Aug 19, 2013
U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin formally recognized the racist manner in which the New York police have employed their policy to “stop and frisk” anyone who “looks suspicious.”
In the last 10 years, the New York cops have made more than 4.3 million such stops. In 2011 alone, they made almost 700,000 stops, 87 per cent of them against black or Latino people. Only 10 per cent of the stops result in any arrest, and in only a fraction of those do they find a weapon.
It’s nice that a judge finally said something about this practice, which amounts to harassment for “Walking While Black.” But it only happened due to the many demonstrations people have carried out against the policy. The politicians and the legal system feel pressure to appear to be dealing with the cops’ racist actions.
Whatever feeling of victory people might have from the ruling, it will likely be temporary. New York’s Mayor Bloomberg has already announced he will appeal the decision. In her ruling, the judge even said there was nothing unconstitutional about the stop and frisk policy and that only the way it was implemented was wrong. She set no standard for how the cops should correct their method of applying it.
The practice will continue, therefore, and young black people, immigrants and poor whites will continue to be stopped for no good reason. And the majority will be black.