T Nation

Racial Profiling


I found the article below on the Internet. Like many things that are found on the Internet I have no idea of it's accuracy. However, it seems to hit the nail directly on the head in terms of profiling.

Read it and post your own opinion on profiling:


Please pause a moment, reflect back, and take the following multiple

choice test. The events are actual Events from history.

  1. 1968 Bobby Kennedy was shot and killed by

a. Superman
b. Jay Leno
c. Harry Potter
d. a Muslim male extremist between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1972 at the Munich Olympics, athletes were kidnapped and
    massacred by
    a. Olga Corbett
    b. Sitting Bull
    c. Arnold Schwarzenegger
    d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  2. In 1979, the US embassy in Iran was taken over by:

a. Lost Norwegians
b. Elvis
c. A tour bus full of 80-year-old women
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. During the 1980's a number of Americans were kidnapped in Lebanon

a. John Dillinger
b. The King of Sweden
c. The Boy Scouts
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1983, the US Marine barracks in Beirut was blown up by:

a. A pizza delivery boy
b. Pee Wee Herman
c. Geraldo Rivera
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1985 the cruise ship Achille Lauro was hijacked and a 70 year old
    American passenger was murdered and thrown overboard in his wheelchair

a. The Smurfs
b. Davy Jones
c. The Little Mermaid
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1985 TWA flight 847 was hijacked at Athens, and a US Navy diver
    trying to rescue passengers was murdered by:

a. Captain Kidd
b. Charles Lindberg
c. Mother Teresa
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 was bombed by:

a. Scooby Doo
b. The Tooth Fairy
c. Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1993 the World Trade Center was bombed the first time by:

a. Richard Simmons
b. Grandma Moses
c. Michael Jordan
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 1998, the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were bombed by:

a. Mr. Rogers
b. Hillary Clinton, to distract attention from Wild Bill's women
c. The World Wrestling Federation
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. On 9/11/01, four airliners were hijacked; two were used as missiles
    to take out the World Trade Centers and of the remaining two, one
    crashed into the US Pentagon and the other was diverted and crashed by
    the passengers.
    Thousands of people were killed by:

a. Bugs Bunny, Wiley E. Coyote, Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd
b. The Supreme Court of Florida
c. Mr. Bean
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 2002 the United States fought a war in Afghanistan against:

a. Enron
b. The Lutheran Church
c. The NFL
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

  1. In 2002 reporter Daniel Pearl was kidnapped and murdered by:

a. Bonnie and Clyde
b. Captain Kangaroo
c. Billy Graham
d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40

Nope, ..I really don't see a pattern here to justify profiling, do you?
So, to ensure we Americans never offend anyone, particularly fanatics
intent on killing us, airport security screeners will no longer be
allowed to profile certain people.

They must conduct random searches of
80-year-old women, little kids, airline pilots with proper
identification, secret agents who are members of the President's
security detail, 85-year old Congressmen with metal hips, and Medal of Honor winning and former Governor Joe Foss, but leave Muslim Males

between the ages 17 and 40 alone lest they be guilty of profiling."


Yes, in fact, everything bad in the world is caused by male muslim extremists between the ages of 17 and 40.

I rue the day when a 41 years old muslim extremist commits some outrageous act of violence though...



Here's another perspective on racial profiling in today's world.



I've seen that before. Pretty funny.

The need for profiling is obvious.

Just remember:

"Liberalism is a philosophy of consolation for Western Civilization as it commits suicide." James Burnham

I had to search the web to get the exact quote and who said it. Interestingly, the web filter at work would not let me get to the first site where the quote was as the filter classified it as "hate speech" :slight_smile:


It's common sense to give the most attention to those most likely to committ the action. Clearly young Muslim men should be given additional scrutiny because of the actions taken by others in their group.

Political correctness may think this an offense but it isn't. It's the wise use of limited resources. Nobody should get a free pass but extra effort should be put into those that have exhibited a tendency to committ the act.

For those that study political history this is precisely why Neoconservatism became such a force a generation ago. It was a reaction to the silliness of government to listen to groups with differing agenda's then those that benefit the majority of the people.


When did a thread about racial profiling turn into a 'liberals suck' thread.

Moving on...

I do not have a problem with racial profiling but I am a middle aged, yuppy, white man. Why would it bother me?

When I was Junior in high school I had a party at my house when by dad was away on vacation. He threatened me before he left to not throw a party but my friend talked me into it and we had a kegger.

I had to patch some walls and I did not have a putty knife. A friend of mine that was black offered to bring a set to my house and help me fix the wall. He took the bus and walked but did not make it to my house before being arrested.

The police said the putty knife was a weapon.

I sure felt safe in the city.


Profiling sucks.

