Chapter 2 – Where We Are Now




Sociology can be defined as the study of human social behavior, especially the study of the origins, organization, institutions, and development of human society. Human society on this planet today means P-B.

Simple Reality has sociology as a dominant focus when it comes to analyzing the health of the human community. The best way to diagnose how a community is faring is to look at how the people in that community behave. Sounds simple and it is but unfortunately policy makers who are charged with prescribing after the diagnosis is made have to make their judgments in the context of a highly dysfunctional practice. For example, it’s as if Washington politicians are prescribing aspirin for a diseased liver.

Washington doesn’t seem to have much respect for sociology even though it could tell them a lot about the most pressing problems in the U.S. Disintegrating families, criminals resistant to rehabilitation, failing educational institutions, an aging population draining limited resources, religions offering delusional narratives, divisive immigration policies, poverty and growing inequality are a few of the challenges we could look at in this chapter. Washington politicians will look at these issues also but they will not understand what they are seeing.

For example, President Obama’s “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative to combat problems afflicting black youth did not consult any sociologists but did ask for insights from prominent economists. “As data from the Census Bureau suggests, while about 1.5 million Americans are economics majors, there is a far greater supply of psychology majors (3.4 million) and history majors (1.6 million), and only slightly fewer sociology majors (1.3 million).”

As chapter one indicated we are unlikely to advocate turning to historians for insights into reality nor are we going to kowtow to sociologists. “I can’t get no respect,” said Rodney Dangerfield and many professional sociologists may feel the same way but they have only themselves to blame.


References and notes are available for this essay.
Find a much more in-depth discussion in the Simple Reality books:
Where Am I?  Story – The First Great Question
Who Am I?  Identity – The Second Great Question
Why Am I Here?  Behavior – The Third Great Question
Science & Philosophy: The Failure of Reason in the Human Community