Analysis Of The Criminal Justice System In The New Jim Crow By Michelle Alexander

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Over the last couple of years at Dominican University, I have taken numerous courses in sociology and criminal justice. I have learned a great amount about the criminal justice system. Michelle Alexander, who is a highly acclaimed civil rights lawyer, advocate, and legal scholar, speaks on the assault against on poor and vulnerable people in American society. In the book, The New Jim Crow, Alexander’s work takes on the systemic breakdown of black and poor communities overwhelmed by a huge quantity of unemployment, social disregard, and forceful police surveillance (Alexander, 2010). Alexander’s “subtle analysis shifts our attention from the racial symbol of America’s achievement to the actual substance of America’s shame: the massive use of …show more content…

During the Reconstruction Era, African-Americans began to attain more political power. Therefore, African Americans began a large rally toward better social and economic fairness. This type of behavior startled the white supremacy and therefore, reacted with fear and violence (Alexander, 2010). This became the birth of Jim Crow, a series of firm anti-black laws. Whites believed that in order to “redeem” the South, it would be reinforced with a rising group known as the Ku Klux Klan, which “fought a terrorist campaign against Reconstruction governments and local leaders, complete with bombings, lynching, and mob violence” (Alexander, 2010, p. 30). Crimes were continuously imposed against the African Americans and the death rates became outrageously high. Segregated laws were put in effect in effort to drive separation between the whites and African …show more content…

In the process, Nixon increased the federal government’s role in fighting crime, and pressed for mandatory sentencing and “no-knock warrants.” According to Alexander, “The War on Drugs proved popular among key white voters, particularly whites who remained resentful of black progress, civil rights enforcement, and affirmative action” (Alexander, 2010, p. 54). When the “War on Drugs” took place, it allowed whites to express their hostility towards the black culture and black progress, without being visible to the charge of racial discrimination (Alexander, 2010, p. 54). By declaring the War on Drugs, it was another structure that was targeting African American men. Certain drugs were associated with the black community, for instance, crack cocaine – a form of cocaine that can be smoked. It was declared that for more severe punishment needed to

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