allegations of racial profiling.
“How can we fight the battle if we also propose to deny these funds to agencies that need them,” asked Gale, “because they can’t afford training or personnel to document allegations of racial profiling issues?”
Roger Clegg, President and General Counsel for the conservative think-tank Center for Equal Opportunity, echoes Gale’s concerns.
Claiming that the frequency of racial profiling is often “exaggerated,” he urged committee members to exercise caution when analyzing related date. His later remarks caused a stir.
“I am opposed to profiling, particularly to profiling in the traditional law enforcement context where frequently it is African Americans who are the victims of that profiling,” he said. “Nonetheless, I think we have to recognize that it’s going to be tempting for the police and individuals to profile so long as a disproportionate amount of street crime is committed by African Americans.” (Editor’s Note: Yes, he really said this.)
Legal analysts and supporters of the bill argue Clegg’s comment misses the point, which revolves not around street crime but around the need to build community trust.
“The issue is how we deploy our street officers in ways that are effective, fair, and carry out the most important ideals of our society,” said University of Pittsburg Professor David Harris.
Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Miami) spoke passionately about the treatment of minority youth at the hands of law enforcement, referencing the Trayvon Martin case as a “textbook example of racial profiling.”
“When my son learned how to drive, I bought him a cell phone because I knew he would be profiled… and he was,” she said.
U.S. Senator and Subcommittee member Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), “Hispanic motorists are two to four times more likely to be searched and African Americans are two to three more times as likely
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