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Police Profiling Is Racist Essay

1208 words - 5 pages

Many people in the United States are against police profiling in our cities and towns against African-Americans and other minorities, while they are supporters of racial profiling in our airports. This research paper investigates how profiling everywhere can help improve our security, while not crossing the fine line into racism. This paper also shows some examples of when profiling has turned into racism, and how we can prevent this.
There are many people in the United States that are against police profiling. Profiling is defined as “the use of specific characteristics, as race or age, to make generalizations about a person, as whether he or she may be engaged in illegal activity” according to dictionary.com. Police are defined as “an organized civil force for maintaining order, preventing and detecting crime, and enforcing the laws” according to dictionary.com. Combine these two definitions, and you can define police profiling as an organized civil force that maintains order and prevents crime by using specific characteristics to make generalizations about a person. Many people today are against police profiling because of what has happened in history. They associate police profiling with police corruption and brutality, as well as with racism. They look at what happened in big name cases such as the Rodney King beating, and associate police profiling with it. To combine these three separate definitions into one is not correct, as they are three separate things.
Since the World Trade Center attacks on September 11th, 2001, police profiling has turned into two separate parts – profiling minorities in communities, and profiling persons of Arab decent or followers of Islam in our airports. You will find many people in the United States who are supporters of the latter, while they are strongly against the former. In my opinion, you cannot be for one and not the other, but the September 11th attacks are still ringing strongly in people’s hearts.
Profiling in our airports, train stations, and borders is a very important step in securing them. Vigilance and surveillance are two important steps in preventing attacks against our country. The United States has “beefed up” security by using the latest technological inventions to search people before they get onto the plane, but they are still able to be “beaten” by criminals. In order to achieve a higher level of security, there must be individual searches by a human instead of just a computer; but, with such a large amount of people flying in planes, taking trains, and crossing our borders, it is un-realistic that the United States would be able to do searches by a human on each and every person. Instead, we must use profiling to help determine who may be carrying something that is illegal with malicious intentions. Michael Tuohey, the airport security agent who checked Muhammed Atta, the leader of the September 11 terrorist attacks, and a companion through the security gates said after the...

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