Nowadays Black mothers are dealing with their children being racially profiled more than ever. How to deal with police when you’re being pulled over or stopped, even while walking, is a conversation parents are having with their children, and it doesn’t matter if you’re famous.

In a recent interview, Empire star Taraji P. Henson told Uptown magazine stories about her 20-year-old son being racially profiled.

“My child has been racially profiled,” she said. “He was in Glendale, California and did exactly everything the cops told him to do, including letting them illegally search his car. It was bogus because they didn’t give him the ticket for what he was pulled over for.”

“Then he’s at University of Southern California, the school that I was going to transfer him to,” she continued. “When police stopped him for having his hands in his pockets.”

“So guess where he’s going? Howard University,” she said. “I’m not paying $50K so I can’t sleep at night wondering is this the night my son is getting racially profiled on campus.”

Amen, Taraji!

But let’s just say everything isn’t rosy at Howard either. You still have to venture off campus and D.C. cops aren’t the most kind.


In a statement to PEOPLE, Chief of the Department of Public Safety at The University of California, John Thomas, said the following:

“I would like to look into this matter further and better understand who was involved and what took place. As someone who personally experienced racial profiling as a teenager, I have a stake in learning more about this incident and doing all I can to reach a just resolution,” he wrote. “Any allegation of bias or unequal treatment by university officers would trigger an investigation that I would supervise along with the university’s Office of Equity and Diversity.”

Image Credits: UPTOWN Magazine 

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  • First and foremost, we are all glad that Taraji P. Henson’s son is safe. Unfortunately, many black people (irrespective of gender, class, age, or creed) have been the victims of racial profiling at the hands of law enforcement authorities. It is Taraji’s prerogative to send her child to Howard if she wants too. Definitely, there should be an investigation and the officer who participated in the racial profiling incident ought to be held into account. Taraji is responding to a situation where she is making sure that her money is being spent on her son’s education wisely (and she will not tolerate an injustice). We also have to continue to be conscious about these issues, know about student debt issues, and defend the human rights of our people.