The Arrogance Of Ignorance
by Larry Turner

The title of this article is about the only accurate way to describe the behavior of certain people who, in complete disregard for all and everyone else, proceed to do what pleases themselves without considering the consequences.  Or, as defined in the dictionary, their action is the epitome of an “offensive display of superiority or self-importance.”  In other words, arrogance.

Ignorance, on the other hand, as used here is not a lack of brains; it is the absence of knowing how to act or react in certain situations because of a lack of awareness, information or learning.  If someone is ignorant about the subject being discussed or about the matter at hand yet pontificates or proceeds as though extremely learned about the subject or matter, that ignorance manifests itself as arrogance.

A few examples: 

  • The friend who advises what medications you should take for your malady before understanding the medical problem being endured
  • The pundit who adopts a political position before understanding the full ramifications of such a position
  • Celebrities who endorse a person for political office without knowing that person’s background
  • Drivers who roll through stop signs putting pedestrians and other cars at risk because they expect them to stop as instructed
  • Restaurant customers who blithely float past tables without protective face masks regardless of endless signs and flyers requiring everyone not at a table to wear such protection

It seems that ignorance fuels a level of confidence because the possible ramifications are not considered or understood thereby leading one to the appearance of arrogance in the moment.