Throughout the course of history, many cultures and communities around the globe have always had certain individuals within their society who possess a specific characteristic that have been deemed by others as source of many problems. The majority of the situations such as these is a result of an individual possessing a characteristic that differs from the ideal or acceptable norms of a society cultural ideology. This manner of thought has greatly influenced our society to the point that it has been incorporated in many fields of government such as policing and judicial system. Many researchers such as Simmons (2011) or government institutes such as The National Institute of Justice (2013) consider this to be Racial Profiling. These studies have defined the term of racial profiling as a discriminatory based tool utilized by l government and law enforcement officials when they target individuals for suspicion of committing a crime. The suspicion or probable cause is completely based on the individual’s internal (religion)and external characteristics (race, national origin, ethnicity, skin pigmentation) . Criminal profiling which differentiates from racial profiling is a tool or method that is used by law enforcement, that is used to identify certain markers or characteristics they believe to be associated with crime. Regardless of the background, this racial profiling is based on a type of bias or discrimination and it has been used against certain group of individuals with a specific characteristic. These differential characteristics can be based on an individual’s gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliations, and much more but the overall aspect that has caused many years of outcasting and targeting is the ethnicity as well as the skin pigmentation of an individual. The belief that a certain ethnic population is polluting a society has been a long ongoing issue to the point where it has not only influenced the manner that ethnically differentiated individuals should be treated but as well as how the judicial and criminal justice system should treat them. The foundation or the main goal of the judicial and criminal justice system is to have a system of practice and use resources that are directed at upholding and maintaining social control and safety while at the same time hindering crime as well as confining and rehabilitating criminal offenders. Racial profiling has not only been a great topic of debate, but has a deep history of being an issue on a national level despite government officials promising that all law enforcement has been modified and adapted to a post racial time. Racial profiling occurs every day, in many societies because as law enforcement officials as well as private security individuals conduct detentions, searches and interrogations without having any evidence of criminal activity. Instead their actions are “justified” on the individuals perceived ethnicity, national origin, race or religion. A huge ration of individuals as something that should be completely abolished because racial profiling in considered to illegal because it is violating the U.S. Constitution’s main principles and protections of equal protection under the law to all and freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. Research such as Legewie (2016 x) depicts that racial profiling is ineffective and has negative effects which something that researchers like Oh (2017). Researches such as these have depicted what many of ethnic groups that are differential from the caucasian or white population have been going through as a result of of racial profiling. This practice seems to have two perspectives one where it causes more damage than good and the other that some of aspects of racial profiling does indeed help in preventing crime to some degree. This is why racial profiling has had an ongoing debate on whether it is a bad or good thing for the community. The following text will give a brief history of racial profiling, discuss how racial profiling is being implemented and lastly what effect it has in today’s society.
In English, Bowleg, del Río-González, Agans, Tschann, and Malebranche (2017) study, address the social science research that has analyzed police and law enforcement-perpetrated discrimination towards African American males in the Community by utilizing policing statistics and implicit bias studies.Due to the lack of quantitative data focusing on the perspective of these discriminated individuals the source as well as many aspects of the discrimination has no reason. This article attempted to address the missing information or data in the qualitative development relating to the issues while testing quantitative test of the Police and Law Enforcement (PLE) Scale The study utilized thematic analysis on survica and sample data collected from a large quantity of African american male in order to identify key themes, concepts as well as quantitative data items. The data supported the study’s hypothesis by depicting a significant positive association between the PLE racial and racial discrimination as well as .negative physiological and psychological health issues caused by racial profiling or discrimination.
In Bond, J., Dees, M., ; Bullard, S. (2011) study goes into depth regarding the history of the white supremacist group of the Ku Klux Klan who was considered to be one of America’s first racial terrorist group. The study was intended to influence and hinder racial violence as wells groups such as the Ku KLux Klan through educating others one many levels including on a political level.The study can be identified as a complete history of hate crime in the United States of America depicting the unethical and inhumane violence or targeting of other due to and individuals characteristics such as their race or religion. The study illustrates the systematic prejudice that extends beyond hate based groups into government and law enforcement. There discuss multiple examples of racial discrimination such as racial profiling and many other, which were used to violate multiple government established protections and rights. The issue of these violations being ignored at a national level is addressed along with duties and obligations that government must insure and protect for all despite their personal characteristics.
