Racial Disparities Of Mass Incarceration

Better Essays

Racial disparities in mass incarceration
Mass Incarceration in the United States has been a large topic of choice because rapid growth in the prison and jail populations, the long sentences the inmates face, and the inability for some inmates to incorporate themselves back into society. Since the 1970’s the U.S. prison population quadrupled from 158 to 635 people per 100,000, causing the U.S. to gain the title of country with the highest incarceration rate. (Massoglia, Firebaugh, & Warner, 2013, p. 142; Muller, 2012) As the growth of the U.S prison and jail population rapidly increased, so did the growth of the three major contributors to that population – African Americans, Hispanics, and whites – with African American and …show more content…

Muller’s study found that though the number of African American incarceration increased after the 1970’s, one of the causes of the rise that contributed to roughly thirty percent of the African American incarceration came about long before during the initial migration of many African Americans to the North between 1880 and 1950. The migration was related to the rise in African American incarceration in that the African Americans who migrated from the South were migrating from a comparatively low nonwhite incarceration rate to the comparatively high nonwhite incarceration rate that was in the North. Though the migration had a direct effect on the increase of incarcerations of the African American population, it did not cause a rise in the number of white incarcerations, thus causing a rise in racial disparity in prisons and jails before mass incarceration was established.
An additional study that Muller conducted was related to the number of foreign whites being incarcerated or joined as a part of a state’s police force and their relationship with the African Americans incarceration rate. Mullers findings suggest that as African American migrants started appearing in the

Get Access
Get Access