Stereotypes don’t just apply to people, places, and religions, they also apply to pop-culture references that we have all just accepted as the “norm.” But where did these stereotypes even begin, and why exactly are they stereotypes that have continued to exist for decades?
Here are the origins of 9 pop culture stereotypes that we just accept as always having been true.
Before the 1950s, cops used to walk their “beats,” then came the advent of the police cruiser. When cops were now allowed to drive around town all night, they were able to find stores that were open late in order to grab a bite to eat or something to drink. At the time, the only places that were open that late were coffee shops, which coincidentally sold doughnuts. Hence, cops like doughnuts. Plus, now that cops have no idea when their next break is going to happen, doughnuts are able to stay edible when sitting in a car for long periods of time.
It doesn’t matter what color a matador’s cape is, bulls are colorblind. So why do we consider the red cape to a be trigger for charging bulls? Matadors use capes of a variety of colors, but it is only towards the end of the fight that the red cape comes into play. The bull is set to be stabbed to death, and the red cape just happens to hide the sight of blood from the spectators.
It turns out that mice don’t even like eating cheese, which is why people who set traps are told to use peanut butter instead. Why do all cartoon mice appear willing to risk their lives for a wedge of cheddar? Before the advent of refrigerators (or electricity for that matter) food was stored in a number of different ways. Cheese was kept in a pantry, so when a mouse would go looking for food, they would often come across this dairy product. Even though they don’t particularly like cheese, when hungry, they will eat virtually anything.
Contrary to popular belief, most opera singers are not massive human beings. It all started with a particular opera, Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, which features a Valkyrie character who would sing for 20 minutes straight to end that particular show. The ladies who portrayed her were often bigger (not obese) and because of the success of that particular opera, the stereotype was born. We also got “it’s not over until the fat lady sings,” from the same deal.
This stereotype has actually been around for hundreds of years. In Paris (200 years ago) there was a blonde debutante named Mademoiselle Rosalie Duthe, who was as beautiful as she was mentally slow. She inspired a playwrite to create a one-act play that depicted a dumb blonde character who was clearly inspired by Duthe. It was because of this play that we still have dumb blonde characters sprinkled throughout pop-culture.
Police officers have a variety of tools at their disposal for making sure they are able to do their jobs. One of those tools is the taser, a device capable of delivering powerful, mostly non-fatal, electric shocks from a distance. Officers are trained in the safe use of the device, as well as when it is appropriate to use it.
One thing that isn’t included in the training is what to do when you accidentally taze your partner, but that is what happened during an arrest on Thanksgiving of last year. The officers involved were responding to a domestic violence situation which turned into pulling the suspect from his vehicle. It was during the struggle on the ground that the accident occurred.
During the struggle, one officer pulls out his taser before pulling the trigger and releasing the electrically charged metal prongs. One hit the suspect, but the other found its way into the other officer’s side.
An Indiana man saved a toddler’s life during his first ever act as a police officer.
Hobart police officer Richard Mayer was eating at a local Chick-Fil-A with his colleagues on Jan. 14 when he noticed a toddler was choking on her meal.
Melissa Hasse, urgently picked up her daughter, Charlotte, and started running towards the man in uniform for help.
“I looked over and she started gagging. I could see something kind of in the back of her throat, mistakenly reached in to try to grab it out, I think that pushed it back into her throat,” Hasse told ABC 7.
Mayer said the incident caught all of the officers off guard.
“She came running over… I grabbed her and Officer Ramos to my right flipped her over, we did back slaps on her and got food dislodged from her throat right away,” Mayer said.
Hasse couldn’t have been more grateful.
“This is what he was meant to do,” Hasse said. “To save lives in some kind of way.”
While an amazing story, this isn’t the first time police officers have been in the news for doing something spectacular.
A police officer made a monumental decision after he found a pregnant woman using drugs behind a convenience store.
Albuquerque police officer Ryan Holets was investigating a bank robbery, when he found 35-year-old Crystal Champ and a companion injecting heroin, and decided to confront them.
He turned on his bodycam to chastise the pair before he realized Champ was about eight months pregnant.
“You’re going to kill your baby,” Holets is heard saying on the bodycam footage. “Why do you have to be doing that stuff? It’s going to ruin your baby.”
