The Instigator
Axiom
Pro (for)
Winning
6 Points
The Contender
slo1
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Racial Profiling Should be Acceptable

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
Axiom
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/18/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 6,477 times Debate No: 25166
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (2)

 

Axiom

Pro

I profess that in many forums racial profiling is a reasonable tool of law enforcement and if done without the intention of abuse it should be acceptable. In this debate I am NOT arguing for 'abuse' of racial profiling or hateful bigotry.

Definitions:

1.Racial profiling:
Part of Speech: n
Definition: the consideration of race when developing a profile of suspected criminals; by extension, a form of racism involving police focus on people of certain racial groups when seeking suspected criminals. (http://dictionary.reference.com...)

2. Racial Profiling: Racial profiling refers to the use of an individual's race or ethnicity by law enforcement personnel as a key factor in deciding whether to engage in enforcement. The practice is controversial and is illegal in many jurisdictions. (http://en.wikipedia.org...)

Acceptable: ac�cept�a�ble/akˈseptəbəl/Adjective: 1.Able to be agreed on; suitable.
2.Adequate; satisfactory (http://www.google.com...)

Reasonable: rea�son�a�ble/ˈrēz(ə)nəbəl/Adjective: 1.(of a person) Having sound judgment; fair and sensible.
2.Based on good sense: "a reasonable request".

Rules:

1. No begging the question. (Ie. Saying that racial profiling should be illegal because there are laws against racial profiling.)
2. Round 1 is for acceptance and introductions only.
3. No new arguments can be introduced in the final round.
4. Respect the intention of the debate.
5. Bop will start with Pro, but it can be shifted.
slo1

Con

Thank you for the opportunity to engage in my first debate. I will do my best to give you a quality debate. I accept the terms as is.
Debate Round No. 1
Axiom

Pro

I thank my opponent for his interest and look forward to an interesting debate.


Firstly, I am not arguing for prejudice. I am not condoning the abuse of racial profiling. However, I do assert that there are paramount civil liberties that in all societies take precedent over the lesser liberties. I find that the enforcement of security and safety, based on reasonable assessments of a situation, are necessary for the utility of society.



Precedent for the deprivation of Civil Liberties:


We can see clearly with freedom of speech, that it is not always observed. (http://www.quora.com...) and it is both legal and deemed moral to not enforce it. Examples: Copyright law, laws against libel and slander, laws against verbal assault, laws against trading government secrets, laws against perjury in court. The reason that freedom of speech is not enforced is that in these instances there are conflicts of liberties. The conflict of safety vs. speech or national security vs. speech.


Thus we have precedent for the reasonable deprivation of civil liberty. Now it is true that in the place of 'racial profiling' there is a distinct difference. The person profiled may very well be harmless. They may not be guilty of the crime they are suspected of. But suspicion does not constitute a breach of liberty.



Efficiency and Common Sense:


In some cases, if you try to spare peoples' feelings and observe poltically correct behavior, it sacrifices the higher liberties of safety and security of the majority. Examples:


At an airport if you have a Muslim Terrorist threat, it makes absolutely no sense to suspect the protestant whites or blacks instead of the Arabian Muslims. You are not expected to pull aside the ten year old blonde girl, just to make the bearded, turbaned man feel good about himself, no matter how innocent.


If you are on the lookout for a serial killer, chances are the killer is a white male. Eighty percent of serial killers are white males. (http://www.psychologytoday.com...) Is it racist or bigoted to assume that the person you are hunting is also white? Or is it efficient to assume so and keep an eye out for white males when searching for the killer.


How about in race crimes? If you have a racial killing of a black person in an only black, or white community, wouldn't it make sense to automatically profile the killer as white? It follows common sense that you can rule out 'blacks.'



Precedent For Profiling Based On External Features


Racial profiling happens all the time. But so does gender profiling, income profiling, and tendency profiling. It comes down to probability. It is about efficiency.


Males are more likely to commit rapes. When you are searching for a rapist, it is not 'bigoted' or 'sexist' to assume the rapist was a male. It is efficient.


If somebody is robbed in an alley for one hundred dollars, it is not bigoted to assume the guilty party is 'poor.' It is common sense to assume the person is not 'rich.'


If you are searching for illegal immigrants, it is foolish to be forced to pull aside the fluent-English-speaking whites. You can automatically assume the person who speaks broken English and is of colored skin is more likely to be an illegal than the former. It simply follows with probability.


