Just pointing out the color of someone’s skin is not racist

January 2nd, 2008

There is a DNA test that can tell the police the race of the suspect they’re looking for, cialis usa salve but authorities are reluctant to use it because they know they’ll be accused of racial profiling:

Frudakis’ test is called DNAWitness. It examines DNA from 176 locations along the genome. Particular sequences at these points are found primarily in people of African heritage, best cialis buy cialis others mainly in people of Indo-European, purchase Native American, or South Asian descent. No one sequence can perfectly identify a person’s origin. But by looking at scores of markers, Frudakis says he can predict ancestry with a tiny margin of error.

Since the Baton Rouge case, DNAWitness has been used nationally in nearly 200 criminal investigations. In several, the science played a crucial role in narrowing the suspect field, ultimately leading to an arrest. But its success hasn’t made the technology popular with law enforcement. Frudakis’ company, DNAPrint, has yet to turn a profit and may not survive much longer.Part of the problem is cost — basic tests run more than $1,000. But the real issue? DNAWitness touches on race and racial profiling — a subject with such a tortured history that people can’t countenance the existence of the technology, even if they don’t understand how it works.

“Once we start talking about predicting racial background from genetics, it’s not much of a leap to talking about how people perform based on their DNA — why they committed that rape or stole that car or scored higher on that IQ test,” says Troy Duster, former president of the American Sociological Association.

To state the obvious, it is NOT racial profiling to mention the race of a culprit on his wanted poster. Just like it won’t be peeper profiling when we can determine eye color from a sample of DNA and use that as part of the culprit’s description, too.

Entry Filed under: Observations

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Being in a wheelchair gives you a unique perspective on the world. This blog features many of my views on politics, art, science, and entertainment. My name is Elliot Stearns. More...

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