While the video initially saw Holets write out a citation, he decided to stop and listen to Champ’s story.
“It’s not every day I see a sight like that,” Holets told CNN. “It just made me really sad.”
Champ said she had been addicted to heroin and crystal meth her entire life. Living in a tent alongside a highway in New Mexico, she spends up to $50 just to get her fix of drugs. While Champ said she’s tried multiple times to get clean, she’s failed every time.
“I did give up. I just decided this was going to be my life,” Champ said. “It just keeps coming back and ruining my life.”
It was then Holets made a decision that would change his life forever.
But Nikki Salgot chose to do something special to remember her late fiance, and her project has been going viral ever since she unveiled it last month. Salgot’s fiance, Police Sergeant Collin Rose, was a member of the Wayne State University Police Department. He was shot and killed while investigating a suspicious person last year.
Rose was remembered as a respected member of his community, and Salgot was heartbroken for months after his death. “It’s been almost a year,” she wrote on Facebook last month, “and it still feels like yesterday he walked out the door for work, and never came home.”
“I loved a hero and paid the price,” she added. “Given the chance, knowing the outcome, I’d do it all over again.”
And while the couple couldn’t officially tie the knot, Salgot didn’t want their wedding date last month to be “ignored and forgotten.” She recruited her friend Rachel Smaller for a memorial photo shoot that would honor Rose and their relationship.
Smaller and Salgot hadn’t spoken for a decade when the widow sent her a message, but the photographer agreed right away. While no one can deny the photos she took are touching, Salgot says they have a special importance for her.
Police departments across the country are on the lookout for a do-gooder nicknamed “Donut Boy.” The suspect is described as a 10-year-old with a big smile, carrying boxes of donuts, and wearing a special donut cape.
He’s also known as Tyler Carach, and while he’s from Florida, the Donut Boy has been seen traveling across America on a special quest these last few weeks. Tyler’s journey of giving began 14 months ago, when he and his mom Sheena bumped into four police officers at a local donut shop.
Without being asked, Tyler bought each of the cops a donut out of his own allowance money. He simply said that buying the treats “makes me happy, because I get to thank the person that keeps my family safe.” But Tyler didn’t stop there. Over the last year donating donuts has become his hobby, and he’s gotten pretty good at it.
He spent his birthday last month on the road, driving from state to state visiting police stations, and handing out donuts along the way. The Donut Boy is now well-known to America’s police officers, and he’s already handed out a lot of treats.
It’s no secret that Gretchen Byrne loves cats – she has six of her own at home, after all – but she’s not your average pet owner.
The 42-year-old police officer from Boca Raton, Florida protects the streets by day, but at night she’s a one-woman animal rescue team, looking after south Florida’s stray cat population. “Everyone knows me as the cop that loves cats,” she explains. “If I’m not working, this is what I’m doing.”
Her “second job” started two years ago, when she found a pair of stray kittens while on patrol. Many animal shelters in her area are at full capacity, so Byrne took the kittens home instead and nursed them back to health. The dedicated cop actually skipped her own breaks to make sure the animals were fed.
Then, a group of strays moved in next to Byrne’s station – maybe they’d heard about her – and finding them all new homes became the officer’s pet project. One by one, Byrne paired the cats up with forever homes, mostly with other officers in her department.
Along the way Byrne discovered she has a passion for sheltering stray cats, and her record with the animals is seriously impressive…
A routine trip to the airport took a scary turn earlier this week when a motorcycle officer in President Trump’s motorcade crashed.
On Wednesday, President Trump and his security detail were driving down Interstate 70 in Indianapolis when Officer Robert Turner crashed. Details of the incident are scarce, but the officer was spotted “injured but moving” by reporters in a press van following the motorcade.
Turner’s motorcycle could also be seen flipped onto its side in the middle of the road. Because of security reasons, the motorcade could not stop to help Turner, which meant the officer was stranded on the road until emergency responders arrived to help him.
When he reached the airport, President Trump was seen speaking with other motorcycle officers, and he must have been asking if Turner was alright. As we later found out, the president stopped Air Force One from taking off until he could do something special for the officer…