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Tolerance

Recently the Seattle Police Department has implemented a training program to address allegations and perceptions of racial profiling. That’s where police take action only because or partly because of a person’s race. It’s a hot political issue and there there isn’t even agreement on the definition, “partly because” or “only because.” As a narcotics agent in the 1970s I did racial profiling based on “partly because” definition handed down to me by my superiors. The profiles we

Profiles

On a more serious note I am being drawn into the issue of biased policing as part of my civilian oversight job. (I thought it was a volunteer gig, but they keep paying me.) Last night I listened to a presentation by three members of the community concerned about how racial profiling impacts African Americans (particularly young men), immigrants, and Muslims. We listened to pretty compelling anecdotes about how individuals were being victimized, not for their conduct, but for

Oversight

July 14, 2008 I was recently nominated to be a member of the Seattle Police Department Office of Professional Accountability Review Board. This is a seven member panel of citizens which oversees the office that investigates allegations of police misconduct and the discipline system. (That’s me, lower right, at the police academy in 1970, not the new board.) This is actually the second iteration of this board which, for seven years, consisted of three members. Complaints about