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Why is stereotypical thinking dangerous?

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Hillbilly’s Elegy is the first book by Jay Dee Vance, who has come a long way – from the marginalized environment of a small town in the middle of nowhere to a successful lawyer’s career. She talks about those who in the United States are called “rednecks”. Their manners and habits are terrible, and the chances of achieving the American Dream are extremely slim. The author’s life refutes these stereotypes. The book became one of the main bestsellers and received positive reviews from Bill Gates, Peter Thiel, Wall Street Journal, New York Post, Booklist.

We also highly recommend JD Vence’s book or our sprint on it for reading. His life experience is incredibly inspiring, helps you not to give up in the face of any difficulties and gives you the belief that any goals are achievable, if you just want to.

In this article of ours, we will talk about how JD overcame stereotypical thinking and what results he eventually achieved.

JD Vance, after graduating from high school, wondered which college to choose. At the same time, offers for education loans began to arrive by mail. She and her grandmother pondered for a long time which one to choose, consulted with relatives who knew no more about financial intricacies than they did, until finally one of the elderly relatives gave Vance good advice. She said that it would be nice for him to grow up in the army. And he enlisted in the Marine Corps for 4 years.

After finishing the service (my grandmother had already died by that time) I entered a local college, and then thought about the university. All the teachers around me advised you to choose something simpler and closer to home, because universities like Yale and Stanford are designed for young people from a different class. They are not available to ordinary people because of the high cost of training.

American Hillbilly are residents of the American hinterland, from which Jay Dee Vence just miraculously managed to get out. But Vance decided to give it a try and sent a letter to Yale. A few days later, the dean of the admissions office called him back and offered a special low-cost program for low-income students. Its price was lower than in the nearby simpler universities, which were recommended by the college teachers.

And Vance realized that most people do not even try any new opportunities, because they are sure in advance of where they belong and what they are worth. But you can check this only by experience, and not by gaining ideas about your group. Even college professors were convinced that their wards were barred from reaching the best universities in the country, based on misconceptions. As it turned out, Yale is one of the most democratic universities with many programs for low-income students, but no one even bothered to ask about it.

Surely the story of JD Vence’s life will be familiar to each of us. The same goes for stereotypical thinking. Think how many times in your life you had a chance to change something, but you did not use it, because you thought that this “life path” was not available to you: because you did not have money, connections, education, etc.?

In conclusion, I would like to quote the words of Jay Dee:

Stop blaming external forces for your misfortunes – the government, neighbors, bosses, family, and so on – and ask yourself how to fix what you don’t like, then you will take the first step towards a better life. This applies to any person, in whatever country he lives. After reading the life story of J.D. Vence, we now understand that we simply no longer have excuses for showing weaknesses and complaints about life.

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