Racial Profiling: Individual Prejudice or Organizational assignment

Racial Profiling: Individual Prejudice or Organizational  assignment Words: 1444

These “codes” made it punishable by imprisonment and indentured servitude for any African American who loitered, remained unemployed, drunk, or In debt. The “Black Codes” were a transparent form of what we call racial profiling today. From a ruling class perspective, the minority groups are constantly undermined, intimidated, attacked, imprisoned, discredited, and sometimes shot and killed. These acts take place in order for the ruling class to maintain control and in most cases unjustly abuse their power.

Today, the most common form of racial profiling is done by the police and targeted toward African Americans, Hispanics, and Asian Americans. It is otherwise known as “DB”, “driving while black” or “driving while brown”. This refers to the practice of police targeting African Americans and any other non-white ethnic group at traffic stops because they believe that minorities are more likely to be engaged in criminal activity. The first public attention of racial profiling by the police began in mid-1 980, when the (DEAD), Drug Enforcement Administration, released guidelines that would profile drug couriers.

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The DEAD notified all the police departments across the country to search for narcotics referrers on major highways. Dependent on the area, the police were told which ethnic group to focus on because that group would tend to dominate that drug trade in that area. Although very successful In decreasing drug trafficking, lawsuits increased because of the extra scrutiny police officers were putting on innocent minorities while practicing the use of racial profiling.

The racial lobbyists were also outraged because they felt there was enough evidence to prove the police had focused on “dark skinned” drug traffickers, while the lobbyists implied that “light skinned” drug traffickers were not apprehended. While racial profiling is Illegal, the Supreme Court was fully aware that profiling was being put Into practice and continued to allow the police to stop motorists and search their vehicles if they believe they are trafficking illegal drugs or weapons.

More traffic stops lead to more arrests, which further skews the racial profiling statistics against African Americans and other non-white ethnic groups. Studies have shown that African Americans are the most likely targeted for these “routine” stops, but it only fuels the continuance of Alice training, I found evidence to support the theory that racial profiling is prejudices put into practice. Police officers are faced with balancing their knowledge of training against the potential for racial profiling. It all begins with their education at the training academy and continues with ongoing in-service training.

In-service training is achieved by pairing with a street partner, which is another police officer that is wise to the way of the streets in that specific area. At any point a different form of training, “informal training”, can begin. I refer to this training as “informal” cause this training is the type that you learn through your own perception of gathered information. This is not training that is necessarily taught, but can include one’s own prejudices and steps are not taken to prevent these prejudices from entering into the officer’s decision making process.

A police officer will use their own ways to deal with situations and make Judgment calls based on their perceptions. How the police officer reacts can be based on their informal or formal training as well as the officer’s own motivations, like fear, physical abilities and adrenaline, which can aka over at any time. Even though prejudices are accepted into an officer’s decision, we must see the importance of how we are socialized. How an officer is socialized in professional and personal settings play an important role on how an officer will base his or her Judgments.

If an officer has been socialized to believe African Americans are more criminal, then the officer will in fact use this information to possibly make a wrong decision. Police must remove their bias and Judge people based on their actions alone or they will perpetuate the stereotype of African Americans and increase the potential of their abuse of power. One could look at other statistical research to prove the theory that African Americans and other non-white ethnic groups are more criminal and the findings are not biased, but fact.

Based on research that I found, our statistics show that in the last twenty years there has been a higher reporting of Black and Hispanic drivers at traffic stops than Whites in most cities, but the report also shows that when White motorists were searched, they were the least likely in comparison to Blacks and Hispanics to be found with illegal items such as drugs or weapons. Officials argue African Americans and other ethnic groups are more criminal and this is Just the facts, plain and simple, biased judgment or not.

Some of the most common complaints and reports that could show potential evidence of racial profiling include; police officers stopping a vehicle because he or she driving and/or the passengers did not “match” the type of the vehicle they were occupying, police officers stopping those people of color while traveling through predominantly White areas, and by far the most common complaint y the members of the community of color is that they are being stopped for petty traffic violations such as under inflated tires, failure to signal properly before switching lanes, vehicle equipment failures, speeding less than 10 miles above the speed limit, or having an illegible license plate. All of these acts have occurred and can be labeled as racial profiling, but officer’s standard form of protocol accepts biased decision making. Again, don’t forget that the Supreme Court has given the police officers the right to pull anyone over.

To say that one is implementing tankard protocol procedures is, in my opinion, a play on words of what is actually occurring. Since the late ass’s some law enforcement agencies have implemented training and overseeing actions as they occur. Typical protocol for a traffic stop today involves use of these new guidelines. Today a routine traffic stop includes, the officer advising the dispatcher via radio that a traffic stop is being made, indicating the reason for the stop, telling the dispatcher gender and race of the person driving the vehicle, and whether the driver is an adult or a Juvenile. The new guidelines that eave been implemented were done so to scale the statistics and train officers to refrain from basing decisions on any bias they might have.

Most states, including Tennessee, have also issued cameras to be mounted in the police vehicles to further ensure the rights of the individuals are not being compromised and to maintain control of the officer’s decisions. Several bills have been submitted into the court system in an effort to pass laws prohibiting racial profiling and allowing for punishment if found guilty. One such bill, S. 989, was introduced on June 6, 2001 by he state of Wisconsin. This bill was sent from the Senate committee to the Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittees on Constitution for further evaluation. Another bill sent to the Senate in efforts to attack racial profiling was submitted by the state of Kansas.

This bill received Senate approval on February 23, 2005. The bill declares, “It is illegal for law enforcement officers to profile suspects based only on their race, ethnicity, nationality, gender or religious dress”. The bill will permit people who believe they have been profiled to make a complaint with the law enforcement agency, in which the agency under scrutiny could face lawsuits or become ineligible for the state grants if officers engage in profiling. The bill originally proposed that punishment for any officer found guilty of racial profiling would be categorized as a misdemeanors and receives possible Jail time, but the law enforcement groups objected and legislators rewrote the measure.

The bill now states that any officer found guilty of racial profiling will receive Jail time, largely fined, never allowed back into any law controlling position, and the organization in which they were employed will be fined as well. Senate voters who approved the bill believe the bill will set precedence for the end of racial profiling. In conclusion, I find it hard to believe that we will ever experience a world without a nonbiased controlling society, but I know the importance of our actions and how we can strive to create a society that is less likely to predict actions based on skin color, gender, or religion. By understanding others ideals, we can change the way we react.