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  • Technorati: graph / links

    Police planning to racially profile events


    by Sunny on 4th December, 2008 at 4:04 pm    

    From the London Daily News:

    The Metropolitan Police are set to racially profile gig goers by asking promoters to fill out a form on what acts are playing and what ethnicities are likely to turn up.

    Form 696 compels licensees who want to hold live music events in 21 London Boroughs to report to the names, addresses, aliases and telephone numbers of performers, and controversially, the likely ethnicity of their audience.

    Speaking to the Independent, Creation Records’ founder Alan McGee called the legislation ‘outrageous’ and just ‘reinforces racial stereotypes’, continuing:
    I think it’s absolutely shocking that anyone is doing this – it reinforces racial stereotypes and creates a Big Brother state. What I worry about is the totalitarian aspect, people knowing what the likely audience will be. It’s another step in the CCTV, fingerprint, eyeball scanning direction.

    This is outrageous, and not all too surprising. I was a regular at a club where they suddenly introduced ID checks because, according to the (white) club promoter, the police were concerned that the place played black music and hence wanted added security. Everyone not only had to show ID, but people’s driver’s licenses were also scanned and recorded in a database. But who will make a noise about this eh?



      |   Trackback link   |   Add to del.icio.us   |   Share on Facebook   |   Filed in: Civil liberties, Race politics




    36 Comments below   |   Add your own

    1. Don — on 4th December, 2008 at 5:29 pm  

      Outrageous is putting it mildly.

    2. Rumbold — on 4th December, 2008 at 5:29 pm  

      I wait with baited breath to hear the cries of ‘infringement of liberties’ from all those Tory bloggers who stood behind Damian Green.

      But the people who goes to these gigs are not members of the Political Class, so they won’t.

      Furthermore, this is a predictable by-product of the requirement to fill in diversity monitoring forms for everything now. As soon as society starts classifying people by religion/race, societies gets used to treating them as mere blocks.

    3. Sunny — on 4th December, 2008 at 5:30 pm  

      Furthermore, this is a predictable by-product of the requirement to fill in diversity monitoring forms for everything now.

      Ermm….

    4. Rumbold — on 4th December, 2008 at 5:35 pm  

      Sunny:

      It is. It makes us all comfortable with the notion that we can divide people up neatly into racial boxes. So ‘there aren’t enough Asians in this industry’ leads to ‘too many blacks at this concert could spell trouble’. We are a society that refuses to recognise that people are individuals first and foremost.

      Not that there wasn’t racism before diversity monitoring, merely that such misguided actions have helped to further entrench the notion that you should view minorities as solid, homogenous blocks.

    5. asquith — on 4th December, 2008 at 5:42 pm  

      I always thought racial profiling was daft. There are a lot of white Britons who are members of Islamist sects or otherwise prepared to engage in terrorism. Surely the manipulators would choose these people to do their work, hoping they can slip under the radar.

      They should remove all this shite. I am a firm believer that people around the world should have the same rights & duties & be treated equally, which is why I am a foe of moral relativism & the pro-totalitarian “left”.

    6. Rumbold — on 4th December, 2008 at 5:54 pm  

      Far too many white people still (unintentionally) possess a colonial mentality, which translates as follows:

      You (i.e. minorities) are different from Us (the whites). This is because, you, even if you were born here, are descended from another culture, which must mean you don’t really fully fit here.

      Since you are a minority, you must have certain views and needs, which is why you need someone from your own community to speak for you. These people are called community leaders. It doesn’t matter if all you care about is taxation and schools, you still need some to represent your tribe’s views to the white authorities.

      You can be moulded and controlled as a block, as evidenced by the faith we place in community leaders. Therefore, if one of you does well, you all benefit. Conversely, if one of you commits a crime, the whole community comes under suspicion.

    7. Shamit — on 4th December, 2008 at 6:50 pm  

      I am glad that the Government has lost the case for holding DNA samples of people. It has been adjudged by the European Court for Human Rights to be non compatible with a democracy.

      This profiling is just plain stupid and its going to be unworkable. The Met police is completely losing its marbles collectively.

