Map of G.R. neighborhoods: Funny or offensive?

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- A map of greater Grand Rapids which points out stereotypes of neighborhoods and surrounding communities has attracted a lot of buzz, but is it funny or offensive?

The map was uploaded on Imgur late last week and has been clicked on more than 27,000 times. It categorizes southeast Grand Rapids as "Crime" and northeast Grand Rapids as "Hipsters." the Westside is labeled "Polish People" and "Charmingly Shady."

Other areas like Jenison are called "Jesus Saves" while Ada is labeled "Really Rich People."

Some say the map is oversimplified, insensitive, or even incorrect, labeling a large swath of Grand Rapids as crime-ridden. But many others find the map humorous and have shared it hundreds of times on Facebook and Twitter.

On the WZZM 13 Facebook page, the map generated hundreds of comments. Trisha Reed wrote, "I grew up in the "Charmingly Shady" area, the West side of Grand Rapids. I thought this was funny and spot on."

But Shawn Melton disagrees: "I think people fail to see the judgement here. The negative racial tones are terrible. The portions of the map that are predominately black are labeled as 'crime' and 'shady suburbs'... which is how some white people see those areas."

WZZM 13 spoke a Grand Rapids historian, residents, and business owners in some of the featured neighborhoods. Hear their opinions at 5:30 p.m.


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