It's easy to look around your own world and time period and come away thinking people are more ignorant and clueless by the day.
But consider this:
Think of all the greed, anger and stupidity you can see in historical events throughout time.
People following tyrants and evil regimes.
People laughing at or even attacking and killing people who discover scientific principles that could save thousands or millions of lives.
Not adopting those ideas, even when they are clearly provable and obvious to anyone that looks with an open mind ... for decades, or even centuries out of fear and ignorance.
People blindly following 'religions' clearly invented by unscrupulous people who want control over their minds, actions and property. And never seeing how silly they are being to believe in it.
Human beings are basically pack animals - like dogs, or wolves - that have developed self-awareness, highly abstract and logical reasoning, sophisticated language and communications, and have an opposing thumb to make tools.
Emotionally, intellectually and socially?
Still basically pack animals.
Grouping together artificially in packs.
Socially slaves to sumbissive / dominance rules.
People who can see the truth for what it is, think outside of the social pressure of the 'norm', and come to original conclusions are rare and always have been.
This is why only about 10% of the population have any clue about what's really going on right now.
"I'm sure that the fluoride, public ed., media, etc. contribute to the problem greatly."
Yes, they are aggravating factors to be sure. But the dumb pack animal nature of humanity is at the root of it.