Adam Borowski

On giving people a chance

Have you heard of a novel called, ”A Confederacy of Dunces?” Chances are you have. It’s an acclaimed novel by John Kennedy Toole. He died by suicide at the age of 31. The acclaimed novel was published 11 years after his death, thanks to the efforts of his mother – Thelma Toole. If it hadn’t been for her, his writing would have been forgotten. In a way, she saved his life. His universe.

There are two types of people in the world, essentially. The first type are the people who have already achieved a lot in life and now they are giving others a chance. When they see talent, even genius, these people aren’t threatened by it. Rather, they open doors for the talented person, they smooth the path. If the talented person becomes even more successful than the one who has opened the door for them, that’s even better.

Then, there’s the second type. The ones who are stuck in their ivory tower of self-importance, the ones who aren’t going to let anyone ”not important enough” near them. People sitting in their corporate offices, surrounded by secretaries and security. People who love a ritual for the sake of ritual – before sending anything to them, or meeting them, you need to fill out five hundred forms and talk to ten secretaries. And, even then, you have no guarantee these people are even going to be aware of your existence. They belittle, even destroy, anyone they see as a threat. Who do they see as a threat? Anyone who is more talented than they are. They are terrified of being dethrone and will use their social status to bury anyone with more potential than them. Nothing is off-limits.

Imagine a Palestinian child who is a brilliant writer, yet no one is ever going to see the child’s writing because the child was killed by a terrorist. How many children, indeed, how many adults, brilliant writers, brilliant mathematicians, or just brilliant minds, die around the world every day, killed by bombs and invaders? Geniuses who could have dazzled the world with their brilliance. Bestselling authors-in-the-making. But that isn’t going to happen. They are dead. No longer with us. And someone, somewhere, along the way, could have given them a chance. But it didn’t happen because a self-important gatekeeper ignored them or scorned them. Another life anonymous, another life wasted because of an insecure, little man who happens to have the power of decision-making.

I can only hope that, God willing, these troubled, yet genius, souls are now somewhere else, growing their talent and enjoying their journey through infinity.

About the Author
Adam Borowski is a technical Polish-English translator with a background in international relations and a keen interest in understanding how regime propaganda brainwashes people so effectively. He's working on a novel the plot of which is set across multiple realities. In the novel, he explores the themes of God, identity, regimes, parallel universes, genocide and brainwashing. His Kyiv Post articles covering a wide range of issues can be found at