Life In Jail By Brent Staples Analysis

741 Words3 Pages
Brief Summary

Staples speaks of his experiences being a six foot tall, young, African American male in a city filled with poverty and crime. He had never truly been exposed to the stereotypes and discrimination in his younger days, of course he knew of it, but he never truly experienced it. When he was twenty-two years old, he was out walking at night due to a bad case of insomnia. Apparently, he was following a little too uncomfortably close to a white woman and she felt endangered. She began to run from him in a defense mechanism, opening his eyes to the discrimination he was born into. As he grew up, he experienced many more experiences such as the one he had that night in Chicago. Staples defends himself to the reader, telling them of how harmless he truly is. Although, Staples can understand why these women could be intimidated, especially in such a high poverty neighborhood. Staples looks past the discrimination, until it comes to the point where he becomes frightful. Staples is terrified of the gun violence and worried that if he makes a wrong move his life could be over.

Response to Context

Staples has a good point with how wrong the discrimination is and how it is never right to judge someone based on their looks. Although, there are certain cases when a person has to choose a defense mechanism such as fight or flight. The woman that he first experienced the discrimination with was very outmatched compared to the larger
…show more content…
Although the writing only gives insight on the discrimination against African Americans, it still goes very well in depth and describes pretty accurately the discrimination African Americans often experience. The writing is a little biased and doesn’t really show more than the African American side of the discrimination, therefore the writing could be useful in paper that wanted to argue against Staples
Open Document