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Which holds greater bias: classism or racism?

  1. Feb 10, 2010 #1
    Are social classes more or less surmountable than racial identity?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 10, 2010 #2
    i say social classes are harder to surmount. people of a certain class always seem to find each other. they know each other by instinct, and can easily spot fakers. take Donald Trump for instance. he's coveted "class" his whole life, but has never seemed to attain it because he equates it with money. sure, he's good at making money, but has he ever really crossed that cultural barrier he aspires to? i don't think so. it's not who he is.
  4. Feb 10, 2010 #3
    I would imagine racism. How much more bias can you be than to dislike or look down upon a person for no reason other than the colour of their skin?

    Unless there is an incredibly large gap between persons the ability to identify one as being of a lower or upper class is mostly wishful thinking. I've met a millionaire that dressed in jeans, flannels, and cowboy boots. He drove a sensible pickup truck and you could often see him whittling outside of the coffee house I worked at. Rarely ever talked about money or let on that he might be any more than comfortably retired on a pension. I've also met people that were poor primarily because they spent all of their money on having a nice car and nice clothes and such. People working for not much more than minimum wage that drove around in a Lexus with nice clothes, a gold watch, and wearing expensive cologne.
  5. Feb 10, 2010 #4


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    I would say that racism is a much greater hurdle.

    If someone judges you on the color of your skin or the slant of your eyes, nothing you can do can change that.

    If it's just a matter of getting in with snobs, you can learn how to fool them. The old rich doesn't mean much anymore in western countries. Money gets you accepted now. There isn't as much snobbery around "nouveau riche" now as in the past. Celebrity rich and flash in the pan rich is all you need in greedy circles now. No one knows what having "class" or "etiquette" is anymore. It's all been thrown out the window.
  6. Feb 11, 2010 #5
    Classism is much stronger than racism though. An adopted non white gets almost as little "racism" as whites.
  7. Feb 11, 2010 #6
    Any statistics? I tried to look but adoption statistics pages are difficult to wade through and usually not very specific.

    I did find though that apparently the system itself is racist when it comes to interracial adoption.
  8. Feb 11, 2010 #7
    It doesn't matter with which wall we bang our head... finally it hurts
  9. Feb 11, 2010 #8
    Considering I make below the poverty line, I have much more in common with other races that are in my own class than I do with people of my own race in the middle class or upper class. My 2 best friends(one I went to Iraq with and the other who was military with a combat background) are of another race but all can tell relate to similar previous experiences. I would say classism. Though I would love to see a study on this.
  10. Feb 11, 2010 #9


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    I would say that racism is stronger than classism, at least today. But racism is quickly becoming unfashionable,* while classism is roughly as popular now as ever (at least in my view). So perhaps after a few generations, as not-openly-racist generations give way to largely-not-racist generations, classism will become more of a problem. I would view that as a success of great magnitude.

    * N.B., _not_ the same as disappearing.
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