Food For Thought

Our friend Anne was over tonight, and one of the subjects the conversation wandered onto was: why were Irish immigrants in the 19th century regarded as "dumb"?

Beyond the obvious, that many immigants came from peasant backgrounds with little or no formal schooling, Anne conjectured the lack of things like, oh, food in Irish diets of the time might have prevented proper brain development in children. Or even before the Potato Famine, that the overwhelming preponderance of a single food item in the diets may have caused a nutrient imbalance with similar results.

"Ah," I said. "Then perhaps grits explains Red States election results."

Anne thought that over for a moment, then said, "No, I think you're committing a logical fallacy. You're making an add hominy argument."

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