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Instructions: Fully utilize the materials that have been provided to you in order to support your response. Responses should be a minimum of 250 words and include direct questions. You may challenge, support or supplement another student’s answer using the terms, concepts and theories from the required readings. Also, do not be afraid to respectfully disagree where you feel appropriate; as this should be part of your analysis process at this academic level.
Forum posts are graded on timeliness, relevance, knowledge of the weekly readings, and the quality of original ideas. Sources utilized to support answers are to be cited in accordance with the APA writing style by providing a general parenthetical citation (reference the author, year and page number) within your post, as well as an adjoining reference list. Refer to grading rubric for additional details concerning grading criteria.
There are many understandings of what racial profiling is, until it was defined as the systematic association of sets of physical, behavioral, or psychological characteristics with particular offenses and their use as a basis for making law enforcement decisions. Racial profiling violates multiple rights under human rights laws, to include discrimination and equality even before the equal protection of the law. By nature, to profile because of race departs from a basic principle of the rule of law with the expectation that law enforcement officers should base their observations and behavior off an individual’s conduct, not their racial or national group. Racial profiling may also have a negative impact on the enjoyment of human rights, to include the right to life, liberty the pursuit of happiness, security, freedom of movement, protection against arbitrary arrest, and privacy. To profile against an individual because of race or religion is not right. Stereotypes are sometimes correct, however, that does not mean that every single person falls within that stereotype and should live their lives in fear for the wrong doings of others. It must also be noted that profiling can be biased on sex, gender, or religion, and these should be addressed. Profiling is ineffective and counterproductive as a general law enforcement tool. Research has suggested that the individuals that are targeted by law enforcement authorities typically have less trust in the authorities and because of that, they are typically less willing to cooperative with police. If you do racial profiling, then it could contribute to a broader stigmatization and negative stereotyping of target groups, which in the end also results in fewer social and economic opportunities for the members of these groups, laddering down to them being forced to turn to illegitimate or criminal lifestyles. Law enforcement agents that live in rural areas where a specific groups of people are dominant and persistent in criminal activity are often times more prone to engage in racial profiling for multiple reasons, which would include individual factors and bias. These factors and biases reinforce collective endorsement of racial profiling, even with institutions, and lack any human rights culture. To get to the bottom of it, there must be a comprehensive policy framework that recognizes racial profiling as something that is unacceptable. These policies should involve laws that prohibit any type of racial profiling and provide guidance on appropriate conduct by law enforcement officials in the case that it is debatable if there is racial profiling happening. It is important that stats also ensure formal prohibitions against any form of racial profiling, to take the form of state laws, ethics, standard operating procedures for law enforcement agencies, or even codes of conduct. These guidelines can be written in the forms of written laws, agency policies, or codes of conduct. To limit this wrong behavior, awareness must be raised and should be led by key officials who are responsible for drafting internal polices, to include those who are responsible for internal accountability and training.
Joel Miller, “Stop and search in England: a reformed tactic or business asusual?” British Journal of Criminology, vol. 50, No. 5 (1 September 2010).
Open Society Justice Initiative and Plataforma por la Gestión Policial dela Diversidad, Fair and Effective Police Stops: Lessons in Reform from Five Spanish Police Agencies—Technical Report (New York, Open Society Foundations, 2015).
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