Food for thought.... Why Is It Still OK To 'Trash' Poor White People? When poor (or formerly poor) white folks do get portrayed in the media and pop culture, they're often reduced to a series of offensive stereotypes: that they're angry, lazy, dirty, overweight, sunburned, stupid, racist, alcoholic, abusive, jobless, tacky, diseased, violent, backwards, Bible-thumping and uneducated. Those stereotypes get reinforced over and over again on TV and in movies, as anyone who watched Here Comes Honey Boo Boo or Duck Dynasty will tell you. other slurs, there has been some reclamation of "white trash" — songs and cookbooks and T-shirts that celebrate white-trash culture. And plenty of people unabashedly refer to themselves as white trash. But no matter who uses it, the phrase itself reinforces some pretty insidious ideas about the meaning of whiteness (and, by reflection, blackness — we'll get to that in a minute). By accepting the idea that white trash exists, people are tacitly accepting that there is another, different kind of whiteness. Normal white people — the ones who aren't white trash — embody all the things white trash can't: They're hardworking, educated, classy, kind and good. Anyone who doesn't conform to those values can't ever really be fully white. Hence, white trash. "The problem with the white trash reference is often ... it becomes an easy way to dismiss a group and to generalize," Isenberg says.