January 19, 2018
Should the United States Adopt the Metric System?
This paper is obviously not going to end the battle between the United States of America and the metric system. Arguments concerning which system is better will eventually be long forgotten and ultimately there won’t be an answer that will please everyone all the time. All systems of measurements are created equal. In it’s most basic essence measurements are used to “calibrate the universe into understandable units” so that humans can learn, build and improve.
Learning the metric system is a rite of passage for a ten-year-old. Former fourth graders may remember from math class that the metric system is based on one beautiful number, ten. Our whole life revolves around the number ten. We have ten fingers and ten toes. Water freezes at zero Celsius and boils at a hundred celsius. The grading system is based on how much you got right out of a hundred. As a senior studying AP Calculus, I can confidently say that fractions are demonic and decimals are my only saving grace. Want to know how many millimeters are in a kilometer? Don’t worry the metric system has got you covered. The majority of humans beings on earth will say that whoever invented the metric system is a saint.
It’s true that Americans did try to adopt the metric system but ultimately failed. America, a country infamous for their rebellions, will undoubtedly view the change as a violation of their freedom of speech. But picture this: Enemies of the United States, allies of the United States and rivals of the United States all have one thing in common. They coincidently all use the metric system. When North Korea launches a missile heading towards Bellarmine, they will use the number ten. Due to the of the lack of “metric” America has become the laughing stock of the world. Sure, America leads the world in industries, technologies, and entertainment but the good ole’ US of A is not bigger than the entire world. Living in a world where things can happen in a split second, no in a split millisecond why would anyone wants to be minutes behind. Ironically, the United States is eons behind many contemporary concepts.
Being a minority in a world embracing a global market is not only a disadvantage but also a liability. Any American company that involves foreign products needs to know how to convert between units efficiency and effectively. Errors occur constantly and may have catastrophic results. Remember when NASA’s Mars Orbiter crashed in 1999? Yeah, about $125 million burned up in space because an engineering team used English units while the rest used the ideal metric system for calculations. But please don’t be hating on NASA. Instead hate on the old policy that still makes Americans use miles, pounds and may God forbid, the F-word.
Besides the arguments against going metric is absolutely ridiculous. Generally the reasons against the metric system typically follow two distinct themes. First, those who believe that integrating the metric system into American culture will bring about certain doom. And second, the metric system is too un-American for America.
One could easily imagine a New Yorker saying, “It’s too much work!” A Texan may yell out, “The whole world will fall into chaos and we’d lose our minds!” Then a Californian could scream out, “It violates our Constitution!”
The process of change is going to be difficult for everyone but it is not impossible. It will need a lot of funds from the government and private organizations but the benefits will make America great again. An example of metric success is literally all other countries on Earth.
But hope does exist for there is a light at the end of every tunnel. Americans have half-assedly been using the metric system since the 1970s. For example, if you ever get caught by the DEA for possessing a hundred kilos of cocaine then you’re in luck because the American court will persecute you with the metric system. But wait, you decide to take revenge on your drug dealer for setting you up. Take your handgun and shoot that bastard in the head with a ten-millimeter bullet. Remember this America! The land for the free but more importantly for the English system. Yet just when you think that metric system ends at drugs and guns there’s still more. Not good with your aiming and got shot in the chest? Rush to the hospital and the nurses will get you a thousand cubic centimeters of Morphine. At least the health department uses the metric system, right?
I understand why Americans want to be different for the sake of benefiting themselves. But when it’s English system stupid or blowing up a $125 million space probe stupid then Americans are just stupid.
As much as I love to hate you. Please change it already. Americans aren’t learning, building or improving anymore. The English system had a good run but now it’s time for the metric system to dominate.
A girl with some common sense.