Why are the "scary breeds of choice" for poor people pit bull-types, Cane Corsos, Presa Canarios, and similar breeds?
Why do wealthier people interested in "scary breeds" generally choose German Shepherds, Dobermans, Belgian Malinois, and so on?
My theory is that the popularity of dogfighting breeds among low-income people is a holdover from when dogfighting was popular. A dog that looks like it could win a fight signifies wealth (having the money to buy it, and then more money made at fights, and possibly even more through breeding). Dogfighting is theorized to appeal to low-income people because it gives them a sense of power and status they do not hold otherwise due to their poverty (thanks, capitalism). Pit bull-type breeds are also readily available at a low cost from backyard breeders or shelters, which also makes them cheap to obtain. I think these dogs also appear "manly" to many owners, who may also value overt masculinity as a means of gaining status and authority.
On the other side, in the modern era, breeds such as German Shepherds and Malinois are most associated with bourgeois institutions: the police and the military. They are known for their intelligence, obedience, and trainability, and have not been popular in dogfighting. Wealthy people often highly value their intelligence, and are likely to choose dog breeds with similar characteristics to themselves. Their intelligence is also primarily their way of gaining power over others (just as poor people may use aggression), so an intelligent breed is an extension of their financial status. Such breeds often also epitmize "the perfect worker" in capitalism. Actually bourgeois people may seek breeds they can easily replicate their relationships with their workers with, but with none of the subconscious understanding of the evils of such a dynamic. Furthermore, wealthier people have more money to throw at a dog, so they're able to buy expensive dogs from prestigious breeders (another symbol of wealth). These breeds are also less likely to be found in shelters than pits. Lastly, such breeds require lots of space, and many wealthy people live on large properties, and even own "hobby farms", necessitating and/or allowing them to keep herding breeds.
There may also be something about how, for various reasons, sleekness is the aesthetic of the wealthy in the western world. Still, poor people sometimes prefer abundance (think the cluttered appearance of many poor people's homes vs the minimalism popular among rich people, because they can afford to throw things away and/or have space to store barely-used items). I think this may contribute to the "elegance" in rich-preferred breeds vs the broad-faces and stockiness in poor-preferred breeds.
I can also write up something about class, liberalism, and dog attacks if anyone's interested.