The Blue & Gold

Physics Has No Real World Application

Foster Cowan

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Recently, as I sat at my desk, struggling over a physics worksheet, I had a thought: why am I taking this class? I’ve never cared for science and physics in particular is just not a subject I enjoy. And then I remembered — I have to take physics to graduate.

Since kindergarten, I have been pushed to excel in school, but there has always been a focus on math and science. It has been ingrained in me from a young age that those were the subjects that would help me succeed in life, both by my family and school. I have since realized that I am not really a math and science person, yet alas, I still have to take physics, as it is a required course.

Two months into the class, it has dawned on me that unless you want to be a physicist, this is downright the most useless course you will ever take. For me, someone with a non-analytical brain, when I see a ball thrown into the air, I see a ball being thrown. I do not take a second to think about its speed, velocity, or acceleration, because that stuff is useless. When I travel somewhere in a car, I do not need to be able to calculate by resultant displacement, I just need to know how to drive. The things I am learning in physics are telling me absolutely nothing. I am learning about abstract concepts developed by scientists that have no impact on my life. I could live happily not knowing a thing about vectors, kinematics, or gravity; to me these are just part of life that do not need to be further analyzed. They exist and that is about as far as I want to go.

To be entirely honest, I am not sure how physics has ever helped anyone. Who has ever needed to know how sound works? I know enough; we hear! Waves? Vibrations? No! We hear, and that is it, end of story, case closed. How does heat work? Some things are hot. Others are not. Simple, easy, no kinetic energy necessary! Gravity? We stay on the ground. That is literally it. Every single thing learned in physics is an explanation of a concept that no one needed an explanation of, and me knowing it is just not needed.

Now for those who enjoy physics or want to pursue a future in the subject, go right ahead. But for me and others who are content living the rest of our lives not having an arbitrary explanation of how the world works, let us enjoy the high school experience untainted by the horrors of someone trying to tell me more than I need to know.  

About the Writer
Foster Cowan, Staff writer

Foster Cowan is a junior and staff writer. He likes to eat prepackaged salads, wear sweatshirts for schools he doesn't attend, and avoid Boy Scout meetings. This is his second year on the staff.

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