      Rumbold interesting comments.

    8. Don — on 4th December, 2008 at 7:10 pm  

      As soon as society starts classifying people by religion/race, societies gets used to treating them as mere blocks.

      Absolutely. In fact, isn’t that the key principle of PP?

    9. Beavis — on 4th December, 2008 at 7:19 pm  

      Rumbold

      “You (i.e. minorities) are different from Us (the whites). This is because, you, even if you were born here, are descended from another culture, which must mean you don’t really fully fit here.”

      Do you think the amount of minority based organisations which receive public funding do anything to dispel this myth?

      Aren’t they making the claim that they are different from the “Majority”?

    10. dave bones — on 4th December, 2008 at 8:16 pm  

      Right. That is fucking it. This means war.

    11. Sunny — on 4th December, 2008 at 8:33 pm  

      It is. It makes us all comfortable with the notion that we can divide people up neatly into racial boxes. So ‘there aren’t enough Asians in this industry’ leads to ‘too many blacks at this concert could spell trouble’.

      Rumbold, you have it the other way around. First comes the view that black people cause trouble and therefore racial profiling is a great idea. All this was pushed by the Tories before ‘political correctness gone mad’ ethnic quotas came in. So I’m afraid your logic doesn’t stand.

      In an environment where black people are constantly marginalised, there are calls for quotas because that’s the only way that some can get into positions of power. For example, many people including me say that Obama came from a post-racial politics. No doubt that is true, but he was only able to grow in an area such as Chicago which was full of that identity politics where blacks were given positions.

      In other words, in a place like America you cannot have an Obama without a Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Malcolm X and MLK before him. I happen to think the era of J Jackson is over but he was relevant at one point.

      Similarly, quotas can initially provide a push that opens the door for others. Only when politicians and media become comfortable with the idea of minorities among them, that the doors start opening up. That’s the way it is.

    12. Beavis — on 4th December, 2008 at 8:55 pm  

      This story dates back to 2006. Unfortunately, there has been serious violence at Grime gigs and nights, but why should the law abiding gig goer have to suffer because of the actions of a few “Gangsta” youth.

    13. Ravi Naik — on 4th December, 2008 at 10:27 pm  

      In other words, in a place like America you cannot have an Obama without a Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Malcolm X and MLK before him. I happen to think the era of J Jackson is over but he was relevant at one point.

      I do not agree with your assessment, Sunny. If anything, the politics of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton which exploited identity politics to the maximum did very little to advance the cause of equality - they operated within a very narrow frame, and alienated everyone else. I believe Obama is more in tune with MLK and his vision of a united America, not one that is divisive and polarising.

      Similarly, quotas can initially provide a push that opens the door for others. Only when politicians and media become comfortable with the idea of minorities among them, that the doors start opening up. That’s the way it is.

      It isn’t. Obama didn’t get to be president with quotas, nor did he have his work done by the Jacksons and the Sharpton’s (in fact, he maintained both of them very far from his campaign). He didn’t have a famous name or a political family. He did it on his own merit, and I believe that is the way it should be.

      In practice, quotas are a poisoned present to minorities. They are deemed incapable of competing with whites, and you get people who are less competent in a job. Personally, I would rather have the government invest in quality education and infrastructure to offset any disadvantages, rather than give a free pass.

      I totally agree with Rumbold on this one. You can’t have it both ways here.

    14. MaidMarian — on 4th December, 2008 at 10:31 pm  

      Sunny - Perhaps a side point, but…

      ‘…they suddenly introduced ID checks because, according to the (white) club promoter, the police were concerned that the place played black music and hence wanted added security.’

      With all respect, that sounds a bit fanciful. I may be wrong, but I suspect that there may be more to the story than that.

      Of course, there is nothing, presumabl compelling you to go to the club?

    15. Leon — on 4th December, 2008 at 10:57 pm  

      Outrageous is putting it mildly.

      Aint that the truth.

      I wait with baited breath to hear the cries of ‘infringement of liberties’ from all those Tory bloggers who stood behind Damian Green.

