Dominating conservative television are studiously dumb chicks, S. E. Cupp (“Another Mouth in the Republican Fellatio Machine”) and Dana Perino (“the Heidi Klum of the commentariat”) come to mind, or just mediocre minds like that of Andrea Tarantula.
At the same time, someone of Fred Reed’s caliber—superlatively intelligent, wise, and pukka American—languishes in epistolary exile. This should tell you everything you need to know about America’s intellectual welfare.
Here is Reed on “Gun Control and the Changing American Characters” (emphasis is mine):
…Government came like a dust storm of fine choking powder, making its way into everything. You could no longer build a shed without a half-dozen permits and inspections. You couldn’t swim without a lifeguard, couldn’t use your canoe without Coast-Guard approved flotation devices and a card saying that you had taken an approved course in how to canoe. Cops proliferated with speed traps. The government began spying on email, requiring licenses and permits for everything, and deciding what could and could not be taught to one’s children, who one had to associate with, and what one could think about what or, more usually, whom.
With this came feminization. The schools began to value feelings over learning anything. Dodge ball and freeze tag became violence and heartless competition, giving way to cooperative group activities led by a caring adult. The female preference for security over freedom set in like a hard frost. We became afraid of second-hand smoke and swimming pools with a deep end. As women got in touch with their inner totalitarian, we began to outlaw large soft drinks and any word or expression that might offend anyone.
Thus much of the country morphed into helpless flowers, narcissistic, easily frightened, profoundly ignorant video-game twiddlers and Facebook Argonauts. As every known poll shows, even what purport to be college graduates do not know who fought in World War One, or that there was a Mexican-American war, or where Indochina is.