I had always understood that noblesse oblige referred to the obligations that come with nobility.
Originally Posted by Wigwam Jones
What have you against monocles? I started wearing one because I'm strongly right-eyed and am losing ever more accommodation in that eye. If I close the left eye to assess a scene, I can barely see it with my right eye. Hence a monocle. Also a lot harder to lose than spectacles, because it's on a piece of string.
Then again, it's curious that some people see monocles as a class indicator. Or as another friend pointed out when I mentioned fencing at school, "The working classes don't fence."
Actually my grandfather was a miner (admittedly clay, not coal) and my great-grandmother on the other side joined the Communist Party in 1917 (admittedly when her father's iron foundry went broke through his unwise investments). Both facts seem to surprise some people.
Your point about condescension escapes me.
Don't fight elites -- join them!