To the editor:
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds promised, in her Condition of the State address and elsewhere, to do something meaningful about the continued problem of racial profiling in our state. I am calling on her — as are others — to fulfill that promise.
Unfortunately, a racial-profiling measure is currently being packaged as a tiny part of a huge, ever-evolving policing bill.
This piece of legislation that is moving through the Iowa Legislature is more than 30 pages long, most of which has to do with giving police more power and less accountability. It heaps unnecessary penalties on protestors and gives problematic special immunity to police that makes it harder to hold police accountable.
This is exactly the wrong direction to be heading.
There is one small, positive part of the bill that addresses racial profiling by police, but it’s dramatically overshadowed by the remainder of this mammoth, harmful bill.
Overall, this bill stifles the free speech and assembly rights of Iowans, undermines progress toward racial justice in our state and does particular harm to Black Iowans.
Please, Gov. Reynolds, do right by Black people in our state, and veto any legislation that lands on your desk that penalizes protestors and gives harmful special protections to police, with a mere crumb to combat racial profiling.
Fredi L. Juri