If you have a male rape victim, it makes sense statistically to search for a homosexual rapist, rather than a heterosexual one. It is not bigoted. It is common sense.



Racial profiling isn't picking on a specific race. It is excluding and ruling out the other races. In a judicial system that constantly places certain civil liberties higher than others and needs efficiency, it follows that suspecting someone based on race is the same as suspecting them based on gender, age, or tendency. There is an entire profession devoted to racial profiling in the FBI known as the behavioral analysis unit.



Sure, a few people will be pulled aside at airports who are innocent. A few people may be taken into questioning due to their skin color. But this is a necessary step in ensuring the safety of many. Racial profiling is not a conviction based on skin color, it is suspicion. And it should be expected as well as reasonable.

slo1

Con

I will admit my opponent brings forth a very compelling argument, however when examined beyond face value the premises are invalid, especially when looking to violate the liberty for an entire class of people.

“Precedent for the deprivation of Civil Liberties:”

It is duly noted that any freedom requires balance, however all the examples my opponent gives“Copyright law, laws against libel and slander, laws against verbal assault, laws against trading government secrets, laws against perjury in court”, are not applicable in this debate.

It does establish precedence of instances when person A’s right is rescinded when the actions of person A violates person B’s right. It, however, does not establish precedence to rescind the rights of entire race of people who have not committed any type of violation over the others rights.

It is also important to recall that there is no right to security. Security is a duty of government, but is not a right of an individual nor is it included in the Bill of Rights. Therefore, again, there is no precedence of violating the rights of an entire race of peoples for the rights of others.

There have been precedence’s where it was deemed acceptable to have minor inconveniences to privacy and search for greater public security, but in all instances it has been enacted fairly and impacted those who have not committed a crime equaly.

My main point is simply that while there may be a precedent of suppressing a freedom to an extent for greater security, each instance must be weighed on its individual merits. In that analysis it must be proven to be effective and worth the social and individual costs. In effect any precedence is irrelevant to this debate.

“Efficiency and Common Sense:”

On face value, and after a slight change to the saying, “if a duck committed the crime, then look for a duck”, makes perfect sense. I don’t dispute that when law enforcement is actively looking for an individual who committed a crime that they should compile a complete profile of the perpetrator including race, gender and any other identifying quality of the person. Visible tattoos and birthmarks are extremely useful to law enforcement to identify an individual when searching as well as skin color, gender, and other visibly identifiably features.

It is important to make three distinctions though. First, an individual has committed a crime and this is forcing police to pursuit the individual. In other terms it is not a security operation to protect from a future crime. Secondly, police do not collect only race as an identifier. They collect as much info as possible to ID the perpetrator so they can maximize odds of capture. Lastly, it does not violate the rights of any individual to compile an identifying profile of a suspect, nor does it violate the suspects rights if they color of skin or other ethnic features were used in his capture.

Racial profiling fails as a tactic when used as the only or main method to identify who to stop/search . It is absurd to imply that law enforcement should use tactics to stop and search all whites in an X mile radius of a murder site when it appears to be a serial killer. It is not effective. It wastes resources identifying too many false positives, and it violates the individual liberty of many with little benefit.

In the case of airport security, which is different as it is a preventative measure, everyone is fairly screened in the same minimal screening manor. In random instances and instances where certain behaviors have been exhibited some individuals receive a more in-depth screening. Random screening is crucial to preventative security in two ways.

First the pressure of possibly being caught can cause behavioral changes in a would be criminal. Secondly, it can help stop exploits to inconsistent screening should groups who wish to do us harm learn of the exceptions. In other terms if we stop including ten year olds in advanced screening it can be clearly exploited.

The use of racial profiling has serious breakdowns of efficiency as the stereotypes which seeming allow us to target those most likely to commit a crime cause opportunity to exploit. Take the fact that a majority of Muslims are not of Arab ethnicity. In fact the Bali bombers were of South East Asian descent. http://en.wikipedia.org...;

Imagine the resources needed to perform a more secure screening of all individuals who appear of Arab descent in airport security while ignoring those of African or South East Asian descent. Not only is it ineffective, it creates a complete hole which can be further exploited and ironically it makes everyone less safe.

