New App That Helps You Avoid the Bad Part of Town Isn't Racist, It's Smart

Rant 23

Have you ever purposefully avoided the bad part of town? Well then you might be a racist. Or something. That’s the sentiment behind critics of a new app called Good Part of Town, which helps people identify safe areas of unfamiliar cities.

Originally titled Ghetto Tracker (they changed the name due to public backlash), the app allows locals to rate the safety of various neighborhoods so that visitors will know which places to avoid. Critics claim that the app is racist and classist for helping the rich avoid the poor.

Oh my gosh, people need to lighten up. Ghetto Tracker was a much catchier name for an app that might be really useful for staying safe. Now, if the app used racial demographics to tell you which areas to avoid, then yes, that would be racist, wrong, unfair, and basically disgusting.

The fact of the matter is that there are ‘bad’ areas in every town, and they are not limited to any one race. It turns out that bad guys come in all skin colors! Who knew? Until we have enough cops to prosecute every criminal, eradicate every gang, confiscate every illegal firearm, etc, then I’m going to avoid the bad parts of town.

More from The Stir: 6 Must-Have Apps to Keep Your Kids Safe

Detractor David Holmes wrote:

It’s pretty detrimental to society when we reinforce the idea that poor or crime-heavy areas are places to be categorically avoided or shamed … As if to assume that every person who lives in an area with comparatively high crime or poverty is a criminal, or that these areas are devoid of culture or positivity.

How exactly is it detrimental to society to avoid crime-heavy areas, or even refer to them as crime-heavy? If it’s an area with a lot of crime, then it’s an area with a lot of crime. That doesn’t mean everyone that lives there is bad, or that it’s devoid of all culture or positivity, it just means more bad things happen there than in other neighborhoods.

Avoiding shady areas doesn’t make you a racist, an elitist, or a bad person -- it makes you smart.

Would you use this app?

Image via Ian Lamont/Flickr

apps, communication, electronics, internet, software, social media, web


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Carme... Carmen8706

It sounds like those who call the app racist are the ones who actually are. They're the ones with skin color at the forefront of their minds.

nonmember avatar erica

The people assuming that only people of one particular race are living in the bad parts of town are the ones being racist. Seems like more and more people are trying to find racism where there is none. Don't we have more than enough reasons to be legitmately offended without making things into something they are clearly not? It's ridiculous. I'd love to avoid areas of town with high crime rates, especially in cities I'm unfamiliar with.

jhslove jhslove

I don't think there's anything wrong with it as long as it's based on actual crime rates. The original name was pretty offensive, but in its current iteration, I see no problem with this.

nonmember avatar guester

It should still be called the ghetto tracker.People who live in 'REALVILLE' know that if you head over to the black side of town you are pretty much asking for trouble because those areas are vehemently racist toward whites and when a thug sees a white person-they see an opportunity.Oh and yes the crime stats not only support what i say they validate it.And im not even factoring in the crime that moves out from those areas to the suburbs

Lilyp... Lilypad523

Is there a full moon? I agree with Jenny! :O

Dennis Carr

Interesting that the stuff in the APP HOLE remind me of the president..

momma... mommaleach

Seriously?! I live in "the ghetto"... and not by choice either! I'm a hard-working single parent and can not afford to live in the nice part of town. It's bad enough that I've already had to deal with the disappointment of my children's friends' parents not allowing their children over for birthday parties or sleepovers. This is inconsiderate!

adamat34 adamat34

If truly based on crime.rates, nope not racist. We have a section where I live the community calls "the projects" 99% white. Still, everyone knows this is where the crime happens,so, no one goes . I think this is another excuse for someone to make an issue of race. Bottom line, read the facts on race and crime. Should clear everything up.

Kristen Johnson

I used to live in the ghetto part of our town. Merely because I couldn't afford to live anywhere else. so Mommaleach, I sympothize with you. I never felt safe, and was always afraid. I chose to abandon my home and figure something else out for the saftey of my kids. My neighbors were white,black, and asian. So I can't say one race over another there was  a pot of us in that part of town. So Racism no, but concerns for saftey, yes! sympothize with those who are living there for no other reason other than money- def

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