The information presented by National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (1968), details the information or data that was a result of investigating the urban rebellions that were occuring throughout the nation between the years of 1964 and 1967. The findings from this investigation give a detailed illustration of the discrimination and treatment towards racially diverse individuals. The social outcasting of these individuals resulted in violations governmental and global protections. It also resulted in physiological and psychiatric abuse from law enforcement and government officials. Where there was no justice for ethnically diverse individuals and were instead the target of racial profiling as well as other discriminatory methods of law enforcement tools.
In the article by Harris (2003), a magnitude of research, data, and history regarding racial profiling is examined and illustrated. The purpose of the article is to address the racial disparity in multiple aspect of the criminal justice system. The article details the not only the stereotypes of ethnically diverse individuals from a government perspective but also discussed the physiological and psychiatric effects of both the community and the individuals who are victims of racial profiling. Policies, laws, and methods of enforcement are discussed in manner that illustrates the hardships and strain ethnic communities as well as the nation had causing hostility on multiple levels including international relations. The behavior of law enforcement in “justifiable” traffic stops are expressed by Harris to have been based on the physical characteristic of the driver and it was the behavior of officials that made the detainment more unjustifiable. Harris’s research expresses that racial profiling has no significant data or research that it accomplishes what it is supposed to accomplish.
In Martinez (2017) article the text focuses on the methods and manner that took place during the recent 2016 United States Presidential campaign and election process. Martinez goes into detail about the intense fear and racial discrimination towards individuals with ethnic backgrounds, especially towards the Hispanic, African American and Islamic community. The article takes into account the sociological and psychological aspect of both the voters and the nominees. The research depicted that a white or caucasian supremacy ideology influenced the United States policies and laws to be racially targeting the ethnically diverse population. The article also discusses how presidential nominee Donald Trump were trying to obtain social control by utilizing racially discriminatory methods such as racial profiling, hate crimes, media manipulation, and many other methods.
Another research article that focuses presidential Donald Trump’s influence on society as well as the racial discrimination towards Islamic or Arabic ethnic individuals is by Stegmeir (2017). The article illustrates the racial discrimination against Islamic or Arabic ethnic individuals in the academic and public environment. The text touches base upon the the stereotypes surrounding people of the Islamic faith as well as their ethnicity and how the enticement of fear caused racial profiling and other forms of discrimination to the point where individuals of Islamic or similar race were detained and prohibited to travel or come into the United States. The article also references the National Conference of the National Association of College Admission Counseling (NACAC) which analyzed the influence and issues Islamophobia and manners to address and aid individuals in situations such as the prohibition of traveling that was caused by Donald Trump.
In Helfers (2016) study, the data of issues single and multiple citations from traffic stops in a community in the United States of America is analyzed in the attempt to find any statistical significance between the ethnicity of a driver and law enforcement official. The study used logistic regression to advance the understanding of the utilization racial profiling when it comes to citation practices law enforcements department in the United States. The results concluded that ethnically diverse individuals receive more citations than their white or caucasian counterparts. Taking the law enforcement officer’s own ethnicity, the data revealed that individuals of Hispanic descent had the greatest percentage for receiving multiple citations and that individuals from African decent are the second greatest to receive citations. The data also depicted that law enforcement officials are more strict and show racial bias towards individuals of Hispanic or African American descent in regards to traffic stop practices and citations.
In Risse and Zeckhauser (2004) article, racial profiling is addressed on multiple level in an attempt to identify and advanced the knowledge on the subject as well as in order to reduce the use of racial profiling. The article attempts to find a significant correlation on whether being from an ethnically diverse group makes an individual more prone to commit a crime. The article also attempts to to find a data that shows that racial profiling is actually hindering crime. The data presented takes into account multiple aspects of the subject including the perspective that to some degree racial profiling is a benefit but at the same time it is an issue. Researches take into account cases and citations such as traffic stops were racial profiling was involved. They found that racial profiling creates a negative bias and hostility towards diverse ethnic groups.
In Legewie’s (2016) article is based on Racial profiling and its use in government and law enforcement . The purpose of the article is to show that by using racial profiling or any racial discrimination methods not only can cause negative effects but can also worse when race is brought up institution such as an african american shooting a white law enforcement official. The study utilized a quasi experiment method that analyzed data from 3.9 million stops in New York City. The data found that show that situation such as the one previously stated increased the use of racial profiling and other racially bia methods by law enforcement against African American communities. The data also showed that by utilizing these negative methods, things such as physical conflict, hostility and negative reinforcement of stereotypes are created.
