The Instigator
Pro (for)
3 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
2 Points

Resolved: Racial/Police Profiling cause more bad than good to society.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/27/2011 Category: Society
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,149 times Debate No: 17589
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)




Hello, I hope you accept this interesting debate, thanks.

Standard rules apply.

R1- Acceptance.
R2- Opening Arguments.
R3- Continuation of Arguments.
R4- Last round, only rebuttals and summary/closings (No new arguments are to be made).

Racial/Police 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. (Wikipedia)

Good luck!


Ok so I'm assuming that I have to debate that Racial Profiling is good for society and that It should be legalized.
Im not quite sure how I'm going to go about doing this but I'll give it a shot. Im new to the site( R2 of my first debate) so please forgive me for any errors in structure of the debate.

I look forward to your opening statements.
Debate Round No. 1


I thank my opponent for accepting the challenge, don't worry, I'm also a newbie at the world of online debating, so don't worry.

Now, in my case, I will prove that this polic/racial profiling is a no-no to the community, why? First, it is mainly discrimination and the core of racism. It is used to judge and show prejudice than to identify or distinguish a certain person. I believe that practice is a violation of a person's individual rights.

"Discrimination based on race, ethnicity, religion, nationality or on any other particular identity undermines the basic human rights and freedoms to which every person is entitled." -ACLU

Sometimes the police decide to question/interrogate a person about a crime based entirely on race because they believe a particular race is more likely to commit said crime.

This prejudicial concept is inconsiderate and is a careless method of detective work for any crime, especially in some cases if the suspect is racially tracable. It is blatantly ludicrous. It is also an abuse of power to use this as a practice, it is also an abuse of trust, which affects society. To make law enforcement be effective in a certain place, there must be trust between the authorities and the people they are serving and supervising. This cannot happen when there is this conflict and racial mistrust.

Sure, let's hold a white redneck when some white punks were behind a bar beating a woman, or arrest a German with a Hitler mustache when a Jew mysteriously died nearby, arrest any catholic priest for every child raped (hypothetical examples), let's arrest these people without cause. Terms like DWB (Driving-While-Black), it's unreasonable! ....To expect people to have their liberties taken away and be held liable for the actions of other people over whom they have no physical control, influence or knowledge whatsoever.

Thanks. Goodluck to my opponent.


Source 1:
Source 2:



Time to unleash my inner arrogance :D
Ok so It's obvious that racial profiling is not the best way to deal with an investigation, nor any law enforcement activities for that matter. But lets see a possible example of this : Recently released data compiled by the Los Angeles Police Department as part of a federal consent decree show that the city's officers are more likely to ask black and Latino drivers to step out of their cars after stopping them than their white counterparts. Once out of their cars, members of these minorities are more likely to be patted down or searched. Ipso facto, say the critics, L.A. cops discriminate against minorities." (*1)

Now that is obviously a case we can't really decide on who's doing the wrong here. As these days it's a common conception (or misconception) that minorities and/or people with low income are most likely to commit offenses.But that kind of thinking is judged as racist, ignorant or biased. So i can't debate a sensitive issue such as this based on negative values, so instead I'll use statistics.

As of 2001, by using a mixture of UCR (Uniform Crime Reports) and BJS (U.S Bureau of Justice Statistics) data gathered concluded that the likeness of being incarcerated based on your demographic group was 32.5% Blacks, 17.5% Hispanic and 6% Whites.(*1) I don't need to explain what these statistics obviously state. So in essence racial profiling can actually be justified, but there is a very thin line between pure ignorant racism and investigation based on legitimate statistics.

Therefore we can't simply view this issue from the moral/ spiritual and or racially sensitive perspective, we need to understand that justice is an extremely complicated issue, and defining what justice is, or whether it has been carried out on lets say a racially sensitive situation as this, is simply not good enough. We need to look at the statistics, and facts, and that's what i hope to do in round two of this argument. If we simply look at the moral side of this, I have lost this debate already.


*note to readers: This debate does not represent my true views and/or opinions on this matter. I had no choice but to take the con side, and debate that racial profiling is somewhat good in society. So please don't be offended by what i might include in this argument. Thanks :D
Debate Round No. 2


Thanks again to my opponent for accepting and replying to this debate. Also, it's nice to see a person playing devil's advocate.

Now, I'd like to point out that the point of this debate is weather or not profiling is good or not, I've stated at the first round my arguments which were not really convincingly refuted by con.

He states that we simply can't look at the issue from the a frame of reference, but says that we need look at the statistics which he reffered to as 'facts'. But sorry, statistics aren't gerenally facts. Facts are things that can really be proven (e.g: Hitler is dead, Obama is the US President). Whereas statistics are somewhat the equivalent of stereotypes, which is the identification of easily observable characteristics of groups of people, except statistics have possible proof to back it up, but it is still not a fact.

