Why We Need To Stop Smart Shaming

Why shame those who could potentially change the world?
by Isabela Secillano   |  Jun 25, 2016
Image: Clare Magno
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"Nerd," "geek," "know-it-all." These are just some of the terms that people call out who show a higher level of intellect. You'd think people would traditionally compliment them or praise them for their smart li'l brain but no, not in 2016. Smart shaming or anti-intellectualism is the act of mocking someone who is smarter than others. It's mind-boggling come to think of it. Aren't we supposed to encourage everyone to enhance their intelligence, not shame them? How can you be mocked just for studying a little harder, giving information a little more, reading a little longer or speaking your mind a little louder? Whatever the rationale behind this, nonetheless, it needs to be stopped. Why? Well I can give you a few reasons up my sleeves as to why we need to stop smart shaming.

  1. It discourages people to strive to be smarter.

If being smart is shamed, then why would people want to be one? It's threatening to know that people are actually refusing to show that their geeky side because of the thought that they might me mocked.  The inventor of the next best gadget might be in hiding all because we shun those who are intellectually gifted. Instead, we should recognize them for their outstanding knowledge and encourage them to flaunt it. Intelligence is a gift, not a curse. Let's not treat it like one.

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  1. It hinders people from expressing themselves freely.

There are probably a number of closet geeks in the world and we wouldn't know. It scares them to show how they really think and talk, when in reality, their opinions and ideas highly matter. The information they share can actually help but they don't get to do that due to their fear of being perceived as a know-it-all. Well, it's better to know-it-all, than know nothing. Am I, right?

  1. It puts a negative stereotype to the smart ones.

We all have that one classmate who's an overachiever. When we see her getting perfect grades in the hardest exams, we tend to think that she does nothing BUT STUDY perceiving her to be nerdy, weird and introverted. That isn't always the case though, we can't pin that stereotype to all people who we consider to be smart. A person can be academically excellent but be a social butterfly at the same time. These people have truly mastered time management and maybe it’s time the rest of us should do, too.

  1. It makes us think we're not smart enough.

You know what they say, the bully has been bullied before. Maybe one of the reasons why we shame someone for being smart is because we don't believe in our intellect enough and we think these people slap their knowledge in our faces. People need to stop thinking that they're not capable of being as smart as others. Remember, our faith in our capabilities makes us a better person.

  1. It confuses a person to pursue a passion.

You'd be surprised at how some people are very concerned about fitting in or being accepted. This means mocking a person's pursuit could eventually dismay her from going after what she really wants. Same goes with smart shaming, it can lead to people pursuing something they're not completely passionate about. We should realize that words are powerful, and it can seriously affect someone's life. Let's stop dishonoring the bright and the brilliant and allow them to shine as they were meant to.


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About the author
Isabela Secillano
Candymag.com Correspondent
I'm a 20-year old fashion girl who loves quirky adventures and dreaming big.
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