And now I wonder why....
Let's take some time to look at how the bulk of the U.S. views educated people. Far right wing talkers have been chucking the phrase "pointy headed" and "elitist" out there in reference to educated liberals. Usually in reference to people with advanced degrees, or people who attended Ivy League schools or just people who act smart. I have spent a good deal of time thinking about this and am finally reaching some alarming conclusions.
The right (and many Republicans) don't want a fleet of smart people. Intelligence, by its very nature, going as far back as Aristotle or Jesus, have encouraged their students and followers to ask questions. Questions, whether or not they lead to answers, always lead to critical thinking and higher thought processes. The more people we educate, the more questions will be asked, the more people will be inclined to look at the authority with questions rather than look at it as though it were infallible.
Along with politics and education, I intend to really dig deep into the general psyche of American beliefs and hypocrisies, of changing likes and dislikes, and of the things that make this country one to stand in awe of as well as shake our heads at.
Onto the issue at hand, when did being well educated become a negative thing. It certainly isn't something that is new, especially not when listening to people on the right. Elitist and pointy headed are both code words for smart. Somebody speaks well, they are pointy headed. Suddenly we want our politicians to be stupid. We want them to be like us. I don't exactly know why, I couldn't even begin to understand it. Going as far back as ancient Greece, people spoke of "philosopher" kings, people chosen to rule based on their superior intellect; in our democracy we have turned it into who can be the folksiest...who can be the most like us. It's okay if you're filthy rich, it's okay if you don't have our best interests at heart, as long as you aren't intelligent, as long as you didn't graduate at the top of your class or get some kind of advanced degree.
Why bother telling my students to try hard? McCain finished near the bottom of his class, George W. Bush was barely a C student, Sarah Palin bounced her way through 5 or 6 colleges. McCain can miss almost 70% of his senate votes...the message is clear...school isn't important, working hard isn't important...float through your school, just scrape by.