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There is a difference between stupidity and ignorance which seems to slip right past white people. Ignorance is when you don’t know something. That is true of most things to most people most of the time. Ignorance is easily excused because there so very many things which can be known but which we simply don’t have the time to know. For example, there are currently a lot of languages spoken but there isn’t the slightest reason to learn more than a few of them and there are vast numbers of peoples names, place names, botanical names, chemical names even knot names but we as individuals have little reason to pay any attention to more than a few of them.

Stupidity is different. It is  a higher order of ignorance because it implies that someone knows something to be one way and then with preconsidered thoughtfulness behaves as if exactly the opposite were true. Stupidity requires a person to cooperate in doing something which to an objective outside observer appears to be counter productive to the doers own well being. This proclivity of people has been know for two thousand years and was stated, “because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, and neither do they understand”. It’s like they don’t want to understand, they want to temp the fates, they want to see if they can get away with being stupid. Animals don’t have this ability to perceive a problem and then intentionally do the thing which will make their problem worse and even put them in deadly peril. People reserve to themselves that ability.

All people but especially white people, it seems, do some things which are dangerous but which have very little practical value and very little reward even if they are successful. Skateboarding, Motocross, Race car driving, surf boarding, mountain climbing, sky diving, base jumping and bungee jumping etc. are all dangerous and with no practical reward. A few people go the safer route and ride roller coasters and other amusement park thrills. But, why do people even do these silly things? The slopes of Mt. Everest are said to be covered with dead people who when they approached the mountain were among the most privileged people to ever have lived—young, strong, healthy, rich and usually white.

Guys used to do similar things to impress girls but that was when there was a direct competition with some other suitor and they wanted to prove to the girls that they were better. But, that doesn’t seem to be the reason for this modern behavior. When I watch the TV shows of guys doing death defying motocross jumps, downhill ski events or base jumping they are often interviewed right before they go do their event and right after they finish and it seems they are far more interested in their personal accomplishment and the competitors response to their efforts than to the crowds. They do pay some attention to the judges score but their response to the judges seems to be rather abstract and is generally accepted with little more than a shrug.

I don’t mean to be particularly racist in these observations but it seems to me that all of these dangerous sports are participated in almost exclusively by white people. Perhaps after a while other ethnic groups will join in, I just don’t know when or why. I don’t see any Black, Asian, or Hispanic skate boarders on Berkeley streets even though there are quite a few of each of these groups around. They just don’t seem interested in the above listed activities. Why? Perhaps it is all self selective but I suspect that they just are not that stupid.

To get back to my point, why are white people so stupid, and my answer is, I don’t know. Perhaps, you do.