The ACLU's New Wrinkle On Racial Profiling (With Illegal Immigration Connection)
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An article in the North County Times, serving San Diego County, (ESCONDIDO: Maher supports licenses for illegal immigrants, by Edward Sifuentes, May 11, 2009), is mostly about the feckless police chief in Escondido, CA, Jim Maher, urging that illegal aliens in California be allowed driver's licenses.

Maher is supporting the latest attempt by state Senator Gilbert ["One-Bill Gil"] Cedillo (D - Los Angeles) to enact such legislation.

Cedillo's driver's licenses bills (always SB 60, in one legislative session after another) have passed in several previous legislative sessions, only to be vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, rare exceptions to the guv's own adamant fecklessness. Apparently Cedillo would now settle for restricted licenses for his illegal-alien constituency:

The licenses for people who cannot prove that they are in the country legally would look different from the regular licenses, and they cannot be used for anything else than driving.

Near the article's conclusion, it gives the American Civil Liberties Union's take on the Cedillo bill. Surprisingly, the ACLU is on the same side as the forces of immigration-sanity. But not because the ACLU is against driver's licenses for illegal aliens:

[Cedillo's bill] is opposed by several anti-illegal immigration groups and the American Civil Liberties Union, which says that the bill could lead to discrimination and racial profiling because the licenses for illegal immigrants would look different.

In a March 2002 City Journal article (The Racial Profiling Myth Debunked), Heather Mac Donald reported an experiment proving that, in traffic stops for speeding on the New Jersey Turnpike, black drivers weren't being racially profiled. (The proof was statistical, but given the numbers of drivers involved, the results were definitive.)

Seven years later, the ACLU is evidently worried that racial profiling will involve not just drivers' physical appearances but also cops' intuition for the particular kinds of driver's licenses to be found hidden away within wallets inside drivers' pockets or purses!

I haven't been able to independently corroborate this bit of dementia at the websites of the ACLU's Southern California or Northern California chapters (readers are invited to nose around!). So I'm relying on the North County Times's Sifuentes. But it is, after all, the ACLU: Why would we be skeptical?


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