Tag: race

Stop and Search: Doing More Harm Than Good?

Luke David Boswell | United Kingdom

There is currently a contentious debate over whether police powers, such as stop and search, are lacking or are too powerful in the United Kingdom. The intents and purposes of these police powers are to protect the public and enforce the rules of society. However, it emerges that those we trust with our protection may be liable for the deaths of innocents. Although these cases have become headliners raising important issues within the police force, is it fair to label the entirety of the police as liable? Or is it only the “few bad apples”?

However, these powers are subject to abuse, often times by white police officers. Cases occur where they routinely stereotype minority groups in stop and search. Evidently, this suggests that stricter regulations are necessary to control the extent of the police’s power. The idea of such regulations would be to prevent the formation of systematic racism and profiling.

Stop and Search

Stop and search is one of the police’s most scrutinized and controversial powers, due to the common occurrence of innocent people being stopped and searched. Under Section 1 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act, a stop and search are only permitted when the police have reasonable suspicion to do so.  Code A (paragraph 2.2), mentions that a stop and search cannot take place when solely based on personal factors. Additionally, Code A states that the stop and search must be utilized “fairly, responsibly, with respect and without unlawful discrimination”. The goal is to prevent discrimination against civilians on the basis of race, creed, age, or appearance.

Racial Issues

Despite these regulations, there are doubts that stop and search is on a tight enough leash. Out of the 300,000 stop and searches in England and Wales during the 2016/17 period, there were 4 stop and searches for every 1,000 white people, with 29 stop and searches for every 1,000 black people. This statistic shows that black people are 8 times more likely than white people to be the subject of a stop and search. Clearly, this demonstrates an inequality and perhaps a prejudice in who the police choose to stop and search.

However, statistics may be misleading alone. Due to government housing programmes, the vast majority of minority groups live in high crime and unemployment areas. This culminates a cycle of poverty, disillusionment with the authorities and subsequent crime.

No Reasonable Suspicion Necessary

There are, in fact, legal clauses for police to perform stop and search absent of reasonable suspicion. Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act, states that the police do not need reasonable suspicion to stop and search in designated areas. A crime occurring in a specific area and the police having limited time to secure the area and all possible suspects in it would be an example of the practical beneficial use of this clause. However, this clause could also be an excuse to unjustly target an area of a certain ethnicity.

Section 44 of the Terrorism Act, states that random stop and searches in ‘the fight against terrorism’ have no need for reasonable suspicion. The majority of the abuse of stop and search has occurred under this clause. In Gillan and Quinton v UK, both of the appellants were stopped and searched near an arms fair under Section 44.

Gillan and Quinton were journalists partaking in a peaceful protest against the arms fair. It didn’t help that the police did not recover anything in this search. After this incident, the appellants bought their case to the European Court of Justice. The court held that the stop and search violated the appellant’s rights. Their ruling upheld that the search was unnecessary and Section 44 did not apply.

Where is the line?

There is a very fine line that police have to walk. Powers that are necessary for protection are also easily subject to abuse. How to ensure that police do not cross the line is a pressing issue for the United Kingdom today.

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Everyone Should Vote

Josh Hughes | United States

Opponents claim that voting is an act of aggression, and thus violates the NAP, or non-aggression principle, that libertarians abide by. They argue that because the state’s existence is made possible through coercion and violence, voting simply legitimizes it. Simply getting a choice on who your leader is, some claim, does not make you freer. A slave that picks his master is still a slave nonetheless, after all. In our Republic, it only takes a simple majority for a leader to be elected. Is it fair that just because 50.001% of voters feel one way that the other 49.999% shouldn’t get a say? These are just a few of many, many totally valid arguments against the institution of voting. However, does being an idealist in this sense truly accomplish anything?

To some, the answer is clear. Abstaining from aggression in every way possible is of utmost importance. However, the other side of the token needs to be examined. Voting in a libertarian candidate, even if he or she is imperfect and not totally in line with your principles, is important for the sake of advancing the cause of liberty.

