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Racial Profiling By Police Essay

1863 words - 7 pages

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, categories all human beings as free. Article one identify all human beings as born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. Article two states, Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty. The act of racial profiling goes against our human rights. Racial profiling has been a controversial issue for a plethora amount of time in the United States of America.
According to the National Institute of Justice, racial profiling by law enforcement is defined as a practice that targets people for suspicion of crime based on their race, ethnicity, religion, or nation origin. Creating a profile about the kinds of people who commit certain types of crimes may lead officers to stereotype against a particular group and act according to the stereotype given to a specific ethnic group and applying it to everyone that may seem to be apart of that ethnic group rather than one specific person displaying one specific behavior. This paper, therefore, is designed to focus on law enforcement and racial profiling.
Many believe (myself included) the concept of selecting individuals by the color of their skin begin during slavery and segregation. During the time of the immigration era, many immigrants were labeled and isolated from society. The Immigrant Act of 1875 was designed to prevent Chinese and Japanese people from entering into the United States because some were considered prostitutes or convicts. Not only was the limitation to Chinese and Japanese, but to other ethnic groups as well. In the 1800’s many people arrived to a port outside of New York were labeled as undesired citizens. These “special” individuals were examined for any harmful disease and illnesses. If anyone was suspected to have some form of an illness, they were immediately sent back to their original country. Labeling individuals based on their race was not only used to determine who could or couldn’t gain access to the United States but it assisted criminologist to develop an argument used to determine what person may be criminals.
Cesare Lombroso along with other theorist throughout the years have made many arguments referring to physical appearance and criminality. Cesare Lombroso believed there was a relationship between crime and race. Similar to Lombroso, many other theories have come about with the connection of race, ethnicity, and crime. Theorist Robert Merton (1938) believed...

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