In a recent video, YouTuber James Klug set out on a journey to ask members of Gen Z basic questions about the United States, geography and world history, among other subjects.
Some of the answers he received are incredibly discouraging.
“We’ve all seen those videos showing how little Gen Z knows about literally everything, so today we’ve come to Los Angeles, California, and we’re gonna figure out if this is really the case,” Klug said at the beginning of the video. He then hit the streets to ask people his various questions.
One of the questions Klug asked was, “How many stars are on the United States flag?”
He received answers ranging from 103 to 32.
A basic American history lesson would teach these people there are 50 stars on the American flag, representing the 50 states. The fact that multiple people in this video were unable to provide this answer is an indictment on the U.S. education system.
One of the harder questions Klug asked was, “What ocean is on the east side of the United States?” The fact that this was a hard question shows just how easy most of the questions were.
While children in the U.S. should be learning about basic geography, including the oceans, in elementary school, many people seemed thoroughly confused about the question.
“Pacific?” one person said. “No, I can’t do the oceans. I don’t do the oceans.”
In some questions, Klug quite literally provided the answers. For example, he asked, “What country is the Queen of England from?”
Some respondents caught the hint, but others acted as if Klug had asked them to explain rocket science.
“I’m not a politic guy, man, I ain’t gonna lie,” one person said. “I don’t know. I really don’t know.”
After Klug told him to take a guess, the man said, “S*** Europe? I don’t f***ing know.”
As you hopefully know, Europe is not a country, but rather a continent. Another person refused to even answer the question at all for fear of getting it wrong.
Perhaps the most discouraging moment came when Klug asked two self-proclaimed UCLA students, “What is the capital of the United States?”
“Stop, I knew he was going to embarrass us,” one of the girls said.
“Wait, I don’t even want to think because I don’t want to sound dumb,” the other girl said. It was too late.
After thinking for a moment, the second girl said, “There’s no capital of the United States.” Klug pretended she was correct for a brief moment before telling her the correct answer, Washington, D.C.
These two college students were unable to answer basic questions about America, yet they did not hesitate to identify the three Kardashian sisters as “Khloe, Kim and Kourtney.”
Some Twitter users accused Klug of “cherry-picking” the bad answers to make Gen Z look worse.
he probably cheery picked footage of the very ignoran people , and decided not to include people who actually knew the answers
— Armando (@w1ll1a23) August 23, 2022
While he probably did include the worst answers for comedic effect, there are two glaring issues with this criticism.
First of all, these questions are so basic that the vast majority of Americans who have at least completed elementary school should be able to answer them. The fact that Klug was able to find multiple people in Los Angeles on one afternoon who could not answer the basic questions is concerning in and of itself, even if he did exclude some people who answered the questions correctly.
Second, Klug did include people in the video who answered some or all of the questions correctly. For example, a group of women from Ireland were able to correctly identify the number of stars on the U.S. flag and the capital of the United States.
He also included another man who was able to correctly say the Atlantic Ocean is on the east side of the United States.
No matter how the video may have been edited, multiple members of Gen Z were unable to answer a series of basic questions from Klug. Since most of these people appeared to be old enough to vote, their lack of basic knowledge about the country should concern Americans.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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