Mass Incarceration is a huge problem in United States culture. No other country in the world incarcerates its population the way that America does. “The U.S. incarcerates more people than any country in the world – both per capita and in terms of total people behind bars. The U.S. has less than 5 percent of the world’s population, yet it has almost 25 percent of the world’s incarcerated population.” Worse yet the majority of the incarcerated individuals belong to a minority group despite not participating in illegal activity any more frequently than their white counterparts. Is the United States criminal justice system racist and if so what is the cause behind this racism. After the end of slavery, many southern black Americans traveled to the north to escape endless violence and discrimination. In the south they could only find low paying field jobs whereas in the northern cities there were steady factory jobs promised as well as the hope that discrimination could be escaped. The northerners while against slavery were not egalitarian and were not in favor of hoards of black Americans surging into their cities and taking jobs away from the white working poor. The need for social control by white Americans only grew with the population of black Americans living in the cities and working in the factories. The rhetoric of “law and order” first came about in the late 1950s as white opposition to the Civil Rights Movement was encouraged by southern governors and law enforcement.
Crime rates are down in America, yet there is an unproportionately large number of Americans incarcerated. This paper will delve into and examine this problem and how it is closely linked to private prisons and the issues surrounding them. While private prisons claim to be cost effective and well-run, evidence has shown that these profit-driven companies ignore ethical consequences by purposefully lengthening prisoners’ sentences, target certain groups for incarceration and maintain despicable living standards for the prisoners; ultimately, these prisons have caused more harm than good for the state.
Over the past few decades, the United States has witnessed a huge surge in the number of individuals in jail and in prison. Evidence suggests the mass imprisonment policy from the last 40 years was a horrible catastrophe. Putting more people in prison not only ruined lives, it disrupted families, prevented ex-prisoners to find housing, to get an education, or even a good job. Regrettably, the United States has a higher percent of its population incarcerated than any other country. America is responsible for a quarter of the world’s inmates, and its incarceration rate is increasing exponentially. The expense produced by these overcrowded prisons cost the country a substantial amount of money every year. Although people are incarcerated for a number of reasons, the country’s prisons are focused on punishment rather than reform, and the result is a misguided system that fails to rehabilitate criminals or discourage crime. By researching mass incarceration, I hope to get society to understand that incarcerating an individual not only effects the family, but we will look at the long term consequences on society and how the United States can remain safe and, at the same time, undo much of the damage that results from large-scale imprisonment.
Mass incarceration has recently become a major problem within the United States. Although crime rates have dropped since the 1990s, incarceration rates have soared. This trend is largely associated with increased enforcement of drug-related crimes. Unfortunately, though not surprisingly, this problem involves racial discrepancies when regarding these mass incarcerations. Incarcerations appear to be the most prominent throughout urban areas and the south, which happen to be the areas where African American males often reside or where racial politics are known to be apparent. In turn, this leads to disproportionate imprisonments. This problem requires immediate attention, but aspects of state and local politics have intensified incarcerations due a variety of factors, which include the state’s focus on the financial incentives that the federal war on drugs has created, the “tough on crime” stance that many politicians posses (largely republican), and the lack of rehabilitation services.
In the past four decades, there has been a staggering increase in the United States prison population at the local and state level. Currently there are 2.2 million people in the nation’s prisons and jails that has added up to a 500% increase over 40 years (The sentencing project). The cause of this prison growth is a variety of laws and punitive sentencing policies that were initiated starting in the early 1970’s. Policies such as harsh drug penalties for non-violent crimes, Mandatory Minimum Maximum sentences and the Three Strikes law have all contributed to America’s current problem of mass incarceration.
Mass incarceration is a barrier effecting many minorities and communities. The growth in incarceration rates in the United States over the past 40 years is historically reoccurring. According to statistics the war on drugs is the number one drive into our prisons. It took a toll on how diligently police enforcement do their jobs, communities, citizens and our 14th amendment rights which addresses equal protection under the law to all citizens, the amendment also addresses what is called "due process", which prevents citizens from being illegally deprived of life, liberty, or property. Marijuana and Narcotics are the most common drug when it comes to distributing and possession. Drug use and abuse is an expensive problem in the United States, both financially and socially. Another factor that contribute to mass incarnation rates
Though many Americans are aware that their nation imprisons more of its own citizens than any other country in the world, what much fewer of them are aware of is the increasing number in which those citizens are housed in facilities with little to no government oversight. From 2002 to 2009, the amount of inmates held in private prisons grew thirty-seven percent while the overall number of incarcerated Americans during that same timeframe grew by only fourteen percent (Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2010), a statistic that reveals a worrying trend; that of a disproportionate amount of citizens being housed in what has come to be known as the prison-industrial complex, a term used not only for the growing
Mass incarceration has grown and developed so much, that it’s come to define and create fear in America’s minority communities. “America contains approximately 5% of the world’s population, but has 25% of the world’s incarcerated.” (DeVernay, 2016) There’s always been an underlying tension between minorities and authorities, and that’s due to the unjust discrimination they face in the eyes of the law.
