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Something's Wrong When Our Smartest People..., April 21st, 1996 :: Ben Turner's Soapbox

 

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archived soapbox: April 21st, 1996
"Something's Wrong When Our Smartest People..." [permalink]
    keywords: intelligence, schools, college, clubs, academics, smart people, salary, affiliation, politics
    soapbox #: 29
    written: April 21st, 1996
    words: 452

"Something's Wrong When Our Smartest People...", an Essay

Once again I refer back to my high school, Plano East High School. This week, I want to make it known that things need to be changed in order for clubs and organizations to work successfully.

First of all, our valedictorian this year is not in National Honor Society, a traditionally prestigious club to be a member of. I share his feelings, as I think NHS is a joke and never accomplishes very much. Meetings are infrequent and most people join just to be able to type it on their college applications (also, they get a silly ribbon at graduation). The valedictorian for next year does not participate in the new IB program, a rigorous program designed for accelerated students. If I remember correctly, he was quoted as saying IB was a waste of time and wasn't worth the effort. He maintained that the program was too challenging for almost all students, requiring people to do extra work and satisfy even higher graduation requirements (Austin raised the req's AGAIN this year). It would be better off just taking AP courses, he said. I can't help but agreeing.

No longer do the smartest people in each generation wish to participate in clubs and organizations. They realize that they're better off staying out, for fear of being attacked, wasting time, or losing ground. The smartest people stay out of politics, understanding that they would only lower themselves to the competitors' levels by getting involved. Smart people know how to manage their time, and they know that joining a club doesn't make one powerful.

Rules and regulations must be changed so that clubs become prestigious again, offering a reward to members in the way of reputation or non-materialistic ideas. For instance, being Poet Laureate of Britain meant that a poet could write what he wanted, when he wanted, and have it published for the entire country. I believe most of these Poet Laureates took the position because it would spread their ideas, not so much because they'd gain fame. The same must be applied to modern organizations. Allow people to express their ideas and they will become active members.

Until this happens, intelligent people will stay out of the public's omnipresent eye and simply donate money to institutions of their choice. We could benefit from these people, as they could be politicians and lead our country to more logical choices. Or they could become teachers (who should be paid a HELL of a lot more for teaching the *future of our country*) and spread their knowledge. Too bad they know better than to become active members in the areas we need help in the most...



 
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