Driving While Black Isn't an Urban Myth

Innocent Milwaukee residents are being inconvenienced by a crackdown on crime, but the police chief says the ends justify the means, Eugene Kane writes in his Milwaukee Journal Sentinel column.

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A recent crackdown on crime has forced Milwaukee residents and police to confront racial profiling, Eugene Kane writes in his Milwaukee Journal Sentinel column. While the city's tough stance on crime has led to safer streets, it has also led to charges of racism.

... While addressing a Journal Sentinel report that found black and Hispanic residents being stopped at a much greater rate than whites in Milwaukee, Police Chief Ed Flynn noted that his policies to target certain high-crime neighborhoods had led to a decrease in crime even while he acknowledged that some innocent residents might be inconvenienced.

Basically, Flynn said the ends justified the means, which is a get-tough stance many residents in crime-ridden areas can support.

But there's little doubt that racial profiling also makes some residents feel like second-class citizens, particularly if police officers are not professional at all times. When it comes to DWB, it usually doesn't matter what color the police officer is, either. 

For whatever reason, I don't get pulled over much these days.

I suspect it's because I drive a conservative automobile with no faulty headlights or turn signals or malfunctioning equipment and I don't blare my car stereo. Also, my driver's license hasn't been revoked or suspended recently, which believe it or not actually makes a difference in terms of confidence whenever a patrol car pulls up behind you.

Read Eugene Kane's entire column at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

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