Ron White likes to say you can’t fix stupid, and that’s funny, but it’s also pretty deep. It means that no matter how much education people get, if they’re stupid to begin with, they’ll still be stupid when they’re educated. Ignorance can be corrected, but stupidity is forever.There is a big difference between being educated and being smart. Some people are both, some are neither, but there is an inordinate number of people who are one or the other. And if I had to pick, being smart beats being educated any day.For example, a good many of our state and federal representatives are educated idiots. There are some smart people mixed in there, but they often seem to be outnumbered by the ding dongs. If the smart people in congress outnumbered the knotheads the Endangered Species Act would have been thrown out before it was ever passed, and we wouldn’t have a lot of the problems we have now.No one wants to see entire specie become extinct, but sometimes they do. I figure there is usually a reason when that happens, and if the problem is easy, inexpensive, and convenient to fix, then we should fix it and go on. But if the solution is expensive, difficult, or creates other problems for people, we should stand back and say, “Oh, well, we can probably do just fine without those spotted owls.” Or golden beaked nesters. Or whatever.The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, which is, no doubt, staffed by plenty of educated people, apparently doesn’t see it that way. With rivers and lakes drying up in Texas, they’re thinking about relocating some threatened species from the San Marcos River and Comal Springs, as they’ve done in dry times before. Some threatened salamanders, fish, and beetles may be moved to the San Marcos Fish Hatchery, to keep them from disappearing altogether.The funny thing is that the San Marcos Fish Hatchery already has stocks of these very same bugs, fish, and lizards, which they take care of all the time, just in case the rivers dry up. Yes. And that already costs money.Now, if you’re a smart person you might ask why the USFWS is considering spending more money to move fish to keep them from dying, if they already moved a bunch of those fish to keep them from dying. Obviously you are not educated to the level of a higher echelon employee of the USFWS. So you can just put a cork in it.But the USFWS is not the only place we find educated idiots. No. California keeps a large stock of them, just in case they start to disappear in other parts of the country. Should, say, Nebraska find itself running a little thin on stupid people with degrees, all they would need to do would be to send a note to California, and they would receive an overnight delivery of knuckleheads with PhDs, who would then start trying to introduce bills into the Nebraska legislative system to preserve the nation’s dwindling supply of flat places, or something.The space cadets in California get picked on a lot, but they deserve it. They spend money to save bushes, they try to ban air rifles, and they can’t seem to balance a budget at all. Their new governor recently announced they would close about 70 state parks to save money, and at the same time they are going to start offering free college educations to illegal aliens. There seems to be a rule in California where, if you want to run for office, you have to first prove you’re unable to operate velcro.But the stupid gene is not limited to politicians. Community activists in Buffalo, New York recently started a buyback program for toy guns. Not real guns. Toy guns. The idea is to instill fear of guns in little kids, and make them think guns are bad.The group behind this insanity is called Fathers Armed Together to Help Educate Restore and Save. It’s an acronym. When you string the first letters of those words together you get LIBERAL. So there you go.Honestly, I can’t imagine a worse father than one who denies his children the opportunity to learn gun safety, responsibility, and ethics. The trouble is that there is no test or requirement to prove intelligence before being allowed to procreate. And stupid genes are almost always dominant.A recent study showed that, when presented with irrefutable facts which proved their beliefs to be undeniably wrong, most people, instead of accepting the truth and changing their opinion, dig in their heels and become even more intractable in their error. In other words, people would rather be wrong, knowing they’re wrong, than to admit they’re wrong. This is why people like Ted Kennedy keep getting reelected, even after they drown constituants.Mark Twain said, “Never let schooling get in the way of your education.” That’s good advice, but I think we should also be careful not to let education get in the way of common sense . . .
Kendal Hemphill is an outdoor humor columnist and public speaker who never accepts a ride from a Kennedy. Write to him at PO Box 1600, Mason, Tx 76856 or email@example.com