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Mar 12th, 2015
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Question description

Analyze the political and social effects of racial profiling within law enforcement. Conduct research and find at least two scholarly resources on this topic. Then, conduct a brief comparative analysis between criminal profiling and racial profiling. Identify the concerns brought forward by the community and the American Civil Liberties Union (A.C.L.U.) regarding racial profiling. Provide your opinion on how law enforcement should allay these concerns.  

The police must not have had a high approval rating for the public to believe the media. “In 2013, the Ferguson Police Department made 5,384 stops and 611 searches. 86 percent of the stops and 92 percent of the searches were of black people. Only 67 percent of the town's population is black” (Madrigal,  2014). What is not acceptable is the racial disparity by these numbers.

Sometimes, a local police  department has unhealthy numbers as a result of police interaction in racist actions, and alternative times, the amount of stops and arrests the police create. Whites are stopped, but for different offenses.  “ If your stops of black folks are less efficient than your stops of white folks," Goff said, "then you want to look at that and make it stop” (Madrigal, 2014).

Race is a factor that many individuals use to make initial judgments about people. When law enforcement practices are perceived as racially biased, unfair or disrespectful, communities of color are less willing to trust and confide in police officers (DeLord, & Sanders, 2006, p.121).

Racial profiling is a problem that occurs in our cities, and towns every day. Law Enforcement loses their creditability and trust among those they are sworn to protect and serve. Racial profiling is the use of an persons race or ethnicity as a key factor in deciding whether law enforcement should stop a individual. When officers take race into account to develop a criminal profile, they rely on stereotypes about criminal tendencies of minority groups, rather than objective and rational criteria for suspicion (Rivera, 2008, p.5).

By the police using this kind of stereotyping this violates many amendments to the United States Constitution. The legal system has failed to prevent racial profiling from taking place. the legal system perpetuates a class structure in which society may continue to socially oppress African Americans by portraying them as possessing uncontrollable and innate urges toward criminality (Rivera, 2008, p.5).  There are many African Americans that feel they are hunted by the police. The history of our nation provides a lot of reasons why they should feel that way. “Police officers do not exempt African Americans citizens from racial profiling based on their education, wealth, or personal appearance” (Rivera, 2008, p.9).

Politically there is favoritism when it comes to allocation of public resources and in terms of job opportunities where a person who is more qualified would be left out just because racists feel he is not qualified. But it’s just a case of racism that lacks proper reasons for the unfair allocation. Police also harass the victimized communities and place unjustified offences on them and other cases are there where police have killed the victims for no good reason. An example of racism in the USA is that of Boston police who engage in racially biased police-civilian encounters where they target mostly black people and harass them (Schaefer, 2008).

  Criminal profiling is a case where collected data from other similar crimes is used in building a profile that is used in identifying an offender of a similar crime while racial profiling is based on a particular authority identifying the race of the offender and concluding that all individuals of that race are criminals. The ACLU's fight against racial profiling includes initiatives in litigation, public education where it emphasizes on proper and fair treatment towards all students despite their background or race and also emphasizes the reduction of unfair treatment by police to the victims. The ACLU has even gone ahead and provided advocates in coat in the fight against this crime. It also emphasizes on anti-profiling and litigation and acts on behalf of those who have been victimized.

A Center for Policing Equity is creating “The Justice Database a national catalog of police behavior—including stops and the use of force. They've received more than $1 million from the National Science Foundation, Department of Justice, and several private foundations to create the aggregated national data” (Madrigal, 2014, para.10).

There are laws in place such as the End Racial Profiling Act.  But, that does not seem to be enough. We need to remember Law Enforcement Officers carry weapons that kill citizens & arrest people that do not want to be arrested, they are on the front lines and their decisions are often instantaneous and may lead to injury or death” (Delord & Sanders, 2006, p, 214).

or death even their own.


DeLord, R., & Sanders, J. (2006, August). Police labor-management relations (vol. I): Perspective and practical solution for implementing change, making reforms, and handling crisis for managers and union leaders. U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. Retrieved from http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/files/ric/Publications/e07063417.pdf

Madrigal, A. C. (2014, August 15). ​How Much Racial Profiling Happens in Ferguson? — The Atlantic. Retrieved from www.theatlantic.com/technology/...profiling-happens-in.../378606/

Rivera, W. (2008, March). PDF] 2 ADDRESSING THE REAL PROBLEM OF RACIAL PROFILING ... Retrieved from https://www.tourolaw.edu/.../Addressing%20the%20Real%20Problem%20of%20Racial%20P.

Schaefer.R.K.,(2008). Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity and Society. SAGE. p. 1113

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