Rep. Rashida Tlaib is inescapably a racist. She’s as racist as any Klansman, kluxer, skinhead, or white supremacist out there.
She proved that by making the most ignorant, the most outrageous comment about race uttered in a long time by a member of Congress.
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib told Chief James Craig on Monday that analysts who work with the facial recognition software should be African-American only.
It is something Tlaib, a lawyer, later told FOX 2 wouldn’t even be legal to hire someone solely on race.
On Monday Tlaib said in a Detroit News online video: “Also, analysts need to be African-Americans, not people that are not. No, it happens all the time, it is true. I think non-African-Americans think African-Americans all look the same.”
Craig responded in that video saying, “I trust people who are trained. Regardless of race, regardless of gender.”
Note the context. She’s accusing a machine that automatically matches certain facial features of suspects of racism. That’s ignorant in and of itself.
Tlaib later said that she was quoting “science” studies that show people of one race have difficulty recognizing people of another race.
FOX 2: “Do you wish you would have said it differently?”
“I’m trying to say it needs to be reflective and if you look at the video I think you can see I’m trying to respectfully disagree,” Tlaib said.
Tlaib cited several studies for support on how people of one race identify another.
“The science supports what I’m saying,” Tlaib said.
FOX 2: “I’m not asking what the science is saying I’m asking what you’re saying?”
“I repeated what the science said,” Tlaib said. “I think if you talk, not just to me.”
The “science” tells us that people have difficulty recognizing specific individuals of another race, not that all black people look alike. There is no science anywhere that reflects that view. Tlaib was unconsciously giving her real views on race.
Chief Craig was understandably outraged.
Afterward, he told the News, “It’s insulting. We have a diverse group of crime analysts, and what she said — that non-whites should not work in that capacity because they think all black people look alike — is a slap in the face to all the men and women in the crime center.”
Tlaib has actually introduced legislation to ban facial recognition and prevent its introduction into public housing because many of her constituents oppose it. And there is a growing chorus on the left that facial recognition is “racist,” presumably because it’s programmed by white people and therefore reflects their biases.
The problem with that idiocy is that facial recognition software is based on a scientific dissection of the face, where certain characteristics cannot be hidden or altered easily. The computer scans faces in a video or photo and searches for a match in its database. The biases of the analysts don’t matter because the criteria used for a match is based on specific bone structures on various parts of the face. To speed up the process, police usually include the race of a suspect so that the computer doesn’t have to search millions of records.
In cases where a positive match is less than 100 percent, the analysts use other criteria. including the estimated height and weight of a suspect in a photo. It’s hard to see how racial bias plays a role at all.
Unless you’re a racist yourself. Ironically, it’s Tlaib’s own biases and racism that are the problem and not anyone else’s.