A lot of times in America people get accused of elitism.

Elitism is inarguably not a virtuous trait to have. To espouse the view that certain people are worth more than others and therefore deserve more rights intrinsically is counter-productive and unethical.

But there is a problem with the American usage of word elitist. Even when used just internally in an average American's culture-impressioned brain, the following inversion of meaning is used. More often than not, and for many people exclusively, the word elitist is used out of envy. The average American calls someone elitist if they take care of themselves, if they keep their house clean, if they value free education, if they despise manipulative profit-driven entertainment (which includes some news, as they've labeled themselves entertainment). These feelings of envy these average Americans have, and their conclusion that they aren't elitist, turn into feelings of being a "grass roots" "salt of the Earth" charicature, as those are the actual antithetical attributes of someone who isn't elitist.

That is where the problem comes from. These people who are objectively physically and intellectually lazy, and practice poor hygiene both socially and within their house, try to grab these humble attributes for themselves because they have labeled others as elitist. Therefore, over time, it has been seen in American culture that partaking in practices that actually help you like exercise, reading, eating healthy, or even actual altruism and self-lessness is a sign of arrogant elitism. And it comes to be that all the opposites of those activities, i.e. sloth, trash TV binging, fast food based diets, and extreme individualism, have come to be seen as actual "every man" attributes that enable their exhibitors to be "good people" who can easily connect with others.

The final irony, and the result of this inversion of virtue, is that those attributes are not actually valued by average people in a natural way. When distanced from someone exhibiting them, your average guy will say that they don't like people who read and exercise, but in practice he will more likely find someone who does easier to be around and talk to. These angry illiterate sloths build conflict, hatred, and anxiety with one another way more often than they find comrarderie in their shared desolation.

So it is with American culture. A death spiral of Ants. Without direction, following irrational phermones towards a race to the bottom. Eventually destined to die of exhaustion.