Driving While Black/Brown

New ACLU Report on Racial Profiling Calls for
Government Action and An End to Official Denials
Wednesday, June 2, 1999

NEW YORK -- Racial profiling of minority motorists is
restoring Jim Crow justice in America, the American
Civil Liberties Union said today in issuing a new
report documenting the practice.

In the first comprehensive look at the problem,
"Driving While Black: Racial Profiling on Our Nation's
Highways," cites police statistics on traffic stops,
ACLU lawsuits, government reports and media stories
from around the nation in making the case that skin
color is being used as a substitute for evidence and a
ground for suspicion.

For the rest of the story ...


Why Minorities Run from the Police
Why do people run from the police? Many American's believe there is only one reason- they are guilty of something. They think someone runs from the police because they have done something illegal, are doing something illegal, or are about to do something illegal. This belief is probably shared by many police officers throughout the United States.(1) But in the United States there may be reasons why a person may run from the police even when they are doing nothing wrong and have nothing to hide.(2) This note focuses on the reasons innocents run from the police. Specifically, this note attempts to explain why minorities, in particular black males, run from the police when they have nothing to hide. It also raises qustions about the attachment of reasonable suspicion to the act of running from the police.(3)

Black Cops Against Police Brutality

B-CAP was founded as a grassroots organization committed to protecting and serving the people. The fact that police violence has reached epidemic proportions has lead to a need for a workshop which advises the citizens of this country, especially young people how to reduce their chances of being victims of police violence.

Counterpunch DWB The issue of racial profiling by police briefly grabbed the attention of the press when New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman recently fired the head of the state police after he accused blacks and hispanics of being more likely to be drug dealers and therefore deserving of heightened police scrutiny. Whitman earned glowing coverage for her swift action. In fact, Whitman has sedulously ignored the problem for most of her term, insisting that racial profiling is not a practice of the state police. Even after two New Jersey state troopers fired eleven shots into a van carrying four black men on their way to a basketball clinic last winter Whitman clung to her contention that the action was not racially motivated. In 1995 a New Jersey state judge threw out charges against fifteen black drivers who, the judge said, had been pulled over without cause. During the trial it emerged that on a 26-mile long stretch on the southern part of the New Jersey Turnpike minorities accounted for 46 percent of the drivers stopped, even though they were only 15 percent of the speeders.

Lundman & Kaufman
Ohio State Researchers

African Americans who are stopped for traffic violations are less likely than whites to believe the police had a legitimate reason to stop them, and more likely to believe they were mistreated, according to a new national study. In addition, black men are 35 percent more likely than white men to report being stopped by police for a traffic violation. There was no difference between black women and white women in reported stops. The study is one of few to look at the “driving while black” phenomenon on a national scale, and to examine citizen rather than police reports
DWB in the UK Scores of Black Britons -- including prominent athletes, Home Office officials and government workers, artists, lawyers, and business leaders -- have experienced the humiliation of being stopped on the streets of London and other British cities for no other apparent reason than being Black and driving a car.