Racial profiling is not effective. It creates too many areas of exploitation and makes us less safe as a result. When presented with the fact that there are now better methods to screen 100% (x-ray scanners) of air travelers effectively, it makes no sense to violate individual’s liberty simply because they belong to a certain race.

The Unintended Consequences of Racial Profiling

I believe my opponents intent that he does not condone the abuse of racial profiling. Unfortunately racial profiling can only lead to unintended group psychology which leads to discrimination regardless of intent.

It is important to recall that on August 24, 2005 the White House replaced the Director of the Bureau of Justice Department because the employee would not suppress a study which demonstrated that there were significant differences of treatment between the races during a simple traffic stop. While I am not concerned for this purpose about the ethical implications of the White House, the survey shows an inability of the human condition to treat people fairly when segmented in groups.

In the survey, all races were stopped by police at a rate of 9%. 3.5% of white drivers had their vehicles searched versus 10.2 % of African Americans and 11.4 % of Hispanics were searched. The report also demonstrated differences on how the individuals were handled while searched noting considerable differences in the use of force or threat of force. The police were more likely to give Hispanics a ticket rather than a warning than white drivers. Interestingly, African Americans and Hispanics who were searched were less likely to have contraband than white drivers who were searched.

http://www.nytimes.com...

It is extremely alarming that this extreme disparity happens during an age when racial profiling is not allowed. It highlights an important concept in group psychology call in and out group bias. http://en.wikipedia.org...

Quite simply it is a concept when people treat others in a biased fashion based on whether they are perceived to be in an in or out group. It is thought to play a major role in the development of xenophobia, discrimination, and other societal ills which impact the quality of life for all.

How does this apply to a sanctioned racial profiling program? In short, it would end up as a government sanctioned “out group”. The long term impacts of persistent and government sanctioned “out group” would have subtle but profound implications on the psyche of the country and result in discrimination on all fronts of those in the racial groups being profiled.

Racial profiling is not an effective tactic. It comes at an extreme cost of liberty to innocent people to try to catch a few. America should take pride that when individual privacy has been disregarded for the greater good that everyone has been equally involved. As example when law enforcement has mandatory checkpoints for sobriety they check everyone not just who they imagine are most likely to be drunk. No one race should be asked to forgo their rights in the name of national security, especially considering the long term psychological effects of being labeled as, “one of them”.

Debate Round No. 2
Axiom

Pro

I thank my opponent for an interesting response. Unfortunately, it appears to be an appeal to pathos, exaggeration and misdirection. I will address his rebuttals under the same headings in order of appearance.



Precedent For The Deprivation of Civil Liberties


In this argument I was simply supplying precedent for the legal deprivation of civil liberties for the sake of other liberties. I was not using the examples of precedent as examples pertaining to this case. They precede it. Precedent for the deprivation of civil liberties stands. (http://www.quora.com...)


The Patriot Act is currently in effect and, if not abused, it is depriving the liberties of many for the security of all. Precedent exists for this also.


"My main point is simply that while there may be a precedent of suppressing a freedom to an extent for greater security, each instance must be weighed on its individual merits. In that analysis it must be proven to be effective and worth the social and individual costs. In effect any precedence is irrelevant to this debate."


I agree with my opponent that each instance must be weighed and carefully considered. It seems that he is conceding that, 'if each instance is weighed on its individual merits and it is proven to be effective and worth the social individual costs, then deprivation of freedom is acceptable." But I reject the notion that precedence is irrelevant.



Efficiency and Common Sense:


"police do not collect only race as an identifier." My opponent is engaging in another straw man here.


Racial profiling is not about using race as the sole deciding factor of a threat. If you read the definition provided above: "the consideration of race when developing a profile of suspected criminals; by extension, a form of racism involving police focus on people of certain racial groups when seeking suspected criminals."


Race is only a factor in the profile and police focusing on certain people of racial groups is not depriving anyone's civil liberty. And sometimes you don't have distinguishing characteristics of 'tattoos or birthmarks to go on.' And if you did, you wouldn't pull over suspects if they didn't have the distinguishing characteristics provided. I am afraid my opponent gets off track of the debate here.


" First, an individual has committed a crime and this is forcing police to pursuit the individual. In other terms it is not a security operation to protect from a future crime. Secondly, police do not collect only race as an identifier. They collect as much info as possible to ID the perpetrator so they can maximize odds of capture. Lastly, it does not violate the rights of any individual to compile an identifying profile of a suspect, nor does it violate the suspects rights if they color of skin or other ethnic features were used in his capture."


