ALITERACY THE COUSIN OF ILLITERACY
Theodore De Dumas
As a society we have moved to the point where most people are fairly literate, they can read basic information (around a 3rd grade level). On the other hand, there exists a new phenomena in which sociologists created whole separate term for. This term is called aliteracy.
Aliteracy is simply "the lack of the reading habit in capable readers". People that are aliterate are not illiterate per se, but choose not to read for whatever reason (which we will get into). This phenomena has been called by some "the invisible epidemic".
People are now able to read, but don't read. Aliteracy is especially causing attention amongst college adminestration. They are finding that less and less students are reading the textbooks and course material. They come to class after skimming through the texts, really not spending time to understand what is in the book. This is scary to some people because these same college students are hired into professional areas and given salaries to do jobs that could potontially affect the state the economy and quality of services in companies. It is said that 90 million Americans over the age of 16 lack reading and writing skills needed for employment! That is a lot of people!
A study was through the Nelson-Denny standardized reading test, in order to find why college students don't read. They found that many of these college students chose not to read because they felt they didn't need to read to "get by". They were only interested in putting in the least amount of reading, and at the same time expected an "A" in the class. These students in the survey also claimed that their reading habits were learned from there parents, who also were not very interested in reading, or who did not wholly value the reading of books. These students did not correlate reading with advancement of knowledge.
I can understand student being disatisfied with the college material, especially with the implementation of curriculum that centers around memorization, rather then true learning of skills and pragmatic knowledge. A book entitled "Readicide" explains that the students lack of reading is directly correlated with the school system, which introduces boring subject matter. Most students believe that all books are like this, and choose not to read. Parents can't blame the school system though, its is their job and responsibility to educate their children.
Its ironic that there would be a push to teach people how to read, yet those same people choose not to read. Its similar to knowing how to cook fresh meals but always eating fast food. In the words of Mark Twain, "The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them".
This quote is very true! Not knowing how to read is similar to not reading. Both do not read! One just may have learned to read, and can read things like newspapers or magazine. Even places like Borders or Barnes & Nobles caters to the aliterate, offering them very casual reading. Its almost impossible to do real research inside of Borders. You can read some intriguing things, but no real knowledge is to be gained through casual reading. As Mark Twain stated, its about good books, not just any material.
The myriad of statistics on reading levels is the most revealing about the decrease in reading in America. One third of high school graduates never read a book for the rest of their lives. 80% of American families did not buy a book last year, and the ones that did mostly were over the age of 65. The National Adult Literacy Survery found that 71% of college graduates are unable to read proficiently. 90 million Americans possess only rudimentary literacy skills. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and development said that 50% of the work force in the United States is not literate enough to work in a modern economy. The American Booksellers Association stated, "Unfortunately, reading may therefore someday be engaged in by a small minority of people who are regarded as eccentrics by their fellow citizens." The U.S. Secretary of Education says "The vast majority of Americans do not know they do not have the skills to earn a living in our increasingly technological society." We could literally go on and on!
These statistics only show the magnitude of the issue in America. The sad part is, those stastics count things like magazines and newspapers as reading, so the numbers may be slightly skewed.
Imagine a labor class of Americans who cannot function within the new economy. What kind of jobs are available to them? Imagine companies facing shrinking markets because they sell products or services that require a user's ability to excercise cognitive skills. Well, you don't have to imagine it, this is the reality of America. Most people can barely read the labels on medical prescriptions. They have no idea how to be healthy, because they don't read about the human body nor health sciences (i.e. diet). Medical agencies are able to impart insalubrious information to patients, because they have no idea about their body or health in general. This creates iatrogenics, or medical induced death. Numerous aliterate people rely on media outlets for most of the information they digest. It is almost too elementary to swindle Americans. There is no coincidence that workers are being taken advantage of at increasing rate by financial advisors like Bernie Madoff, they have no financial literacy skills to understand what is occuring. Corporations are adding hidden fees to bill statements, knowing consumers don't read them. The populace is paying for services they have never used. Employers are mistreating employees because employees do not know they actually have rights in the workplace. Ignorant people are guillable. Guillable people will take any command, no matter how demoralizing. Guillable people have no authority and are subject to those in the know. Truly a case of cause and effect, tyrants cannot be blamed!
