Adopting the metric system is unfinished business. Our legacy measurement units will remain a problem - a thorn in our side - until we decide to make the switch.
The current system of measurement in the United States is a mess. There are many random units used for volume or length, often with little or no relation to each other. How many times have you seen a shelf tag show price per ounce, and the one next to it shows price per pound? Comparing and switching between these, or between miles, yards and feet, just does not work well.
By sticking with the old legacy units instead of adopting the metric system, we're missing out on the simplicity and standardization that comes with a well-designed measurement system. Metric units really do form a "system" that old legacy units simply do not.
When people understand metric units and have the opportunity to use them, they have an advantage they wouldn't have if they were stuck with the old units. Conversations become easier to comprehend. Why settle for a second-rate system when a better one is available?
International trade can be hindered by the use of non-standard measurement systems. If the US continues to use legacy units while the rest of the world uses metric, it can create confusion and inefficiencies in global trade. Asking for special treatment in the form of converting measurements can also come with added costs.
To be competitive in the global market, it is essential for the US to adopt the metric system and be on the same page as the rest of the world.
In today's globalized world, understanding the metric system is a fundamental aspect of education. Just as being able to locate Asia on a map or count to one hundred are basic skills, knowing metric units is essential if you want to participate in many fields of study and work.
There are some minimal standards of education that are required if you want to be part of the conversation, and the metric system is a crucial part of that. Much of the intellectual life of the country relies on the metric system.
Other countries managed to make the switch - it can be done! The real obstacle is not the dollar cost, it is getting enough agreement that we should make an effort to move down that path.
We are already partway there!