With the NYPD conducting random searches in subway stations, the dormant arguments about profiling are re-surfacing.

“There will certainly be no racial profiling allowed,” says Ray Kelly.

Does that exclude religious, or national-origin profiling? Should it? It’s not a conversation people here are particularly comfortable having. But it’s also an obvious question.

Take this observation from William Finnegan’s must-read piece on the NYPD in this week’s New Yorker (no link available):

“Behind [NYPD intelligence chief] Cohen’s desk stood a bin of large rolled-up maps of New York’s neighborhoods, with handwritten tags attached: ‘Significant Concentrations of Pakistanis,’ ‘Significant Concentrations of Palestinians.'”