Bush`s Racial Profiling Guidelines Could Be Worse – And May Well Be
How bad are the new Bush Administration`s racial
guidelines for federal agencies?
Well, we should be thankful for whatever sensible
policies on race we can get from
this Administration. So let`s call the glass a
little bit full – the guidelines could be worse.
They ban "stereotyping" of blacks and Hispanics
(i.e., realism), but they don`t seem directly to impose
racial quotas for stops and searches by federal law
enforcement officials – i.e. as many whites etc. as
blacks would have to be searched. (Don`t laugh – this
was a real possibility.)
But remember, we`ve wound up with quotas
before without anybody originally specifying them.
So we shall see.
The good news: the Bush guidelines actually include
exemptions for anti-terrorism work. Roger Clegg in
National Review Online
enthuses over this distinction (racial profiling
against crime—bad; racial profiling against terrorism—good)
as simple common sense. It causes him to describe the
Bush policy as “perfect, A+, 100 percent.”
And the fact remains that all this racial profiling
hysteria is bunk. I got racially profiled a lot last
month by the U.S. Border Patrol. And I liked it.
I spent a few days hanging around the Arizona-Mexico
border, talking to
Border Patrol guards, and crossing into Mexico and
back. Each time I ran into a federal agent, they`d
initially be suspicious. But then they`d quickly turn
friendly and helpful as my traits—6`-4" tall, blue-gray
eyes, light brown hair, no accent—clicked into place
against the profiles they
carry in their heads, and the answer came up: He`s
almost certainly an American citizen.
They knew then they had
better things to do with their limited time than
Granted, there are Mexican nationals who
look rather like me—for example, President Vicente
even taller than I am. But those guys aren`t trying
to sneak into America. They like it just fine in
Mexico because they, essentially,
In contrast, at the Tucson airport the
Transportation Security Administration put me
through the usual wringer to make sure I wasn`t an Al-Qaeda
ritual horror that greets the term "racial
profiling" these days is actually testimony to the
impressive progress in controlling crime since the
anarchic early 1990s.
According to the FBI, the number of homicides in
America fell from 24,700 in 1991 to 15,517 in 2000.
That`s over 9,000 lives saved – or the equivalent of
three 9-11`s that don`t happen each year. There are a
lot of reasons for this, but aggressive Giuliani-style
policing that has put a huge number more bad guys
behind bars is a big one.
Now that crime is down, however, our elites feel they
can afford the luxury of
demagoguing against "racial profiling."
But there are still five 9-11`s worth of people being
murdered each year. And that could easily go back up to
the pre-crackdown rate if the cops are constrained.
Simply put, the police can use either of two
They can sit around eating donuts and
wait for bad guys to commit crimes.
Or they can get in the face of potential bad guys and
To do the latter, though, they have to use the brains
God gave them to figure out who is more likely to
And that`s when they get blamed for profiling.
The simple truth is that sex, age, and, yes,
race/ethnicity all are closely correlated with a
propensity to break the law. Today, it`s not too
controversial to point out that males and the young are
more murderous. But the enormous race difference is
heavily censored. According to the
U.S. Department of Justice:
"Based on data for the
disproportionately represented as both homicide victims
and offenders. In terms of rates per 100,000, blacks are
six times more likely to be victimized and about eight
times more likely to commit homicide than are whites.
three-quarters of homicide victims and nearly ninety
percent of offenders. In terms of rates per 100,000,
males are three times more likely to be killed, and
almost eight times more likely to commit homicide than
of murder victims and almost half the offenders are
under the age of 25. For both victims and offenders, the
rate per 100,000 peaks in the 18-24 year-old age group."
In other words, for homicides, the racial ratio is
just as large (8X) as the sex ratio, and race seems more
important than age.
In fact, race gap is actually a little worse than
that. Government numbers lump almost all Hispanics in
with whites. So the ratio of blacks to non-Hispanic
whites is even higher. A liberal advocacy group recently
extracted the Hispanics from the data and came up with
ratios for imprisonment:
- Blacks vs. non-Hispanic whites:
- Hispanics vs. non-Hispanic
They didn`t report the Asians vs. non-Hispanic whites
ratio, but it would be well under 1.0X.
American intellectual discourse has become so
corrupted, however, that even mentioning these
statistics is seen as racist. So the
debate over racial profiling largely ignores the
central reality of racial differences in propensity to
And a debate that is based on lies can come to no
Ironically, Bush campaigned in 2000
against racial profiling – specifically against the
profiling of Muslims and Arabs by airport check-in
If so, I shudder to think what it would take the
Administration to learn about the folly of the
[Steve Sailer [email
him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and