Throughout my life I have witnessed stereotyping.  I have grown up in Brooklyn, NY and personally seen people of certain ethnicities get targeted over others.   

I live in a middle class neighborhood that is not considered dangerous.  However, two blocks away, there are a group of housing projects called the gawanus projects.  Because they are labeled projects, automatically people are afraid to walk through them, when in reality, they are just as safe as walking down a random street in the city.  I do admit that in some cases there are projects that are more dangerous than others, but these do not have that reputation.   During the summer, I witnessed a police car stop a group of black males just sitting on a stoop near these housing projects.  Within minutes the cops had all of them in hand cuffs, when it was clear they were doing nothing wrong.  It was appalling to me that people who are sworn in to protect the law can abuse it in such a way.  

Recently in NYC, stop an frisk laws were banned due to racial profiling.  The stop and frisk law was a way for the New York City police to stop any random pedestrian on the street and search them for illegal contraband.   In 2011 684,000 people were stop and frisked, the majority being of african american or latino decent.  Of those 684,000, 9 out of 10 people were found innocent. According to the New York Times, the main reason it was revoked was because “it violated the constitutional rights of minorities in the city.”  

I applaud New York for taking initiative and stopping a law that was clearly not affective. 

 

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