Skip Nav

Racial Profiling Essay

Reflective essay on racial profiling: The concept

❶The fact that most terrorists today happen to be Muslim does not conversely imply that most Muslims are actually terrorists.

Racial profiling essay

Navigate Guide
Reflective essay on racial profiling: The key examples
Get a custom essay from expert US & UK writers

The fact he was Muslim and a speaker of Arabic, the fellow passenger immediately made a mental connection regarding terrorism.

Such examples, some extremely serious could be multiplied endlessly, and together could constitute a broad picture of the racial profiling of Muslims not only by law enforcement but every-day non-Muslim civilians. Some stakeholders have suggested that racial profiling is in fact a valid law enforcement practice that should be permitted to continue within the United States.

This argument has always been a pragmatic one in nature. Advocates of racial profiling contend that it's a necessary tool during an investigation. Law enforcement officers rely on their training and experience when developing a case and if their expertise leads them to believe that a subject is involved in. For example, it is an undisputed fact that most terrorist threats targeting the United States today originate from Muslim countries ; therefore, if law enforcement observes numerous Muslims about committing this sort of crime, then it would perhaps be appropriate for him to in the future pay more attention to young Muslim men than say, elderly White women when attempting to prevent such crime from happening in the future.

This argument is based on the fundamental insight that at a statistical level, people from certain demographics often are more likely to commit certain crimes associated with that background than those from an unrelated background.

From a law enforcement perspective, it would make no sense whatsoever to disregard this insight simply because it may strike some as politically insensitive. Rather, law enforcement officials must use all the information at their disposal to detect crimes in the present and deter future crimes. If some level of racial profiling were to provide crucial intelligence that did indeed deter crime, the conclusion is perhaps that racial profiling should in fact remain a part of law enforcement's more general professional arsenal.

Racial profiling would thus constitute a direct violation of civil rights. It would deny the right of every American to be legally treated first and foremost as an American and not primarily as a member of any one demographic category. There is also the obvious point that even the potential benefits of racial profiling may not always cover the costs.

The fact that most terrorists today happen to be Muslim does not conversely imply that most Muslims are actually terrorists.

In short, innocent people are getting being persecuted for no reason whatsoever. This is clearly a serious moral dilemma.

The pragmatic benefits of racial profiling may be getting undermined by the drawbacks of the practice. Ranja Natarajan of the Washington Post has written:. When law enforcement officers target residents based on race, religion or national origin rather than behavior, crime-fighting is less effective and community distrust of police grows" paragraph 4. Such distrust gets in the way of law enforcement efforts and in the long run even helps to cultivate exactly the kind of environment within which crime tends to grow and thrive.

In short, racial profiling tends toward creating an outgroup within the community by implicitly assuming that an entire population has a proclivity toward criminality; and this can actually contribute to creating the preconditions of criminality itself, in the manner of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The main conclusion of the above discussion is the basis that racial profiling is a highly problematic practice that has more drawbacks than it does benefits. As the review of arguments has shown, racial profiling breaks down trust within a community, which in turn makes the existing problems of crime worse. At the level of principle, it is also a clear violation of civil-rights and equal treatment of all under the law. On the other hand, the point could also be argued that at some level, it would be almost impossible for most law enforcement officers to avoid racial profiling.

This is for the simple reason that racial profiling does in fact sometimes yield true insights regarding the nature of crime within a given community. Such insights may be an indispensable tool to officers who are simply trying to do the best job they can.

Especially in a profession that requires split-second decision making in literal matters of life and death. The best suggestion that can be made is that law enforcement training should attempt to become more sensitive and conscious regarding the use of racial profiling.

On the one hand, it is clearly absurd and immoral to walk down the street thinking that every black person is a criminal or that every Muslim is a terrorist; on the other, it would also be wrong and ineffective for competent law enforcement officers to disregard information that they view as genuinely salient. Information that could possibly include demographic factors, just as it could include a plethora of other factors as well should not be discarded.

However, it must also be admitted that there may be a legitimate, albeit narrow, use of racial profiling as well, when such a practice is considered as simply part and parcel of an objective and empirical analysis of all salient factors. American Civil Liberties Union. National Institute of Justice. Ultius Blog, 23 Aug. Click here for more help with MLA citations. Reflective Essay on Racial Profiling. Click here for more help with APA citations.

