ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is ubiquitous in the American classroom, there’s little debate about that. According to CDC statistics from 2012, 11 percent of children between the ages of four and 17 had been diagnosed with ADHD at some point. With over six million kids diagnosed, it’s hard not to wonder: Is this condition even a real problem?
Sure, some kids struggle to pay attention during school — but does that signify an actual problem with the child? Perhaps it’s more indicative of a society that simply doesn’t allow children to be children anymore. If you’ve ever found that the notion that children who’d rather play outside than sit at a desk are “broken” and need medication was a bit hard to digest, you may be right.
Writing for The Daily Bell, Joe Jarvis explains that there is proof that ADHD is nothing more than a fake disease. As Jarvis notes, two states with some of the highest incidences of ADHD are Arkansas and Kentucky.
These states are also home to a lot of children who enjoy hunting and fishing. Jarvis reports that census data from Arkansas shows 89 percent of kids fish and 35 percent hunt. Similar survey data shows that in Kentucky, 86 percent fish and 31 percent hunt. “These were the closest indicators I could think of that Kentucky and Arkansas children are more interested in being outside and active than cooped up in a classroom,” he contends.
<="contentad494269"> Jarvis further notes that in states with the lowest incidences of ADHD, children seem to be far less interested in the great outdoors: In New Jersey, only 45 percent of kids go fishing. While not exactly evidence of a cause-and-effect relationship, it certainly raises questions about the way we look at kids who have trouble focusing in the classroom. Jarvis posits that the data he’s collected “suggests that the states with the highest instances of ADHD diagnosis are also states where the traditional values of public education are least aligned with the population.”