rant . . .
When I'm in a class, or in particular a private lesson, I make a conscious effort to be open to criticism. It's a little bit my Buddhist learning, but it's really a whole lot more about economics. I am paying to learn. Getting defensive wastes time and money. That said, I am also aware that every teacher says something different - often contradicting what the last teacher said. The best advice I received regarding that all-to-common phenomenon, is that the teacher of the class is correct at least for the duration of lesson. After that, you have to decide what works for your body, your situation, and your comfort. So for the duration of the class or lesson, I try very hard to give the benefit of the doubt.
So let me repeat (mostly for my own benefit) that I try very, very hard to stay open to criticism. I may not always welcome it with the grace that I would like, but I do try to be a receptive student. I can take a teacher being abrupt, or abrasive - even short tempered (to a point).
What I don't handle well is condescension directed at an entire group of dancers based on style preference. At one class I was informed that "close embrace" or "milonguero" style tango is only done in the Buenos Aires' "lower class" milongas simply because they tend to be more crowded. Lower class milongas? Do you mean like Niño Bien, or Salon Canning, or Porteno y Bailarin, or Los Consagrados, or maybe Cachirulo (which wasn't crowded at all in this video.) In the days before YouTube, maybe you could get away with saying something like that - but now I can simply search for myself and see video of dozens of milongas all over Buenos Aires. What I see is close embrace danced practically everywhere.
And even when overt comments aren't made, the attitude is still there. The attitude of close embrace dancers dance that way because they aren't good/skilled/creative enough to dance any other way. For the record, I don't accept that open embrace or nuevo dancers are insensitive or disprespectful either. Generalizations on both sides do no good. If there is an action or specific behavior that needs to be addressed, then address that behavior and leave the personal jibes out of it.
Anyway, I'm sorry to get so ranty about this topic. It's been building up a little while.