In Levers (2007) article focuses on racial profiling and refers to previous studies that relating to the issue such as Risse and Zeckhauser (2004). The article address the perspective of how racial profiling can be justified in a society but argues that at the end of the day it increase multiple forms of racial discrimination and inequality. The article argues that racial profiling should never be a part in of the legal and justice system. As well as should not practiced in law enforcement in any manner due to the fact that it violates protections and rights. The article also addresses the demolition of society as well as racial profiling victims in regards to their physiological and psychiatric well being.
As previously stated racial profiling has been present in human history around the globe since biblical times. In regards the the history of the United States of America, the main targets of have been any colored, ethnic or religious groups that differentiate from the caucasian or white christian population of societies. The main issue or source of racial profiling is Racism and discrimination as expressed by English, Bowleg, del Río-González, Agans, Tschann, and Malebranche (2017). English et al. (2017) states that when analyzing survival data based on racial profiling African American men who have been detained experience “discrimination with police/law enforcement”. Which is something that has been seen in past and current event in the United States. The racism or discrimination in United States’s policing goes back further than the pre-Civil War era. When African Americans were considered slaves and were dehumanized on an every day basis. In an attempt to control the African American or slave population Slave Patrols were created. In a manner these were are considered by some as the first “policing” or government steps in using racial profiling. The patrols consisted of caucasian or white citizens who were commissioned to serve as a slave patroller.’ The patroles were given the authority or power from state to unlawfully perform random searches, enter the homes of African Americans, seize items that were considered illegal for a colored individual to have possession at the time. These items consisted of things such as books or pens or paper and just about anything that was related or identified and school material. Slave patrollers also had the authority to take into custody colored individuals, and administer their own justice with mild to severe beatings. According to Bond, Dees, and Bullard (2011), some methodologies as well as ideologies from these groups became the foundation for the white supremacist group the Ku Klux Klan as depicted in the work of. Racial profiling later began to during the civil right movement cities in the 1960s had law enforcement officials treat African American citizens in a brutal manner. Something that is still seen today and has resulted in a significant amount of the detentions was the targeting of African American drivers by law enforcement officials. The power to be able to detain and search individuals is something that the United States Supreme Court noticed to be taken advantage of. This was due to the fact that these powers were used by law enforcement departments to suppress and control minority populations which was seen in the famous case of Terry v. Ohio 1968. Nevertheless, these were always considered issues that would only concern African Americans, and seemed to have no relevance at all for the general public. According to the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (1968) reports from African Americans regarding the brutal treatment from law enforcement was almost completely ignored. Racial profiling as a law enforcement tactic became known in the more known in the 1980s because the United States government attempts to combat drug trafficking. The United States Federal Drug Enforcement Administration and customs agents created profiles of distribution methods by “observing” the manner that paraphernalia was being transported through border checkpoints. The problem with this was that there was no statistical data that supported the profile. According to Harris (2003) , ” they used no even remotely rigorous statistical analysis to see if the factors used actually predicted the targeted behavior any better than would random selection of passengers”. This was later turned in to Drug Enforcement Agency’s program called Operation Pipeline which was intended to teach law enforcement officials to look and identify a number of characteristics in drivers. They searched for things such including visible demeanor, amount of currency, amount of travel baggage, and amount of passengers in a vehicle and their names. As well as the drivers background information such their reason for driving and their destination. Eventually the racial aspect began to come into play because some of the suspicion criteria began to only target racial and ethnic groups especially the African American and Hispanic community. Despite the government claiming that the agencies involved with the program claimed that the training and concept of the program was racially neutral in every aspect. According to Harris (2003) the “training films and other materials mentioned race or ethnicity as a factor” which highly contradicted the government’s claims. There were many cases that were based on the issue of racial profiling one of them being the case of the State of New Jersey v.s Pedro Soto in 1996. Where the defense manage to establish in court that the race of the defendant (driver) and their passengers was “a decisive factor or a factor with great explanatory power” in determining which vehicles or individuals would be detained and searched ( Harris (2003)). In the following years individuals began to try to enact End Racial Profiling Act, which would address and attempt to end the racially bias treatment in law enforcement. This act was influenced after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, because net of racial profiling began expand not only to its targets but to the people who began to see racial profiling as a beneficial thing. Individuals that includes pre existing targets of racial profiling began to racially profile Arabic as well as Muslim ethnic groups because of the perceived notion and fear that they are terrorists. It was seen as Anti-terrorism profiling where it was deemed as a precautionary tool to keep everyone safe. The profiling of Arab and Muslim individuals became brought new forms of retaliation due the discrimination that not caused “random” searches and detainment in airports but as well in the public.