Yes, justice is extremely complex, we want that bad guy caught so we can live in peace, but I believe it shouldn't affect innocent people with different races, question them for a long time then eventually let them go, wasting their valuable time, or maybe frame them for a crime just because of their race. There's a saying, that 'it's better to set 10 guilty men free than let 1 innocent man suffer in prison'.

Now, can you explain how these statistics affect your argument that profiling is bad? It may influence people on the society about other races (if that's where you're going), but of course, some people are bigotted, gullible on these situations and can be prejudiced immidiately.

That's all my arguments for this round, good luck to my opponent for the 3rd round. =)


Ok I'll have to agree with con about the facts/statistics statement.

My counter to Pro's 2n'd statement:
Ok the statistics I displayed in the previous round state obviously that certain demographic groups
are more likely to end up in jail than other demographic groups. Ill give a hypothetical example, say in a city with a mainly hispanic population, there has been a recent rise in... home invasions. Now the police capture 50 criminals, and all are ...Japanese. Then on a routine patrol a cop sees a Japanese man, carrying a large bag, who was heading in the direction of a house. He opens the bag and it contains hammers, crowbars, and gloves(or whatever is considered robbing equipment). Common sense would tell the cop to arrest the guy, because of the observations he has made. Now we can debate that this suspect could be a plumber, but because of his ethnicity its most likely that he is a thief.

Had that japanese guy been a thief, and let go because the cop does not want to be seen as practicing racial profiling, that would definitely been bad to society. However, like you said, had that man been innocent and arrested, that would be bad for society as well. But in the first situation, that japanese man would go rob other people and effect lets say 2 families. Had he been innocent and arrested only he and his family would be effected. So the saying 'it's better to set 10 guilty men free than let 1 innocent man suffer in prison', is actually contradicting what were talking about, which is the effect on society. Those 10 guilty men would go effect another 10 families, whilst that 1 innocent man and his family would be the only ones effected.

I hope you know what I'm trying to say. Criminals are known to repeat crimes, so what really is worse for society? 10 negatively effected families or 1? Also might i add, that if they are incorrectly sentenced, once the authorities realize that they are innocent, they compensate by a cash sum(not saying that makes up for 20 years of prison). So therefore racial profiling is indeed better for society in certain context's such as the ones i provided above.

Now to round 4. I await your reply :D.
Debate Round No. 3


Thanks to con for his reply, now for my rebuttal for this round.

To your hypothetical, I just wanna point out that the patrol cop needs search warrant, unless the guy acted suspiciously (since we're talking about police ethics). Anyway, you said that it would be bad for society if the japanese thief was set free, yes it's good from another point of view, but the society I am talking about is the legal definition, which is "A number of people joined by mutual consent to deliberate, determine and act a common goal." (1), which is the law. The policeman might've did the wrong thing which can affect other people's lives but he just followed the law and did his ethical duty. The law is not perfect, I know, there are rules and process we have to follow.

Now about the quote, that one innocent man and his family is not only affected, but the whole legal system may be affected too, let's say that that man was executed, then further investigations revealed that he was innocent and that the racial profiling was connected to the case, it will make others furious, what if we live in a society of mixed people, they will sure be angry. As I said, the law enforcement and the community need to have trust among themselves. Some states/countries don't give compensation to wrongful convicts, which is the sad part. What makes us so sure that this kind of thing won't happen again?

So, I think the real question is, What's more worse, 10 negatively affected families or one innocent man who's family grieving for him and suffering from the fault of the law enforcement and the legal system. I say this innocent man deserves better. From being judged by his ethnicity to police carelessness to wrongful conviction and punishment.

I thank the readers for reading my arguments and urge them to vote pro.

Thanks to my opponent and good luck to him on his closing.



I shall now end my argument.
But first a small response:

We can never be sure mistakes based on ethnicity and or what you describe as police carelessness, won't be repeated. It's the nature of systems, like that of the law to be wrong at times, and be wrong again. What we can do is realize that what sometimes may appear to be racial profiling, might just be good policing. I gave an example of this in round 2. But regardless of that we are still putting the wrong people in prison, and as advanced our law systems may seem, domestic and international, we still are making mistakes with or without racial profiling.

Thanks to everyone who's been following this, and also to my opponent for taking time in replying and constructing his arguments.
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by alex0828 5 years ago
What about terrorism? Radical Islam is the main threat when it comes to terrorists.
Posted by jm_notguilty 5 years ago
Thanks for accepting the debate, again good luck!

Also wanted to add -- -- as one of my sources, forgot to put it. :)
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by larztheloser 5 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:32 
Reasons for voting decision: Good debate considering the inexperience of the debaters. Both sides should check their grammer. Pro argued on mistrust and liberties lost. Con argued that banning profiling forces police to overlook statistics, which may lead to more mistakes. Pro argued his was the bigger issue. It was quite late (r4) but enough to win the debate. Con should have argued why his points were more important, as well as more correct. Close (3:2) Aff win.