I can't decide why the article "Dumbth" is relegated to the J section of the Sunday Times (Jan. 21).
With "Dumbth," Steve Allen warns of a "deterioration of basic intelligence in America," exposing a "spreading incompetence, illiteracy and gullibility across the land." Mr. Allen says, "It's a combination of ignorance and stupidity, plus some unidentifiable ingredients."
I'll take a shot at one "unidentifiable" ingredient--Alien-Nation. I may be incompetent or illiterate, but not so "gullible" that I don't understand the real meaning of Mr. Allen holding court with "Nobel laureates, physics professors, telecommunications managers," and an otherwise "sold-out audience of scientists, teachers and technicians."
What happened to the real people? Were there no scalpers selling tickets to the show, or discounted tickets being somehow available to an incompetent public? It's easy to denounce the lack of education to an elite group with "enough concentrated brain power to turn out an encyclopedia in two hours flat," but that's like coaching the extremely rich on how to make a fortune. If "Steverino" wants to attack the pitfalls of education, why not take his humor to the middle schools where there is still time enough to make an impression?