Letter: Doukhobors owed apology

As a teacher, Doukhobor and life-long resident of Grand Forks, I am appalled.

To the producers of the ad , “What The %$#@ Is Borscht?” (HYPERLINK “http://vimeopro.com/user824322/grand-forks-settle-down/video/107218556″http://vimeopro.com/user824322/grand-forks-settle-down/video/107218556) the correct spelling is B-O-R-S-H-C-H in English—the last consonant of the word in Russian is pronounced “shch”; the producers of the ad, or staff at Grand Forks City Hall, could simply have asked any local Russian language student how to spell it.

Besides the spelling issue, the ad in its entirety is poorly researched, poorly produced, and exhibits an underlying prejudice while playing on negative cultural stereotypes. As a teacher, Doukhobor and life-long resident of Grand Forks, I am appalled.

To those involved in producing this ad, give your head a shake. To those involved in approving and paying for this ad, specifically those at Grand Forks City Hall: you owe the Doukhobor community, as citizens of Grand Forks, a sincere apology for your blatant lack of cultural understanding, sensitivity and respect.

Robb Stevenson,

Russian Language Teacher, GFSS, Grand Forks

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