In recent times racial profiling is continuing to be implemented in law enforcement in one way or another. In the article by English et al. (2017), their is the explanation on how experiences of discrimination expands the conceptualization of racism to include things such as institutions, beliefs, actions, as well as other stimuli to be considered or deemed as discriminator. This is caused by individuals being victimized, rather than what is deemed as discriminatory from other perspectives. As a result of the newly elected president Donald Trump, his morals and ideology regarding the caucasian or white population of the nation, resulted in more racial discrimination and profiling towards differential ethnic groups. As Martinez (2017) discusses, Trump’s victory in the presidential election was a result of him playing on the stereotypical fear and beliefs regarding non caucasian or white population of the nation. The racial profiling began to get a lot worse because of these methods of obtaining more voters. Trump began intice fear within the Caucasian society by making negative remarks regarding the Hispanic and African American community stating that they are the source of the United States drug problem, rape epidemic, other issues. Another target of Trump’s influence was the Arabic and Muslim community. After making progress on not profiling or targeting ethnic groups, Trump issued a travel ban that prevented individuals of Arabic or Muslim ethnicity to enter the United States without any notices. Stegmeir (2017) pointed out how Trump manipulated the stereotypes that are based on how any individual that posses characteristics of a different ethnicity are either criminals or terrorists. Today policing is still implementing methods that use racial profiling. For example the broken windows policing which is used to describe the approach and theory suggests that law enforcement should target minor crimes which would result in not only a decrease of crime but also prevent more serious crimes. This is depicted in the the research study of Hayle (2016) where the study used survical data that depicted that young African American are “5.8 times more likely to be stopped” and “6.5 times” more likely to be searched than “white” individuals. The data also depicted that individuals that appeared to be of low income or have a homeless status would also be detained or searched just on their appearance especially if they were of ethnic descent. Research literature such and English et al. (2017) has discovered that that police officers are more likely to show automatic biases against Black men and adolescents than their peers from other racial/ethnic groups. The majority of racial profiling is done in shown in policing in traffic stops or traffic violations as shown in Helfers (2016) study that analyzed the traffic stop data of a suburban community. According to Helfers (2016), the data revealed Hispanics have the greatest odds of receiving multiple citations, followed by Blacks, regardless of the ethnicity of the officer. The findings provide additional evidence the police are more punitive towards Blacks and Hispanics in traffic citation issuance practices.” There are situations or cases such as Alvin W. Penn who was the African American deputy president of the Connecticut State Senate. His case was in relation to law enforcement officials stopping and detailing colored individuals traveling through areas where the population was predominantly caucasian or white white due to officers having the strong belief that they are present in the are from criminal activity and overall did not belong in the area. This racial profiling was experienced as well as reported by Penn after he was stopped and detained by law enforcement as he was traveling in his vehicle through a white suburban city. After reviewing Penn’s legal identification and documentation the law enforcement officer asked Penn whether he was aware of his location, which Penn questioned why his location was an issue. The officer expressed that he was not required to answer his question and to justify his reason from for detaining him and if Penn caused any commotion the officer would cite him for a traffic violation. Penn’s experience resulted in him creating and help enact the 1999 Racial Profiling Prohibition Act that prohibited any law enforcement agency unlawfully stopping and detaining as well as searching any motorist when the stop is caused on the basis of the motorist’s race, ethnicity, color, gender, age or sexual preference. Another case was the case of Dr. Elmo Randolph’s case, who was an African-American dentist and was commuting from Bergen County to his office of profession somewhere New Jersey. In The time frame of 9 years in the same commuting route, law enforcement had stopped and detained him more than 50 times. Dr. Randolph expressed that he has never violated any traffic laws and had no criminal records. He claimed that there was no reason or probable cause for him to have been stopped or detian. Law enforcement had not issued him a ticket but they approached his gold BMW vehicle they, request his license and registration, and at the same time ask if Dr. Randolph was in possession of any drugs or weapons. The last case is the case of Robert Wilkins who was a public defender at the time, who on his way home from a trip with his family in a rented vehicle. Wilkins and his relatives were stopped and detained for speeding while driving 60 in a 55 miles per hour zone. During the stop Wilkins and his relatives were forcibly made to stand in rainy weather for long period of time, while at the same time law enforcement as well as drug-sniffing K9 units searched their rented vehicle and found nothing. According to Risse and Zeckhauser (2004), petty traffic violations is something that ethical individuals are constantly cited for no matter how ludacris the citation can be these citations can include things from failure to signal to speeding 5 miles above the speed limit. In Risse and Zeckhauser (2004) article they state that “police stopped 40 percent of blacks but only 20 percent of whites exceeding a speed limit by 10mph.”
