Response Paper to Michelle Alexander's "The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness"

743 Words Sep 26th, 2012 3 Pages
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness was written by Michelle Alexander to expose the truth of racial injustice in the system of mass incarceration through the comparison of the racial control during the Jim Crow Era. She reveals how race plays an important role in the American Justice System. Alexander argues about the racial bias, particularly towards African-Americans, immanent in the war on drugs as a result of their lack of political power and how the Supreme Court tolerates this injustice. Statistics show that African Americans commit only fifteen percent of drug offenses, yet they comprise up to 90% of incarcerations for drug offenses in communities throughout the country. Besides that, although the …show more content…
Although some victims of this type of abuse took legal action and attested that the war on drugs is racially unjust, their claims were rejected and disregarded by the court. “The Supreme Court has made it virtually impossible to challenge racial bias in the criminal justice system under the Fourteenth Amendment, and it has barred litigation of such claims under federal civil rights laws as well.” (Alexander 106) For instance in the McCleskey vs. Kemp case, the real matter in question was whether the court would permit racial discrimination in the criminal justice system. The sentence given to McCleskey was the Court’s reply, “racial bias would be tolerated––virtually to any degree––as long as no one admitted it.” (Alexander 107) So in reality, the Supreme Court has sanctioned racial bias in the criminal justice system and policing instead of opting for rules prohibiting it. The facts speak for themselves, people of color are the enemies and targets in the war on drugs. They also tell us that fighting back is useless due to the racial bias that is inherent in the criminal justice system. This might come as a surprise to the majority that believe discrimination is no longer in existence, considering that it is a black man living in the White House. Ever since Barack Obama pledged to serve as the forty-fourth president
Open Document