involved in his children's lives and when to butt out and let us make our mistakes without any "I told you so." He was there for us when we wanted advice, but never offered it without solicitation. He would lend money when it might help, but not when it just helped someone persist in wasteful folly.

I know you just lost your dad recently, he sounds like he would have been a good man to emulate.

"All of us are ignorant, just in different subjects"  Mark Twain. Another great atheist mind.

Well maybe, but still it is an ability not intelligence. And attracting hot chicks isn't just for one group.

When was the last time you heard of Chess Club Groupies --?


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