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Diversity vs. Discrimination (CS)

April 23rd, 2013

When racial profiling is used in the wrong situations, it leads to racism and resentment among minorities. A clear example of this would be a police officer pulling over a minority driver for for no reason besides his race. From then on, the driver would have an unfavorable opinion of police officers. This is good for no one.
However, when racial profiling is used carefully in specific situations, racial profiling’s benefits outweigh its risks. Airports security screenings are one example of an appropriate place for racial profiling. It is a fact that certain minorities have, in the past decade, been more involved in terrorist acts than others. In the interest of public safety, racial profiling could be used to help identify possible threats in airports. Of course, this would all have to be done with subtlety. Race can not be the only factor in choosing targets to watch, nor should it justify anything more than extra surveillance. When people start getting searched solely because of their race, a line is crossed, and the negatives of racial profiling outweigh the risks.

Racial profiling should be used in a similar way in education. Race can be a factor that sets individuals apart from others, but only if all other factors are equally important. Because of this, holistic admissions programs such as the one used by the University of Texas should not be changed. UT’s admissions policy gives a small boost to those who need it, so there is no reason to ban it.