Racial Profiling in Today's Society Racial profiling is the tactic of stopping someone because of the color of his or her skin and a fleeting suspicion that the person is engaging in criminal behavior (Meeks, p. 4-5). This practice can be conducted with routine traffic stops, or can be completely random based on the car that is driven, the number of people in the car and the race of the driver and passengers. The practice of racial profiling may seem more prevalent in today’s society, but in reality has been a part of American culture since the days of slavery. According to Tracey Maclin, a professor at the Boston University School of Law, racial profiling is an old concept. The historical roots “can be traced to a time in early American society when court officials permitted constables and ordinary citizens the right to ‘take up’ all black persons seen ‘gadding abroad’ without their master’s permission” (Meeks, p. 5). Although slavery is long since gone, the frequency in which racial profiling takes place remains the same. However, because of our advanced electronic media, this issue has been brought to the American public’s attention. Some consider racial profiling a viable tool to reduce crime. The New Century Foundation, a non-profit organization based in the Washington, D.C. suburb of Oakton, VA, published a report on the American Renaissance website, stating that African-Americans commit 90% of the approximately 1,700,000 interracial crimes of violence that occurs every year in the United States. They are more than fifty times more likely to commit violent crimes against whites than vice versa. According to this same report, African-Americans are much more likely to commit violent crimes than whites and wh... ... middle of paper ... ...ldnet. Internet. 30 Nov 2000. Available: www.speakout.com/Issues/Briefs/1156 Harris, Jr., C.E. “Applying Moral Theories.” 3rd ed. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1997 “New Century Foundation to Release Interracial Crime Report.” 1999. n. pag. Online. AT&T Worldnet. Internet. 30 Nov 2000. Available: www.amren.com/colorpr.htm Olen, Jeffrey and Vincent Barry. “Applying Ethics.” 6th ed. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1999. Toby, Jackson. “Racial Profiling Doesn’t Prove Cops are Racist.” Wall Street Journal (March 1999). N. pag. Online. AT&T Worldnet. Internet. 30 Nov 2000. Available: www.frontpagemag.com/archives/racerelations/toby3-11-99.htm Williams, Walter. “Racial Profiling.” (1999). N. pag. Online. AT&T Worldnet. Internet. 5 Dec 2000. Available: www.jewishworldreview.com/cols/williams031099.asp
In the United States of America today, racial profiling is a deeply troubling national problem. Many people, usually minorities, experience it every day, as they suffer the humiliation of being stopped by police while driving, flying, or even walking for no other reason than their color, religion, or ethnicity. Racial profiling is a law enforcement practice steeped in racial stereotypes and different assumptions about the inclination of African-American, Latino, Asian, Native American or Arab people to commit particular types of crimes. The idea that people stay silent because they live in fear of being judged based on their race, allows racial profiling to live on.
People of color are being pursued on the highways in the land of the free. In Bob Herbert’s “Hounding the innocent” acts of racial profiling are displayed flagrantly. Racial profiling should be illegal, since it is unfair to its victims, demoralizing, and it breaks the trust between the public and the police.
Racial profiling is a wide spread term in the American justice system today, but what does it really mean? Is racial profiling just a term cooked up by criminals looking for a way to get out of trouble and have a scapegoat for their crimes? Is it really occurring in our justice system, and if so is it done intentionally? Most importantly, if racial profiling exists what steps do we take to correct it? The answer to these questions are almost impossible to find, racial profiling is one of many things within our justice system that can be disputed from any angle and has no clear cut answers. All that can be done is to study it from different views and sources and come up with one’s own conclusion on the issue.
For the past few years there has been an ongoing debate surrounding the issue of racial profiling. The act of racial profiling may rest on the assumption that African Americans and Hispanics are more likely to commit crimes than any individual of other races or ethnicities. Both David Cole in the article "The Color of Justice" and William in the article "Road Rage" take stance on this issue and argue against it in order to make humanity aware of how erroneous it is to judge people without evidence. Although Cole and William were very successful in matters of showing situations and qualitative information about racial profiling in their articles, both of them fail at some points.
Before any argument can be made against racial profiling, it is important to understand what racial profiling is. The American Civil Liberties Union, defines racial profiling as "the discriminatory practice by law enforcement officials of targeting individuals for suspicion of crime based on the individual's race, ethnicity, religion or national origin"(Racial Profiling: Definition). Using this definition we can determine that racial profiling excludes any evidence of wrong-doing and relies solely on the characteristics listed above. We can also see that racial profiling is different from criminal profiling, which uses evidence of wrong-doing and facts which can include information obtained from outside sources and evidence gathered from investigation. Based on these definitions, I will show that racial profiling is unfair and ineffective because it relies on stereotyping, encourages discrimination, and in many cases can be circumvented.
According to a 2011 report from Washington Press, “the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights found evidence of widespread racial profiling, showing that African Americans and Hispanics are disproportionately likely to be stopped and searched by police, even though they’re less likely to be found possessing contraband or committing a criminal act”( Natarajan) Racial profiling has its origins in the nineteenth century, when many scientists in Europe and America tried to prove that people of certain physiques bore positive and negative personality traits that matched their physical features as stated in Racial Profiling: An
Racial profiling in America, as evidenced by recent events, has reached a critical breaking point. No longer can an African American, male or female, walk into a store, school, or any public place without fear of being stereotyped as a person of suspicion. Society constantly portrays the African American
In 2003, 36 black police officers were asked to recount their lived experiences with having been the subjects of racial profiling, and a majority indi- cated that they had been stopped and questioned by other police officers ‘‘for no other reason than the colour of their skin’’ (Tanovich 2006: 1–2).
Racial profiling and the various problems that arise as a result of it bring up many controversial issues. Racial profiling is a topic that weighs heavy on the minds and opinions of many in this country. It has been the subject of many disagreements as to whether or not it actually exists. Some argue that certain races can’t see it because they never experience it, but a case can be made that all races experience it at some point. One of the most controversial is the debate of whether or not racial profiling is justified. One of the hindrances to finding an answer to this question is the fact that many agencies and departments in law enforcement refuse to cooperate with studies to
Throughout American history, there has been, without a doubt, an indisputable sense of racial tension among the various ethnic groups of the nation. These issues have been traced back since the establishment of the colonies and are still prevalent today in one form or another. Although the tension is no longer as intense as it was before, it continues to exist today in modern society in the form of racial profiling. Racial profiling can be defined as the use of race or ethnicity as criteria for suspecting someone of having committed an offense. In recent decades, a trend has been observed in which police forces have been distinctively targeting black and Hispanic Americans more often than other ethnic groups. Police departments have argued
According to the American Civil Liberties Union, racial profiling is a longstanding and deeply troubling national problem. Racial profiling occurs every day, all around the world, in many different states,cities, and towns. It is when law enforcement mainly targeted