Thursday, November 08, 2007

Fal-awful

When people expressed outrage over the idea of racial profiling, it didn't occur to me that the US government would go right on past it to simply racist profiling.
Like Hansel and Gretel hoping to follow their bread crumbs out of the forest, the FBI sifted through customer data collected by San Francisco-area grocery stores in 2005 and 2006, hoping that sales records of Middle Eastern food would lead to Iranian terrorists.

The idea was that a spike in, say, falafel sales, combined with other data, would lead to Iranian secret agents in the south San Francisco-San Jose area.
Can I just add my voice to the chorus of people who think this is incredibly stupid? Basing your hunt for terrorists on a two-tiered stereotype (weird food like falafel is for weird people like Iranians, and Iranians are terrorists) seems like a pretty poor idea to me.

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