View Full Version : American insults

03-19-2009, 02:26 AM
Can anyone suggest perjorative terms that might be used against poor, white Americans? The nastier the better. The only ones I can think of are trailer trash or white trash.


03-19-2009, 02:33 AM
Cracker? Redneck? Hick*?

* Hick might actually be just used in Canada.

03-19-2009, 02:37 AM
wife beater wearin' redneck

03-19-2009, 02:40 AM
Goober grabber.

Kitty Pryde
03-19-2009, 02:44 AM
hick works in the US too. don't forget 'poor white trash'.
IMO the nastiest one is wigger or wigga

Chiquita Banana
03-19-2009, 03:12 AM
Depending on who's saying it and where they live, you could use

scrub - fairly widespread
gringo - if it's a Latino/Latina saying it
inbred redneck - probably only in the rural areas
common - in the south

and my favorite:

hooiser - but only if your story takes place in St. Louis, MO.

From Wikipedia:

in St. Louis a "Hoosier is a low-life redneck, somebody you can recognize because they have a car on concrete blocks in their front yard and are likely to have just shot their wife who may also be their sister."

Kitty Pryde
03-19-2009, 03:22 AM
OMG WHO IS HATING ON HOOSIERS? I object to this thread. There have been many fine upstanding Hoosiers!
ahem, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_from_Indiana

and, ME! :P

03-19-2009, 03:28 AM
Depends on region, era and livestock, but you might try:

dirt farmer
(insert species here) f**ker

Be creative.

03-19-2009, 04:02 AM
Honestly, the only ones you're most likely to hear in common, modern conversation would be redneck, hillbilly, or white trash.

Redneck -- is almost a compliment in some circles. (I call myself a redneck on a regular basis, or I'll describe my house -- which is a doublewide, and has chickens and goats in the yard -- as, "A bit redneck.")

Redneck just pretty much implies you're blue collar, working-class, down-to-earth, you don't live in tract housing, and you've probably eaten wild game at some point in your life. ;-) It can be used as an insult, but the insult-ee may well laugh it off if they are a redneck. ("You're a redneck!" "... and proud of it!")

(The biggest fans I know of Jeff Foxworthy are rednecks.)

Hillbilly -- fairly insulting among the circles I travel in. "You're a dirty old hillbilly ..." implies you're uneducated, probably don't have indoor plumbing, live in a tar paper shack, and you married your cousin. OTOH, there's folks who'd consider "hillbilly" a compliment too -- depends on where you're from.

Trailer/white trash -- similar to hillbilly, but white trash can live in the city. You might describe a stereotypical welfare mom with six kids by six different men "white trash" ...

"Welfare mom" is another insult, BTW, that I hear tossed around sometimes.

William Haskins
03-19-2009, 04:05 AM

03-19-2009, 04:18 AM
Oh, a few more just occurred to me, that are not necessarily racially linked, but are pretty much fighting words:

crack whore/stoner/tweaker (obviously, describing drug addicts -- "they're just a bunch of stoners")

'ho (whore) -- usually in the context of something like, "That dirty old 'ho ..."

baby mama ("His baby mama's after him for child support again ...")

sperm donor (Describing a good-for-nothing man, usually the former boyfriend of the baby mama -- can be applied to a man of any race, obviously)

oh, and, *grin*, "bum" -- which doesn't mean what it means in the UK. "dirty old bum" "useless old bum" -- bum means a useless, unemployed man, generally homeless or about to be. "My old man's just a dirty old bum."

"Old man" -- can mean either a father or a husband, depending on context. Can be insulting, or at least, not very respectful.

03-19-2009, 05:18 AM
Pretty much universal but questioning a guy's manliness is insulting. Suggesting a guy sits down to pee (the Germans use sitzpinkler). Urbandictionary.com is probably overkill but has quite a selection. Look up words like "wimp" and you'll see related words above the definitions.

03-19-2009, 05:36 AM
Rube for Reuben, once a common farmer's name.

Chiquita Banana
03-19-2009, 06:24 AM
OMG WHO IS HATING ON HOOSIERS? I object to this thread. There have been many fine upstanding Hoosiers!
ahem, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_from_Indiana

and, ME! :P

Sorry Kitty Pryde!! I don't think I explained it well enough. St. Louisans don't hate on people from Indiana or anything of the sort. The term hooiser in St. Louis applies specifically to rednecks/hicks who were born & bred & live in St. Louis - or more likely on the outskirts.

