Poor people are pathetic, and rich people are shitheads, but there's really nothing wrong with middle class people, so I guess that's why everyone refers to themselves as middle class. It's a way of middling out. A way to keep from stepping on anyone else.
Of course, if you're so careful not to step on anyone else, you're not even going to end up making a footprint. Maybe a light toeprint, if you look hard enough, the spot where you danced around people's opinions too carefully. We're okay with that. We're okay with shirking the limelight, the thing that makes us noticeable and criticizable and murderable. We're okay with not being looked at. And that's a funny thing, I think. A funny thing that we're alright with that, with locking ourselves into middling positions and carrying on with our heads down.
We're afraid of being too stupid. Stupid people are ignorant. We're afraid of being too intelligent, too refined. Intelligent people are elitists. No, but you, you are just right. You are perfect right there, and don't move. Don't move an inch. We're afraid of our arrogance. Arrogance is too blunt, too forward, too abrupt. Too striking to others. We're afraid of reproach, to have to defend the roots of our arrogance to the other people who are also afraid of our arrogance. We're afraid of our arrogance and also of our modesty. We're afraid of the weakness of humility, the timidity and the smallness, because smallness does stand out in a crowd, despite what you think. Arrogance and timidity, they are both destructive things, and we try to avoid them both at least a little.
We're afraid of our own political left and the political right, because they are radical and crazy. The center is where our rationale is. That is the safe place where we can't be attacked. And then someone shows us the global scale, that our political left is the world's political center. And that might change things for us, but probably not, because the world is not our neighbors and our neighbors are who can attack us.
Our neighbors are who we have to defend against. They are constantly at the ready to attack, with their antagonizing looks and their loud silences with hasty conclusions in their brains. Mostly, we're probably defending against ourselves. Being afraid of not being rich, not being intelligent, not having other things too, is a powerful fear. It's a lucky thing that we have a middle ground, a place where we can keep from stepping on other people, and from being considered at all. Our neighbors can't attack us if we say we're middle class, firmly agnostic, politically independent. You can't attack what you cannot see.