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Racial Profiling By Police Must Stop

1757 words - 7 pages

The great era of civil rights started in the 1960s, with Martin Luther King, Jr.'s stirring "I have a Dream" speech at the historic march on Washington in August of 1963. At the same time Birmingham Police Commissioner "Bull" Connor used powerful fire hoses and vicious police attack dogs against nonviolent black civil rights activists. Although these years proved to be the highlight and downfall of civil rights in America, even with the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act being passed, time has repeated these tumultuous events again in the present.
Racial profiling has been one of many civil rights issues concerning the unnecessary stopping and arresting of people based on race, color, ethnicity and gender. Skin-color has become evidence of the propensity to commit crime, and police use this "evidence" against minority drivers on the road all the time. This practice is so common that the minority community has given it the derisive term, "Driving While Black or Brown" -- a play on the real offense of "driving while intoxicated". Although many law enforcement officers defend themselves by saying they are fighting against the "War on Drugs" by arresting these law offenders, recent trials and reports show that no basis of arrest have been found against these minorities. Official skin-color prejudice is still reflected throughout the criminal justice system. Today, skin-color makes you a suspect in America. It makes you more likely to be stopped by a law enforcement officer, more likely to be searched, and more likely to be arrested and imprisoned. Tens of thousands of innocent motorists on highways across the country are victims of racial profiling, and these discriminatory police stops have reached epidemic proportions in recent years. Fueled by the "War on Drugs", this fight has given police a pretext to target people who they think fit a "drug courier" or "gang member" profile.
At many times, these minorities have been stopped and arrested for illegal offenses, however we are not sure if these stories have been filed truthfully by law enforcement officers. Many police departments face issues concerning racist law enforcement officers who cause the problems of racial profiling. One such example comes from the Hillside Police Department, where several racial bias charges have been made against them. Racial slurs have become common in the Hillside district, where even the department supervisor does background checks on minorities IN the squad, even to kick them off the squad. In this department, only two officers are Hispanic and one is of African decent. The officers, many of whom are white, are encouraged to target minorities first to fill their ticket quotas for the month. Hillside officers defend themselves saying that Hillside is 40 percent black and 20 percent Hispanic. However, the actions taken by Hillside officer, such as targeting to fill quotas and background...

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