Carl writes, “…listen to Rachel Maddow. She is very smart, and certainly well-informed, and yet the core of her message is consistently to demonize anyone who disagrees on the basis of his or her ignorance and lack of sophistication.”
First, I agree that Rachel Maddow is very smart and well-informed. I disagree with the use of the term “demonize”. However, what exactly would you have Rachel do with those who disagree with her based on their ignorance? Applaud?
So, if someone accuses you of ignorance on any subject, there are two types of responses. You could educate yourself on the subject and respond from the point of actual knowledge, or you can console yourself with the thought that what you know on any topic is just as good as what anyone else knows. The modern hillbilly right winger seems to have developed an attitude, fostered by Fox “fake” News, talk radio, and alt-right websites such as Breitbart or the Drudge report, that their simple opinion on any topic is just as good as any so called expert. Now, I do have to admit that given this attitude, any condescension from Maddow would only make them upset. Instead of condescension, what they really need is a kick in the ass.
What Trump’s election tells us is that a large portion of the voters no longer value education or development of expertise. Anyone can do anything just as well as the well educated and experienced. Belief is all that matters. And the product of that mind set is…chaos.