Friday, October 30, 2015

Who's Responsible?

By Walter E. Williams

Hillary Clinton told a mixed audience, "I mean, if we're honest, for a lot of well-meaning, open-minded white people, the sight of a young black man in a hoodie still evokes a twinge of fear".  Before we get into the nuts and bolts of that observation, I'd like to ask a question. Would well-meaning, open-minded white people have a similar fear at the sight of an elderly black man using a walker and wearing a hoodie?  Whether we like it or not, easily observed physical characteristics — such as race, sex, height and age — convey information. That's because there is often a correlation between those characteristics and other characteristics not so easily observed.

Say that you're a police commander faced with the task of finding vandals responsible for slashing car tires and smashing windows. How much of the city's resources would you expend investigating 60- to 70-year-old Chinese men? You probably wouldn't spend resources on any men in that age group. So who is responsible for your decision not to investigate 60- to 70-year-old Chinese men and other men of the same age? If you said it's the behavioral reputation of that demographic as a group, you'd be absolutely right........  A black and Hispanic president of the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers told his drivers to "profile" their passengers. "The God's honest truth is that 99 percent of the people that are robbing, stealing, killing these drivers are blacks and Hispanics," he said. ......To Read More....
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