      But the people who goes to these gigs are not members of the Political Class, so they won’t.

      Very well said.

      Right. That is fucking it. This means war.

      Well, at least there’ll be a few friendly faces in Belmarsh when shit hits the fan. I’m not joking, the way this government is indulging it’s Orwellian wet dreams is beyond a joke.

    16. sonia — on 4th December, 2008 at 11:13 pm  

      as rumbold puts in no. 2

      “Furthermore, this is a predictable by-product of the requirement to fill in diversity monitoring forms for everything now. As soon as society starts classifying people by religion/race, societies gets used to treating them as mere blocks.”

      every one wants diversity monitoring forms. it was meant to be so that organisations were showing they were being ‘inclusive’ and conforming to ‘diversity’ regulations.

      im surprised people don’t complain more about diversity monitoring forms

    17. sonia — on 4th December, 2008 at 11:18 pm  

      yep rumbold -(6)

      its what after all keeps the MCB and such orgs in business.

    18. Leon — on 4th December, 2008 at 11:23 pm  

      I think they’re a must for things like the police when it comes to stop and search.

      I’m not particularly hung up on the fact that the state classifies people really; no industrial society can exist without some planning, planning means mapping things like population, and part of that will be things like the census.

      To those that don’t want to be categorised by our society I’d seriously suggest going to live in a jungle as a tribes person! In our society we’re never getting away from it. I just don’t think information has to be collected to such extremity or used consciously to control us.

    19. sonia — on 4th December, 2008 at 11:30 pm  

      good point leon…seeing as we live in ’society’ there are compromises we have to make, of course we don’t want to compromise too much when its not ‘necessary’.

      besides surely this is all too much work for the Police, isnt it far more likely some corporate behind this trying to work out where and who to target their marketing!

    20. Leon — on 4th December, 2008 at 11:34 pm  

      besides surely this is all too much work for the Police,

      The club profiling issue yeah, but then they’ve just been given new powers to demand we show ID of some form when they want so I doubt they’ll complain…

    21. MaidMarian — on 4th December, 2008 at 11:43 pm  

      Sofia (16) - As I understand it, no one is obliged to complete a diversity monitoring form.

      Happy to be corrected, but do you not hold out the slightest, faintest possibility that more people are not complaining because either 1) they know they have a right to refuse or 2) not everyone gets their underwear in a knot and sees conspiracy around every corner.

    22. BenSix — on 5th December, 2008 at 12:04 am  

      So, the police have kicked out all the BNP members and then adopted one of their bright ideas.

      Great work, guys.

    23. douglas clark — on 5th December, 2008 at 12:15 am  

      Bloody hell, what is it about me this week?

      The arguement about Damian Greens rights and the rights of clubbers are not divisible. They sit well within the spectrum of a state that desires to curtail freedoms. Whether those of Tory MPs or people that just want to ‘chill’.

      Their back door methods of introducing ID by stealth suggest that they well know the ideas of divide and conquer.

      Could we please get it clear that an attack on one target is an attack on us all?

      No, probably not.

      In my opinion, this government is in control freak mode.

    24. Sunny — on 5th December, 2008 at 2:22 am  

      If anything, the politics of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton which exploited identity politics to the maximum did very little to advance the cause of equality

      Both those were less interested in equality, and more interested in black empowerment - with the view that power equality would only come once blacks made themselves into a powerful, political, cohesive force. I’m sorry but I’m not going to sit here and condemn them for the time and era they had to live in. Its easy to say JJ and AS were against equality at a time when blacks were treated like shit openly.

      They may not have had the same style as MLK but they weren’t out to supress white males and white society - merely to take a more confrontational approach.

      Similarly - when my uncles and forefathers beat the crap out the Nazis who came to Southall, I’m not going to sit here and condemn that by saying thats not fighting for equality.

      the fight has different stages at different times.

      Obama didn’t get to be president with quotas, nor did he have his work done by the Jacksons and the Sharpton’s

      I didn’t say Obama was helped by either (though he had a more tacit relationship with Rev Sharpton who neither openly helped him nor hindered him, realising that times had changed better than JJ did). But Obama was helped by the black politics in Chicago that was borne out of Affirmative Action. That much is pretty undeniable. Blacks have always been organised in Chicago precisely because of people like AL and JJ who were interested in black self-empowerment.

