“What holds us together is our collective effort to ensure that every single person in our midst is valued beyond measure,” Davis’ email continued.
Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin both supported western expansion as a means of taking “white trash” elsewhere, Isenberg explained.“They argued that the poor would be drawn into the western territories, and this would alleviate high concentrations of poverty and population along the East Coast,” she said.
Unlike slurs about Irish or Jewish people, “white trash” seems to be saying more about class than ethnicity.
Nancy Isenberg told the history of American politics through the experiences of “white trash” to a packed Lewis Auditorium Thursday.
“We understand barriers to black advancement in America,” said Matt Wray, Temple University sociologist and author of .
“We don’t understand barriers to white advancement.” That’s why even liberals believe that they can use the term with impunity: Poor whites have only themselves to blame for not making it.