Racial profiling is nothing new. However a particular case involving college student Trayon Christian made headlines after the Queens resident decided to sue Barney’s and the NYPD Tuesday.
The 19-year-old claims he went to the Barneys on Fifth Avenue to buy a $350 belt that he had saved up for working a part-time job at his college. Despite showing the Barneys clerk his identification upon request when using his debit card to purchase the belt, the clerk called police claiming the purchase was fraud. Undercover officers then grabbed Christian as he exited the department store and according to the lawsuit asked “how can a young black man such as himself could afford to purchase such an expensive belt.”
Christian was taken to the local precinct where he produced his ID, debit card from Chase and the receipt with his name on it. It wasn’t until the cops called Chase and the bank verified that the card belonged to Christian, that they let him go.
Barney denies having any involvement in Christians incident with the NYPD claiming they have zero tolerance for any form of discrimination. However another young black Barneys customer, Kayla Phillips, came forward Wednesday saying she too had been racially profiled by the store after splurging on a $2,500 Celine handbag. “As I was walking into the train station, four undercover police officers attacked me,” the 21-year-old said.
Unfortunately most of us have had an experience where we’ve been racially profiled. Maybe you’ve been followed around at a store or on the flip side not greeted properly at one. Perhaps you can never get through airport security without coincidentally being the one pulled to the side for their random inspection. Or maybe your just tired of your doctor telling you to stay away from fried foods when in actuality you’re a vegetarian. Tell us, where do you feel most profiled?