My opponent continues with his straw men tactics. No one is suggesting that racial profiling is always a pre-emptive tactic. No one is suggesting that race is the only determining factor that is collected, cops will still collect all the evidence available as per my opponent's instructions. And the last line I agree wholeheartedly with, " Lastly, it does not violate the rights of any individual to compile an identifying profile of a suspect, nor does it violate the suspects rights if they color of skin or other ethnic features were used in his capture." I don't actually see how this helps my opponent's position. It seems a concession.


My opponent continues to hound away with providing ludicrous scenarios and then bashing them as 'absurd.' I agree, they are absurd. And they aren't at all what I'm defending. No one is saying that all white males in X mile radius should be searched. Only that in cases involving serial killers, it statistically follows that cops should be on the lookout for a white male. No one is saying to stop and search every one. Only that it should be a determining factor in profiling.


And once again, my opponent sets up an absurd scenario to bash down. No one is suggesting that the law enforcement should discard all tactics and only employ racial profiling. All tactics should be in play and profiling should simply be another tool allowed to the law enforcement belt. Screening should continue. Security checks exist for everyone. But security officers must be aware that Muslim terrorist attacks are carried out by Muslim radicals. It follows that if a Muslim man is setting off the security sensors, he should be given a random search instead of a ten year old girl who may have also set off the security sensors. If you had to pick one or the other to search, it makes statistical sense to pick the one perceived as a higher threat.


And one final time: no one is basing opinion solely on race. It is simply a factor in a profile and should be allowed to exist as such.



The Unintended Consequences of Racial Profiling



As for the final point, my opponent suggest that racial profiling will always be abused and will end up leading to bigotry. This is a possibility that exist. However, I'd suggest that racism leads to bigotry, not the employment of statistical data for the sake of apprehending a criminal or preventing crime. Race is never the sole determining factor in a non-abusive case of racial profiling. It is a factor. The BAU relies on such statistics and factors to hunt kidnappers, serial killers and murderers.


This last point of my opponent is a scare tactic that appeals to pathos. I am not supporting the abuse or degradation of racial profiling. I am suggesting it be used as a tool and used only as a factor. Not necessarily a determining factor, as exceptions always exist to statistics.


Now my opponent might be suggesting that if you search for a white killer when a black man is killed in a hate crime (in an exclusively white and black community) then you are being racist. I disagree with this notion. It is not racism to rely on common sense or statistical evidence as a contributing factor to determining guilt.


If someone is a rape victim, you look to able-bodied males as suspects. If someone is threatening a muslim terrorist attack, you look to muslim middle-aged to young men. If someone has been held up at a gas station, you look for a poor suspect, not a rich one. Statistics are used all the time as factors in rooting out suspects.


Racial profiling isn't always applicable and has to be taught with extreme care to officers, but it is a useful tool and effective one. If someone has a room full of suspects in search of a serial killer and six are black men, one is white, officers should be informed that there is an eighty percent chance that the white man did the crime and thus, it follows that he may be questioned first. No one's civil rights are being impeded by employing statistical tactics. (http://www.psychologytoday.com...)


slo1

Con

I wish I was clever enough to incorporate the use of emotion, exaggeration and misdirection with in my argument as my opponent alleges.

Precedent For The Deprivation of Civil Liberties

In consideration of the example I gave of a police sobriety check point and rule #1, it is allowable to examine the costs of the social benefit versus social and individual costs in instances of security versus 4th amendment. I do not agree that the examples given in terms of freedom of speech, the first amendment, demonstrate any type of precedence in a discussion of security versus intrusion of our 4thamendment, search and seizure.

Efficiency and Common Sense:

Racial profiling is not about using race as the sole deciding factor of a threat. If you read the definition provided above: "the consideration of race when developing a profile of suspected criminals; by extension, a form of racism involving police focus on people of certain racial groups when seeking suspected criminals."

I would like to remind my opponent that I have already conceded that it is acceptable for police to construct profile that includes and “considers” race. It is the manifestation of how that information is used that is under consideration. Also, by the second definition it must be a “key” factor.

