Opinion & Review

Opinion: Water is Not Wet


Water splash

Water droplet morphing into a larger body of water. Photo courtesy of Ripples.com


The hottest debate of the last month has finally entered the hallways at Boys’ Latin.

As a hard-working student at Boys’ Latin, I do not appreciate the constant bitter arguing that goes on throughout the hallway when I am trying to get my work done.  I have heard just about every single argument for and against water being wet, and since I am tired of hearing one side of the spectrum be, in my opinion, incorrect, I feel it is my civic duty to put this argument to rest.  

Water is not wet, and let me explain why.  I will start off with the most commonly used argument for water not being wet.  If something is put into water and then taken out, the object is wet.

While water does indeed make other things wet, this does not automatically make water wet.  If someone is to put a smaller amount of water into a larger amount of water, the two waters just morph into one larger body of water.  The larger amount of water does not become wet due to the smaller amount of water.

Biology teacher Mr. Freeman said, “Wet is a condition of an object that is not made out of water.” However, I will admit that he was the only science teacher in the Boys’ Latin Upper School who believed that water is not wet, but being a science teacher does not make one more qualified to judge if water is wet or not.  

Another common argument for the side of water being wet is comparing water being wet to a fire being hot. A common mistake with this argument is that “hot” and “wet” are not opposites or closely enough related to being opposites to use this as an argument. If we are comparing water to fire, the opposite to “wet” would be “burning.”

You see, when fire burns it is not the fire itself that is being burnt or burning.  Whatever is up in flames is what is being burnt, not the fire itself.  An example of this would be, “the wood is burnt.”

My last argument for water not being wet is explained brilliantly by Boys’ Latin student Chris Brandau, when he said, “In order for something to be wet, there has to be a possibility for it to become dry.” Water cannot be dried.  If you are to dry water, you are just destroying it.

Say it rains a lot one day and leaves a puddle in your backyard.  Then the next day the sun comes up and the puddle disappears.  This is because there is no such thing as dry water.

I will concede the point stated by Mrs. Rodriguez: “Water is wet because for something to be wet it has to be covered in water, and if you look at it from a molecular scale, each water molecule is covered in other water molecules.”  I do concede that Mrs. Rodriguez makes a good point here and there is not much I can say to disprove this.  However, I do believe all the information above far outweighs the point Mrs. Rodriguez makes with this quote, so my position on this matter of water being wet has not changed.

The Boys’ Latin community is very torn by this question.  Out of the 150 students and faculty members who took my Google Form survey asking, “Is water wet?”, only 60% of the students and faculty said water is not wet.  However, after reading this article, I hope you all can maybe make an even more educated opinion on this matter.

Categories: Opinion & Review

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