An in-development Microsoft smart phone app designed to help drivers and pedestrians avoid unsafe neighborhoods is proving controversial among some minority rights groups that find the software potentially discriminatory.I can. If you want to know the worst neighborhoods in any city just look for Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. or Cesar Chavez St. If you see those street signs, make a run for it.
The as-of-yet unnamed product is being referred to as the “Avoid The Ghetto” app by those who are concerned with where it will guide users.
“I’m going to be up in arms about it if it happens,” said Dallas NAACP President Juanita Wallace.
Wallace spent her afternoon at a rally on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. and said she felt safe there, but fears the app may project otherwise.
“Can you imagine me not being able to go to MLK Blvd. because my GPS says that’s a dangerous crime area? I can’t even imagine that,” she said.
Of course an NAACP official is going to feel safe on Martin Luther King Blvd., but I'm not sure a paleface like me would have the same experience (assuming I lived to tell about it).
This app will be very popular...as long as Microsoft doesn't collapse under the pressure from racial grievance groups and cancel the project. The worst thing they could do is modify the code because then you run the risk of sending somebody where they shouldn't be and you'll end up getting somebody killed.