Click here for more help with CMS citations. Click here for more help with Turabian citations. Ultius is the trusted provider of content solutions and matches customers with highly qualified writers for sample writing, academic editing, and business writing. Ultius is the trusted provider of content solutions for consumers around the world.

Go to Homepage current My Account my. Core offerings Browse by service type Start your search By selecting a service type. Racial profiling has become a contentious issue in law enforcement practices over the last twenty years.

An increasing number of reported instances in which law enforcement personnel have been accused of targeting certain minority groups has cast a spotlight on racial profiling, as well as increased tensions and debate over the legitimacy of the practice for various reasons Institute on Race and Justice, There is no single agreed upon definition of racial profiling.

The definition across the literature ranges from including race, ethnicity, or nationality as a consideration when deciding to apply law enforcement procedures, to using race, ethnicity, or nationality as the only consideration when deciding to apply law enforcement procedures.

The public perception of the acceptability of racial profiling varies under circumstances. For example, a poll conducted in said 81 percent of individuals reported that they disapproved of racial profiling when law enforcement officials pulled over motorists solely based on their race and ethnicity.

On the other hand, another poll conducted after the September 11 terrorist attacks showed that the majority of those polled supported increasing security and investigation of individuals from Arab backgrounds on planes Pampel, The practice of racial profiling by law enforcement agencies was begun during the late s, as police officers worked to capture drug traffickers.

A profile is a collection of gathered facts that help law enforcement officers target individuals who are likely committing criminal acts. Law enforcement officers have long used profiling to help them gain understanding about the likely characteristics of the perpetrator of a crime, including but not limited to age, sex, race, and observed behaviors Institute on Race and Justice, Police have used profiling to target the characteristics of certain individuals as more likely to commit certain types of crimes, often observed by police officers.

For example, a poor individual who spends a large amount of time in affluent enclaves may be targeted as someone likely to commit a crime. While this type of profiling has often been seen as unfair and biased, law enforcement agencies consider it a necessary practice to intercept possible criminal activity before it occurs Pampel, Racial profiling was first termed during the war on drugs in the s and s, when police officers were accused of pulling over motorists based on race and then searching their vehicles for illegal substances.

However, there are incidents of racial profiling in other situations and instances throughout American history. Even more currently, after the September 11 attacks in , the War on Terrorism was announced and individuals across the country were arrested, questioned, or detained by federal law enforcers. Other instances of racial profiling include pulling over Hispanics near the Mexico border in an attempt to capture illegal immigrants en route to the United States or questioning or searching minorities in high-crime urban areas Pampel, In April , Arizona enacted SB , which made it a misdemeanor crime for a a nonresident of the United States to be in Arizona without carrying required documents.

The arguments that surround the issue of racial profiling are connected to the inherent racism found in our communities and the tensions between law enforcement officials and various communities of color. Statistics have shown that African-American individuals are much more likely to be arrested and imprisoned than white Americans.

As of , 60 percent of all imprisoned men were African American, and 1 in every 15 African American men was in prison versus 1 in every white men. Additionally, 1 in every 3 black men can expect to go to prison as some point in their lives, and convicted blacks receive sentences that are 10 percent longer than their white counterparts. Blacks were also three times more likely than whites to be searched during traffic stops Kerby,

Blog Archive

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

Free racial profiling papers, essays, and research papers.

Privacy FAQs

Racial Profiling by Police is Not Justified Essay. In relation to the debate of ‘racial profiling,’ Taylor and Whitney define racial profiling as “the practice of questioning blacks in disproportionate numbers in expectation that they are more likely than people of other races to be criminals” (Taylor & Whitney, ).

About Our Ads

Racial Profiling Racial profiling is the tactic of stopping someone because of the color of his or her skin and fleeting suspicion that the person is engaging in criminal behavior. This practice can be conducted with routine traffic stops, or can be completely random based on the car that is. Racial Profiling. Racial profiling is a contentious issue in US law enforcement policy. The practice of using race as a part of a profile when attempting to identify or curb criminal activity has been used in various ways, including pulling individuals over on highways and questioning airline passengers and individuals at border crossings.

Cookie Info

Unlike most editing & proofreading services, we edit for everything: grammar, spelling, punctuation, idea flow, sentence structure, & more. Get started now! Racial profiling is the use of personal characteristics or behavior patterns to make generalizations about a person. Sometimes we do it without even realizing it.