“An analysis of 100 million police traffic stops has revealed that white people are more likely to be found with illegal items. Despite this fact black and Latino drivers are more likely to be stopped and searched by the police than white drivers.” The orange dots represents the percentage of black people who are being stopped by police unjustified.
There are many questions about racial profiling that still do not know the answer, such as, how does racial profiling in the past, affects the present? Are there cases of racial profiling today and what are they? Why colored, different religion, different ethnicity, has a certain impact in U.S. law enforcement? Although the United States Law Enforcement agencies should be compromised to treat everyone equally, racial profiling still affects society every day, specially people of color. Judging someone just because they have a different color of skin happens every day and affects not only the victim, but it has a significant effect on the whole society, indeed, public safety. It is basically assuming some charges based on no real evidence.Racial profiling is the act of suspecting or targeting a person of a certain race for committing an offense. Racial profiling is illegal, however, it still a social controversy, it violates the U.S. Constitution’s core that promises equality under the law for everyone. It occurs especially when an officer accuse people based on their race, ethnicity or religion without any proof of criminal offense.
Racial profiling is ineffective as an strategy from the law enforcement agencies and an offense for the 14th amendment of the constitution which states that “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.” This is according to FindLaw for Legal Professionals. This amendment guarantees equal rights and equal protection under the law.
According to the same article “nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”People of color are more likely to face charges without any evidence than those who are considered actual “Americans”.This is something that affects specifically colored people, different religion, different ethnicity despite that the United States began an “post-racial era”. According to the CNN news “The headlines pop up with alarming frequency: People of color going about their daily business — shopping, golfing, moving in — only to have the cops called on them.”
Another evidence from CNN news states that “Researchers studied nearly 100 million traffic stops and found black motorists are more likely to be pulled over”. The question becomes, why uncolored people passed by and the representatives of law enforcement do not even care much? This is do to the fact that, according to them, colored people are more likely to commit crime. According to History News Network “At the age of seven, Mary was profiled and taken to court by Augustine Washington Senior (George Washington’s father). At court, she was judged to be mulatto, sentenced to a thirty-year indenture, and was ordered to serve her indenture with Washington.”. “ Today, because of their appearance and ethnicity, citizens are being stopped, searched, and arrested.”. This demonstrates how racial profiling in the past has affected the present. Despite significant advances in civil rights, the U.S. still deals with a lot of racial profiling. Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2003, racial profiling became a turning point for the United States Government. They are committed to stop and interrogate with any evidence of criminal activity. According to ACLU “In fact, the very inclusion of a national security exception in the guidelines is an admission by the Department of Justice that it relies upon racial and ethnic profiling in its domestic counter terrorism efforts” Which means, what they believe is, that the country will be more safe if they take more control of those who are considered more likely to commit crime.
As you can see in the graph, black and Hispanic ethnicity are more likely to be stopped by the police and experience unnecessary use of force against them and it is a topic that still concerning the society today.
There are annual statistics that show how people of color and Hispanic ethnicity are more likely to experience use of force from the police against them. According to the Prison Policy Initiative, black residents in New York City were 8 times more likely to be stopped by the police than white residents and 11 times more likely to be frisked. NBC News also claims that 64% of all Americans say that racism remains a major problem in our society. There exist many cases of racial profiling than were content of controversy in the United States such as the Jogger case and the Starbucks arrest case. This cases involved only black people. Police charged them for crimes that they did not committed for the fact that they were black.
Jogger case: This is the case of five black and Latino teens, Antron McCray, 15, Kevin Richardson, 15, Yusef Salaam, 15, Raymond Santana, 14, and Korey Wise, 16, who were quickly arrested by the police for the brutal assault of 28 years old white woman Trisha Meili without any evidence that they were the attackers. They were forcing them to say they were guilty, indeed, spent 15 years in jail being innocent. They did not get enough evidence to put them to jail just because they were at the crime scene and were black. The case generated a lot of concern in the whole society, some were targeting the five teens as animals, rapists, “wolf pack” and among other nicknames. Donald Trump also took place on this case saying that they deserve to be sentenced for death penalty. A Netflix series was filmed based on this case, according to ABC News “When They See Us,” which is directed by Ava DuVernay, is a dramatized account based on a 1989 case of injustice and racial discrimination in New York City when five teenagers — four of them black and one Latino — were wrongfully convicted in the attack and rape of a white woman jogging in Central Park.”
Starbucks arrest case: This case involves two African Americans men who were arrested in a Philadelphia Starbucks. Minutes after they arrive at the place the manager called the police when they refused to leave because they were waiting for their acquaintance. CNN says that the nation started complaining about the case claiming that it was racial profiling act.
In conclusion, racial profiling is illegal, is a matter that still exists throughout the United States, it is a real problem as you have seen and it needs to be addressed.
“When they see us’ is a lesson in the Dangers of racial profiling”
- “Fourteenth Amendment – U.S. Constitution.” Findlaw, https://constitution.findlaw.com/amendment14.html.
- “Racial Profiling.” American Civil Liberties Union, https://www.aclu.org/issues/racial-justice/race-and-criminal-justice/racial-profiling.
- Yan, Holly. “This Is Why Everyday Racial Profiling Is so Dangerous.” CNN, Cable News Network, 11 May 2018, https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/11/us/everyday-racial-profiling-consequences-trnd/index.html.
- Willingham, A. J. (2019, March 21). Researchers studied nearly 100 million traffic stops and found black motorists are more likely to be pulled over. Retrieved from https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/21/us/police-stops-race-stanford-study-trnd/index.html.
- Willingham, AJ. “Researchers Studied Nearly 100 Million Traffic Stops and Found Black Motorists Are More Likely to Be Pulled Over.” CNN, Cable News Network, 21 Mar. 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/21/us/police-stops-race-stanford-study-trnd/index.html.
- “Racial Profiling Since 9/11 Report.” American Civil Liberties Union, https://www.aclu.org/report/racial-profiling-911-report.
- Arenge, Andrew, et al. “Poll: 64 Percent of Americans Say Racism Remains a Major Problem.” NBCNews.com, NBCUniversal News Group, 30 May 2018, https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politics-news/poll-64-percent-americans-say-racism-remains-major-problem-n877536.
- History.com Editors. “The Central Park Five.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 14 May 2019, https://www.history.com/topics/1980s/central-park-five.
- ABC News, ABC News Network, https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/netflix-series-renews-outcry-donald-trumps-role-central/story?id=63607696.
- “Racial Profiling in Police Stops.” Maps Mania, http://googlemapsmania.blogspot.com/2019/03/racial-profiling-in-police-stops.html.