Uncritical is a term that is not part of the dictionary. Instead, the critical adjective appears, which can refer to the moment of a crisis or to the subjective comment that includes a judgment or an assessment of something.
The concept of uncritical, in this way, is used to describe what does not have a critical perspective. Typically, the notion is linked to the fact of accepting, in a passive way, a certain discourse or an event the way it is presented.
Suppose a journalist must report on a government measure that involves a cut in the education budget. When presenting the news, he merely reproduces the president’s announcement and mentions that the cut will represent a saving of 20 million pesos for the State. As can be seen, the journalist offers an uncritical report: he does not analyze the scope of the authorities’ measure and does not mention its negative aspects. A journalist with a critical sense, on the other hand, would say that the budget cut will impact on the quality of education since schools will have difficulties maintaining their structure, incorporating technology or acquiring study materials.
To describe a journalist or a social analyst as uncritical, therefore, supposes a negative consideration towards the professional in question. In certain environments, the individual is expected to have a critical view of what they have to analyze or report; otherwise, it will only provide a sweetened, biased view.
When we speak of uncritical thinking, on the other hand, we are referring to a way of connecting with reality that is not based on analysis or the search for explanations, that does not follow a particular methodology or large-scale objectives. In other words, we can say that moving through life with this way of treating information is synonymous with living passively.
In the example of the journalist who reproduces the news without leaving space for his own point of view, there is a clear lack of empathy for the people who would be affected by the budget cut. While the work of journalists should always focus on information and not opinion, it is also important to engage with reality on a human level, because the public only trusts them if they realize that they are not mere repeaters of events but living beings, people who feel the words they speak, who are able to put themselves in the place of others.
But outside the field of journalism, the uncritical way of being is not well regarded, very typical of individuals who do not feel self-confident and therefore avoid all forms of direct speech. When we tell a problem to our friends, or when we share a news of our interest with them, we usually wait for a committed response from them, a comment that comes from having received the message, prepared a small analysis and issued an authentic opinion. When this does not happen, communication is impoverished, since it becomes one-way.
Like almost all aspects of our behavior, the critical sense must develop through a series of stimuli during the first years of upbringing. It is essential to teach children to make their own decisions, to judge all the situations they face in order to build their own points of view; It is always easier to correct or straighten out the wrong ideas than to get an idea to emerge in the face of an uncritical attitude. If we show the little ones that their opinion is worth, that we want to know what they think, then over time they will begin to express themselves spontaneously.