The system favors a two-party process, meaning that the overwhelming majority of people will align with either a Republican or a Democrat, and their views will match those of their respective party for the most part. In fact, there are many who are unaware of other options such as the Libertarian Party. If enough people show up on election day, many libertarians nationwide have legitimate chances to win their elections. The best way to get voters informed about the LP is for it to grow. The “lesser of the evils” argument is a strong one, but in the world of politics, idealists rarely get anywhere.

Politics in America are becoming increasingly polarizing, and the future seems destined to either take a turn for radical neo-conservatism or liberal socialism. Both futures are ugly ones for those who support personal and economic liberty. However, this will become the reality. While a libertarian leader is still a person with power over individuals that will engage in aggression, it will be a stepping stone towards a society absent of authority.

The Democrats are increasingly advocating for higher taxes and more economic intervention on the part of the government, which are ultimately a threat to American finances. The Republicans are advocating for an expansion of the military and police state, a threat to the social tradition of America. While imperfect, the principles of the Libertarian Party are by far the least aggressive and would lead to less government interference across the board.

This November 6, if you are able, get out and vote for your local libertarian candidate. If there isn’t one, find other ways to support the party or a candidate of your choice.  If a vote was hypothetically going to come down to a democratic-socialist, a neo-conservative, or a moderate libertarian, who would you choose?

Ideals are important to individuals. It is imperative to not sacrifice your principles and remain consistent with what you believe. However, the current system America has left little room for true ideals. The best way to advance the liberty movement is to deal with voting pragmatically and vote for your libertarian candidate.

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Wealth Creates More Privilege than Race

Nate Galt | United States

Much of the current political discussion surrounds the controversial topic of privilege – many believe that the white race has more privileges than people of color do, and others believe that straight people are better off in society than homosexuals. While those categories may make one privileged at a certain place and time, there is no bigger privilege than wealth. Wealth, universally, gives someone opportunities and offers them more possibilities. If they happen to be a billionaire who is a transgender, lesbian, African-American woman, they are infinitely more privileged than a heterosexual white homeless man. The privilege of wealth trumps any other supposed notion of privilege. 

“White privilege” is a term used by those who label themselves “progressive” or as a crusader for “social justice”, to say that white people have many privileges that non-whites do not have. This phrase can also be combined with “male privilege,” “straight privilege,” or “cisgender privilege.” A popular talking point in their circles is that statistically, being white reduces your risk of being shot by a police officer and being male reduces your chances of being raped. While these statistics are certainly true, minimizing those chances does not indicate privilege. Special programs that encourage gender and racial diversity in the classroom and in the workplace have been created. One such program, Affirmative Action, decreases the chances of a white man getting accepted into college. Men are approximately three times more likely to be homeless than women are, and are at a higher risk of committing suicide. One group is not more privileged than another; each group has its own hardships.

A notable “progressive” description of white privilege appeared as a musical skit on the A.B.C. channel on Australian television. The segment depicts two people trying to cross a stream. One person, who is said to be a straight white man who speaks English and was born in a peaceful nation, waits with a woman who the writers say cannot speak English, has dark skin, and is a refugee. The segment shows the methods that each person uses to cross the rapid. The writers say that since the white man is inherently privileged because of the color of his skin, he uses teleportation to get across. The skit then shows the woman swimming across the stream and then getting sick. The lyrics of the segment say that because she is female, cannot speak English in an English-speaking country, and has brown skin, she has to swim across the stream. As a result, she catches a cold. This description of privilege could be no further from the truth. The justification for the man using teleportation is that he has certain privilege that the woman does not. Not all heterosexual white men have privileges that darker-skinned refugee women do not. The deciding factor of who has or does not have privilege is wealth and/or material possessions. LeBron James, a multimillionaire African-American legendary basketball player, has many more doors open for him than an impoverished white man. Even if James were to become transgender and subsequently come out as a homosexual, he would still have privilege that the aforementioned poor white man would not. 

Phrases such as “white privilege” are extremely divisive rhetoric.  Implying that someone is privileged because of their sex, sexual orientation, or the color of their skin will divide people into several distinct groups at odds with each other. Instead of uniting one another and saying that no matter who we are, we are fellow Americans, some keep pushing identity politics. Our country is already divided into two distinct camps as a result of the congressional duopoly of Democrats and Republicans. Dividing the United States of America any further could cause an inseparable rift. 

