Racial Profiling In The Police And African-American Police

1625 Words 7 Pages
In America law enforcement officers are portrayed as heroes; protecting the citizens of the United States, from unknown danger or harm. However sometimes, law enforcement officers are portrayed as villains. Police officers do not always assure safety among civilians. In some cases they do the complete opposite by, victimizing, violating, harming and killing people. Author Sheila Fitzgerald argues that “Police brutality and misconduct are merely the major contemporary forms of state-sponsored racist violence”. (Fitzgerald 55).Police brutality is a form of racist violence, and African Americans have been victims of police brutality for many years and still are. The police officers in the United States are abusing their power by racial profiling …show more content…
Racial profiling is a practice that is used by law enforcement officers to target individuals for suspicion of crime based on race. The term “Driving While Black” has been used to describe the practice of police officers stopping African Americans for no probable cause. Racial profiling is a pre-deposition held by law enforcement that makes them believe that African Americans are engaged in criminal activities; consequently, they are stopped when standing, walking, driving, shopping, and violated without reasonable suspicion or probable cause. The president himself stated that “There are very few African-American men in this country who have not had the experience of being followed when they are shopping at a department store. That includes me” (“Legacies of fear: from Rodney”). African-Americans are being targeted by cops who believe stereotypes; they believe that African Americans are involved in illegal …show more content…
Oscar Grant was a twenty two year old, African American, father who was pushed to the ground face down while Johannes Mehserle pulled out a gun and shot him in the back. The bullet pierced his lung and killed him. Before the altercation occurred Grant repeated to the officer “Don’t Shoot”. Bystanders who were at the scene recorded a video of Mehserle shooting Grant and a few posted it on YouTube. Oscar Grant was at the Fruitvale Station riding a train on New Year’s Eve with his girlfriend and friends. Grant was removed from the train after police officers suspected him and a few others of being involved in a fight that was on the train. Grant was innocent and did not violate any laws, but he was still shot. Research done by The Guardians, a British newspaper, states that a black person is twice as likely as a white person to be killed by a police officer (“25 Shocking Facts About the Epidemic”). This includes not only African-American men but also African-American, children and woman as well. On February 26 2012 Trayvon Martin, a seventeen year old African American, was shot and killed in Sanford, Florida by George Zimmerman. Zimmerman claimed that he had got into a confrontation with Martin that led to him being shot. Martin was visiting family that night when Zimmerman had followed him throughout a gated community that his family

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