Why hasn’t the USA switched to the metric system yet?

At a time when the entire planet measures the world in meters and kilograms, the United States stubbornly continues to use inches, pounds, miles and other outdated «imperial» measures of calculation.

The metric system is the brainchild of French scientists,

In the same year, the French introduced the cubic meter (ster), liter and kilogram into circulation. The advantage of units is their decimal calculation: all quantities are easy to raise to a power and easy to divide.

Initially, the metric reform was supposed to standardize units of measurement across the country. The fact is that since the period of feudal fragmentation, each French province has had its own calculation measures. Such disagreements provided room for deception in trade, hindered the development of industry, and made it difficult for scientists to communicate.

During the 19th century, most European powers adopted the metric system. In the Russian Empire, traditional arshins and pounds were

The Russian people took the idea coolly and continued to count kilometers by miles. Only the heavy revolutionary hand of the Provisional Government in 1918 helped to plant the meter on the population, and in 1925 the Bolsheviks once again confirmed the reform with their own decree.

Americans measure values ​​in units that were invented back in the Roman Empire. The average body proportions are taken as a basis: an inch is the length of a finger, a yard is the distance from the nose to the tip of the middle finger of an outstretched arm, etc.

Temperature is measured in Fahrenheit, pressure in inches, wind speed in knots


In fact, the US formally adopted the metric system back in 1866, just after the Civil War. However, due to democratic views

Only American pharmaceuticals are built entirely on the metric system. In addition to pharmaceuticals per meter today

Specialists identify two reasons for conservatism: American imperialism and economy. The United States is the world’s economic and political leader. Representatives of imperial thinking in government

In turn, if the States want to go to meters, they will have to revise all technical drawings and instructions for the equipment produced.

For comparison, NASA employees calculated that to transfer software and documentation of the space program to the metric system, they would have to spend $ 370 million.

It is also the psychology of the Americans themselves that hinders the meter. In the United States, the belief prevails: «All the best in the world is American.» Innovations that come from foreigners are not liked and accepted here, and therefore the international meter will never conquer the United States.

In addition to the States, there are 2 more states that have not yet switched to the metric system. These are Burma and Liberia.

Burma is a former British colony in Asia, which is still largely dependent on the English-speaking world.

Liberia is a country in Africa bought by Americans in the 19th century to return former black slaves to their homeland. The free coast did not become happy. The liberated Africans were mired in civil strife and became one of the poorest countries in the world.

However, Liberians remember that they were once Americans, and therefore made a similar flag for themselves, declared themselves an ally of the United States and are pursuing a similar policy in everything.

Perhaps Americans will someday switch to a system of measures that the rest of the world uses. For now, they use outdated units of measure that are meaningless today.