Political discourse must move away from “white privilege” or any other category which is not based on wealth. The wealthy, no matter their skin color or their gender, are incredibly more privileged than a poor person of any race. Every group has their hardships that society should work to fix. We, as a community, should combat these struggles together. Preaching identity politics in the name of fighting nonexistent “white privilege” will only drive us farther apart. 

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The Anti-White Agenda Really Needs To Stop

By Nick Hamilton | United States

The Anti-White agenda in America has gone insanely too far. By me saying this, I don’t agree with the notion that any race is better than any other; in the end, we’re all equal. However, it isn’t racist to acknowledge that the left’s Anti-White agenda has gone too far.

Why is this Anti-White agenda unfavorable?

Well, for one, if you’re going to judge someone based off of the color of their skin, that makes you a racist. It doesn’t matter what the color of your skin is. Saying that certain races can be racist while others can’t doesn’t promote your supposedly ideal message of equality. That’s not how any of this works. Social Justice Warrior groups such as Black Lives Matter and AntiFa have entertained the idea that white people are the only group that can be labeled as racist. However, if you’re going to say that certain groups have free passes to do certain things because of the color of their skin, where is the supposed promotion of equality? Where is your “equal rights” agenda where it really matters?

Now, why does this agenda need to stop? How is it getting out of hand?

That’s a fantastic question. A lot of this evidence was inspired by popular YouTuber Mark Dice, who has over 1,000,000 subscribers on YouTube. Recently, he has brought to light certain African-American individuals who have blatantly lied about their interactions with police officers. This has pushed police departments to release the unedited body cam footage.

However, their stories take off, and the police officers get defamatory hate against them and sometimes even death threats. Jarrod Moultrie, the President of the South Carolina NAACP, blatantly lied about an interaction with a South Carolina Highway Patrolmen, who pulled him over for not using a turn signal. He asserted in a Facebook post that the officer asked if he had drugs in the car, and referenced Bill Gates in his string of racial profiling for driving a Mercedes-Benz.

However, the body camera footage tells a different story. No questions were ever asked about drugs, no reference to Bill Gates, and Moultrie was even let off with a WARNING. Dice has shown four instances on his channel of incidents like these, however, it’s quite appalling that the President of the South Carolina NAACP is trying to lie about a white police officer to push his agenda. While yes, there are unfortunately racist police officers that still exist, there is no need to lie about an interaction with a police officer to push your anti-white agenda.

So, we’ve got police officers covered, I can’t imagine civilians who are white are targets of this agenda, right?

Wrong! The intellectuals over at Mel Magazine published such a fantastic and well-written article that blew everyone’s mind away. A stunning piece of work that should challenge the notions of today’s society. An article titled, “White People Should Not Be Allowed to Call 911 for an Entire Month.”

I read this article expecting to be given hard facts and a well-strained argument on why a certain race should be banned from using emergency services for an entire month. However, like this entire agenda, I was robbed of five minutes of my precious lifespan reading the author of this article rant, with profanity on many occasions, about why he hates white people calling 911.

The author brought up a few instances of white people abusing 911, so that perfectly justifies banning an entire race from using it, right? So, since white people apparently can’t do anything right; if I set my kitchen on fire while cooking that causes me to have to evacuate my house, God forbid I call the fire department, right? Or even worse, say I witness someone abusing an animal? I guess I’ll have to just keep walking along.

Let’s not forget, a co-founder of Black Lives Matter asserted that white people are genetically “sub-human,” last year in Toronto. So, you claim to fight racism but say the because of someone’s race, they’re subhuman? Because of someone’s race, they should be killed?

Look, no race or group of people is perfect, including white people. But everyone needs to chill out and stop going after people based on their race. Honestly, if we want to all just “coexist,” we need to stop fighting and pointing fingers, and just get along. For our country’s sake, stop lying, stop fighting, and just get along.

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Can We Dismiss Race In The Present While Still Acknowledging The Concept’s Troubled Past?

