Social Question

mazingerz88's avatar

What causes human stupidity, idiocy and dumbness?

Asked by mazingerz88 (18465 points ) June 16th, 2011

In case you’re thinking what a dumb question, well, ok. Lol.
Mere inquisitiveness compelled me to inquire as to what other people might think as to the causes of human stupidity.

Obviously, each one has his or her own take on what human behavior constitutes a stupid action but I’m more interested as to your take on what may have facilitated such dumbness. : )

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31 Answers

Zaku's avatar

Dumbness is in the mind of the person thinking the other person is dumb. The judging mind is the origin and cause of the judgement of dumbness.

I don’t think dumbness exists in a pragmatic objective sense. Even though I am often very righteous about the dumbness of others.

marinelife's avatar

Lack of IQ.

ninjacolin's avatar

In a word: Ignorance. Whether intentional or unintentional.
– When you ignore the the position of the edge of a desk, for example, you tend to stub your toe.
– When you ignore the plight of the poor, you end up with more poverty.
– When you ignore the rights of people, you end up with unrest.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

Ignorance is all I can say.

josie's avatar

Lack of ambition to know how to study and think.

jonsblond's avatar

laziness

Symbeline's avatar

I’m too retarded to know that. :D

That’s pretty hard to answer. I mean, you have stuff like IQ, intelligence and learning and application capabilities, but you also have wisdom, common sense and so forth. I know that intelligence and wisdom are not the same, but I’m guessing that both these things are highly related to how your brain functions regarding its development. Comprehension, figuring stuff out, and…I don’t know. How does all of that entail to understanding emotions? I’m going too far, or not far enough. I’m guessing it has to do with the brain though.
Then again, some peeps are awfully smart, but have no wisdom. A dumbass may, in turn, be the greatest philosopher of all. And then there’s Rainman.
Perhaps social environment and influence plays a high role as well. But that leads me to wonder, how do we recognize wisdom and intelligence anyways? Anyways, erm.
Intelligence may also be altered by several psychological disorders. Wisdom too, I guess. Also, things that kill brain cells. Huffing gas, doing certain drugs.
Being closed minded and things like that are an issue, but I think that’s only a byproduct of the cause, rather than the cause itself. If it isn’t a natural thing to begin with, which I kinda think it is. A blank page that sits, and waits, so to speak.

All that based on my belief that the brain is the key. If it isn’t, I don’t know.

sarahtalkpretty's avatar

Being intellectually challenged doesn’t always prevent a person from being productive.I know of a mail clerk with Downs Syndrome; he’s the friendliest guy and his work ethic is outstanding. If you’re not impaired but you choose to keep making bad choices then maybe you have emotional issues to work out. I think that’s usually why we make ‘stupid’ choices; because we have some kind of baggage to deal with.

faye's avatar

I think nature vs nurture here. If you have a lower IQ and are raised by similar IQ’d people who are bigotted, mean, and just plain stupid, why, you’re gonna be dumb acting. Which we call dumb. Idiocy, though, could be an intelligent person making decisions like extreme sports that I find idiotic.

Cruiser's avatar

Distractions. Sometimes people get so invested in their own efforts that they lose sight of the real task at hand and over react…even let their mind get the best of them where they then see and feel things that are outside the realm of whatever it was that may have meant something to them.

Other daily responsibilities then muddy up the situations and turn nothings into somethings and the wheels come off the bus and shit hits the fan and stoopid dumb things take over the parade. Such is life and live and learn.

YARNLADY's avatar

Differences in experience and training.

wundayatta's avatar

The Orange Tree.

Grantor of all boons and banes.

Symbeline's avatar

What is this cursed orange tree you’re always talking about lol?

wundayatta's avatar

Grantor of all boons and banes. Did I not just tell you that?

Also a doorway between the universes and dimensions.

Also an award given to deserving questions.

GladysMensch's avatar

I’m starting to believe it involves reading Atlas Shrugged

dannyc's avatar

Weakness of spirit and genetics.

Pandora's avatar

Sloth (a desire for ease)
or low self esteem
or nature
or nurture
or all of the above

Bellatrix's avatar

Sometimes I think we are at out dumbest when we assume we are superior and/or cleverer than another person. Often in our attempts to look smart and superior, we can come across looking very dumb and small.

It comes down to your definition of dumb. As has been pointed out here, some people who are intellectually challenged may be judged by others to be dumb, and yet they obtain and hold down jobs and manage their day-to-day lives well. Others who have a very high IQ may achieve little in life because they are lazy or lack common sense. What is dumb?

Hibernate's avatar

One doesn’t need a low IQ to play dumb or act like an idiot .. maybe it’s just the way some like to act.

ucme's avatar

Fallibility, we’re a fragile lot when all’s said & done.

mattbrowne's avatar

Bad parenting.

HungryGuy's avatar

Partly education (or lack thereof), partly social conditioning (to be uninterested in learning), and partly genetic (lacking a certain degree of physiological cognitive ability pertaining to reasoning and memory).

HungryGuy's avatar

Stupidity and idiocy? Lack of eduction.

Dumbness? Lack of vocal chords.

Coloma's avatar

Nature/nurture as always.

The way I see it, the world is full of only 3 types of people.
The pretty damn awake types, the semi-sometimes awake types and the full blown sleep walker zombies.
It really doesn’t matter how they became this way. lol

ninjacolin's avatar

@Coloma it does matter because ignorance is always the result of not having learned the right kind of lessons to normalize an individual’s perception of ability and responsibility. Once a person learns what they are lacking only then can the void be supplemented.

atch's avatar

Stupidity is perpetuated by television, media, and solidified by the ideology of individualism. Simply put: Jocks get the girls, and smart people (aka geeks, losers, nerds etc.) get pants’d.

ddavel544's avatar

Most stupidity or dumbness is the result of willful wants. One chooses to watch reruns of TV shows instead of reading a thought provoking book of substance. Therefore, it’s becomes the choices we make. And a lot is caused by environments people live in. A poorer societal environment could lead to massive loss of brain power because of limited leaders within that environ. A good example of that would be the average ‘gang-banger’...only taco-bright. And a great deal is via media control, it is known as ‘dumbing down’ for the purpose of maintaining ‘the hierarchy’ within society. But overall the most quantifiable basis for most all human ignorance is the simple fact that humans utilize only 15% of their entire brain matter. And I just exhausted 10% by merely answering this question. ...Or was it 12?

GabrielsLamb's avatar

Genetics, biology, environment and circumstance… Much like the same things that contribute to mental illness.

*Which before you jump my sh*t… No, I am NOT saying that the mentally ill are stupid, but that is not to say how they are at times deemed stupid, ineffectual and less than, by many more people then will ever admit it.

GracieT's avatar

@atch, I’m a girl. My husband was NEVER a jock. He is a computer engineer. BTW, I’m smart also. Not all girls fall for jocks. Some of us value a man’s intelligence, kindness, and human decency more than his sports prowess.

Araphel's avatar

Pure and utter ignorance. V….V

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