Wednesday, 10 November 2004

ACLU files suit against "behavioral profiling" at Logan Airport

Keeping itself, and Massachusetts, on the cutting edge of the litigation over police searches, seizures, and interrogations of travellers, as well as police denials of access to public and/or common carrier transportation, the ACLU of Massachusetts has filed suit against Massport (the Massachusetts Port Authority, operator of Boston’s Logan Airport) and the Mass. State Police against their practice of allegedly “behavioral” profiling of travellers and other people in public areas of the airport, and its use as a basis for detaining them, demanding identification credentials, and threatening with arrest those who decline to answer or to document their identity or who attempt to leave the airport.

The complaint was filed in state court against two state agencies, but has additional importance because of the adoption of the practices pioneered at Logan by Massport and the Mass. State Police as a prototype for the practices of Federal police at Logan — and, unless challenged, at other airports — by the by the USA Transportation Security Administration (TSA). This case thus presents a crucial test of whether the ethnic, racial, and religious sterotyping practiced by Israeli “security” forces, and introduced into the USA after 11 September 2001, under the rubric of “behavioral profiling”, by former Ben-Gurion Airport (Tel Aviv) security director Rafi Ron — the person at the center of the Massachusetts profiling disputes — will pass muster under USA Constitutional standards.

Link | Posted by Edward on Wednesday, 10 November 2004, 16:08 ( 4:08 PM)
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