Mass Incarceration Advantages

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The United States of America is known across the world as one of the biggest superpowers, both in its military and economy. It is a democratic nation that runs on a successful capitalist system, which especially benefits those in positions of power. In the 1960’s, 200,000 people were incarcerated across the country, however this number has increased rapidly in the last fifty years and now more than 2 million people are incarcerated in prisons and detention centres all across the United States, leading to what is described as an age of mass incarceration. There is evidence to suggest that mass incarceration does benefit the American capitalist system and that the institution of criminal justice is beneficial to capital gain. America is a nation that prides itself on truth and justice for all its citizens, however it could be argued that America values its capitalist advancement more than the individual rights of the people who live there and consequently marginalises and discriminates against its African American and Latino communities in order to further its capitalist system. Angela Y. Davis discusses how the age of mass incarceration began during the…show more content…
For example they have served as valuable subjects in medical research.’ The use of prisoners for research was stopped in 1974 but prior to that, companies such as Johnsons and Johnsons had tested many pharmaceutical products on detainees. Many of the products tested could not be sold in their original form because of the great harm they caused to the prisoners but for some time this was overlooked due to the ‘great material benefits’ that these experiments provided. Although this practice has now been prohibited, it once again illustrates that America was not reserved in putting the advancement of capitalism above the rights of its
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