Thursday, November 4, 2010

Profiling: Is It Good or Bad?

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For some people, "profiling" is a dirty word. For others, it seems like the solution to all our problems. Which is it?

On the one hand, there's well over a billion people half way around the world who have declared, not just war on us, but HOLY war on us. It seems perfectly sensible to distrust anyone who professes to believe in a deity who supposedly wants us dead, especially when nearly all of them propounding this war are of the same race and are happy to die for their belief. (Why an all-powerful being can't take care of that himself is never satisfactorily explained.)

On the other hand, there are plenty of insane people who aren't Arabic, and choosing to distrust ONLY Arabic people seems a wee bit on the short-sighted side of things. The Oklahoma City bombing, the Waco siege, pretty much anything to do with the KKK... these are all terrorist actions that weren't hatched by Arabs or Muslims either one.

The problem I see is that ANYONE can be a terrorist. From a little old lady in Pasadena all the way to a dyed-in-the-wool religious fundamentalist (regardless of his claimed religion). Muslims don't have a monopoly on insane cults, they're just the ones in the news right now because they've, you know, declared WAR on us. You know, the JIHAD, which is their word for CRUSADE. Strangely, they don't like to hear us say that word, but don't mind saying words we don't like.

Sure, it'd be nice if the peace-loving Muslim majority would take responsibility and dethrone those who seek to boost their own power at the expense of Allah's good name, but since we don't even kick our own politicians out of office when they drink and drive and kill people, I don't think we can expect much in the way of change any time soon.

So what's the most important concern? It seems to me that we need to know the ratio of Arab terrorists to all other terrorists, and then we need to know at what ratio we're justified in profiling Arabs. What's the ratio at which profiling is the right response? 1:1? 10:1? 100:1? And while I'm thinking of it, what can we do to make terrorists stop profiling US?

Near as I can tell, a 1:1 ratio - that is, 1 Arab terrorist for every non-Arab terrorist - definitely means profiling is bad. It definitely means we're letting half of all terrorists off the hook. On the other hand, with 100 Arab terrorists per non-Arab terrorist, that means about 99% of all terrorists are Arabs, and so profiling is most definitely the way to go because otherwise we're letting 99% of terrorists off the hook. So somewhere between those two extremes is the proper cut off point.

It's my opinion that if any group constitutes at least a 4:1 ratio - that is, they make up 80% or more of the terrorists - then we are completely justified in profiling that group, whether they're Arabs, Jews, Communists, Mexicans, Englishmen, grannies, sock puppets, hookers, or watchers of "reality TV". So, the question is: what's the proper ratio? Is 4:1 too strict, not strict enough, or just perfect (since I did, after all, suggest it)?

Speak up now, or forever hold your peace.

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Other articles which will amaze or illuminate you:
Expose Yourself #2 - Straight to the T.O.P.
Shh-it's a Secret!
Nelson Mandela isn't THAT good

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