I for one have been playing Dungeons and Dragons since the early 80's as I recall it could actually be 1979 specicfically the year Star Wars came out. I have been there though all the the devil worshiping days and the fall of TSR to the WOTC, with all the different editions. To this day I enjoy the gaming experience fully.
Now I know that with the 4th edition and bringing back the brand as just "Dungeons and Dragons" many hard core DnD fans choked and croaked at the current state of that franchise, for example: "what the fuck is Wizards trying to do to Dungeons Nd Dragons into a card game like Magic the Gathering, why ruin what Gary Gygax and Arunson created?" I have heard many such statements and I for one disagree. I love the new system as I love the 3.5 system that is now called Pathfinder. With the current game rules it makes so much more easy to bring people into this great table top gaming hobby, it connects people at the tale versus playing a video game.
With the Dungeons and Dragons system you teach someone how to play a great table top RPG, as they learn the game with the simple and efficient rules of fourth edition, you can the talk about the mechanic of 3.5 the Pathfinder system that allows more avenues of exploration. The work your way to true roleplaying rather the hack and slash. I do enjoy a good hack and slash though.