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« Guest Blog: Anti-Semitism and Free Speech | Main | Worst of Dark and Best of Bright »

October 19, 2007


Daniel Greenberg

Unfairly targeting black males:
From where exactly does this policy originate? I do not believe that it is a centrally proposed policy. It must, according to my thinking, be a result of the ad hoc decisions of the CAP security guards.

The question to ask, then, is what is their background? What would make these ex-militia target black males disproportionally. Statistically speaking, the majority of violent crime in South Africa IS committed by black males. Is it necessarily unfair, then, to use racial-profiling in promoting safety? After all, El Al does so to ensure the safety of its passengers. The difference between these 2 situation, again, is that one is a top-down policy while I believe GAP's is based on individual, ad-hoc judgment.


Firstly, a large number of the GAP/CAP etc guards are black.

Secondly as Daniel pointed out above, this is not a policy but an on the ground decision by each guard on what he sees as a possible threat.

And thirdly, and I do hope all you happy clapper liberals don't get too much in huff over this and use up even more of our precious oxygen, but as Daniel said - crime is committed by black males, at least contact crime. It would be a little silly to stop old ladies and black females in the interest of equality in policing. GAP is not about equality its about not being killed. If every hijacking, murder and robbery in the area in recent memory was committed by a black person then thats who you have to target.

And to cries of "racist" I answer: Saying that the crime is committed by black people is not racist, its pointing out a fact. Saying that crime is committed by black people BECAUSE they are black people is racist. But no-one is saying that. Maybe we can arrange a happy meeting for all the liberals to discuss the racial bias in the criminal population, and ways to mend it. Maybe the most ardent of you can even suggest ways of convincing more white people to take up careers in armed robbery in order to have better racial representation in the field. But that is not the job of GAP its to fight crime, and in the meantime, whilst the social services and policy makers work on ways to reverse the evils of apartheid (this being one of them), companies lie GAP exist to help prevent people from dying.


I have spoken to someone who is part of the GAP professional staff. He has assured me that there is no deliberate targeting of Black males. Alerts sent out to the security guards are based on the Intel available. Thus last week there were reports of 3 White males jumping fences in the neighbourhood. And the guards were instructed to be on the look out for people meeting this description.

I actually don’t think the issue is so much about racial profiling. Its more about freedom. Does a private security guard have the right to limit someone’s access to an area just because he thinks he is suspicious? The comment by the guards to the journalists 'this is our area and you cannot just do what you want here’ (if true)is, in my opinion problematic.

George Sklar

Mike is 100% correct.

Brett, your point is warped by your extremism.

"If every hijacking, murder and robbery in the area in recent memory was committed by a black person then thats who you have to target."

You are incorrect. Its the overwhelming majority, but not every crime.

" Maybe the most ardent of you can even suggest ways of convincing more white people to take up careers in armed robbery in order to have better racial representation in the field"

Such sarcasm is part of the problem and not the solution.


Given that I only reiterated Mikes points it strikes me as odd that you say he is 100% correct and my points are warped. But I hear you, sarcasm can blur the point being made if the reader is offended by sarcasm, as the personal offense blinds him to the argument. I apologise for offending you.

Re the 100%, point.Perhaps you are correct but what are you suggesting based on this?Does the difference between 100% and 90% translate to a practical difference on the ground?

Mike, you're contradicting yourself. In your article you made a number of points that essentially boiled down to placing your chances of surviving a day in Glenhazel above other peoples less definitive personal rights (eg. your comment to Mrs Kassel). Now your question the right of private security guards to interfere with freedom of movement. Is the latter of such importance that you are willing to die for it?
If the comments the guards made were correct I agree that it is insensitive and rude to approach a suspicious person this way. But I argue that given the appropriate criteria, the guards have every right, nay, obligation to interfere with the freedom of movement of others.


I don’t think there is a contradiction. I stand by my original point that although ideologically I don’t like the idea of GAP, given the dire security situation it is a necessary evil. That said, its not a blank cheque. We have to try and limit the degree to which it infringes on other peoples rights.

What I was say in the comment above that more than infringing on peoples right to equality (unfairly targeting Black males), it infringes on their right to free movement (suspicious people cant come into Glenhazel, Black or White). The comments were focused on the discrimination bit but not on the movement issue. I was hoping to shift the conversation in that direction.

Of course this is all just my opinion, I don’t know if a South African judge would agree with me. I also have no case law to back up my point. Pure on an instinctual basis, I am saying yes in this case on balance GAP is justified. If we want to examine the issue in a more legal sense, I am sure we could find a qualified constitutional lawyer to write us a more authoritative opinion.


I agree with you 100% Mike. Send this letter to the Times...

Account Deleted

You are Correct.
I've read a number of articles on based of Security Guard, but is very interesting Article.

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