Last night I dreamt of all things about the old show Head Of The Class. For those who don’t know this was a sitcom mid-late 80’s about this smart class. It has been rarely seen since it went off the air in 1991 I believe except briefly about 10 years ago on Nick At Nite. Why I would dream about it seems odd, considering I haven’t even seen it for about 10 years, except to say it got to me think about how smart kids become smart unemployable adults.
More than most of the shows I watched in that time this show related to my high school experience. That’s not to say it was my favorite show, I probably liked a few shows better, just that it dealt with an issue close to me: smart kids. See, in high school I was in honors courses myself and a few others I could have been in but chose not to. I had low self esteem back then and was convinced I was stupid and ugly though in reality this wasn’t the case. However it was discovered I had an extremely high IQ and needed to be with other smart kids. One of my classmates is now a plastic surgeon to the stars and another is a rocket scientist. However, for as many smart people in my classes and how many went on to be successful what I find interesting is how many didn’t. Many went on to menial jobs, others work in fields that don’t require degrees and quite a few women went on to become stay at home moms. I’ll discuss this topic in another thread.
Getting back though to the smart kid issue and what disturbs me is how as a society we do not value smart people, especially women. We make fun of smart women who aren’t attractive. Smart men are not picked on as much but in movies they are often the blunt of jokes. However when it comes to employers they often don’t want smart people. When I hear the word “overqualified” my first thought was “too smart”. There was a case where a cop wasn’t hired because he had a higher score than the police department wanted. I personally know far more unemployed lawyers, PH.Ds and people with Masters than I do high school dropouts. They use the excuse “they are too qualified” but it’s really they want people they can control. Smart people aren’t as easily controlled. This is also why they give psych tests to see those people they can control. Employers claim they can’t find skilled people but this is a ruse to bring in people from other countries.
I wonder if the these fictional students were real students would they be in the same situation as someone like me, competiting for the few skilled jobs with morons (who get the jobs)or the unskilled jobs, or would they be successful? I would place a bet that they would be like me or the majority of my smart classmates who are either working for themselves or unemployed/underemployed. Losing jobs to a stupid frat boy who happens to be the son of a rich guy. We had one of these for president and look how well things turned out (sarcasm)and currently have another one running for president and could win if the economy stays terrible.
It says a lot about our society when we have highly qualified people being rejected for people who barely graduated high school or college.