Cities Depicted as Overly Dangerous

Double Standard Bias  
Table Of Contents

Conservative Trope Examples

  • The Devils Advocate (1997)
    On the subway, a man turns to Al Pacino and asks him "what the fuck are you looking at?" and pulls a knife on him after telling him to get out of *his* subway car.
  • Coming to America (1988)
    Also in the summer of 1988, Coming to America constantly depicted crime as a problem in Queens with all their stuff stolen in broad daylight and Samuel Jackson attempting to rob the McDougals again. It frames things that crime is such a big problem, it's become a joke. Robberies in NYC peaked in 1991 but steadily dropped on average every year until it was six times less in 2019. But the movie still airs on TV networks and is streamable as a classic.
  • RoboCop (1987)
    Detroit is depicted as an anarchical hellscape hopelessly beset by anarchy.
  • Adventures in Babysitting (1987)
    Brenda cries out to her friend Chris on the phone that she's seen "three people shoot up, a bald Chinese lady with no pants on and there's this old guy outside who wants his bedroom slippers" as the camera pans down and focuses on filthy slippers along with a toiletry bag filled with false teeth and a can of SPAM mixed in with a hair brush and deodorant.
  • Adventures in Babysitting (1987)
    An overarching theme of the film is that cities are dangerous places filled with unscrupulous people of color who want to harm you and that it's much safer to live in the suburbs. Every role played by a black or brown person depicts them as thieves, criminals, gang members, or poor.
  • Adventures in Babysitting (1987)
    Chris (Elisabeth Shue) and the kids she's babysitting are riding in an empty L-Train cart in Chicago when rival gangs enter from opposing sides ready to fight with switchblade knives during which Brad (Keith Coogan) has a knife thrown into his foot which Chris then grabs to make their escape.

How Trope is Biased

Double Standard

  • Rural and urban areas have comparable crime rates, but you wouldn't know that watching shows cities are much more often depicted as dangerous than rural areas.

Conservative Biases

  • Republicans constantly fear monger on crime in cities in election campaigns going back decades despite crime in cities and elsewhere near historical lows. Anything that depicts cities as dangerous supports their propaganda efforts.