Thursday, January 1

Randy's Random Perplex 2 -

Who ordered the police
to conduct such an operation?

I presume it was the Black police chief. Some of the residents who expressed complaints may have been Black as well. This is part of the DOJ's mission to reduce neighborhood crime. And it represents Public Policy on behalf of the Public Good.

Randy says he "felt humiliated," but he does not specify what Officer Reed said or did which caused his emotional distress. In the absence of any specific evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the officer, I would not want to casually defame Officer Tristan Reed.

The principals in this situation are all Black, but they are of different ethnicities. The police chief is described as Jamaican-American, Officer Reed is described as African-American, and Randy is described as Haitian-American. Sometimes there is cultural friction between these groups.

What is Profiling? It is a term used by the FBI which refers to the extrapolation of information from a computer database.

As far as I know, Profiling is most frequently used here in Broward County for the crime of Bank Robbery.

The FBI collects information on bank robberies which have occurred here, which is entered into a computer database. This data consists of a long list of characteristics of the incident such as the number of robbers, what weapon was used, whether they wore ski masks or other disguises, getaway vehicle description, locations, etc.

Then, periodically, the FBI may query the database, asking the computer to find any cases which share several common characteristics, indicating that those robberies may have been committed by the same suspect or a serial bank robber on a spree.

A Profile consists of a long list of characteristics. A Profile is not composed of one characteristic such as Race.

Thus, "Racial Profiling" is ersatz jargon.

I think it is unlikely that there was racial discrimination or racial stereotyping involved in this complex police operation, but some cultural sensitivities may have been ruffled.

I have provided Randy with a possible explanation for his perplexing mystery here, although I don't expect this explanation will mollify him. I hope my readers have found this situation interesting to explore with me from other angles.

What intrigued me about this story is that it seemed like Randy had fastened onto a fragment of an elaborate police operation and had mistaken his little part in it for the purpose of the entire operation.

This is called a synecdoche.