Psychology Today reported on this in 2014, but unfortunately, it bears repeating, as it doesn’t look like we’ve made any strides toward improvement in the last 18 months, and the current state of presidential politics only seems to further highlight the issue! People are literally coming out of the woodwork and flaunting their ignorance for all the world to see on social media.
The report states:
There is a growing and disturbing trend of anti-intellectual elitism in American culture. It’s the dismissal of science, the arts, and humanities and their replacement by entertainment, self-righteousness, ignorance, and deliberate gullibility.
Which explains why so many are so lost when they attempt to engage in conversations about topics that should be familiar to them… like the role of government, how it’s formed, and how it’s supposed to work!
The report goes on:
Part of the reason for the rising anti-intellectualism can be found in the declining state of education in the U.S. compared to other advanced countries.
In American schools, the culture exalts the athlete and good-looking cheerleader. Well-educated and intellectual students are commonly referred to in public schools and the media as “nerds,” “dweebs,” “dorks,” and “geeks,” and are relentlessly harassed and even assaulted by the more popular “jocks” for openly displaying any intellect. These anti-intellectual attitudes are not reflected in students in most European or Asian countries, whose educational levels have now equaled and will surpass that of the U.S. And most TV shows or movies such as The Big Bang Theory depict intellectuals as being geeks if not effeminate.
And while none of this is really a big “NEWSFLASH,” it certainly explains the utter confusion surrounding our election processes and highlights the critical need to do a better job at passing along our American history to the generations that follow us. And instilling the importance of maintaining our Republic as framed by our Founding Fathers, especially the importance of preserving the 1st and 2nd Amendments. Right now, we’re failing miserably.
You can read the full report at PsychologyToday.
Photo credit UBC Library Communications