Race is only a factor in the profile and police focusing on certain people of racial groups is not depriving anyone's civil liberty. And sometimes you don't have distinguishing characteristics of 'tattoos or birthmarks to go on.' And if you did, you wouldn't pull over suspects if they didn't have the distinguishing characteristics provided. I am afraid my opponent gets off track of the debate here.

When a crime has been committed race and other identifiers should be used to exclude possible suspects as a means to avoid stopping and searching innocent individuals. Note though, using race to exclude people from search is not the same as using race to include people in search.

Excluding an individual due to race avoids a breach of liberty. Including an individual in a search because of race promotes a breach of liberty.

The more prominent race becomes as factor in the decision on who to search, the more innocent bystanders suffer through an intrusive search without due cause other than they are of the same race of some criminal.

In a manner my opponent has provided clarity as to why it is acceptable to use race as an exclusionary technique, but my opponent has yet to demonstrate why the tactic of using race as a key factor is beneficial when deciding who to stop and search. When it is used as a key factor on who to stop and search the net remains too wide to be effective and too intrusive to too many innocents.

My opponent continues to hound away with providing ludicrous scenarios and then bashing them as 'absurd.' I agree, they are absurd. And they aren't at all what I'm defending. No one is saying that all white males in X mile radius should be searched. Only that in cases involving serial killers, it statistically follows that cops should be on the lookout for a white male. No one is saying to stop and search every one. Only that it should be a determining factor in profiling.

It appears that we may be in agreement that using race as a primary and key factor in deciding who to stop search when trying to apprehend a criminal does not warrant the grave breech of the freedom given to us in the 4th amendment. This is a clear example where the tactic of racial profiling is not affective and does not warrant the breach of individual freedom for the greater good of capturing a serial killer. This agreement is even despite that the murderer may have a chance to kill another victim. If security in this instance does not warrant such a broad violation of rights, when does it?

And once again, my opponent sets up an absurd scenario to bash down. No one is suggesting that the law enforcement should discard all tactics and only employ racial profiling. All tactics should be in play and profiling should simply be another tool allowed to the law enforcement belt. Screening should continue. Security checks exist for everyone. But security officers must be aware that Muslim terrorist attacks are carried out by Muslim radicals. It follows that if a Muslim man is setting off the security sensors, he should be given a random search instead of a ten year old girl who may have also set off the security sensors. If you had to pick one or the other to search, it makes statistical sense to pick the one perceived as a higher threat.


I am not certain how the impression was made that I advocated a discontinuance of screening. The main issue of using racial profiling in instances of preventative security remains the same. Since we have a baseline screening which is mandatory for everyone at an airport, it does not make sense to eliminate little girls who do not fit the profile from random more intrusive screening, as it creates a gap which could be exploited.

My opponent also fails to respond to the wide breath of races that make up the world wide community of Islamic radicals who would do us harm. It is virtually impossible to use racial profiling as they are of all races.

An Arab Islamic terrorist could clearly exploit the situation by recruiting a South East Asian radical Muslim with a 10 year old daughter. If using racial profiling in security, which of the three would have the best odds of getting illegal contraband through?


The Unintended Consequences of Racial Profiling

As for the final point, my opponent suggest that racial profiling will always be abused and will end up leading to bigotry. This is a possibility that exist. However, I'd suggest that racism leads to bigotry, not the employment of statistical data for the sake of apprehending a criminal or preventing crime. Race is never the sole determining factor in a non-abusive case of racial profiling. It is a factor. The BAU relies on such statistics and factors to hunt kidnappers, serial killers and murderers.


My opponent discredits an extensive work of group psychology with no basis to do so. Minimal group paradigm is a social psychology method to discover what are the minimal conditions required to make one group discriminate another group.http://en.wikipedia.org...

It has been discovered that something as trivial as using a coin flip to segregate people into groups causes perception and behavior changes towards the “out group” versus the “in group” enabling discriminatory behaviors.

This is a real and proven threat. Let’s extend the concept of using racial profiling to illegal immigrants. It was suggested in the original argument that when looking for illegal immigrants one should focus on dark skinned individuals with broken English. The minimal group is immediately created as soon as law enforcement communicates a policy to stop dark skinned individuals with broken English. It is now “us”, law enforcement versus dark skinned individuals with broken English.

There are plenty of dark skinned individuals with broken English who are here legally and would surely be stopped and asked to be shown papers for no reason other than having the wrong skin color and little experience with English.

