Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib told Detroit’s chief of police that he should hire only black people as analysts to run their facial recognition software because, she claimed, non-black people think they all look alike.
The suggestion came Monday as Chief James Craig gave Tlaib a tour of the Real Time Crime Center, where the department uses facial recognition technology to find suspects. Craig was showing Tlaib how the software works, and how analysts use it to identify and locate individuals. But the tour quickly turned contentious as the freshman Michigan congresswoman made repeated requests that were shot down by the chief.
“Analysts need to be African-Americans, not people that are not,” Tlaib said. “It’s true, I think non-African-Americans think African-Americans all look the same!” She said she has witnessed people confuse Reps. John Lewis, D-Ga., and Elijah Cummings, D-Md., who both are black and bald.
Craig, who is black, did not go for Tlaib’s suggestion.
“I trust people who are trained, regardless of race, regardless of gender,” he responded.
This came after Tlaib claimed that “the error rate among African-Americans, especially women,” was 60 percent.