The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) [advocacy website] Thursday blasted a proposed plan that would allow Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents to consider a person's race, religion, or ethnicity in deciding whether to open a terrorism investigation.
CAIR decried the plan as "unconstitutional and un-American," saying that it could allow security agents to target Muslims and Arab-Americans for harassment.
A US Department of Justice spokesman responding to press reports on the plan - which has neither been finalized nor formally announced - denied that the new guidelines would allow profiling, noting that ethnicity is only one of many factors to be considered and that it is only when all those factors as a whole are deemed suspicious that an investigation can be opened.
Under the proposed guidelines as explained to AP by unnamed sources, agents would be able to initiate investigations even in instances where there is no evidence of a crime, something required under current guidelines. (MORE)