by Emily Luong
Here’s the deal, people suck. We know this. Racism is alive and well people, and tensions are only getting higher.
We’ve been fighting racism for too long, but at least we acknowledge that as a problem. Classism, however, is quite invisible to most people. This is basically prejudice against or in favor of people of a particular social class. Classism is embedded into our society, and racism is still lingering… but we’re gonna change that.
- Educate yourself on how issues regarding race and class are almost always intertwined. It’s not a secret that white employees make significantly more money than black employees, or that white housing applicants are significantly more likely to get accepted than black applicants. Do some research and get the facts.
- Make it clear to yourself that patterns within race and class aren’t always the same. NOT ALL BLACK PEOPLE ARE LOWER CLASS. NOT ALL WHITE PEOPLE ARE UPPER CLASS. White people CAN be below the poverty line, and black people CAN be largely successful. Do not succumb to assuming stereotypes.
- Educate others who are ignorant. We all have that one friend who says things that make the rest of us a bit uncomfortable. Call them out on it. Don’t allow them to make it normal to tear anyone down using racist and classist words. If you’ve literally tried everything in your power to teach this friend how to be a decent human being and nothing works, keep trying (Unless they’re 100% hopeless, then you have permission to sacrifice them to a cult).
- Be kind. People can say whatever they want about you. They’ll call you hurtful things like “ghetto,” “bum,” “hood rat,” “gold digger,” “redneck,” etc. Do not, under any circumstances, stoop down to their level; be the bigger person. Fighting back with positivity and kindness might anger them even more, but at least you and everyone else will know that the slurs used against you are just that, and in no way represent you as a person. Hold your head up high and keep striving for success, because that’s the best way to prove these guys wrong.
- Change the way you personally think and speak about race and class. Maybe you yourself have jokingly used an aforementioned slur a few times among friends, it doesn’t automatically make you a bad person. Just don’t do it anymore. It’s never too late to make yourself a better person. Cut out these words from your vocabulary so that you aren’t offending anybody who may be struggling with racism and classism.
Now take this information and…