Anti Authority Irony

Traits of Borderline Pers. Disorder that seemsto be very, very common among adults in this current cultural era, (with or without BPD diagnosis), are being hyper-defensive and automatically rebellious against anyone who seems to have even the slightest hint of "authority". Even an air of confidence from a peer can set off this "rebellion". Many who exhibit this trait seem appear to feel entitled and quite self-righteous in "knocking someone off their high horse".
The criteria used to discern whether a person is arrogant or vain is often extremely superficial and not evidence of anything untoward at all; sometimes even being construed completely reversed (a person who is genuinely humble and gracious may be misconstrued as the most arrogant and self-centered in the group).
For example the woman at work who sits quietly at her desk, who is not outspoken or boastful, is polite to everyone who speaks to her, and who is the sole caregiver for a disabled relative when she's not at work is perceived and painted as "that stuck-up lady".

Often, a person showing signs of confidence, conviction, knowledge, skill, experience, creativity, strength or happiness is construed as being "stuck up", arrogant, a know-it-all or a "show off". After such labels have been stamped on them, the labels serve as a justification to treat them with disrespect or even abuse.

This developmental stage can be seen in certain times during childhood development, when a young person is feeling insecure about their own worth, capability, and potential. When a person stays in this stage for any number of reasons, they can become an adult who continually seeks others who they think need to be "knocked down a few notches" or "put in their place", or "owned".

This feeling of a very high, almost magical ability to discern haughtiness and agenda in others is ironic.

When acted on, this can become behavior that can manifest as very unhealthy interactions with others, such as bullying or other forms of domination, slander, triangulation, gaslighting, even sabotage.

Western culture at large seems to show a significant increase in these traits in the adult population over the last couple of decades, and seems to be increasing instead of decreasing.