Profiling is a troubling problem that has had great ramifications in the country in recent times. Although most of the claims put forward today outline that the country is in a post-racial era, cases of profiling occur often and pop up in news outlets among people of color and different ethnic backgrounds. Racial profiling is illegal and goes against the constitutional fundamental protections on rights of equality. Recently, however, a Muslim passenger was escorted from a Southwest Airlines plane by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA). The student at the University of California was asked to leave the plane because of speaking in Arabic.
The issue in this case is the profiling of a person due to his appearance. The student Khairuldeen Makhzoomi had the appearance of a Muslim Arab and thus was perceived as a threat due to the language he chose to communicate in (Blackwood, Hopkins, and Reicher 154). This is a rampant case of profiling from both the passenger who incidentally reported on him, and the airline for ejecting him from the plane. Profiling occurs for the majority of non-white American citizens who are subjected to various disgraces due to the stereotypes that are often leveled against them by society at large.
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The court of public opinion being the place where this case has been addressed at large condemns such acts. However, the practice has become a norm within a wide array of communities due to the recent incidents of terrorism. The federal government’s attitude towards immigrants is another contributing factor, with the recent pass on Trump’s ban on accepting refugees from various countries that have a Muslim majority. This rhetoric means that the average citizen is persecuted for actions that are out of his/her control, such as ethnicity, race or religion, to their detriment.
- Blackwood, Leda, Nick Hopkins, and Stephen D. Reicher. “‘Flying While Muslim’: Citizenship and Misrecognition in the Airport.” Journal of Social and Political Psychology, vol. 3, no. 2, 2015, pp. 148-170.