Why are Americans so stupid?

+91 votes
asked Jan 3, 2018 in Culture & Society by astrid (490 points)
edited Jan 11, 2018
As an American, I'm used to hearing people from other countries and cultures saying that we're all pretty stupid. There's a lot of education and advantages in the United States though, so why does everyone think that Americans are stupid?

18 Answers

+4 votes
answered Aug 11, 2019 by Rachelle (930 points)
edited Aug 12, 2019
The higher obesity rate in the United States gives people the idea that Americans are stupid and lazy. No not all Americans are fat, but there’s a larger percentage of obesity in America than almost every other country. Obesity is linked to a lack of physical activity, which is perceived as laziness, and laziness just gives off the impression of stupidity. Basic health and well being seems like a pretty simple concept.
0 votes
answered May 2, 2018 by Trippadan (140 points)
edited Jan 10, 2019
As a British man currently living in America, with my American wife, I can say with a fair bit of certainty that most Americans aren't any more stupid than most of the Europeans I grew up around. Saying that though, just because most of the population seems to be perfectly normal in terms of intelligence, culturally and politically America as a whole seems to prize stupidity, which is propagated through the media, and thus distorts the world's view on American ignorance.
This can noticeably be seen is various areas:
Politics - the two party fallacy that is "democracy" in this country is ridiculously bipolar. On one side you have die hard conservatives, with a terrible reputation for completely ignoring tried and tested scientific fact, claiming that their 300yr old Constitution and 2000yr old Bible are the only important documents that should rule how we lead our lives, whilst on the other you have a side so liberal that no one could possibly agree with the majority of their policies. Add this to the fact that the way your candidates for all sides conducting themselves worse than a group of children at preschool, and you begin to see why the rest of the world raises serious questions about the intelligence of a country that wants any one of these frontrunners to become your leader. I know most americans don't want any of these people, but unfortunately your system is the one that has made these people into your "best" candidates.
Ignorance of the outside world - it's no stereotypical comment to say that America knows next to nothing about countries that are not America. I'm regularly told that, as an Englishman, I'm exactly the same as a Welshman or Scotsman. This is not only highly offensive (and is the exact same thing as someone calling a US citizen a Canadian) but it shows off your ignorance of other countries. That was just a common example that I deal with on a daily basis, but the ignorance spreads into virtually all aspects of all countries, and I'm continually astonished by how little the majority of Americans know about other cultures and countries.
Learn that criticism isn't an insult - this is the main aspect of Americans that give them such a bad name abroad. This notion that "We're #1!" and that everyone's a winner is taught practically from the cradle. This is a damaging attitude that Americans own, and consequently leaves many blind to their flaws. That's not to say that America isn't great in certain areas - they excel at many things. However, no country is perfect, and we can all learn from each other. Instead of going on the attack when someone points out a flaw in what you're doing or saying, assuming that they're just out to discredit you, understand that in most cases they are just offering genuine suggestions on how things could improve. This is how we teach each other.
Foreign policy - nothing offends a country/culture that has been in existence for 1000yrs more than a country that has been around the international stage for 100yrs telling them that they're doing things wrong, especially when the alternative is a system that produces the likes of George W Bush and Donald Trump as the favoured candidates. Let people get on with their own business, and realise that they don't like you telling them what to do anymore than you like them telling you what to do. The days of America being the World's Police Force are long over - America has been too discredited over the years to be able to maintain that stance anymore.
Like I said in my beginning statement - my personal experience is that Americans are no more stupid than people from any other countries. It's purely the image that your politicians and media give to the rest of the world that continues to drive this stereotype, and until that changes, unfortunately Americans will continue to be looked down upon by every single other developed nation in the world
0 votes
answered Jul 7, 2018 by 54markl (140 points)
edited Dec 16, 2018
Because we can't figure out a way to legally get rid of all of the stupid Rural Americans that doesn't involve Killing. As soon as we unload them, the national I.Q. will go up about fifty points to almost 100. And no more Donald Trumps!
0 votes
answered Sep 13, 2018 by gracinggreens (140 points)
edited Feb 4, 2019
Sorry but as a non american its safe to say nobody but americans likes americans.  If you were to personify the world's view of an american it would be as donald trump - fat, full of himself,  arogant, gun-waving, clueless, materialistic,  racist,  sexist, fat, greedy, bigoited, oh and did I mention fat?

