I am dismayed at many of the answers here.
I am 45. I was never more intelligent, more vital, more curious, more positive, more engaged, than when I was…
… actually, than when I was 25. But I was still pretty damn impressive at 18. And I read a hell of a lot more literature.
It’s true, as the renowned party poopers on this thread have put it, that your brain development is still ongoing at 18; as Kazantzakis would put it in Greek, your brain “has not yet congealed.” But that’s nothing to do with intellect; that’s to do with impulse control, and experience. The only thing that I grew in mentally since 18 was reserve.
Or selling out, as my youthful self would put it. And it wouldn’t necessarily be unfair.
Two of my favourite Quorans were my favourites before I had any idea of their age: Lara Novakov and Dimitris Almyrantis. The only reason I’m not adding Sierra Spaulding to that list is because I don’t care as much about US electoral politics as she and Michael Masiello do, so I haven’t followed her as closely as he has. (I’m looking forward to what she says on Quora past November 🙂
All of them have occasionally (very occasionally) said things to make me wince (just as any number of 60-year olds here have); but none of them have said anything to make me not take them seriously. And the same goes for any number of other teens I may have bumped into here, realising it or not.
Are they outliers, as party poopers here have harrumphed? Sure.
But aren’t we all?
P.J. O’Rourke was in town recently. He was explaining Trump and the resentment of the elites to us Antipodeans, in an ABC chat show (Q&A). And he pointed out that everyone in the audience was by definition in the resented elite, simply because they were interested in politics.
These are people posting, intelligently and vibrantly, about Ottoman history and Serbian daily life and American politics, on a forum defined by its braininess. On a forum that by definition counts as the resented elite. They’ve earned the respect I give them.