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The Orion

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The Orion

Measuring the US against the world

Illustration by Miles Huffman

There are numerous things that confuse me about America: the obsession with reality TV, addiction to pumpkin spice lattes and the system of measurement we use.

The fact that America is basically the only country that doesn’t use the metric system should be argument enough to convert. And yet, we’re still using our own confusing system.

The metric system is much easier to understand and use. It makes a lot more sense.

For instance, in the metric system freezing would be 0 and boiling is 100. Doesn’t that make more sense than 32 degrees being freezing and boiling being 212 degrees?

Another benefit of the metric system is that there is one base unit for each type of measurement:

Need to measure weight? Use grams.

Need to measure volume? Use liters.

Need to measure length? Use meters.

This is unlike the US, which for volume alone has cups, pints, quarts and gallons.

And guess what else is nice about the metric system? They are all a factor of 10.

For instance, 10 millimeters = 1 centimeter. So if there is a unit in millimeters, and it needs to be converted to centimeters, divide by 10. Easy as that.

I’m just not sure why the US doesn’t use this system instead.

Sometimes I feel like America doesn’t convert just to be obstinate. It’s like Americans can’t possibly handle using something the rest of the world uses.

If America were to convert, it would make everything so much easier to understand, not to mention there wouldn’t be a discrepancy between America and the rest of the world.

Allison Galbreath can be reached at [email protected] or @agalbreath19 on twitter.

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