In a recent opinion piece for the Oregonian, guest columnist Thabiti Lewis offered his perspective, as an African-American male, on the harsh reality of racial profiling in Oregon for people of color, particularly African Americans. In addition to giving the reader a realistic view into a slice of African-American life, Professor Lewis also offered some practical advice for individuals who may be unfairly targeted by police.

The ACLU of Oregon appreciates and echoes Professor Lewis’ advice that individuals arm themselves with knowledge of their rights. We offer these relevant links for you to do just that: (1) an ACLU membership card;  (2) a copy of the U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights and Additional Amendments; and (3) a library card. We offer another helpful item: an Oregon ACLU “Know Your Rights” card for when you are not driving a car .

The ACLU has a long history of working to address the issue of racial profiling in law enforcement  and in recent years has been working to tackle the effects of disproportionate discipline on youth of color in its School-to-Prison Pipeline project.

Thanks to Thabiti Lewis, English Professor at Washington State University in Vancouver, for his excellent article and shout out to the ACLU.

Also see: ACLU publications “Race & Ethnicity in America: Turning A Blind Eye to Injustice” and “The Persistence of Racial and Ethnic Profiling in the United States: A Follow-Up Report to the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of  Racial Discrimination”.

Coming Soon:  An ACLU of Oregon report on the School-to-Prison Pipeline in Oregon