There's an old song that says "Everybody loves my baby, but my baby only loves me."
Richard Janero and Thelma Alt-schuler, educators from Miami, have a problem with that lyric; they say there's a flaw in the logic. Janero told a group at Utah Valley Community College on Friday that modern culture does not encourage critical thought, and most people will let flawed logic and untrue assumptions slip by, unchallenged.The pair, authors of "The Art of Being Human," told students and faculty members they must choose one of two paths through life.
"There is the road of critical thought and weighing every possibility, and there is the super-highway approach," Janero said. "The super highway looks glossier and is paved with the opinions of other people.
Paraphrasing Robert Frost's poem, "The Road Not Taken," Janero added, "The road of independent thought is the road less traveled, but taking it will make all the difference."
Altschuler said she had been watching a morning news show and a story came on about a retired sports hero convicted of dealing drugs.
"The reporter said,`This is the thanks he gets,' and people all over the country probably nodded their heads and thought about how unfair it all was. They were accepting the assumption that because he won awards, he should be allowed to deal drugs and break the law."
Altschuler said there are not many critical thinkers.
"You will have to be willing to be part of a small minority. Being a critical thinker means you cannot forgive stupidity, even from a friend."
Janero agreed that popular culture does not encourage critical thought.
"The television talks a lot about the environment, the ozone hole and the dangers of eating red meat. No one goes into the danger of losing (logic-related abilities of) your mind."
People do not spend enough time alone with their thoughts, he said.
"All too many people are afraid of spending time with themselves. They have to have outside input at all times. You see people walking everywhere with those walkman things on their heads."
Janero said people who spend time evaluating the world and their views are more healthful. People who define themselves by their job or possessions lose their identity when they retire or lose their belongings.
It is harder, but "the good life is the critical life," Janero said.
At the end of the lecture, Janero revealed the flaw in "Everybody loves my baby, but my baby only loves me."
"If everyone loves my baby but my baby only loves me, my baby does not love himself, so not everyone loves him. The phrase is only logical if "my baby" and "me" are the same person.