Aliteracy is one of the main causes for the abuse of Americans by the government. A people who are unaware because the lack of reading are prime for abuse. The founding fathers of America who were freemasons trained under Moorish Sultans in Morocco and certain mystery schools in the American continent, made sure that information was public, and that the people wouldn't be taken advantage of because of their ignorance. They wanted to make sure what happened in the Dark Ages, when the church filtered information to illiterates, didn't happen again. Thomas Jefferson stated, "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be".
Thus meaning the government is almost expected to become tyrants amongst the ignorant. Ignorance results from the lack of knowledge, illiterates and aliterates alike! Most people have never read the Constitution or Bill of Rights, nonetheless Supreme Court Rulings and Peace Officer codes. This ignorance allows governmental agencies (which in actuality are only fronts for sovereigns and bankers) to do as they please. And rightfully so! This boosts the ignorant into learning, stagnation is cured with fire to the rear. High taxes, unconstitutional statues, etc, are the direct result of ignorance and the lower level learning of Americans. The responsibility is on the citizens.
To continue, the data proves that most Americans are illiterate, and almost all are aliterate. There really is no contrariness between the two. Both do not read, its just one can't, and one can. Aliterates have the potential to read, but probably will not. History proves as the populace becomes less knowledgable, the tyranny increases.
Some report that a shortage in time is the reason they don't read and study. Yet they have time to have favorite sports teams, track stats, visit the mall frequently, attend clubs and parties, participate in social media website like facebook and twitter for hours, watch television, and excersise. It has been proven by psychologists that the valued things in life will always have place in an individual's schedule, always! People must not value knowledge and understanding! People must really value being ignorant, and must feel comfortable being controlled, as long as they can watch that new reality show (that is the same story over and over again with new faces). Until people began to read, the legislatures will continue to think of them as ignoramuses who are not capable of thinking for themselves. Corporations will pick up the slack and continue to think for the populace, thus, the population will get continue to get what they deserve.
Is there a cure to aliteracy? Yes! Read! Also learn how to read, there is a distinction between reading and reading comphrehension. A book called "How to read a book" was written for this purpose. Remember that a large amount of those who can read, lack comprehension skills.
Do you know the origin of the way we read? The modern education system uses a method called "Look-Say" wherein a student is taught to associate a picture with a word instead of learning root words, etymology, phonetics, meaning of the word, etc. The Look-say method was contrived from Thomas Hopkins Galluadet, who creatred a methodry for Deaf Mutes. This form of reading was developed for deaf mutes who have no concept of a spoken language (because they are deaf) and cannot hear or are unaware of phonetic sounds for different letters. Now why would the United Stated adopt a method of reading specifically designed for deaf mutes and use this as the means to teach the youth? I won't answer that question, just know that we are not learning efficient ways to read. Students of psychology are now finding out that there are far more efficient ways to read and retain information. Unfortunately, these methods are not being taught. Luckily subjects like speed reading are being studied. It is now known that the conscious mind is a terrible learner, and that complusory education should be aimed at controlling the deeper aspects of the mind- the subconscious, which can record and retain more vast amounts of information. The science of yoga nidra has been shown to help children learn to play instruments, learn new language, and other great feasts, by simply entering a relaxed state of consciousness. There is a lot more to it, but I will leave it at that!
Its amazing people pay for public services but don't use them. The library has tons of books that are all free. There are also legal libraries in the cities where people can learn personal rights as a human being in the United States. Even Amazon.com and other providers have books at low prices. Where there is a will, there is a way. If you want to learn, you will find a way to get the books you need. That's all it takes! It will be interesting to see where this massive amount of aliteracy takes us as a nation! Dark Ages possibly? We will see!
Thanks for reading!
Theodore De Dumas
"We live in deeds, not years. In thoughts not breaths, in feelings, not in figures on a dial."
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