Sunday, December 13, 2009

Ivory Towers

Over the last coupla years, I've had a real hate-on for educational institutions. I went to university for a year before I realized I was paying tens of thousands of dollars for something with no real application whatsoever. The professors all (and even in college, too) had a sense of elitism around them. Questions were sneered down at. Dare question what you're being taught, and expect to lose a significant number of marks (again, this has been my personal experience this year). I've always hated dealing with academic institutions, not only for their snobbery and the reasons above, but because they think they're doing you a favour by taking your money to subject you to these people.

In what is now my fourth year of post-secondary education (I have a two-year Law and Security Administration diploma, thank God), I have seen but one professor who inspired me to learn, to apply my critical thinking skills. Dr. Micheal Persinger actually made school...enjoyable. I looked forward to his classes, instead of looking forward with a grim and sardonic attitude like I do now.

With all these experiences, I've had a chip on my shoulder against the whole university community, especially the social sciences- sociology, specifically. They tell us how to live, how to act, with no real experience in the community as a whole, lording over young men and women in high-stress situations. But I listened to the video above, and I thought about it. The real academics- scientists like Sagan- have a childlike wonder about them. They seek knowledge, not dispense it grudgingly. Yeah, see what I did there? I plugged what I'm saying into the video. Anyways, I was sitting there one morning listening to this song, and it struck me: sometimes, segregation of scientists like this from the rest of society is necessary. If Sagan was around today, I honestly think he'd be hitting the bottle, hard, knowing how society is running. He may have been outspoken about about nuclear war, but you know it took a toll on him.

Persinger was a brilliant professor, and here is one of his lectures. He is the best of what modern academic life can produce. And just think- in twenty years, the kids of today will be teaching the kids of tomorrow. That's gonna turn out GREAT.

Dr. Persinger's Psychotropic Drug Lecture


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