PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Lauren Veckranges
 
Comments: 46
Article views: 1610
 
 
 

The problem with being uneducated

17 June 2014, 21:15

Frequently, I hear people dismissing opinions different from their own as "uneducated". This trend was brought into sharp focus this year, when South Africa celebrated its 4th free and fair election.

When the election results rolled in, many of my friends dismissed the large support garnered for the ANC and the EFF as the as the result of the uneducated masses. Why else would someone vote for a radical such as Julius Malema, or a corrupt party like the ANC?

While I’m the first to admit that education in our country is in crisis, dismissing people’s opinions because they have a different kind education than your own is problematic for several reasons:

1.    Being “uneducated” is not a real thing.

At least, not in this context. When does a person become educated enough for you to take their right to choose who runs the country seriously? When they can write their own name? When they have a degree? A PhD in Political Science?

I think you’ll find, when you really think about the people in your lives, that as long as you don’t completely disagree with their choice in party, you don’t tend to dismiss their fundamental human right to choose.

2.    Just because a person has a different experience from you, it does not make their opinions any less valid.

As much as we’d all like to believe that we’re completely independent and logical creatures who hold our beliefs after due consideration, it is simply not true.

A white male growing up in the heart of Sandton is going to have a very different point of view than a black female growing up in a small village in the Northern Cape. But both of them are equally capable of forming their own opinions, and articulating them if asked.

Maybe you understand macroeconomics, but I can guarantee you that “uneducated youth” who voted for the EFF understands something you don’t.

None of us hold any special privilege, intellectual or otherwise, over the next person’s right to vote. And everyone deserves the dignity of having their opinions, and the experiences that have informed them, taken seriously.

3.    When you other someone, you’re up to no good.

From Nazi Germany and the Jews, the Hutus and Tutsis, Black and White - no good can come from making someone different from you. If you choose not to see their point of view, to make another human being into a mass of something frightening and foreign, you make it that much easier to treat them a little less human.

The bottom line is that it’s easy to dismiss people when their opinions are different from your own. Their point of view is so absurd, so nonsensical, that the only plausible explanation is that they’re uneducated, or stupid, or just plain silly. Their opinions don’t deserve a second of your consideration.

There is VALUE  to listening to the other side. The next time you find yourself accusing someone of being uneducated or stupid - don’t judge, don’t sway, don’t dismiss.

Ask. Ask why they believe what they believe. Ask because you genuinely want to listen. You don’t have to agree with them, and you don’t have to change their point of view.

I’ve found that when you ask someone why they voted for a certain party, the answer isn’t as simplistic as you might think. If there is one great gift that South Africa has left with us, it’s Ubuntu. We are who we are through our connection with others. Let’s not forget it.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
46 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
A Groovy Trooper
3 Every Hour

I would just like to highlight the fact that, according to the latest murder stats, we lose 47 South Africans to murder EVERY SINGLE DAY. That's 329 per week. 1,316 per month. Read more...

11 comments 876 views
Submitted by
Manthole Morwa Kgwedi
“The forgotten transport infrastr...

The problems resulting from transport externalities have become a world-wide contested concern.  Read more...

3 comments 458 views
Submitted by
hzcummi
The Truth of Genesis: Another App...

Over 244 million years ago, Yehovah created the first known birds, other flying creatures, and the dinosaurs of the sea, which Moses called “sea monsters”.  Read more...

56 comments 1071 views
Submitted by
Siiphamandlah
Open Letter to “OUR” Politicians ...

It comes with great sadness and distaste to realize that our institution(s) have become a platform for releasing personal frustrations and settling old scores. Read more...

2 comments 397 views
Submitted by
ohomen171
Before Sending Human Colonists To...

It's about three groups of people who decided to forsake normal civilized life and got to live on the island of Floreana in the Galapagos Islands. Read more...

11 comments 759 views
Submitted by
Mickey Meji
Do we need accessible or ultra-th...

One of the reasons why the condom is not working (as in people are not using) is not because of the texture.  Read more...

8 comments 958 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at kalahari.com

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Baby extravanganza month at kalahari.com

Celebrate baby month with a wide range of awesome baby products. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.