The New Jim Crow Mass Incarceration Summary

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The New Jim Crow Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness Alexander (2012) examines the Jim Crow practices post slavery and the correlation to the mass incarceration of African-American. The creation of Jim Crows laws were used as a tool to promote segregation among the minorities and white Americans. Alexander (2012) takes a look at Jim Crow laws and policies that were put into place to block the social progression of African-Americans from post-slavery to the civil rights movement. Fast-forward to 2008 the election of Barack Obama certified the myth that African-Americans are no longer viewed as second-class citizens instead African-Americans are now considered equal to their white counterparts. …show more content…

I have to agree with Alexander (2012) that being labeled a felon condemned individuals to second-class citizenship perpetuate the cycle of criminal behavior. I have seen firsthand individuals being released from prison as a felon back into society and how Jim Crow practices outcast them from society. For example, newly released individuals from prison are indeed released with a financial debt owed to the Criminal Justice System. Many of the individuals often have to pay restitution to victims, court costs/attorney fees, and fees owed to the Probation department. Individual parolees are required to pay money to their probation officers every visit and some parolees may be required to visit their probation officer every month. Because many parolees have felony convictions, it is difficult to find a job to pay such costs, leading probation officers to send individuals either back to jail or to the prisoner work crew that picks up trash on the side of the freeways for not complying with the terms of their probation. Similar to the vagrancy law Alexander (2012) describes post slavery where slaves that did not have employment was in violating the of law and sentence as slave labor to pay off their debt to the Criminal Justice …show more content…

The recommendation calls for civil rights advocates to put mass incarceration on their agenda similar in the ways civil rights advocate’s affirmative action agenda. In my opinion, America is at a turning point where mass incarceration is slowly fading away with state lawmakers trying to cut prison cost. Being labeled as a felon is a stigma that can and will follow individuals for the rest of their lives. However, there is a change in the atmosphere and how society view individuals with felony records. Opportunities are slowly becoming available such as jobs and education, allowing these individuals to reenter society. It’s been 29 years since the War on Drugs campaign was announced and is not going to be overnight to reverse some of the effects of mass

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