2. Rankism afflicts individuals, groups, and nations. It distorts our personal relationships, erodes our will to learn, taxes our economic productivity, stokes ethnic hatred, and incites nations to war. It is the cause of dysfunctionality, and sometimes even violence, in families, schools, and the workplace. Over the course of history, the most common abuses of power have acquired special names: tyranny, corporate corruption, slavery, racism, sexism, rape, child abuse, domestic violence, lynching, sexual harrassment, clergy misconduct, homophobia. Each of these practices is an abuse of the weak by the strong. Each of these familiar named offenses is an instance of bullying, of pulling rank.