Posted in College, CSI, Gender

Yes, I Am A Strong.

 

When I was a child I asked an unparallel amount of questions. I was never satisfied with a just because. I would search in books, ask relatives, google, I think I even remember going up to strangers and asking them questions. I have this need for information and explanation, which is why I choose to be a scientist. The more I knew the stronger I felt about myself.

As a woman, I don’t think I will stop being underestimated. However, I will never stop proving people wrong. I get this strength from watching the women who inspire me every day.

When I was 4-5 my great-grandmother would sit me on her armchair and taught me to read. She wanted me to be an educated woman just as my mother, and grandmother were. She taught me that hard work will help you gain new skills and give you tools to solve problems.

When I was 8 my mom was my soccer coach, she taught me to be a keeper. The final line of defense. She gave me one objective, keep the ball from going over the white line in front of the goal. She taught me that you can break down any job to one task and complete it.

When I was 15 I ended up in the hospital and complications led me into a panic attack. My step mom taught me that I have the ability to control how I react to my surroundings.

That fall of my freshman year of college, I got a job as a lighting technician for a local music hall, I had to prove myself each day. Big men would think I was too fragile to move the big speakers or drum cases, by the end of the night they would apologize for underestimating me. This happened almost every night. My boss who had been in the business almost 30 years, he told me on his last day that he often forgot I was so young because of how skilled I was and how professionally I held myself.

When I was 19 I worked in an office filled with women, and my office manager taught me I was capable of working with numbers and with people. She would give me the directions once and tell me to ask questions if needed. This was one of the first times that instead of asking for a step by step procedure I would adjust as needed. Over 18 months I was able to get both offices of the company organized and up to date, some of the oldest material was backdated ten years.

I spent my first few years in college studying criminal justice. In many cases, I was the only one in my class who would take a minute and ask my professor for more information. He would often play this little game where he would give three facts and from that, you have to determine if you should detain someone. Many of my classmates would be quick to say of course —- is guilty, cuff um! I would never answer without more information. Many of my classmates though that my further investigation was a waste of resources. When I was ready to leave one school and head to the next, my professor, the good ol’ boy retired chief of police, told me I was one of his favorites students and how I would make one damn good investigator one day.

This past spring I had a professor who gave me female contacts within my field and encouraged my curiosity as a scientist. She shared my enthusiasm for finding answers and making possible scientific improvements. She taught me that science is not about the bottom line it’s about understanding, improvement, and advancement.

I have learned through these women, and I have taught men not to underestimate me for being a woman. Never let being a woman stop you from anything.

Posted in CSI

Profiling

I have an assignment with my criminal procedure class this week, discuss whether or not profiling along with stop and frisk is acceptable according to heritage. The exact question is as follows, “Is it lawful to profile someone, stop and frisk them and perform more invasive actions based on the individual’s heritage?” I feel very strongly about this topic and wanted to publish my response to more than just my classmates.

Stop and frisk is a legal action any officer has the authority to do and in places like New York City is it actually encouraged by officers to engage in this action towards people of color. A series of papers and research was done on the topic of stop and frisk by a table of research professionals around this concept. The results were as follows, stop and frisk polarizes much more towards minority groups than majority groups and people of color have higher negative thoughts towards police than white men and women. Since cooperation with the police is based off a sense of trust and many cities having higher populations of people of color a new program started to minimize stop and frisk and try to maximize trust in police. (Vigne,2014)

Yes, it is lawful to profile someone based off their heritage, this type of profiling is called racial profiling and as much as it is legal it is harmful. This country runs on the principle of innocent until proven guilty and with racial profiling it has become guilty by association of heritage.

As far as going further to be more invasive due to heritage this can cost an officer their badge. Street stops became unconstitutional in the case Terry v. Ohio. This means an officer cannot approach a civilian on the street and confront them just because the officer has suspicion that the civilian will cause a crime. (Stringer, 2012) Though this concept has become unconstitutional it is still used and racial profiling killed too many people last year. This problem is not just a problem it is an epidemic with a simple solution to stop assuming heritage equals guilt.

 

Vigne, L., G, N., Lachman, P., Rao, S., & Matthews, A. (2014) Stop and Frisk. – Retrieved March 15, 2016, from http://ric-zai-inc.com/Publications/cops-p306-pub.pdf

Stringer, S. (2012). Beyond Stop-and-Frisk: Toward Policing That Works. Retrieved March 15, 2016, from http://www.thenation.com/article/beyond-stop-and-frisk-toward-policing-works