“Don’t hate me because I’m rich”

26 Nov

The other day I found myself at a train station, bored out of my mind, and I spied ‘Grazia’ – the big fashion issue! – in the newsagent.  I had some spare change in my pocket which y’know I could’ve saved because I knew what would happen.  I’d buy it, flick through it in fifteen minutes at the most, then that would be that.  But I went against my better judgement and bought it, flicked through it in ten minutes and then that was that.  Only one article in particular piqued my interest – a piece by Catherine Pickering on the prejudice she gets for being rich.

This piece was actually in response to a blog by wealthy New York student, Rachel Sacks, who had written about the problems she faces as a rich girl which received a barrage of criticism.  I suppose I’ve been out of the loop with things so I hadn’t heard about this controversial blog entry, so I read the Grazia article with curiosity.

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I really did try and read it with an open-minded attitude and an impartial view.  I thought to myself, perhaps these girls really are victims of jealousy and insecurity from others – but before I even finished Pickering’s first paragraph, I knew where I stood, and it definitely wasn’t in their current season Manolo Blahnik’s.

Firstly, the tone of the piece is snobby, condescending and imbued with a misplaced sense of security.  Perhaps if it was written more sensitively, some of the points could have even be argued persuasively but, as it was, the whole thing came off as a whiny, spoilt rant.  Apparently, Rachel Sacks was inspired to write her entry after ‘getting attitude from a grocery-store cashier last month simply because she was carrying a Mulberry shopping bag.’  If this was the case, yes, I do think it’s wrong.  Casting judgments on people you don’t know based on superficial things is wrong.  Everyday I see plenty of people carrying Mulberry shopping bags but I don’t always assume that this is because they have been handed everything on a plate.  Indeed, most people work hard for their money and are allowed to treat themselves because, life’s short and you might as well enjoy yourself.  The sad fact is that everyone is judged by how they look.  While richer people may feel like they are victims of prejudice, poorer people are equally victims of prejudice in a consumer-driven world where the media makes you feel as though you’re practically a second rate citizen if you don’t keep up with the trends.

Pickering seems to be the queen of bitchy comments – when talking about a ‘working-class’ friend, she mentions that ‘she still hadn’t been abroad when we met and she was 21!’  She goes on to say that it isn’t her fault that she has ‘high standards’ and that this income disparity creates a gap in her friendships as ‘I often stick out like a sore thumb when we go out, dressed in my designer gear while everyone else is in high street.’  It is rather clear Pickering gets a kick out of distinguishing herself from everyone else so her flimsy protestations that she tries to understand her friends’ concerns about work or competing for a promotion are laughable.  She couldn’t try any less.  

And her comment that she ‘simply can’t relate’ to those less fortunate than her is not a concern reserved for the more financially fortunate than others.  It is reserved for those spoilt, vacuous and narcissistic beings like Pickering or Sacks, but that is not an issue to do with one’s wealth or lack of it, but rather of one’s complete and utter lack of class.

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One Response to ““Don’t hate me because I’m rich””

  1. stressingoutstudent November 26, 2013 at 2:47 am #

    … while I try to read things for myself before getting in a tizzy…

    I think I’d better refrain or else my desk will soon have a forehead-shaped dent on it.

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