Summary & Response

Jack Wang LART 211 25 February 2013 Instructor: Natalie Panfili Summary In Joshua Adler’s essay, “Our Alarmist Society,” Adler point out a serious problem; alarmist have a lot bad influence in our society. In his essay, he said that “Scientific alarmism is becoming a way of life in the United States. ” We all know that alarmism can cause misunderstanding and trouble for listeners, but it can cause our life to become miserable if it becomes part of our living element. Based on Adler’s essay, in 1989, the U. S.
Customs Service banned South American grapes because people were poisoned by the grapes from Chile. The U. S. almost destroyed the economies of Peru and Chile, both countries are struggling countries and need U. S. business to maintain their living standards. Once the U. S. stops business with them, they will lose their basic quality of life. When South American countries are not making enough money for their daily living, they start selling illegal crops to America and give Uncle Sam a drug addiction in order to make him weaker.
The media plays a big role in this ball game, if the press thinks an event is important, they can make it sound as significant as they want and make it sound uncontrollable. However, when Joshua returned home on spring break and saw an old couple waiting for their food, the old woman said she heard other people say that eating yolk will kill you for sure so she wanted her eggs scrambled. She believed what other people said without finding the evidence and realized the yolk in her scrambled eggs.

If everyone believes in the same logic that she does, our egg-producing farms will immediately shut down. Alarmism could be both bad and good depending on how we use it; in today’s society, news can be spread very easily and we don’t really have time to think, we always try to find the solution to the problem without looking at the bigger picture. Critical thinking is one of the best ways to solve this problem, communication is also important but we need to be responsible for our own words.

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