We have all grown up in a society of presumptions, which grows stronger every passing day, considering that we are growing older and wiser. A major part of these presumptions revolve around the educational qualification (depicted by a sheet of paper) bestowed upon us as a means to inform the world that we hold a certain ‘degree’. And hence, we are ‘presumed’ to be literate, knowledgeable, rational and believers of principles which have a direct nexus with humanity.
However, this bubble of presumption is so toxic that it prevents us from observing and asking questions about several important issues that surround that ‘degree’. A few examples may be necessary here.
When someone flashes an MBBS degree in front of us, do we question whether they will be a firm supporter of ‘equality’ or whether they will stand up against female feticide? When someone says that they holds an LLB degree, do we question that whether they will follow the ‘truth’ and hence ensure that his clients do not commit perjury while deposing in a court of law?
Next in the line is the ‘degree’ of journalism. Do we question the holders of such a degree whether they value ‘right to privacy’ to an extent that will lead them to indulge in responsible journalism and not pursue it recklessly? When people inform the world that they are engineers, do we question if their feet are so firmly rooted that they won’t approve a faulty map of a bridge (if they have fallen in the pit of corruption)? Similarly, when people say that they are teachers, do we question if they guard themselves from indulging in favoritism amongst their students? For that matter, do we question movie directors if they are building a castle on nepotism?
If there are people who inform us that they are social workers, we question if they have kept themselves away from patriarchy? Do we question career or mind counsellors if they are free from orthodox prejudices themselves? When a group of people refer to themselves as historians, do we question if they seclude themselves from the incorrect, manipulative narratives that may lead to propaganda? If there are people who call themselves politicians, do we question if they value ‘freedom’ the most? The list can be endless.
The point worth noting is – yes, these presumptions are to some extent necessary for the smooth working of a society, but they are not enough. We have to look beyond the veil of degrees and have a peek into what principles form the personality of a particular person. So, the next time someone flashes their degrees in front of you, don’t be unnecessarily swayed or impressed. Instead, do assure and convince yourself if they are ‘functionally literate’ too.
Featured image used for representative purposes only.