There is a very real and valid concern of creating bias and discrimination against those here legally because they continue to be a member of the “out group”. Once an out group is created as seen in the study I referenced where Hispanics and African Americans were treated very different than whites during traffic stops, it becomes almost impossible to stop discriminatory behavior against an out group.

Ironically race boundaries are even ignored. When a person of the “in group” is the same race as an individual as the “out group” he will still discriminate.

It is a real and valid concern and the social costs of creating government sanctioned “out groups” clearly does not warrant the use of racial profiling when other tactics are just as if not more effective.
Debate Round No. 3
Axiom

Pro

My opponent's first argument doesn't stand up. It is not unlawful search or seizure to suspect somebody based on race as a factor. There's no way to even draw this wild conclusion. If racial profiling is abused, then this will happen, but I clearly state in my introduction that I advocate racial profiling without abuse. And using your fear-mongering examples of what 'could' happen doesn't stand up, but more on that in a moment.

"I would like to remind my opponent that I have already conceded that it is acceptable for police to construct profile that includes and "considers" race."

Then what exactly are we debating here? That's all racial profiling is. It considers the race of the individual as a factor (key or ortherwise) in determining the target demographic of suspects. If someone is poisoned, it isn't an impedment of civil liberties to profile a woman as the killer. If someone is robbed, it isn't bigotry to look for a poorer suspect. And one always can keep expections in mind. These points go uncontested, so I'm not exactly sure what my opponent is contesting. There CAN BE abuse where racial profiling is involved and if it was used as law enforcements only tool OF COURSE it would cause abuse and monger fear. But the whole point of racial profiling is that it gives yet another tool to police officers to use in their pursuit of justice. Used responsibily, IN TANDOM with other law enforcment tools, it can be effective in profiling suspects. The FBI's BAU agrees.

"When a crime has been committed race and other identifiers should be used to exclude possible suspects as a means to avoid stopping and searching innocent individuals. Note though, using race to exclude people from search is not the same as using race to include people in search."

No, it is the exact same thing. You're engaging in semantics here. Saying, whites aren't guilty of this, asians aren't guilty, native americans aren't guilty... so it must be blacks. Is no different then simply using the precedent of such a statistic to determine that 'blacks' are the target demographic. This is splitting hairs and nothing else.

"Including an individual in a search because of race promotes a breach of liberty."

It isn't 'SOLELY' because of race. Race is a factor. You contested this point moments before. Is it a breach of liberty to use a person's gender as a reason for search, how about age? Heigh? Weight? Upbringing? Socio-economic demograph? All these things are done. Racial profiling just has a bad stigma because it has been abused in the past and because people can't get over the concept that while everyone is intrinsically equal, NOT everyone is the same. Once more: 80 percent of serial killers are white. Using this as a key factor in a racial profile is good policework, not a breech of liberty.

No one is arguing for race being a "prominent factor," and by that I assume you mean "Sole-determining-factor" or "main factor." It should simply be allowed to be a 'factor.'

My opponent doesn't understand that sometimes, if the only information you have to go on is race, you cannot stop or search anyone, because it isn't enough information to go off of. You need corroborating evidence and supporting facts before you can proceed with a search.

"It appears that we may be in agreement that using race as a primary and key factor in deciding who to stop search when trying to apprehend a criminal does not warrant the grave breech of the freedom given to us in the 4th amendment."

My opponent doesn't seem to understand what racial profiling is. It is not, automatically stopping and searching 'the black guy cuz we don' trust him.' It is statistical data and use of crimonology to determine likelyhood of guilt so you can narrow your pool of suspects or expand it depending on the situation. It is common practice in the FBI and should be allowed and not frowned on in other forums as well.

"An Arab Islamic terrorist could clearly exploit the situation by recruiting a South East Asian radical Muslim with a 10 year old daughter. If using racial profiling in security, which of the three would have the best odds of getting illegal contraband through?"

Sure he can. What's your point? He can exploit the same situation even without racial profiling. Nobody is saying racial profiling will always be the method of solving a case, but that is why law enforcement has multiple methods of determining guilt. I simply suggest that they should be allowed one more, 'statistics and demographics in targeting suspicious groups.'

