image by megantrace
Snobbery, in simple terms, means thinking you or your beliefs are superior than someone else’s. Before you get on your high horse and tell me what a wonderful, equality-loving human being you are, I can assure you that you are at least a little bit of a snob. Everyone is. Unless you are a saint, but as we have established before, saints really don’t read this blog.
Part of being human is accepting our prejudices. Simply by having opinions we are prejudicing against certain groups or people. It’s not about right or wrong. It’s about differences. My right may be your wrong.
To take an extreme example, Bin Laden probably didn’t think he was wrong. So from his point-of-view, by thinking of him as a murdering extremist and a slayer of innocents, we may be prejudicing against him. Do you think you are a better person than Bin Laden? Probably. So do I. That makes us snobs in his and his cronies’ eyes.
Now a more normal example. I am a total city girl. Like, 1000%. I don’t mind a short visit to the country (though preferably only where there is decent accommodation, and ideally paved tracks, and no wild animals), but a home in the country is not something I aspire to. Even worse are the small towns, which in my opinion have disadvantages of both. They don’t offer the beauty of countryside, and don’t offer the conveniences of a big city. So I’m a city snob. Not just a city snob. A big city snob. I don’t even like small cities!
Does that mean that those of you who enjoy living in small cities, or villages, or the mountain caves, are wrong? Of course not. But it might make you weird, in my opinion. Just as wanting to live in cities like London and New York makes me weird in the eyes of some of my more nature-loving friends, who can’t understand why anyone would want to live in dirty, noisy places and pay a fortune in rent in return for space that is probably not that much bigger than Harry’s cupboard-under-the-stairs. Okay, maybe slightly bigger. But only slightly.
I’m not ashamed of this snobbery, and neither should you be, just as long as you are not imposing your beliefs on someone else or hurting other people. Our opinions make us individuals. If we all agreed about everything, wanted the same things, and loved everything equally, then this would be one boring, mediocre world.
Most people understand, on a logical level, that people are different. Their needs are different, and that not everyone want the same lifestyle. But that’s when you are feeling logical. Your emotional side is what pushes the prejudices. It doesn’t necessarily make you a horrible person, as long as you are able to reign-in those prejudices and not hurt other people.
Each of us are unique, and part of that uniqueness means that not all of our traits would be compatible with other people. That’s okay. The world is not a conformist factory yet. We don’t all have to be the same.
Let that liberate you, and fess up about your personal snobberies in the comments below.