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Topic subjectGood Question
Topic URLhttp://board.okayplayer.com/okp.php?az=show_topic&forum=22&topic_id=4508&mesg_id=4525
4525, Good Question
Posted by Nettrice, Sat Jul-05-03 04:49 AM
>What real benefit is there to knowledge over ignorance?

The best I can explain knowledge vs ignorance is through family. Quitters and campers stop climbing, while climbers keep going. What I realized as a kid was that I was happiest when I did my own thing and was able to keep learning, expressing myself and teaching. In my case, vision involved the production of information and knowledge, providing access and opportunities for people through arts and technology. I had to be open, emotionally aware, knowledgeable and prepared to handle change or adversity in order to feel free. Personal freedom is about being open to "knowledge", defiance of the status quo and determination to climb.

Freedom has everything to do with ethics, democracy and civic courage. A being that had all his/her personal needs met can become a productive individual. Otherwise, they are more likely to stagnate, engage in unethical activities, resist change and sink with the ship, so to speak.

--------Background (if you care to read more):

I've been unable to convince my father that education had any real impact over my life and since he is an extremely closed, stubborn, mostly uneducated man, he is unwilling to know anything about my accomplishments. He literally closes his ears and eyes. Last Easter I spoke to him by phone because his wife tricked me into calling him. He wanted to know why his daughters never called or visited him. He was in great emotional pain and only his wife knew about it.

See, my father figured that, as a Black man, he did not have a chance in the educational system, so he decided that school was worthless. He dropped out of high school and joined the Army only to discover that the Army was not place for a Black man. He went AWOL. He was 17 when I was conceived and he married my mother, a college educated intellectual. He became a postal worker and worked that job for over 30 years. He was bitter about working for The Man but needed to take care of his children.

My mother was a very bright, college bound, woman who loved education. She instilled that love into my sister and I, as she struggled to raise us on her own. She worked as a computer programmer so that we could have a good education and we excelled in our different paths. I spent a lot of time with my father in my pubescent years. He was proud of us but concerned because we were girls, Black girls. If the system was no place for a Black man, it certainly was hostile to Black women and he wanted us to finish high school, get married and have babies. College was optional. I was determined to do my thing and defy him because I had a vision.

In this case, knowledge is the ability to master your own personal goals, your own reality. There is no hope if you are conditioned to be a victim, a pawn of the system. Ignorance is fear and suffering. This is the life my father lived.