Think about it--why are we one of the only countries in the world that doesn't use the metric system?

Why do we have such haphazard systems of measurement, such as 12 inches to a foot, or 3 feet to a yard, or 5280 feet to a mile?

How about 16 ounces to a lb? The metric system is all in 10s, 100s, and is overall much easier to keep track of. Why are we stuck in this crazy system?


u/ViNella44 asked:

Americans of reddit, what is your opinion on switching to the metric system?

Here were some of those answers.


Lobbyists

What difference does it make when Big Tape Measure is lobbying with tens of dollars to keep inches so they don't have to paint more lines?

heymattay

Are tape measures not double-sided like rulers?

zhetay

Wait until big tape measure figures out how much profit there is in selling everyone new metric tape measures.

PoliticalDissidents

20 Years Ago We Should Have Switched

My persuasive speech in high school speech class was about why we should convert, this was 20 years ago.

I got a good grade but people love multiplying and dividing by 25.4 apparently.

I program CNC for medical device components. Well over half the drawings I see are metric, machines are programmed in imperial. Many conversions back and forth between inches and millimeters. It's so freaking annoying.

Thenandonlythen

Puns

Reports say a man in CA was mugged, and they beat him within millimeters of his life

phlux

You could start expressing an even worse beating saying "he was beaten to within a mm of his life." "Oh dear, that bad? I'd only heard within an inch."

monsantobreath

More Beer For All

If that means rounding up a 32oz beer to 1 liter, then yes please.

echil0n

We're already suffering from the metric fifth, so I guess it'd be good to get something back.

m_sporkboy

'Murica

Americans will never accept a foreign ruler.

BigXris

That's because they just don't measure up

Tea_and_a_Biscuit

Furlough

The metric system is the tool of the devil. My car gets 40 rods to the hogshead and thats the way I likes it.

Frig_You_Downvote

One furlong per fortnight is exactly equal to 0.01663095 centimeter per second.

ImALittleCrackpot

Surprise!

The Metric System is the official measurement system of the US. It has been since he early 1980s. However, it wasn't actually put into practice because we've already been using the Imperial system for so long that changing everything over would cause trouble to the infrastructure. Like someone else already said, it's the equivalent of forcing a new language onto society because "it's now the official language of this country".

The_Travelling_Gamer

It Ain't Just Us

Everyone acts like it's just the US, but the UK and Canada also still largely use imperial system in many applications even though officially we're both metric. It's a very gradual shift.

In Canada we switched 20 years before I was born and I still couldn't tell you how much I weigh in kilograms or how tall I am in centimeters even though it's written on my drivers licence.

  • When doing construction unless for government jobs pretty much everyone uses inches and feet
  • Anyone talking about how much they can bench does so in lbs
  • We mostly use tsp/tbsp/cups for cooking
  • Our ovens work in fahrenheit (but we use celcius for weather)
  • We use PSI for our tires
  • We use square feet for areas

etc.

LevTolstoy

Why Are We Such Whiners

The US tried to convert back in the 70s. But everyone complained about it. I'm all in for switching. It would be really nice to go to literally any other country and understand size and speed.

Yes I personally can do the conversions and understand it's not that difficult but lots of Americans can't be bothered

am03lett

We've Done It For Too Long

The people who need to use it - the academic community - already do. But the imperial system is so deeply ingrained in American culture I can't ever see it going away.

If there was a real, concerted effort by the government and several private enterprises (the NFL, car manufacturers, construction companies and suppliers) then maybe. But it would cost billions of dollars and there is little financial incentive to do so. Even if there were gains to be made in the long run, corporations only seem to look a quarter or two ahead in the long run.

alexja21

You May Also Like
Hi friend— subscribe to my mailing list to get inbox updates of news, funnies, and sweepstakes.
—George Takei