      In practice, quotas are a poisoned present to minorities

      Like I said - it depends on the environment. If you’re talking 1960-1990s America, then no they weren’t. Right now they probably are poison in certain areas, maybe not the south. In the UK I don’t think they work.

      But then the MET doesn’t have quotas, it has targets to try and reflect the population it serves. I don’t see that as a problem.

    25. Rumbold — on 5th December, 2008 at 9:29 am  

      Beavis:

      “Do you think the amount of minority based organisations which receive public funding do anything to dispel this myth?”

      It depends on which organisation it is. Some, like the MCB, Sikh Federation, etc. are divisive. Others, like the Southall Black Sisters, are okay in that they are specialists in particular areas (especially when it comes to language).

      Sunny:

      “First comes the view that black people cause trouble and therefore racial profiling is a great idea. All this was pushed by the Tories before ‘political correctness gone mad’ ethnic quotas came in. So I’m afraid your logic doesn’t stand.”

      Yes, diversity monitoring forms did not create the problem. But don’t you think that when the state racially profiles us it simply adds to the sense of the divide- I am white, you are brown (or wheatish), so we should be treated differently?

      “Similarly, quotas can initially provide a push that opens the door for others. Only when politicians and media become comfortable with the idea of minorities among them, that the doors start opening up. That’s the way it is.”

      Based on British history, I think that is debatable. During the Raj, We had MPs from India, Indian princes captaining our cricket team, lots of Indians attending Cambridge, yet post-1947 Indians, in some senses, had to start all over again.

      Leon:

      “I’m not particularly hung up on the fact that the state classifies people really; no industrial society can exist without some planning, planning means mapping things like population, and part of that will be things like the census.”

      But why the need for so much information? It is one thing to know the number of people in an area, and thr age range (for schools, old people’s homes), but why the need to know our skin colours?

    26. fugstar — on 5th December, 2008 at 10:08 am  

      *STOP PRESS* SAMI YUSUF CONCERT RAIDED BY DOGS AND HELICOPTERS. 14 MUSLIMAH TEENY BOPPERS HELD FOR BREACHING THE PEACE WITH THEIR SHREIKING.

    27. Leon — on 5th December, 2008 at 10:26 am  

      but why the need to know our skin colours?

      In the Census they don’t ask for skin colour.

    28. sonia — on 5th December, 2008 at 12:23 pm  

      demanding ID is ridiculous -no one has ID anyway. its very annoying when they ask you for id - i havent got a drivers license so nothing i carry with me shows my age. im tired of old indian men in off-licences asking me if i’m 18!

      yes ethnicity reporting isn’t THE SAME AS skin colour reporting. its about what ‘group’ you feel you fall into. you can have a ‘white’ looking skin and report as black if thats the ethnic group you feel you want to self define as, and be brownlooking and put Mixed or White if you feel thats the ethnic group you feel you are part of, say if you’re of mixed parentage, no one is going to say to a mixed kid, you cant self report as white. loads of people do .

      that’s the fun thing about the ethnic box ticking exercise is here (unlike the USA) we can all tick what we like - and it wouldn’t be ‘lying’ because its all about how you self-define your ethnic grouping.

      I think we should all just put Mixed and when the next Census rolls around we do the same

    29. sonia — on 5th December, 2008 at 12:28 pm  

      “Sofia (16) - As I understand it, no one is obliged to complete a diversity monitoring form.”

      SONIA - no one is ‘forced’ to complete a diversity monitoring form- and even if they choose to fill in the form, they can always tick the box ‘do not wish to reveal’ etc. but “we” all just have to ask nicely, because without fail, each and every public funded project (that’s who i meant when i said ‘we’)has to report how you are meeting equalities targets. you wouldn’t get public funding if you don’t say you are meeting equalities targets, that’s the point.

