City Of Inmates Sparknotes

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The historical monograph, City of Inmates, by Dr. Kelly Lytle Hernández, let’s us dive into the beginnings of Los Angeles and lets us discover on how the city transformed into what is now the capital of incarceration in the United States. Hernandez criticizes how instead of prisons being utilized as tools to keep society save from criminals, they have also been instances of it being used to keep middle to high class white American ideals safe from the poor working class, implying how even though one of Los Angeles first accomplishments was to eliminate the spanish casta system, it never truly got rid of the casta system since there is still a force continuing to enforce the social hierarchy, but modified throughout the years to racially target …show more content…

“No other city north of the border and only one city south of the border was home to more Mexicans” (Lytle Hernández, 2017: Kindle Location 2900-2901). Dr. Lytle Hernández allows us to see through her historical lens as she builds up the city of Los Angeles, allowing me to realise the severity of the racism, disposition, oppression, and unrecognition Latina/os have had to endure in US society by correlating it to the large dark history of incarceration Los Angeles has had throughout the years.
Latina/os will never fit the Anglo American view for the “Aryan City of the Sun” and would rather pass laws in order to incriminate and disposition them, not allowing them to fully settle in Los Angeles. By the 1880s many people started to settle west, in search of constructing the perfect city with Anglo-American ideals, something that Latina/os could never be a part of. As an Anglo-American preacher named Bob Shuler once stated on his radio program, “Los Angeles is the last purely Anglo-Saxon city . . . in America. It is the only such city not dominated by foreigners. It remains in a class to itself as the one city of the nation in which the white, American, Christian idealism still …show more content…

Latina/os living in the United States are viewed only as a source of cheap labor. White Americans would go as far and call them “ignorant Mexicans” or “young Mexicans, with very few brains, if any”(Lytle Hernández, 2017: Kindle Locations 2816-2818). The only reason western industries advocated for Mexicans to continue crossing into the United States after the 1924 National Origins Act, an act that blatantly excluded immigration from anywhere except western Europe with a list of quotas, was because their labor was cheap, something industries loved taken advantage of. Although Anglo-Americans preached for a white-dominated society, whenever it came to who would be building this “Aryan” society they would gladly hire Latina/os, taking advantage of their poor situation to load their pockets. Sometimes, hiring wasn’t even needed if convict labor could be used. In the Tucson, Arizona prison, they deliberately build it in a place where they could use Latina/o labor, “...men imprisoned at the camp were to build a road up, through, and across the mountains to a little town named Oracle, where local residents had hopes of building a health resort”(Lytle Hernández, 2017: Kindle Locations 2805-2806). Latina/o immigrants were constantly taking advantage because industries new they

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