Many believe that racial profiling is indeed beneficial just as individuals like Donald Trump believes. There are has been research that has found no significant data that shows racial profiling to any overall benefit in policing that differentiates from other methods of policings. Instead the effects of racial profiling over the years has caused a great range of damages and continues to create a great deal of damage especially on the relationships amongst individuals as well as the government. It instead entices hostility and negative issues that not only provoke more discrimination and reinforcement of harmful ideologies. Racial profiling is not driven by statistical research but driven from racist beliefs and events. Studies such as Legewie (2016) state that ” racial bias in policing and discrimination more broadly is not static but fluctuates, partly driven by significant events that provoke intergroup conflict and foreground racial stereotypes.” Racial profiling causes a great deal of mental psychological issues overall in racially diverse groups. It alienates communities from not being able to establish a relationship to law enforcement, hinders community policing as well as results in law enforcement to lose credibility and trust among the people they are sworn to protect and serve. When analyzing the geocoded data of the study, Legewie (2016) expresses that “encounters with law enforcement erode the sense of police legitimacy and increase critical perceptions of the police”. This supports that data from other researchers that state that racial profiling has no statistical or significant data that supports racial profiling a legitimate method of decreasing present or future crime. Citizens of the United States of America rely on the government and its law enforcement to protect their citizens from harm and establish fairness as well as justice throughout the nation. But racial profiling has resulted in an overwhelming amount of ethnically diverse communities to live in fear. Due to the threat that because of a person’s appearance or personal characteristics or background the will be dehumanized and treated as trash because of who they are especially in a caucasian or white community. As Lever (2007) states ” racial profiling discourages people from living, traveling and working in white neighborhoods, especially at night, and so compounds residential and occupational segregation. It discourages people from joining the police, and so perpetuates a damaging public perception of the police as hostile”. When researching for statical data in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime rates, there was no recent data on race or ethnicity of offenders.
Overall Upon reviewing and analyzing data and research based racial discrimination there are a significant amount of issues. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, “There is incontrovertible proof that racial profiling does not give law enforcement officials an advantage in fighting crime. Furthermore, the premise upon which it is based that certain ethnic minorities are more likely than whites to be in violation of the law”. These issues are illustrated in the violations to not only the constitution but as well as other protections that are promised by governments to individuals not just as citizens but as human beings. For example, according to article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, it clearly states that, “no one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.” The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination details how the United States of America has the responsibility as well as obligation to prevent as well not be involved in any racial discriminatory practices of acts. Article 2 of the same protection document also forces the United States of America to “take effective measures to review governmental,national and local policies, and to amend, rescind or nullify any laws and regulations,which have the effect of creating or perpetuating racial discrimination. Another protection document is that is being violated is the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment which addresses how torture is being committed by racial profiling. According to article 1 of the document it considered torture as “any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person”. In the same document it also addresses the obligation the United States of America needs to eliminate any actions or practices related to the term. According to Article 16 every form of government is obligated to ” prevent in any territory under its jurisdiction other acts of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment which do not amount to torture as defined in article I.” Lastly the 4th Amendment to the United States Constitution is violated because it clearly states that it protects citizens against “unreasonable searches and seizures”. The constitution’s 14th Amendment prohibits any government or state to “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” The majority of racial profiling cases argue that law enforcement had probable cause in order commit or proceed with their actions. The issue with that is that that basis of the their probable cause is based the ethnicity or race of an individual. Another issue is that statistical data that is collected and presented in places such as the Uniformed Crime Reports is not accurate. For example it does not take into account the dark figure of unreported incidents of law enforcement. This was show in Penn’s case that was previously stated where law enforcement attempted to entice fear in Penn in order to prevent any record of the unjustified detention. To some degree it is understandable that stereotyping is useful tool in combating crime. For example characteristics such as certain tattoos, psychiatric profiles and other like things can aid law enforcement with catching perpetrators. Religions like La Santa Muerte which is a Catholic deity seems to be worshipped by many individuals involved with the cartel, but just because someone worships the sames deity does not mean that they are criminal. It is better to enact more policies and mandatory training or courses that can teach individuals in law enforcement and government to identify non racial characteristics that focus solely on non racial or non skin pigmentation perception methods such as tattoo identification. By implementing the proper training that includes non racial methods as well as deductive reasoning, not only will law enforcement really make a change in the community but they will also heal the years of deep damage that racial profiling has caused in the world.