You would think that by now, in 2013, since we live in what many refer to as a “melting pot” that racism, and other types of discrimination would not exist. Considering the number of laws against discrimination that have been put in place over the last few decades, one would hope that their rights would be recognized and that everyone, would in fact be treated fairly, irrespective of their racial or cultural background. Sadly, many people, specifically those who have not personally experienced discrimination, continue to walk around “oblivious” or in denial that racism and acts of hatred do in fact go on around the world, every single day. This is especially true when it comes to the subject of racial profiling by law enforcement. Many argue that racial profiling doesn’t exist, is over-exaggerated, and is in fact just a way for people to “pull the race card” in an effort to avoid accountability for their actions.
Just So You Know…Racial Profiling is very real! Statistically, racial disparities in policing show that African-Americans and Latinos are “over-stopped, over-frisked, over-searched and over-arrested when compared to other races.
In 2008, The Los Angeles Times reported that although stopped blacks were 127% more likely to be frisked than stopped whites, they were 42.3% less likely to be found with a weapon after they were frisked, 25% less likely to be found with drugs and 33% less likely to be found with other contraband. We found similar patterns for Latinos.
More important than recognizing that racial profiling exists, is teach your children how to deal with it in a manner than will potentially save them from physical harm or worse, death.
Check out this video (below) of a 17-year old boy who captured his racial profiling encounter with NYPD on audio. While the video was very troubling, for me, the thing that stood out the most about it was the way he handled the situation. Had he handled it in a combative manner, based on the conduct of the police officers, chances are he would have been severely abused or worse, as they were provoking and waiting on him to make the wrong move.
What have you taught your children about racial profiling? What are you teaching those within your reach about it? Even if this doesn’t apply to you, it may apply to someone you know and love, and could save a life. Post your comments below!
For more statistics & explanations regarding racial profiling, click here