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December 9, 2004 — Leave a comment

remember when you were in school and you were taught, never assume because it makes and ass of u and me. you would think that; stupid snickers aside; this lesson would have stuck with most people, apparently not.

i`ve read in various journals support for the Patriot Act and profiling of Arab men by fairly intelligent people. what is interesting to note about those who supporting profiling is; in the grand scheme of things; the closest they will come to be profiled is the Ugly American Abroad and the greatest penalty for that is a high price at the cash register.

profiling is based on a flawed assumption that all people of a specific group will behaving in a specific manner.

all Arab men terrorists

all black men from the Caribbean drug dealers

all Americans abroad loud and obnoxious

are any of those statements 100% true? of course not, but they are the basis for a profile and it doesn`t work that way or i should rephrase, it shouldn`t. for those of you about to jump in with specific instances where the authorities have stopped someone and prevented a crime; there is a vast difference between probable cause and profiling.

i`ve said this on more than one occasion, Americans are willing to give up personal freedoms for the illusion of safety. The Patriot Act and racial profiling are not making the US any safer. profiling Arab men is stopping terrorists but people `feel` safer because it looks like they`re doing something but in the long run, organisations like Al Qaeda believe they`re fighting a holy war and they can draw on the support of many Muslims and here`s the frightening thing; they look just like you or i. one of the people captured in Afghanistan was a white middle class US citizen.

fear and shock are the basic tenets of terrorism. terrorist don`t have rules of engagement, they don`t follow set patterns. profiling people isn`t going to stop attacks, if anything they are more likely to escalate as people start to feel more marginalised and ostracised.

sadly this boils down to race; black men are still being profiled, not as much in places where there are Arab men, but it`s going on and until they start pulling white Americans out of cars and lines in airports and doing strip and full cavity searches on them, people are going continue to sit back and think profiling is a good thing.

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