One statement that Trump made was

“We won the evangelicals. We won with young. We won with old. We won with highly educated. We won with poorly educated. I love the poorly educated.”

The sentence "I love the poorly educated" has been frequently mocked online. As Trump's shtick consists of making lots of controversial statements, I know that lots of his statements will be criticised, but why this one?

  • @blip - The question (at least the way it seems to me) asks for reasons of an existing fact. Don't see any attack on anyone personally in it. Hell, I can easily argue that it's showing EITHER side in bad light, depending on which side pays me more to argue their way </IAINAL> – user4012 Mar 15 '16 at 17:32
  • @user4012 which 'fact' are we talking about? That Trump said something? If so, that was my point. Trump says things unfiltered. That's why most of his statements are criticized (and arguably also why he's doing so well). – user1530 Mar 15 '16 at 17:37
  • @blip - he did say this (I guess. I am trusting the quote in the question). And people mocked him. Both are facts, with no air quotes. (tangentially, as far as "unfiltered", that's your personal opinion. The same data can be equally explained by him deliberately wanting to sound controverctial to achieve a couple different goals; OR as a deliberate political tactics - gaining media attention at the expense of competitors. I've even seen it exlained as a deliberate strategy). – user4012 Mar 15 '16 at 17:41
  • @user4012 sure, no arguments with any of that. – user1530 Mar 15 '16 at 18:04

First, let's see his complete statement:

(...) We won the evangelicals. We won with young. We won with old. We won with highly educated. We won with poorly educated. I love the poorly educated. We’re the smartest people, we’re the most loyal people, and you know what I’m happy about? Because I’ve been saying it for a long time. 46% were the Hispanics—46%, No. 1 one with Hispanics. I’m really happy about that.

Now, let's see some interpretations of what he said and them some explanations:

From this article, that criticizes who is mocking this phrase:

Of course Trump loves poorly educated voters. Who else would be asinine enough to buy his tripe?

According to this other, from Huffington Post (another article critical of the negative interpretation of his phrase, as a kind of prejudice against poorly educated people):

On the surface, Trump's pronouncement seems to confirm the worst fears of his critics: of course he loves poorly educated voters! Why else would anyone support someone whose policy platform preys upon those driven by ideology, a platform that cannot withstand even minimal scrutiny?


Perhaps it is because attacking the poorly educated has become a kind of American sport.

Marco Rubio used this phrase against Trump:

"That's really what Donald Trump is all about. He thinks we're fools."

In this another article,

Now, it's obviously unusual to call attention to your supporters' low level of education—it's normally a seen-not-heard situation. But Trump, who graduated from an Ivy League school, also seems to be putting himself in this group. We're smart and loyal, he says to his kindred spirits, We're just proud Americans with common sense. Trump also has plenty of reason to love the less-educated: the half of voters without a college degree he took in Nevada (including 57 percent of those with no college at all) was right in line with what he's been doing across the country.

So, the negative interpretation is, first, that Trump loves "poorly educated people" because they would be easily convinced to vote for him, in an assumption that these "poorly educated people" will be "dumber" that people with more instruction (I'm not saying they're, but it's implicit in the argument). So he's admitting that his proposals are not so good, and that individuals who are able to properly understand about politics will be less prone to vote for him. However, according to the interpretation in the Huffington Post article, this is an implicit prejudice against the "poorly educated".

Also, it's not clear who is "we" in "We’re the smartest people, we’re the most loyal people", but an interpretation (the one of the Esquire article) is that this "we" is the "poorly educated". So, according to this interpretation, he is not only falsely including himself in this group but also saying that education makes a people less smart and less loyal; this can be seen as an anti-intellectual view.

So, it seems that the statement is mainly mocked as an admission that less educated people will easily vote for him, and as an anti-intellectual prejudice.

| improve this answer | |
  • 8
    @Era Both parties value their goals over science. For example, see scientificamerican.com/article/the-liberals-war-on-science -- they just have different things that they think are too important to believe the scientific answer. In the Democrats' case, these tend to be environmental and social justice issues. And note that some Trump issues are also Sanders issues. In particular, his views on trade. Or consider the "Bubba" image of Bill Clinton. Anti-intellectualism is not limited to one party. – Brythan Mar 14 '16 at 2:22
  • 1
    Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. – Sam I am says Reinstate Monica Mar 16 '16 at 3:25

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .