Read­ers di­vided on ‘racist city’ claim

SundayXtra - - OPINION -

COM­MENTERS on the Free Press web­site were di­vided on a Ma­clean’s ar­ti­cle that de­clared Win­nipeg the most racist city in Canada.

Is it time to can­cel my sub­scrip­tion to for their in­ac­cu­rate, di­vi­sive jour­nal­ism?

Anec­do­tal met­rics. Solid jour­nal­ism.

Here’s another thread try­ing to min­i­mize the im­pact of racism against a fast- grow­ing in­dige­nous pop­u­la­tion with a point­less dis­cus­sion about the rel­a­tive mer­its of a par­tic­u­lar ar­ti­cle. Get over it and face re­al­ity. Win­nipeg is hurt­ing be­cause of racism.

I read the ar­ti­cle, and I thought it was in­ter­est­ing how you had to read about two-thirds of the way through be­fore it con­cedes the point that much of the vi­o­lence within the in­dige­nous com­mu­nity is in­flicted by other in­dige­nous peo­ple.

Some­one in Toronto see­ing the cover on a newsstand might con­clude whites are an­tag­o­niz­ing mi­nori­ties when that is clearly not the case, but that

wouldn’t sell as many copies.

Not hav­ing lived in any other Cana­dian city, I couldn’t com­ment on whether Win­nipeg is the most racist city in the land. How­ever, if it isn’t, I would be sur­prised. It al­ways was racist, just well-hid­den. Now, with In­ter­net anonymity, peo­ple set their true feel­ings free. I am fairly amazed at things I see on the streets of Win­nipeg or hear at pri­vate func­tions. Un­for­tu­nately, I have lost friends over this is­sue, and I don’t think it’s go­ing to go away any time soon. The me­dia and politi­cians of all stripes fuel the stereo­typ­i­cal views of all those that hold them, in my opin­ion.

A sen­sa­tion­al­ist ar­ti­cle does not prove Win­nipeg is the most racist city, but Win­nipeg, bro, we have to talk. You’ve got a prob­lem.

There is no doubt racism (and sex­ism and ho­mo­pho­bia) ex­ists in Win­nipeg. But based on this ar­ti­cle, I don’t feel it is a just con­clu­sion that we are the ab­so­lute worst. Did they do a ran­dom survey across the board? Did they just chat with a few abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple down­town? Doesn’t sound like all that much of a study was done to reach this con­clu­sion.

I ques­tion the ti­tle of most racist city. Lis­ten­ing to my rel­a­tives from Toronto leads me to be­lieve Toronto may pos­sess this ig­no­min­ious award.

I would hope that peo­ple out­side of Man­i­toba would dis­miss the ar­ti­cle, re­al­iz­ing there is ab­so­lutely no valid sci­ence ap­plied to ar­rive at such a con­clu­sion.

To truly il­lus­trate the level of in­tol­er­ance Win­nipeg­gers dis­play, we’ve never elected a gay mayor or a fe­male mayor or an abo­rig­i­nal mayor. Wait, what? Never mind.

For a mag­a­zine to la­bel an en­tire city racist be­cause of the ac­tions of a few of its in­hab­i­tants is to ap­ply the same kind of stereo­types that racists do to jus­tify their own be­hav­iour.

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