If [(Arab+Muslim+Trip to Pakistan+ …) / (age+ #of prayers/day+ …)] > X,
Ok, not exactly. But Mukasey, a strong supporter of the Patriot Act, and who argued in a WSJ piece that:
“current institutions and statutes are not well suited to even the limited task of supplementing . . . a military effort to combat Islamic terrorism.”
I talked about Mukasey before his AG approval in this post “Injudicious and Malicious” Judge Mukasey : An Attorney General Nightmare For Muslims?. As expected, he has been busy developing (constitutionally) dirty techniques, using public and government records to create “terrorist profiles”. So, even if you did nothing wrong in your life, or you were the biggest activist against terrorism; your age, ethnicity, national origin, trips “back home”, and I am guessing your “religious profile” (perhaps your membership to an Islamic organization) could make you a “prime suspect”.
We already know that Mukasey’s record shows his utter disregard and near disdain towards Muslims (read previous post), so it is not entirely surprising that he would go after the civil rights of Muslims & Arabs. Though I would have hoped that he would leave his prejudices behind for the sake of fairness and justice in this most important position of authority. Of course the obvious intent of racial and ethnic profiling is buried under “access to military training” (paintball??) and “travel to regions of the world known for terrorist activity” (entire Muslim world, barring Turkey and Malaysia??), and “a person’s race and ethnicity” (Muslim, Arab??). The article discussing this new policy points out:
The policy, first reported last week by The Associated Press, would let FBI agents open preliminary terrorism investigations after mining public records and intelligence to build a profile of traits that, taken together, were deemed suspicious. Among the factors that could make a U.S. citizen or resident the subject of an investigation is travel to regions of the world known for terrorist activity, access to weapons or military training, along with the person’s race or ethnicity.
The rush that Mukasey seems to be in, coupled with the blanket of secrecy (like most other illegal Bush programs), seems to display a serious intent of getting something in before the new President takes office. He wants to leave his mark in the new McCarthyism against Muslims. And he wants to do it fast!
What can you do? Write to the members of the Senate Judiciary committee (especially its chairman, Patrick Leahy), urging them to pay close attention to this program and urging them to not allow the passage of this program, because such profiling is against the constitutional independent check of equal protection under the law.
More on the constitutional 14th Amendment (info. gleaned from my business law book):
Though the 14th amendment applies to states in original writing, equal protection guarantee has been incorporated within the 5th amendment due process, so it also restricts federal government. The guarantee applies to ALL situations in which government classifies or distinguishes people. “The law inevitably makes distinction among people, benefiting or burdening some groups but not others. Equal protection doctrine, as developed by the Supreme Court, sets the standards such distinctions must meet in order to be constitutional”.
Moreover, there are certain basis for classification that require very rigorous equal protection review, and this includes race, national origin, and even one’s citizenship status! Obviously the DOJ program being discussed here cuts straight through race, national origin and ethnicity, and thus needs to be vehemently questioned.
Make sure to use the constitutional discussion when writing to the Senators, it will make you look much more informed and will give the Senators more pause for thought.