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The proper form of measurement: Why we should start using the metric system

Kiyomi DallasKidd

American children are still learning the imperial system, even though it is foreign to nearly every other country in the world. The only possible explanation for continuing the use of the imperial system would be because our country is currently using it and it is ingrained into our daily lives. Other than that, there are countless reasons to switch to the metric system. 

The imperial system of measurement was developed in the United Kingdom during the 1820s, and Britain began to use it throughout their Empire. The United States also started to use this system during the 1800s. However, in the 20th century, the U.K. switched to the metric system, but the U.S.A. kept using imperial measures. 

The first reason, perhaps the most important, to switch our system, is that every other country uses the metric system. There are only two other countries in the entire world besides ours that use the imperial system out of hundreds. Isn’t it enough that we have language and cultural barriers with other states, we have to now divide ourselves between different units of measurement? Shouldn’t the U.S.A., one of the most powerful countries in the world, use a system familiar to everyone else in order to communicate more easily? 

Another reason supporting a transition to the metric system is that metric units are far simpler. Our standard measurements have strange titles and are not even numbers in comparison to one another. For example, a foot contains twelve inches and a mile is 5,280 feet. Unusual numbers like those are not as easy to memorize for a young person learning the system. The metric system has units with mathematical names that refer to the ratio between it and other units. For example, a kilogram has 1,000 grams in it, hence the prefix ‘kilo.’ They are also typically multiples of ten of each other, which makes it easy to convert to greater or smaller units. 

The final reason is that for mathematical and scientific purposes, the metric system is already used, even in the U.S. Because math is considered to be the “universal language,” it logically makes sense to use the basically universal system of measurement. Scientists use it with a similar motivation. By using the metric system in science, everyone all over the world can measure things the same way. Science is also an entire subject practically based on specific measurements of everything, and the metric system is a more logical and easy-use system. 

These are only a few of the justifications behind a national switch to the metric system in the U.S.A. So why are we still using the imperial system? To that question there seems to be no answer other than laziness. American people are too used to the imperial system to want to bother switching and learning a new language. 

The metric system is a more logical method of measurement in nearly every way, and it seems about time for the U.S. to catch up. 

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About the Contributors
Lucy Egan, Contributor
Lucy Egan is a freshman at San Domenico and a contributor to The Panther Press. She enjoys playing tennis, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.  
Kiyomi DallasKidd, Contributor

Kiyomi DallasKidd is a freshman at San Domenico and a contributor to The Panther Press. She loves to animate, write, create characters, and illustrate in her free time. 

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