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View Diary: Food Pantry Notes: Your Self-Image (10 comments)

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  •  This is particularly telling. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jabney, ladybug53, sberel
    I learned the hard way that long-time friends and relations believe to the core of their beings that people who struggle must be bad. And that people who have money and straight teeth with sparkling eye glass lenses are inherently good and control their own destinies.

    We live in an "achievement ideology" culture -- the central tenet of that being, "If you're smart and you work hard, you'll be successful."

    Sounds cheery enough.  But the awful and necessary corollary is, "If you're not successful, you're either lazy or stupid."

    It's bad enough when successful people believe that.  It makes them callous and smug.  

    But what's even worse is that most unsuccessful people belief it too, especially in families that have been poor for generations.  (Paradoxically, I've read accounts where black youth were less affected by this self-blame; they felt their parents had been held back by racism, but they wouldn't be.)

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