Name: Lecturer: Course: Date of Submission: Mass incarceration in American Prisons Introduction More than 2.3 million Americans today are prisoners, a population that represents more than a quarter of the number of prisoners in the world. This means that 760 Americans in one hundred thousand are prisoners in America (Detotto and Pulina). The rise in prisoners’ numbers has sharply risen since 1980 with the cost of maintaining the prison going to over four hundred percent within the same period.
The main argument within this article was that America has a poor approach to incarceration and is ultimately an expensive failure. However, the article provided many points on how our justice system could be improved upon. For example, they could change the harsh sentencing rules, crimes that are currently felonies (drugs), and the rehabilitation programs. All of these things would help to lower the incarceration rate which would ultimately lower overcrowding within our jails and prisons. Though these tools may take time to be put in place they would have highly beneficial outcomes.
Have you ever question about the justice in the United States? Stevenson states that, “Today we have the highest rate of incarceration in the world. The prison population has increased from 300,000 people in the early 1970s to 2.3 million people today” (15). Is United States is a modern country that doesn’t serve justice to her citizen? 2.3 million of prisoners are just embarrassing the whole country. You might want to know how bad the justice system is and how the heck cause 2.3 million prisoners to be in prison. Our system is define by an error; which serve justice to the rich and injustice to the poor. It’s common to know that poor and color people are more likely to be convict if they commit a small crime. We created a system like “Three strikes and you’re out” to show how strong we can be, and as the result of that, we have created the mass incarceration that no other countries can’t do. We are no better than a beast. We condemned the poor because we know they are helpless and we condemned the color people because of racial bias. What does justice really stand for? The justice should be change in order to prevent mass incarceration in the future and focus on a fairness when it comes to trial.
in recent decades, violent crimes in the United States of America have been on a steady decline, however, the number of people in the United States under some form of correctional control is reaching towering heights and reaching record proportions. In the last thirty years, the incarceration rates in the United States has skyrocketed; the numbers roughly quadrupled from around five hundred thousand to more than 2 million people. (NAACP)In a speech on criminal justice at Columbia University, Hillary Clinton notes that, “It’s a stark fact that the United States has less than five percent of the world’s population, yet we have almost 25 percent of the world’s total prison population. The numbers today are much higher than they were 30, 40 years ago, despite the fact that crime is at historic lows.” (washington post) How could this be? Are Americans more prone to criminal activity than the rest of the world? How could they be more prone to criminal activity if crime rates have been dropping? Numbers like that should be cause for concern, because if crime rates are dropping then it is only logical for one to expect the number of incarceration to go down as well; unfortunately, the opposite is true. Shockingly, there seem to be a few people who actually profits from keeping people in jails. The practice of mass incarceration who most see as a major problem in the United States of America is actually beneficial to some. The prison system in the United States who was create to
The hype around globalization and the negative impact of the social media have obscured discussion on the most immediate and pressing issues that need immediate attention in the U.S justice system. The number of incarceration in the United States beginning 1970 has swollen to all time higher (Walker et al., 2012). According to Binswanger et al. (2012), American judicial system has imprisoned 2.3 million of its populace, and these are more than any other country in the world. Davis (2007) mentioned ironically that the U.S jails a quarter of the world prisoners albeit it contains merely 5% of the global population. These statistics are mind boggling for a country that has opted to teach the world fairness, justice and equality.
The United States is the world’s leader in incarceration. It spends more resources on its prison system than any other nation and has the largest prison population in the world. Between 1980 and 2016, the number of inmates in U.S. state and federal prisons increased from 320,000 to more than 1.5 million. This corresponds to a change in the incarceration rate from 139 to 450 prisoners per 100,000 residents. Most lawmakers tend to believe that incarceration is a necessary construct needed to reform criminals to properly incorporate them into society. They insist imprisonment reduces crime rates through incapacitation and deterrence. Thus, it is not surprising that expenditures on corrections increased as states built new prisons,
The United States prison population has expanded at an increasingly rapid rate over that past several decades. Each day, more and more criminal offenders are sent to prisons; most of which were designed to house fewer inmates but are now packed to their limits. This “mass- incarceration era” as many scholars and commentators of the Criminal Justice System call it, is a result of several key issues that have created an environment within the correctional system that forces many inmates to serve longer prison sentences while increasing recidivism rates. Current federal and state sentencing policies have resulted in historically high rates of offender recidivism and the highest incarceration rates in the world (Warren, 2007). As a result, prison population and overcrowding has rapidly increased and has become a serious issue across the country however, a reform in sentencing policies, more early-release incentives, and reintegration back into society through rehabilitation will help reduce recidivism and prevent the continuing rise of prison populations. (change once paper is complete)