There are some great american people who are stand outs because the fight to make their country better (Obama) but for some weird reason americans seem to hate people who try to make them better as if they love to wallow in their murderous, greasy, fat mud pit of a country.   Go ahead america vote trump in as your next president  with him and your homicide rates I wonder how long it will take before you are all extinct.
0 votes
answered Nov 24, 2018 by KrystalRosen (170 points)
edited Jan 11, 2019
Let me tell you why are Americans so stupid. Let’s start from their education. Yes, they do have world-class university, taking up the majority of the world ranking as the top university, with the name such as Harvard known throughout the world. That’s great and all but the report from the Educational Testing Service shows a worrying trend. Young adults between the ages of 20 and 34 in America as way behind the rest of the industrialized nations in terms of literacy, mathematics, and technological proficiency. More Americans are going to college and yet the intellectuals are instead falling rather behind. Their education system is a joke.

Half of America, the supposed epitome of the world, score below the minimum standard in literacy, dead last among 22 developed countries. In a country where Coca-Cola can be marketed as a healthy snack and that Vitamin Water can be named so without having any actual vitamins in it. The standardized test for the middle and high school does not leave any tangible result on the students, only leave them with unnecessary stress (meanwhile in China and Singapore...). It ended not become a test of skills, rather going on it for the sake of it. 500th place in the 3rd International Science and Math test is not something to scoff at.
0 votes
answered Jun 16, 2019 by sajtelo (140 points)
edited Aug 1, 2019
Hi, well I am not going to blast it in your face, and I do not think Americans are stupid; I believe that they are misguided into believing that they are smart. Same goes for much of Europe as well.

I am a mathematician, and what I find so funny is that many modern inventions and discoveries which are credited to Europe and America are stuff which already existed in places like India, Sri Lanka and China, thousands of years ago.

For example, textbooks say calculus was invented by some German guy, but in fact, people in Sri Lanka were using calculus millenia before that. And many believe that the value of 'pi' was discovered by Archimedes, but fail to accept that a Chinese astronomer had already calculated its value centuries before Archimedes was even born.

These are just mathematical examples, but if you put some effort into it, you can find examples from other fields as well, e.g.: - medicine (Ayurveda is very advanced), astronomy (Asian astronomy is one of the most brilliant systems in the world), even the very numbers we use today were invented in India and Sri Lanka.

So there you have it.


0 votes
answered Jun 20, 2019 by fob_asian (160 points)
edited Jul 31, 2019
First of all, if you want to ask a question and try to argue that's not the case, you shouldn't say why ARE they stupid....you should say why do people THINK their stupid. Another thing is just because America has the greatest universities, doesn't mean the people are smart. Think about it. I have lived in America nearly all my life and I have a lot of things to say, but I won't go that far. They say to keep clean and wash your hands which is an obvious thing, BUT when they wash their hands, they put their bags/backpacks on the yucky floor. Another things is because you think Donald Trump is the best. No, that's just wrong. If there were only true Americans in the US, then U.S's population would decrease by at least 30%.


One more thing....there are schools that are starting to be ..... let's use a nice word, mean. They didn't want to give away their special prizes and even though there were many more smarter people, they gave all the awards to white people who didn't even get straight As.


This doesn't mean all Americans are stupid and all Asians are smart. There are incredibly smart americans as well.
0 votes
answered Jul 28, 2019 by anderson6001 (180 points)
edited Aug 4, 2019
America has been a country for two hundred and forty years this July. We've gone through revoulution, civil war, playing a pretty big roll in both world wars,  and numerous wars through the latter half of the twentieth century as well as our current war on terrorism. Despite some mistakes made along the way, we have done pretty good at trying to uphold the freedoms we hold so dear. Only in the last few have we been looked at as stupid. It is justified in cases such as, our general health, choice in presidents, our morality that from any view has major flaws, and the fact our school system is degrading. If you think about it, pretty much every great thing we have done was done by the generation of the early to middle ninteen hundreds. In the end though, the percentage of other countries population that call us stupid is probably about the same percentage as that of Americans who call them stupid. So, don't read too much into it. (Though seriously, the captial of a prominent European city has a terrorist attack, and our president was in Cuba, going to a baseball game. Are they really wrong if we voted for him twice?)
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