In the final point my opponent is once again fear-mongering. Saying that everyone will gang up on the out-group. This is ridiculous for the fact that different crimes call for different out groups. If a serial killer is involved, you'd be wise to be wary of white males on dark streets in alleyways. If a robbery spree is going on in a poor neighborhood you would be wise to watch out for the black teenage male with a hoody on and gang tattoos. If a poisoning is reported, you should be wary of the woman next door who is fretting and pacing back and forth in the living room.

Statistics are used all the time in determining safety. Society also employs common sense though. And saying that racial-profiling always is abusive and causes hate and discrimination, is the same as saying using gender, age, wealth, hierarcy, occupation or even ideology as a means of limiting the suspect pool will cause bigotry and hate. This is prepostorous and I discard your study as ludicrious. Appeals to authority don't satisfy me.
slo1

Con

When law enforcement use race as a key determiner in deciding who to stop, question, and search rather than truly suspicious behavior, it causes more problems than it solves.

It is clear that my opponent was not comfortable with racial profiling in an instance where police stopped and questioned all white males during an investigation to find a serial killer, yet implied it is acceptable to stop all dark skinned individuals with poor English as a means to find and enforce illegal immigration.

On one hand he argues that when other factors are mainly used it is acceptable to use race. I would like to remind all who are interested that the definition of racial profiling includes using race as a key determination, implying other factors may or may not be used. My opponent, however, fails to make a clear distinction on the exact level race plays in the determination of identifying suspects versus other factors in his arguments.

Being color blind or race blind in police work would, of course, be silly. Race is a factor just like a tattoo or other attributes of an individual, which helps identify a suspect from innocent individuals.

However there is a key distinction of using race to exclude possible suspects when law enforcement has a positive id of the race of the perpetrator. That ensures people that do not have the same identifying attribute are not subject to illegal and unethical search.

Race as an exclusionary identifier is very different than using race to include people as suspects. Other key factors are absolutely necessary to demonstrate reasonable suspicion, which then implies race has become a minor factor and does not constitute as racial profiling.

In addition to confusion around what constitutes racial profiling, my opponent completely dismisses an established body of work in group psychology that is critical to understanding how discrimination against groups of people begins. No evidence was brought forth questioning the validity of the theories and experiments that explain how easy it is to form an out group and how humans have a predisposition to discriminate in subtle to direct ways against the out group.

I clearly understand the frustration of arguing and seemingly common sense thought that if someone of x race does something bad, lets more closely scrutinize all people of race x to find the trouble makers within them. It however unfairly groups innocent individuals in the group of suspects and exposed them to intrusive search and a violation of freedom.

That infringement of freedom is clearly not worth any perceived benefit of racial profiling, especially when considering that it creates more risk, uses too many resources identifying false positives, and overall does not make us more secure.

Thank you for reading this important topic and debate.
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by benjamaison 5 years ago
benjamaison
Axiom, you make a few points, but you also gloss over some major factors. Lets start with racial profiling in an airport. After the attacks of 9/11, the fact that the terrorists happened to be of an arabic background led many to believe that terrorists were mostly arab. Unfortunately, this glossed over the whole idea that religion, not race played the biggest factor in why the attacks were carried out. This is a good indication of where racial profiling becomes a problem. The patriotic act and all the regulations enforced by TSA thereafter targeted Arabs as potential terrorists threats, not muslims. Muslims can come from any race, but due to profiling, only one was targeted. Secondly, with crimes, the whole premise of the crime lies in the race of the victim and perpetrator, so calling it profiling is not exactly the right word. Statistically, if a black man is killed in an all black neighborhood, he was most likely killed by a fellow african american.
Overall, the main issue with racial profiling lies in the slippery slope that usually follows it. When you begin to profile a certain crime based on race, you wipe out whole pools of suspects from the get go. Your right in the assumption that racial profiling can be used proactively by law enforcement, but only after several things have been factored in first. You can't begin an investigation with a rascial profile, but i will concede that one can be established should the evidence support it. Acceptable is too broad of a word to describe this topic because it can only be efficiently used in such specific circumstances.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by TheOrator 5 years ago
TheOrator
Axiomslo1Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con's arguments came from blowing Pro's into something other than they are while Pro was able to prove that it's acceptable from the point of law enforcement.
Vote Placed by RyuuKyuzo 5 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
Axiomslo1Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: I too felt at times that con seemed to be conceding. He also seemed unable to attack Pro's position without first inflating it to extremes.