- Hypothesis: Members of the African American community are more likely to be harassed by the police than members of other ethnic groups
- Independent variable: Ethnic affiliation
- Response Category: Different ethnic groups willing to confess their interaction with the police
- Dependent variable: Police harassment
- Response category: Were you harassed by the police when you were flagged down? (Yes or No)
Structural functional theory
Being a functional system, the society is wired to encourage order and moral standing. This theory would explain the hypothesis by opposing police harassment and ethnics profiling.
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This theory views society as a cluster of race, class, or gender that may give benefits to specific individuals. This theory explains the conflict between the police force and different ethnic groups. The theory would therefore explain the constant conflict between the police and different ethnic groups. Thus, the African Americans are subjected to fear and vulnerability by the policemen due to misconception or inferiority complex.
This theory states that society is a continuous project. This means that interaction would translate into either fear or coexistence. In the case of this hypothesis, the African American ethnic group has had a confrontation with the police. This confrontation has caused fear.
In my opinion, the conflict theory offers the best explanation because it defines the social systems and origin of the confrontation between African Americans and law enforcement agents.