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Racial Profiling

Reader comment on item: Does the [New York] Police Department Profile? Should It?

Submitted by Steven Goldberg (United States), Jun 13, 2006 at 16:16


I agree with all you write in today's post, but it's a stretch to call this "racial profiling,", though technically one might well argue that it is.

I can't imagine that those who are dubious about racial profiling will get much upset when it is an entire mosque that is "profiled." Of course you're going to look in mosques if your looking for muslim terrorists, just as you're going to look in Kansas if you're looking for a murderer from-and likely to be in--Kansas.

It's debatable whether tis is profiling or not, but it's a bit much to call the police "liars" for taking the position it's not.

Once the police were in the mosque, the evidence against this guy was--as you make clear--overwhelming. Mosques may be Muslim, but this guy would have been rightly arrested if he were Jewish.

The real racial profiling issue is put in much more bold relief by, say, interrogating a Muslim getting on a commercial plane primarily because he's a Muslim.

I agree that Hykind's law should be passed, though I doubt it would pass Constitutional muster unless Congress declares war. Until it is a law, it's likely that emphasizing the fact that the police do what they now do will be counterproductive in that it might force the police to stop doing what they do now.

Always enjoy your posts.

Steven Goldberg


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