Sorry again :)
Chiquita, who originally hails from the Corn Belt

03-19-2009, 06:37 AM
Okie - archaic now?

03-19-2009, 07:17 AM
...not many branches in that family tree...

...his wife weighs more than his pickup...

Sign of affluence: a double-seater outhouse

03-19-2009, 07:55 AM
Trailer trash


Honky (very dated)

White Bread

White Devil (archaic also - but there's a character in the movie 'Undercover Brother' who does a wonderful job with the phrase).

The best white people insults I know are in Spanish, and they're specific (as far as I know) to Southern California.



03-19-2009, 09:33 AM
PLEASE don't use "White Devil." You just know people are going to get an image of Ace Ventura in their heads. (For those who've seen that movie, anyway.)

03-19-2009, 09:06 PM
I remember someone describing a poor country family by saying, "You could practically hear 'Dueling Banjos' in the background." Which is a reference to Deliverance, which . . . er, does not paint country folk in a good light.

I agree that "white trash" and "trailer trash" are pretty common. Around here we also have "ridge-runner," but that's pretty specific to East Tennessee.

ETA: Oh, and I once heard "white n****r." That kind of sentiment makes the name-caller look a lot worse than the target, though, so I'd only use that one if you want to make the insulter seem like a complete and total tool.


03-20-2009, 12:24 AM
I'm an Okie, and here are some of your more common insults from the Panhandle:

shitheel (implies you're so freshly off the range, you still have shit on your boots)
hayseed (implies you're a dirt farmer)
goatfucker (self-explanatory :D)
barnyard romeo (see above)
okie (what can I say? The truth hurts)

03-20-2009, 01:15 AM
Here in Oregon (also known as Boregon) urban dwellers refer to country folks as "farmers" (which sails right over the heads of those who farm) and "nimrods." That one sailed over my head, as I hunt for food and recognize the positive biblical reference.

The other side of those insults are we hicks in the sticks refer to city dwellers as "townies" and "slickers." Didn't I say this was Boregon?

Where I grew up in Montana, anyone stupid was a North Dakotan.

03-20-2009, 03:04 AM
As a side note, many insults are regional and in most states, people insult the folks from one or more of the border states. In Minnesota, they insult folks from Iowa and Wisconsin. Illinois also insults Wisconsin. Iowa insults Missouri and Missouri insults Arkansas. New Youkers insult folks from New Jersey. Etc, etc, etc. Northerners consider most southerners to be uneducated, stupid, overweight and politically ignorant.

Clair Dickson
03-20-2009, 03:13 AM
In Michigan, we insult people from other parts of the state. =) (Yoopers vs. Trolls.)

To respond to the above, some people try to be wiggers. I've got a bunch of students who think they so bad because they're wiggers... from a small whitebread town. But they're so proud of being wiggers.

I'd say white trash is probably the most universal as far as white insults go. You can add inbred, dumb, poor, and country/ghetto to enhance it as applicable.

03-20-2009, 04:16 AM

Religious slurs:
Bible thumper
on the God squad

03-20-2009, 04:44 AM
Thanks for all the replies :Thumbs:, and the explanations. I had heard rube and shitheel before but didn't know where they originate from.

I like "welfare mom", that fits one of my WIP characters nicely.

03-20-2009, 06:56 AM
We used to call the poor kids "pig farmers", which had nothing to do with farming, porcine or otherwise, just that they had shit on their shoes.

Check out urban dictionary. You'll find all the insults you need.

03-20-2009, 06:58 AM

03-20-2009, 07:16 AM
I'm going to steal that one. Goatfuckers. That is absolutely classic.

03-20-2009, 09:34 PM
A new one came on the scene last Fall - Wasillabilly

03-20-2009, 09:41 PM
In addition to wigger, I've heard acting 'ghetto'

03-21-2009, 05:10 AM
hick works in the US too. don't forget 'poor white trash'.
IMO the nastiest one is wigger or wigga

Honky?! That doesn't mean white trash, that just means white (as opposed to black). It's insulting, but it's solely racist, not classist.

Oh, but here's an insult I didn't see mentioned: "inbreds" (they're just a bunch of inbreds, look at that inbred...). I heard that used in Vermont a lot to describe poor white country folks.

03-21-2009, 06:58 AM
*coughs quietly*

Remember we're in Story Research, please, not OP. Don't make me go all modly on you please. You wouldn't like me when I'm modly.

03-25-2009, 03:23 AM
White trash.

But, I very rarely hear anyone say "hick" or "redneck" anymore as an insult...