The Lies Our Teachers Taught Us In School

Jun 14, 2019 Kayode Oseh

The school system is a source of education and enlightenment, a fortress of higher learning where our children can safely discover the facts about the way our world works. Through this system we have the opportunity to grow and mature into responsible adults, secure in our knowledge of history, science, and mathematics.

However, There are some ridiculous things we where made to believe in school that are really not factual - they cannot be judged by reasoning or by practical.

Here are some of the biggest lies we where made to believe in school.

Deoxygenated Blood Is Blue (Which Is Why Your Veins Appear Blue)

If you look closely at the inside of your wrist, you’ll probably see a small network of blue veins running up into your hand. Despite what they might teach you in elementary school, that’s not blue blood running through there. The myth is that deoxygenated blood is blue, while blood leaving the heart is red because it’s been filled with fresh oxygen. When you bleed, the blood is immediately red because it’s exposed to oxygen in the air.

But if you’ve ever given blood or had blood taken at the doctor’s office, you’ll know that it’s not some alien blue liquid filling up that sealed tube—it’s, well, it’s blood. The reason your veins look blue is a simple trick of the light, and the way your eyes perceive colors. When light filters through the layers of skin, the low frequency wavelengths (like red) are refracted by pigmentation and thin fat layers, leaving mostly blue light to reflect back to your eyes. An albino person will usually have red veins because of the lack of pigmentation in their skin.

Europeans Invaded Africa and Kidnapped the Slaves

This isn’t meant to trivialize slavery, or pardon any of the people who took part in it, or condone it in any way. But let’s face it: most Americans are under the impression that colonial-era slavery got its start with white people sailing over to Africa, kidnapping hundreds of thousands of people, and bringing them back to Europe and America in chains.

Parts of that are true. There were a lot of chains, and many Africans were certainly kidnapped. But despite the picture painted by many history textbooks, the majority of those slaves were actually sold to Europeans by other African slave traders—slave traders who had been operating on the continent for thousands of years. Slavery is nothing new to the world; it was actually pretty normal around that time. In fact, Egyptians were using Caucasian slaves in their armies during the thirteenth century. Heck, even the Bible endorsed the practice!

As far as the Atlantic Slave Trade was concerned, in-country African slaves were typically members of a defeated tribe. But as soon as slave traders realized that Europeans would pay for their slaves, they actively began kidnapping people just to sell them on the Nigerian coast.

Abraham Lincoln Was Strongly Opposed to Slavery

Abraham Lincoln is often put on a pedestal as one of the greatest opponents of slavery for freeing the slaves with his Emancipation Proclamation in 1862. In fact, he struggled with conflicting and ambiguous views on slavery—not to mention sexuality—during his entire Presidential career. He wasn’t a stalwart supporter of abolition; he only wanted to do what would make the Union stronger (remember, this was a time when the Confederate states had split from the Union and were at war).

In his own words: “If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union.” This is called talking out of both sides of your mouth.

The Emancipation Proclamation didn’t really touch on racial equality or human rights. It was a wartime decision: “as a fit and necessary military measure. . . . All persons held as slaves in the Confederate states will thenceforward . . . be free.” In other words: only the enemy’s slaves were freed. Hooray to the great emancipator!

Let’s face it—if Honest Abe really wanted equality, Martin Luther King probably wouldn’t have a holiday named after him.

Diamonds Are Made from Coal

If you believe that diamonds are made from highly compressed coal, don’t worry—so does everyone else. But it’s completely false: diamonds are found in vertical shafts filled with rocks formed by volcanoes, while coal is mainly found among other types of rocks—like limestone and shale.

Coal is almost never found in the same type of environment as diamonds. Coal is formed near the surface from plant matter, while diamonds are formed in the Earth’s mantle—over ninety miles (145 km) closer to the core—and then carried up to the crust during volcanic eruptions.

It’s true that diamonds are formed from carbon by intense heat—2,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,100 degrees Celcius)—and high pressure, but it’s unlikely that the carbon comes from coal. So while the idea of a lump of coal becoming a beautiful diamond makes a pretty picture, it’s still one big spoonful of lies.

On the other hand, modern science can pretty much turn anything into a diamond in the lab: even the corpse of your recently deceased loved one.

Human Evolved From Ape

In this scenario Christians have it right—but not the way they think. Early classes on evolution usually leave one basic impression: humans evolved from apes. Go to a zoo, and you can watch your genetic ancestors frolicking and flinging poop at each other.

But that’s not the way it happened. After all, evolution works by eliminating the inferior species while the stronger, better-adapted ones thrive. If that had happened then there wouldn’t be any apes left, because we would have outcompeted them. The more likely theory is that humans and the great apes—chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans—started with a common ancestor, and then evolved in separate directions over the years. Specifically: four, eight, and twelve million years ago, respectively.

And it’s still happening—in the animal kingdom, at least. Researchers believe that less than one million years ago the eastern and western gorillas parted evolutionary ways, and are now developing in different directions.

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