Mass incarceration is the new movement of racism targeting young black males. Majority of young black men in major cities are locked behind bars or have been labeled as felons. The felon label takes away their American rights such as voting. Rights that past generation have fought for us to have and be able to express freely as American citizens .Thus is the justice system trying to control African American men just as Jim Crow?
In her book The New Jim Crow, Michelle Alexander argues that we have not ended racism in America, but we have simply redesigned it into our judiciary system as the new Jim Crow. Alexander tries to prove her argument in the numerous chapters with endless statistics and analysis. Alexander does a hell of a job throwing numbers in your face which helps back up some of her arguments, but she misses her execution behind her reasoning most of the time. But one things for certain, black males are faced with a dilemma where rights that their grandfathers before him didn’t have are now once again being taking away.
Officers love to hit the incarcerated with a hefty plea bargain. The officers try to fine the incarcerated with anything under the sun. The plea bargain is used to help the convicted from doing a long prison sentence. Many convicted men fear of losing their case and accept the bargain offered. Accepting the plea insanely makings the convicted a felons which results in loss rights as a citizen. Question readers, would you give up our rights to serve a lesser time in prison?
I came across an article by Michael Skolnik. He brings up the “War on Drugs” which was used to target black communities. Stating that there was no war on drugs but a false war that President Nixon gave to the American people to target blacks. Blacks were the face of the new epidemic against the war on drugs. Skolnik writes that these convicted black men that were associated with the drug war would be incarnated with fines and then giving a plea bargain. The plea bargain would strip them from their rights and cause this viscous cycle of black men relaying on plea bargains. Skolnik does reference Alexander in his article but he equates the unfairness of blacks in the judiciary system to slavery, which would have been a better argument in Alexander’s book.
We think that there’s progress in the African American community, but how when majority of us are still being mistreated? Its crazy how your not seen as masculine if your not serving a jail sentence or selling dope, but yet its ok to lose your rights as an American citizen. Thus bring us to a new age of slavery.
An informative video of Michelle Alexander discussing her book: The New Jim Crow
Michael Skolnik Article : More Black Men In The Prison System Today Than Slaves in 1850…