Here’s an example of what can happen as police take extreme caution about possible terrorists: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg apologized to a group of British tourists who were handcuffed and forced to kneel on a Broadway sidewalk after cops swarmed a sightseeing bus, the New York Daily News reports. The mayor said citizens should use “common sense” and avoid profiling people like the group of South Asian-looking visitors, who were Sikhs from Britain. The tourists were members of the Sikh religion who grew up together in Birmingham, England.
The men were shaken when they were taken off the bus by heavily armed cops after a Gray Line worker called police to report “suspicious” tourists. The men’s hands were bound behind their backs and they were forced to kneel on Broadway. Other terrified tourists had to walk off the double-decker bus with their hands up while their bags were searched. As Bloomberg spoke, a bag chained to a Brooklyn fire hydrant sparked evacuations and street closures. The bag left at in the heart of downtown contained a sewing kit and yellow dish detergent. But cops didn’t know that when they X-rayed it. “We didn’t like what we saw,” one cop said.