Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION

Don’t believe the stereotypes

  • Print

We’ve all heard the typical Winnipeg stereotypes. The whole North End is a ghetto. All the people who live in River Heights are snobs. Wolseley is filled with nothing but granola-crunching tree huggers and Transcona is trash.

I used to believe that as I got older I would hear these community stereotypes less and less. Unfortunately, in my experience, this has not been the case.

My most recent experience came when I was reaching out through social media, looking for material for this column, when an old acquaintance jokingly responded, "Transcona has a newspaper? What’s the literacy rate there anyway?"

And so came the topic for this column. Now, I know the person didn’t mean anything by it, but I was still mildly offended.

I was offended because blanket statements bother me. I still find them rude. I feel they’re statements that paint distorted pictures of a community and its people. That being said, I chose not to engage in the online smack talk and didn’t respond at all, believing I was taking the high road. In hindsight, I would have acted differently given the chance.

I’d do it differently because I was guilty of not speaking up and I believe not speaking up doesn’t help fix the distorted pictures some individuals have of communities or large groups of people.

Granted, I realize people form opinions based on their own personal experiences but it isn’t fair to judge people as a whole. I’d still like to believe that the majority of us don’t stand by quietly when someone smack talks us or our neighbours.

I realize there are larger stereotypes in our communities and greater issues in our city than what other individuals in our neighbouring communities think of us and vice versa — but I feel the smallest of changes in perspective can lead to big changes in bringing communities and their people together.

The reality is that the whole North End is not a ghetto. All the people who live in River Heights aren’t snobs. Wolseley isn’t filled with nothing but a bunch of granola-crunching tree huggers and Transcona isn’t trash.

See how changing a few small words in that paragraph changes its perspective?

Adam Petrash is a community correspondent for Transcona. He can be contacted at aetpetrash@gmail.com.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Readers' Choice Awards

Best Of Winnipeg Readers Survey

See the results of the 2014 Canstar Community News Best of Winnipeg Readers' Survey.

View Results

This Just In Twitter bird

Poll

Are you concerned about West Nile Virus?

View Results