Is there a better term?

Rick Kennerly rick at MOUSEHERDER.COM
Thu Jun 6 10:26:49 UTC 2002

><))));>anger. Racial profiling has too often been used by lower
><))));>middle class
><))));>whites in law enforcement to revenge themselves against
><))));>highly successful

Nice fantasy, but a majority of the NJ State Police are college educated and
all make a professional salary.  The profiling schemes they've admitted in
court was pushed down on them in an institutional way by their supervisors,
relying on pop psychology, pseudoscience and selectively sampled
statistically data to predetermine the outcome--Nazis did the same thing.
Driving while black is still an offense in a lot of places, we shouldn't
honor NJ alone.

><))));>there probably are. You suggest a one way ticket, but that is easily

Trip profiling was just one example of a more successful method of drug
interdiction that works better than racial profiling for US Customs, and it
does take into account the country that issued your passport.  But this
problem, like drug interdiction,  is also an ever shifting puzzle--like a
ball a clay, if you squeeze here, it pops out somewhere else--just like the
current problem.

><))));>should a 50 year old woman
><))));>from Denmark be
><))));>treated in the same way as a 28 year old man from Saudi Arabia?

Ah, by your own example we're back to physical attributes to determine who
is singled out for intense scrutiny--if white, all right.  If brown, strip
them down.   And we're going to let who, exactly, make these decisions?
Those highly professional--cum federal employees--with a wand and a  badge
at the gates nowadays? And thanks for the information that there are no
aging white terrorists--not even a few old left over bader meinhoff folks in
Germany? no old desperate Europeans muling drugs or worse for rent money? no
grandmotherly dupes inadvertently carrying somebody else's package for a
grandchild back home? or traveling with bags that their angry radicalized
Indonesian house slave packed for them?  Amazing insight.  Of course, until
911 the worst mass murderer in US history was a super patriotic white guy,
an Army veteran living in the Midwest, who no one would suspect, but it's
too much trouble to intensely scrutinize white folks, too many of 'em.

But that's okay, after all after 911 the black community, the oriental
community and the latino community were right in there with everybody else,
pitching like a lodge brother, to have people of Arab descent thrown off of
planes and ghettoized in neighborhoods.  The fact that they've been there
makes it particularly wrong.   But, listen it's a natural response.  We're
all right, they're not.  But the beauty America is that through our ideals
we can rise above that, despite our historical lapses.

In any event, being of demonstrated cleverness, well-financed, and patient,
I'm sure, regardless of what we do, a determined group of terrorists--maybe
Filipino or Malaysian or Indonesian this time--will strike again.  But it
might just be another Timothy  McVeigh, too.  The question is where do we
draw that line which, if crossed, we stop being America?  If we abandon our
ideals yet survive physically, is this country still American?  Did we not
learn anything from the interment of Americans of Japanese descent?  The
ghettoization of the Jews?  The hell German-Americans lived at the hands of
their neighbors during the war?

><))));>Maybe I'm just old fashioned

Yep, and it's that old fashioned thinking that will open the door to allow
the next group of terrorist to strike.


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