Media Blog

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“There’s no dilemma about the ferry photo”


Unlike the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Seattle Times gets it:

A classic example of racial profiling is stopping an African-American man driving responsibly at 2 a.m. for the sole reason that he is driving while black. Skin color, not behavior.

Releasing a picture of two men of unknown descent, possibly Middle Eastern, who apparently took photographs of the interiors of ferry boats and went into areas tourists do not normally go is altogether different. Sounds like solid police work based on behavior, not skin color. The inordinate interest by these two men in the workings of the vessel was unusual and suspicious. It would be unusual and suspicious done by any person of any nationality or descent.

The behavior of these two men concerned the captain of the ferry. Good. He took the photos of the two men. It is his job to take steps to keep his ship safe. If passengers act strangely on the boat, the prudent thing to do is get more information, even if it makes the passengers uncomfortable.

The rest of the editorial here.


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