Racial profiling is a myth. It is myth especially as understood in the popular vernacular of today’s media, liberal progressives and of course my friends in academia. When viewed through the prism of political correctness and identity politics, the very term has lost all credible meaning. This loss of meaning has been particularly libelous to police and law enforcement officials. In many cases, if not all, what would in more rational times be construes as good police work, has metastasized into pejorative view far too many African Americans and politicians hold about these special men and women who place their lives on the line every day to protect us. In many inner city areas, this demonization of law enforcement has become a tragic if not dangerous charade.
The claim that minorities and blacks in particular are singled-out for no other reason than that they are black; and that the cancer of racism motivates current policing methodology is absurd. Yet it is this absurdity that makes inner-city neighborhoods very dangerous and uncivil places to live and police.
Proponents of racial profiling point to the higher arrest rates for blacks as oppose to other racial groups as well as incidents like Ferguson, Trayvon Martin and the current Tony Robinson incident up in Madison, Wisconsin as proof that police specifically target blacks. Racial profiling has taken a common law enforcement practices (criminal profiling) and made it less than elementary. If blacks seem to draw the attention of the police more often; criminal profiling occurs for the simple fact that black men generally commit crimes at a higher rate the other groups. If you have a constituency that represents only 13% of the U.S. population continuing to be responsible for an inordinate amount of murders, rapes, robberies and drug infraction; than it only makes sense that when a crime is committed in an inner city neighborhood , the police don’t go out an arrest 87 year old Korean grandmothers.
They profile individuals who generated the most lawlessness in black neighborhoods, and that is black criminals. There is nothing mysterious about profiling. Taking the time to discriminate, implementing reasonable actions in determining who most likely would rob your local inner city Rite-Aid or Family Dollar doesn’t take an epiphany. Yes, police discriminate in order to make the best judgment call given the preexisting societal data on crime rates among various groups.
A recent decision by University of Minnesota’s President to ban the use of race in helping police identify and arrest individuals suspected of a crime is yet another example of how liberal progressives have made it more dangerous for all law abiding citizens. At the same, time they set-up another barrier for law enforcement to negotiate.
Far too many liberal academics and their counterparts in the mainstream media who don’t have to deal with decaying and crime prone neighborhoods are the very ones with the most discordant view of the police. The young liberal attorney who may feel quite proud of themselves when they defend, and many cases helps free much of the human debris that terrorizes law abiding citizens; seldom lives in the neighborhoods where these same criminals return to inflict even more damage on their fellow residents. To paraphrase the late Dietrich Bonheoffer, liberal progressives, enjoy their “grace on the cheap.”
As a sidebar, all of us practice some form of profiling in order to make the most common sense and efficient decisions. For example, I practice gender profiling when I am moving a couch up the back stairs of my home because generally men have more upper body strength than women. So I wouldn’t normally ask my youngest daughter, who is slight of built to lift sometime heavy. I know that my son who can bench press over 300 pounds is the best candidate for this task. Yes, I profiled the hell out of my daughter because of a fact that the upper body strength of men is a more reliable indicator in addressing the fore mention task. On the other hand, my college age daughter won’t let me near a Calculus III problem, because long ago she profiled me as severely math challenged.
The High Cost of Criminals
Excessive criminal behavior that unfortunately defines too many inner city neighborhoods comes at a great cost to the majority of blacks who attempt to live their lives and raise their children like many Americans. Some of these costs are obvious, such extra store security at your local Wal-Mart or Dollar Tree. Also, limits on the types of products and services that are available at an inner city box stores like K-Mart as oppose to these same stores in more affluent areas. The reality that suburban stores can keep thousands of low price items display outside the store thus providing its customers with more choices while the same stores located in the inner city cannot, is a direct cost of criminals (young black guys) that bring so much chaos to these communities.
In many larger inner city communities such as in Philadelphia and Baltimore, everything must be tied down or placed behind bars in order for it not to walk. Residents live with bars on their windows and vicious dogs in their yards, not because they are afraid of the police. The clear and present danger is the black criminal who commits 90% of the murders in the inner city and virtually all of the petty and not so petty robberies. As a result, police and all of us who live in these communities are acutely aware of this reality. Therefore, the police criminally profile those individuals who are most likely involved in some form of maleficence. And yes, all African Americans pay for the criminality of their wayward brethren.
Blacks from all class levels pay for this bad behavior. It comes at the cost of receiving extra scrutiny by police and residents when visiting friends in less crime probe areas. We paid the cost when a security guard might eye ball you more when entering a store in your community. Often times when my wife and I entertain guess who live in more affluent areas of town, I might have them park their vehicles up in my driveway or walk them out to their cars at night, simply because of the threat of criminal black folks. All of this sounds so unfair. We all want to be judged by our character and as individuals. But that is not the current reality. If I guess wrong and I am not vigilant either with my personal security or that of my friends; my kids will not have a father or my friends may be seriously hurt. Once again, blacks commit crimes at rates vastly disproportionate to other groups.
The real problem is not racial profiling, but the self-destructive behavior and attitudes all too systemic among the black underclass. If the truth be told, it is the men and women in law enforcement who have saved more black lives than the Al Sharpton, Maxine Waters and Erie Holders of this world. They are the ones who patrol a housing project a night and so doing prevent crimes which the liberal media will never acknowledge. It is the police who must go up to a car in the early morning hours not knowing whether this routine stop may lead to incidents we tragically only see the end results of in the national news; which unfortunately often plays up the canard of racial profiling or police brutality.
The tragedy of the now defunct police brutality charges in Ferguson Missouri is exhibit A in showing the profundity of so-called racial profiling.
It would seem that the parents of Michael Brown should have taught will that if you go up to a police officer and punch him in the face and try to take his gun; the police officer may try to shot you. This is the “obvious” and tragic lesson of Ferguson.
Does racism exist among some police officer? The answer is of course. But no more than it exist among all human beings black or white. The problem is cultural progressives want to paint a picture of rampant Bull Connerism among law enforcement officials. The current shooting of Walter Scott, a black man by Michael Slager, a white police officer, despite being condemn by police officials nationwide, was quickly used to libel all police as racist. But the fact remains, it is the black criminal in places like Chicago, Newark, New York or East St. Louis that cause the most problems and not the police.
Back in high school, I remember being introduced to the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and the character of Sherlock Holmes, who in retrospective was the ultimate profiler with his deductive reasoning to solving a crime. In today’s racially charged vernacular, determining who most like would stick a gun in your face at an inner city CVS is no longer elementary.
Today’s narrative would end with the conspicuous retort that, “You are a racist my dear Watson, you are a racist”.