The Dumbing Down of America

Just when I started thinking we had hope for our next generations.

How lacking has our culture become that we can not read something and understand or comprehend?

How insulting is it to have our government support making a freaking comic book to explain why something they made is good?

Whether you support the Health Care Reform Act or not, in this instance is moot. The sheer audacity behind this particular publication is absolutely amazing. Essentially by this publication, the author is saying “Your too stupid to understand this. Here’s a comic book.”

Have we really fallen so low?

The scariest part is, someone will read it, and think it gospel.

3 Responses to “The Dumbing Down of America”

  • Johnny:

    Much ado about nothing honestly. This isn’t the first time the government has tried to explain something potentially complicated via simplified language and the use of comical (no pun intended) graphics. From just a very quick search, look at this page from a brochure about Social Security from 1961. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:BrochureUSSocialSecurity1961Pages2and3FormOAAN7006.jpg

    Also, if I was a comic guy, I’d be insulted. :) Graphic novels and whatnot have come a long way and many are very adult/mature in nature (no, not like THAT.) Assuming that just because something is done in comic style is dumbed down or kiddie would be assuming that just because it’s a cartoon it’s for children.

    The fact is is that people are much more prone to actually read and absorb information if you mix up the media. If the government sent out 50 page brochures with nothing but text, how many people would actually read them? Breaking down complicated topics and presenting them as “snippets” and in a graphical fashion isn’t really new or necessarily bad.

  • Maybe I’ve been spending too long with Academia. It bothers me that this is the best way we can come up with to “sell” the program, you know?

    Personally I love comic books, I have a great deal of them, and several graphic novels (mostly Green Lantern, and Batman I confess :) )

    That said I still do not like the idea of using a comic book to discuss something as complex and far reaching as the Health Care Reform Act. It strikes me as gross oversimplification.

    Again however, I confess I may be biased, both because of my view of HCR and because of the amount of time I’m spending writing APA papers lately :P

  • Johnny:

    You have to consider your audience. I wouldn’t expect a chemistry textbook to be in graphic novel format but you can’t seriously expect your average person is going to read a long, boring document with most of the nitty gritty of a health care bill.

    I’m pretty mixed (though leaning against) on national health care, but I think this is the wrong thing to pick on. Presenting information in an easy-to-understand and digest format for the audience you are targeting is good.

    And seriously, you DO have to dumb it down. Look at recent studies; many Americans ARE stupid. 1 in 5 still thinks that the sun revolves around the Earth for crying out loud. :(

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