I stumbled onto this opinion about, well, rednecks, I guess:
And yet many American library systems are poorly funded and do not rank highly in the priorities of tax-cutting, public service-gutting legislators.
And yet anti-intellectual, partisan, conspiratorial idiocy has invaded public discourse and news reporting to a scary degree - and this tendency only grows stronger. The “dumbing down” of America is real. Far too many Americans do not make use of libraries, or read books and newspapers at all.
And yet in many states, especially conservative red ones in the South and Midwest, the teaching of creationism as science is common, and politicized school curriculums deny climate change and the legacy of slavery. School boards in states such as Texas routinely ban important works of literature to satisfy the whims and prejudices of the religious right.
And yet - more than 40% of American voters support Donald Trump, who peddles blatant lies and bigoted idiocy ever time he opens his mouth. Sorry, but there is no shortage of “obnoxious ignoramuses.” In fact, there is a bumper crop.
This is from here, a comment on an article in Britain’s Guardian newspaper about America’s most beautiful libraries.
Just a few comments are in order.
1. If lots of America’s library systems are poorly funded, it is still true that lots of other countries don’t even have “library systems.” Sarah A. Hoyt has talked of the scarcity of libraries in her native Portugal, for example (here). Actually, I’ve lived in a bunch of different states in our country, and the libraries are always decent.
2. Yes, lots of people don’t use libraries or read newspapers, though with respect to the latter, that might be an advantage, given the horrible slanting of many of them.
3. If the teaching of creationism is bad, then why bring in immigrants who will support it? I’m referring to Muslims, of course.
4. Denying climate change? I didn’t know any school curriculums that were doing this. Hurray if they are!
5. Denying the legacy of slavery? I don’t know about that, but I have heard of young people who believe that America started the practice of slavery. Incredible.
6. Banning important works in the schools? How about banning speakers just because they are conservative?
As I pointed out the other day (here), we have an ignorant president who can easily be shown up by the very “ignoramuses” this commenter is complaining about.
So, here are some examples of the new ignorance. These people believe that:
• Slavery was first used here in the United States. [I’ve never actually encountered this belief, but others claim that they have. Maybe they are just making it up.]
• Restrictions on speech (for the sake of excluding “hate speech”) are somehow compatible with, or maybe even a part of, the concept of free speech.
• Global warming is a fact, and scientific facts don’t exist.
• Diversity is automatically helpful, strengthening, etc.
• Blacks can’t be racists, and women can’t be sexists.
• Peace comes when the U.S. stops fighting because then the other side will automatically stop fighting, too. Also, all problems in the world are caused by the United States.
• Islam is a religion of peace, Muslims were never imperialists or had slaves, etc.
• ISIS and other similar groups can’t be genuinely Islamic.
• There’s a Republican war on women, but no Islamic war on women.
• People who come from a part of the world where homosexuality is illegal nevertheless can be trusted to support gay marriage.
• Muslims are a race, or if not that, then it is nevertheless appropriate to call those who hate them “racist.”
• They (that is, those on the left afflicted with this new stupidity) are rebels against an entrenched conservatism that dominates the corridors of power instead of being agents of the New Establishment.
Notice that here I am not including their disgusting moral views, such as the belief that all climate skeptics should be put in jail or that no one should criticize Muslims. I am just including their beliefs about the facts.
Unfortunately, I don’t know of any words to describe this group of people. They themselves have all sorts of words to describe the conservatives they hate whom they think stupid: redneck, hayseed, yokel, hick, bumpkin, etc. But what does one call this new breed of stupid people? The great educated but unwashed? Urban bumpkins? Cosmopolitan chumps? Sophisticated suckers? The worldy-but-stupid? Postmodern patheticals?