EDITORIAL: Overrated Knowledge vs Arrogant Ignorance

The results of the recent elections are the hottest topic being subjected to a close scrutiny by some pundits. One school of thought holds the view that those identified as belonging to the economic classes C,D and E proved too vulnerable to vote buying and cleverly worded slogans from armies of trolls due to absence or lack of education. Another school of thought holds that that those who belong to the economic classes A and B are to blame for their misplaced over awareness of being equipped with knowledge.

Both are partly right and wrong.

Being abundantly armed with knowledge is one strong asset, which can be utilized in order to influence the greater segment of the society. Those knowledgeable can understand and magnify the relevant socio-economic issues at hand. Also, they can readily digest prevailing circumstances.

On the other hand, asserting their views is a very sensitive task. The learned needs to be very careful with their language and actuations. Otherwise they are open to misinterpretation of being elitists.

This must have proved to be the undoing of the largely educated populace, which in championing certain advocacies have been to the judgment of the uneducated or for that matter less educated, who felt being discriminated upon or even looked down. As a consequence, idiocy became a wellspring of social numbness or even misguided arrogance. This probably explains in part why refusal or failure to attend political debates turned out to be an asset rather a liability. Also, to a larger segment of the electorate, debates are too divisive, time consuming and even boring.

Instead of drawing supporters, those who displayed mastery of available tools in debates, to the judgment of the less exposed to intellectual exchanges have been, due to their shortsightedness, showoffs.

Moreover, for a society already rendered weary due to a pandemic and a string of natural calamities, debates and rallies are an exercise in emptiness and do not offer immediate relief from poverty. As a result, many opted to desecrate the ballot in exchange for a certain amount via vote buying/selling. Intellectual discussions do not immediately serve food for the table of the poor. Long term plans and programs are nice to hear and read. But several kilos of rice and viands prove more attractive to stave off hunger.

In fairness, most of the principal personalities in the political arena have been more circumspect in dealing with the situation. Eager beaver supporters and volunteers have been too carried away and in the process failed to realize that in asserting their advocacies, they should have a working knowledge about communication skills or simply stated, techniques in dealing with the people. There is a simple term for that. Too technocratic or even excessive intellectual assertion.

Those of lesser perseverance abhor such perceived elitism. They feel being discriminated or taken for granted. Be that as it may, efforts need to be exerted patiently in order to address that sociological malaise. Otherwise, the divide between the knowledgeable but aristocratic and the idiotic but either numb or arrogant shall further widen.

Unless met more realistically, the gap between the two shall become wider and wider.

At the end of the day, the educated has to face a very harsh reality. Education alone does not indicate wisdom. For the less educated or uneducated, they better admit that such state of life shall continue to be their major disadvantage. They should acquire the perseverance of reading longer texts instead of swallowing deceiving propaganda from troll armies.

This schism largely attributable to the state of being educated or the want of it may not register immediate impact. Sooner or later the divide would register. The sub-sectors that may be identified as aristocratic intelligentsia pitted against arrogant ignorance. The commonality is highlighted with their insecurity.

Whatever, there is an urgent need to address this divide. Otherwise the quest for inclusivity will for a longer period of time remain an elusive dream.