Black guys in nice cars get pulled over all the time simply for driving while black.

Profiling is also needed. It is silly to search an 80 year old lady for bombs while letting a 25 year old arabic looking man waltz aboard a plane just for the sale of political correctness.

Like most things in life both extreme positions are wrong. Finding a good balance is the real struggle.


Okay, I have a serious question. Or maybe two...

Outside of the context of searching for muslim terrorists, is racial profiling able to be classed as "right" or "wrong"?

If you are someone who classifies it as "wrong", are you then committing "moral relativism" in order to justify it's use in special circumstances?

In some other political threads I've seen folks claim that right and wrong are absolutes and that it is moral relativism to look at the context of an issue to make a decision.

Are citizens innocent until proven guilty and is it their right, or should it be, to equal treatment under the law?

Okay, maybe more than two questions, but they really struck me as not being necessarily easy to answer.




How else are you going to find who you are looking for if you aren't allowed to look at the people you are looking for?

Business has been using demographic profiling for years to increase efficiency. It's about time we start to apply a successfull concept like that to terrorism prevention. Not that the scope of investigation should be limited to a certain profile, but that some do warrant emphasis.


On what ZEB wrote:
Only 3 of the 13 had anything to do with airport screenings. So I am not sure what type of profiling your are talking about for the other 10. Sure it makes sense to let the 80 year old grandmother through without much hassle, or even senators and war hero's.

Profiling would make perfect sense in a black and white world. The problem is that while profiling someone because they "appear" to be muslim and may or may not be a terrorist, you let through the guy who doesn't "appear" to be muslim because you are concentrating on the other guys.

I said it in another thread, improved training and technology are probably better options.

Whether we allow the available technology to be used on us is another issue.


How do you figure? It is a humorous way to illustrate a real concern.


Male muslims between 17 and 40 and Democrats Vroom, don't forget the hate filled and suicide prone Dems.

zeb, as far as the actions in Iran, Lebanon, Afghanistan, I wouldn't think it was the Inuits who would be the perps.

That being said, I do see the need for some type of profiling.


Old ladies are often used as mules for drugs on international flights because they are viewed as less suspicious, they don't ask questions about their cargo, and they're often desperate for money for medical bills. While the job of the security screeners is not to find drugs-- as an aside, I hear they deliberately overlook stuff they find quite often-- the same characteristics which make an 80 year old grandmother a good drug mule also make for an effective walking time bomb.

Also the original post itself is completely useless. I can name off 20 heinous crimes committed by 5 year old retarded mongolian children over the course of history, but that does nothing to establish that they are more threatening to society than any other group. That isn't to say that the link doesn't exist though. It would be interesting to see how the world wide murder rates for men 18-35yo (lets use the marketing scale) would compare between racial, ethnic and religious groups. Then again, building even remotely accurate and comparable statistics on this would be near impossible.


Bombs do not equal drugs.

I don't care as much if someone on the plane is smuggling drugs as opposed to trying to kill us all.

The end result of your logic is inaction.


This is a load of crap. Of course those who of you who fit the "non-profiled" profile would support such endeavors. Don't hit me with the "if you've got nothing to hide" or the "I wouldn't mind if my race/social class/whatever were being profiled, it's in the name of national security." This is very close to becoming racist, in a world where racial tensions have never been good.
Take it however you want, as I'm under no illusion that a lot of you won't disagree, but this is from someone who gets security checked everytime I go to the airport, and I'm white. I was actually made to go through a security check on my way home for leave from Iraq, while in uniform, with a military ID, and a duffel bag.


zap, there you going putting your blinders back on. He wasn't comparing drugs to bombs, but rather adapting to the countermeasures. Old drug smugglers who looked like Johnny Depp in that movie Blow, pretty easy to spot. They then changed up the tactics and started using less attention provoking grannies.

You think Al Qaeda isn't looking at alternate tactics then ten arab dudes getting on a plane or walking throught the airport.?


[edit] Already got it I see.

The point is that someone who carries packages without asking questions could just as easily be given a time bomb to carry as heroin.
The implication is that the old folk should be considered suspect if a profiling program is in effect.


Face facts - security officials are profiling even when they say they aren't.

My wife gets the security shakedown every time she travels - and she has alabaster skin, blonde hair and blue eyes. She is the 'patsy' in essentially a dummy patdown - security folks grab her to enable them to check travelers that fit the profile. If they check a Caucasian woman, they've satisfied the baying hounds of political correctness, all the while targeting exactly who they want from a racial profiling perspective.

The profiling is gonna happen - it's really just a matter of whether or not we are gonna be blunt and honest about it, or whether we will continue to maintain this weak illusion.

It is a sad fact - but we have instincts for a reason.


Instincts? Hahahahahaha!