By Craig Axford | United States

Salt Lake City isn’t exactly known or its large minority population. However, by the time our daughter was born in the early 1990’s, the Hispanic population was increasing rapidly. None-the-less, race relations were not on the top of many people’s list when pollsters called to find out what issues were most important to them. Even immigration only rarely came up.

So it wasn’t as though we needed to put much effort into not talking about race around the house. We didn’t banish it or stick our heads in the sand either. We watched the news regularly each night — usually the PBS Newshour — and often had NPR on during the weekends. If our daughter had any questions about anything she saw or heard, we tried to answer them honestly. The TV or radio didn’t get turned off when controversy of any sort was being discussed.

When our girl began school some of the friends she brought home were of Hispanic and African descent. It felt perfectly natural to simply continue our de-facto policy of not saying anything unless we were asked. After all, it’s not as though there was anything to say. It seemed to us the best way to raise a child who was indifferent to race was to model indifference ourselves. We didn’t refer to her friends by their skin color or ethnicity if we could at all help it, though I’m sure my wife and I unconsciously slipped into our own parents’ old habits now and then.

When I went back to school years later, it was something of a relief to be told by one professor after another that race is a “social construct” and that the genetic differences between individuals greatly outnumbered those detected between groups. Social constructs come with the option of ignoring them built in. Given race’s history as an idea, it didn’t seem a particularly positive construct to be dwelling upon.

I feel awfully ambivalent about hyphenated identities. Likewise, being literally only skin deep makes the use of colors to describe people practically useless. In each case the description provides enough information about a person to reach some very basic probabilistic conclusions, none of which should logically lead anyone to change their feelings about them.

I have a vague memory from childhood of my father expressing disgust with the increasingly common insertion of the hyphen before the word American. “We’re all Americans!” he declared. This sounded reasonable and inclusive, but that he said it in a tone that reminded me of Archie Bunker made it seem as though his real argument was far more insidious than the words alone might lead someone to believe. I was young, and concepts like white privilege had not yet been fully articulated. So for quite a while I was just left with the strong suspicion that my father wasn’t promoting inclusion and no way to prove it.

None-the-less, he got me thinking. I couldn’t shake the feeling that my father’s words were correct even if the attitudes behind them were antiquated; maybe race really doesn’t matter as much as we like to think it does. But why then should being American alone matter any more than being a hyphenated one? What was so special about being born north of the Rio Grande or south of the 49th parallel? While we’re at it, what’s so special about being a melanin-deficient American?

Around 2009 my daughter moved south to live with her boyfriend in Mexico. A few years later we became grandparents. Our granddaughter is Mexican-American by virtue of the fact that her parents are from two separate countries. The ever so slight and ultimately insignificant genetic differences that lead us to distinguish between Hispanic and Caucasian are also both present in some combination, adding another wrinkle. However, how society can construct an identity for her using these facts remains an enigma.

We’ve all seen the commercials for tests offered by companies like Ancestry.com or 23andMe. In one of my favorite ads for these services a man who thought he was of German descent discovers he has a significant quantity of “Scottish genes,” so he turns his lederhosen in for a kilt. If someone genuinely enjoys dressing up in lederhosen and attending the local Oktoberfest each year, it’s not at all obvious why a genetic test should cause him to stop. Genes matter, but on a level far below cultural creations like lederhosen and kilts.

No matter what your genetic test reveals, I believe you have the right to alternate your ethnic costume and swill different beverages every month of the year if that’s what you want to do. Vive la différence! That said, at least it is ancestry and not race driving the man’s change of preferred clothing. That’s progress I suppose.

Regardless, I can’t shake the feeling that what we should be teaching our children is that once upon a time people commonly thought ideas like race and nationality accurately reflected fundamental reality and that these beliefs drove them to do all sorts of cruel and stupid things to one another. Those that still think this way are like those that still cling to the idea that the earth is flat.

Now we know better. We no longer take ourselves so seriously. We understand identity is fluid and something we casually wear on our sleeve, not something that defines who we or others truly are. There’s just one race, and that’s human. We should use colors and hyphens to describe ourselves and others sparingly in historical or ancestral contexts, or when referring to the words used by the racial flat earthers still among us — or perhaps in a medical setting where information like ethnic background may actually convey some vital information.

If only it were so…

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