'Pre-Crime' Database Has Got To Go
How. Dare. They.
It is official. Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Kelly have gone off the deep end. These two want us to believe that maintaining a database of 'pre-crime' suspects, derived from stop-and-frisk actions, will deter crime.
After years of cajoling from the City Council and lawsuits by the NY Civil Liberties Union, Commissioner Kelly has been forced to release data on the NYPD's stop-and-frisk program.
Analysis of that data has revealed minorities, particularly African Americans and Latinos, are the majority of those stopped. Last year, a total of 500,000 were subjected to these unconstitutional actions. (Perhaps neither Bloomberg or Kelly take the 4th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution seriously. Or maybe they believe 4th Amendment rights are afforded to everyone except Blacks and Latinos.) Of those stopped, the overwhelming majority are law abiding citizens who were not charged with any crime, and allowed, somewhat traumatized, to go about their business.
Yet, Bloomberg and Kelly want Governor Paterson to veto a bill passed in both the Senate and Assembly, that would require NYPD to no longer maintain a 'pre-crime' database of innocent citizens. Bloomberg states maintaining the database of innocent citizens is a crime prevention tool. Kelly is just as disingenuous when he writes in an op-ed that maintaining the database of innocent people will save the lives of black boys.
Both seem to presume that those who have been stopped-and-frisked are going to commit a crime sooner or later. These men do not realize how offensive this policy is.
Bloomberg and Klein apparently have watched too many re-runs of the ironically titled “Minority Report,” a 2002 flick starring Tom Cruise in which a specialized police force apprehends criminals before crimes are committed. The movie makes the point that anyone with inappropriate knowledge of 'pre-crime' can manipulate it.
Is “criminalizing a race” the point of Kelly's 'pre-crime' database? Are free Blacks in 2010 NYC really supposed to be enslaved (imprisoned) as Charshee McIntyre so eloquently wrote?
Maintaining a 'pre-crime' database of innocent New Yorkers is bad public policy. It must stop.
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