      (that’s the world i was talking about - re: diversity monitoring forms), perhaps i should have made that clear. participants in a publicly funded event will be kindly asked to fill out the forms. they don’t have to - but you’re screwed if you don’t get them. you can’t make them up…(in theory anyway) though of course regeneration organisations do their best :-) most people though don’t seem to mind at all - perhaps because the sorts of people one hauls along to these events generally are used to the idea of bureaucracy and form-filling to get access to publicly funded events/opportunities etc.

    30. sonia — on 5th December, 2008 at 12:36 pm  

      well you see Rumbold, if we didn’t know who self-defined in which ‘ethnic category’ and where, then when people say the State has to do something about the ethnic make-up of such and such a place, well then the State wouldn’t be able to tell would it? and then it could just use that strategy - well i can’t do anything about ‘diversity figures’ because i don’t know who’s diverse and who isn’t
      :-)

    31. marvin — on 5th December, 2008 at 2:40 pm  

      They should informally profile music types and likely outcomes of the crowds — not races. You’ll obviously need some tougher security at a UK speed garage event with So Solid Crew gracing the stage (have they ever had a gig without some upstart trying to pop a cap?) than a Vanessa Mae concert. Obviously.

      Bringing guns in to clubs is a regular occurrence here where I live. Yes said clubs are vast majority black but the element that determines violence is the dark, violent and sometimes nasty lyrics and aggressive attitude in the music which does not bode well for a nicey nicey atmos. More… gangsta.

      Contrast and compare the violence between the rock pub and the UK garage club down the road. One has been shut down, at long last, due to multiple gun attacks. I was amazed at how long the autorities allowed the place to stay open. And the police had a very hands off approach to the place. Didn’t want to be ‘hassling’ people. Even though people died there.

      The other has hardly ever any trouble in it at all.

    32. Trofim — on 5th December, 2008 at 4:40 pm  

      marvin:
      . . . than a Vanessa Mae concert.

      There were 76 promenade concerts on consecutive days this year at the Albert Hall. There were no reports of any kind of violent incidents or disorder, let alone stabbings. Same for the past 103 years. There must be something of significance there.

    33. Trofim — on 5th December, 2008 at 5:36 pm  

      And what’s more Sarfraz Mansoor wrote a thoughtful article about the last night:

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2008/sep/16/proms.classicalmusicandopera

      I was expecting the usual rant about jingoism and so on, so it was a pleasant surprise.

    34. Ravi Naik — on 5th December, 2008 at 10:53 pm  

      They should informally profile music types and likely outcomes of the crowds — not races. You’ll obviously need some tougher security at a UK speed garage event with So Solid Crew gracing the stage (have they ever had a gig without some upstart trying to pop a cap?) than a Vanessa Mae concert. Obviously.

      This seems totally reasonable and highly effective. Why does the police want to rely on something that not only is controversial but also highly ineffective?

    35. Ravi Naik — on 6th December, 2008 at 12:37 am  

      Both those were less interested in equality, and more interested in black empowerment - with the view that power equality would only come once blacks made themselves into a powerful, political, cohesive force. I’m sorry but I’m not going to sit here and condemn them

      I am not saying JJ and Al Sharpton are bad people and should be condemned, but I do not see what these two politicians have done to have contributed directly or indirectly to Obama’s success. Their politics were divisive and polarising and did very little to empower black politicians at mainstream level. Obama went precisely the opposite way, going for unity and equality. Not surprisingly, Al Sharpton, said in late 2007 that Obama behaved like he was white. And JJ wanted to “cut Obama’s nuts” for having the gull to talk about father responsibility in the black community.

      I am also not sure how affirmative action works to get politicians elected in Chicago. What I know is that Obama went to Harvard on his own merit, no affirmative action. By the way, Obama is not unique. There is an exciting new generation of elite African-American and minority politicians (including Indian-Americans) who represent this post-identity-racial politics. Who talk about diversity and unity, despite the fact that minorities *are* still treated like shit in America.

    36. Ravi Naik — on 6th December, 2008 at 12:44 am  

      Cory Booker (Mayor of Newark) is an example of this new generation of politicians.



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