“The reality is that profiling in one form or another has always existed in policing and football hooligans are only one example. I have no doubt that the Home Secretary predicted negative knee-jerkism at the slightest hint of profiling, but it is a sad state of affairs that this has come from a high ranking police officer at such a sensitive time.
“In dismissing profiling before making a dispassionate analysis of the evidence – good and bad, positive and negative – I fear Mr Dizaei is displaying the same mindset as his colleague Metropolitan Assistant Commissioner Tarique Ghaffur: blissful ignorance.”
He continued: “Cheap, sensationalist soundbites about creating an offence of ‘travelling whilst Asian’ are only likely to inflame moderate Muslim opinion and thus play into the hands of the terrorist. Yes, this is a difficult and emotive debate. But it is a debate we must have.”
Yes, let’s have a debate. These are the opinions of Police Federation’s vice-chairman Alan Gordon. He, let me start off by saying, is an idiot.
It seems the police, along with New Labour, is intent on making Britons into paranoid freaks. With the level of intelligence displayed by PP regular j0nz, which says: “well, an 80 year old granny is hardly likely to blow up a plane is she?”, the police has run out of any sensible ideas.
I’ve met Tarique Ghaffur numerous times and have immense respect him. He has remained loyal to the police and has always strived to deal with extremism and rising crime amongst ethnic minority groups (drugs in Southall, gang warfare amongst Tamils, crime in Tower Hamlets etc) without making it a race issue. The police didn’t even want to give him any money to deal with it so he went to Asian businesses. That’s how much he cares. And he tried hard to get people to think about joining the Met police. And what does he get in return? Mud in his face.
What was surprising about his admission that racism had held him back was that it took so long in coming. Journalists who deal with the police had been saying it for years. It was obvious he was being used as token Asian / Muslim police officer while his talents were being ignored. He didn’t play the race card because he loved the police. But he has clearly had enough.
Now, Ch Supt. Ali Dezaei and Tarique Ghaffur are embroiled in a row over passenger profiling because they know the consequences – it will simply play into the hands of those (of all religions) who keep saying Asians will never be accepted in this country as equals.
Before some wise-ass retorts that if terrorism didn’t exist we would not be here, let me remind you that this racial profiling has long been in practice towards the African-Caribbean community – with no visible impact other than to make them even more suspicous and antagonistic of the police. After Isiah Young-Sam’s murder during the B’ham riots last year some African groups were planning to take militias there to protect families because they had no faith in the police.
Is it any wonder that while Alan Gordon mentions profiling of football hooligans (yeah right) but neglects to mention why stop-and-search figures for young black Britons is so high and whether that’s had any impact. Don’t accuse others of “cheap soundbites” Gordon if that’s all you have to offer too.
It is our duty to offer full support to Tarique Ghaffur and Ali Dezaei so the upper echelons of the police think twice before dismissing their advice so cheaply. The police cannot expect and will not get the full support of ethnic minority communities if it treats them so disdainfully.
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Filed in: Civil liberties,Race politics