The criminal justice system in the United States promotes the mass incarceration of blacks can be seen through the high number of African-Americans going to jail for drugs compared to any other race. According to www.naacp.org “about 14 million Whites and 2.6 million African Americans report using an illicit drug”; if someone was to calculate this that means five times as many Whites are using drugs as African Americans.
The “War on Drugs” established that the impact of incarceration would be used as a weapon to combat the illegal drug problem in this country. Unfortunately, this war against drugs has fallen disproportionately on black Americans. “Blacks constitute 62.6% of all drug offenders admitted to state prisons in 1996, whereas whites constituted 36.7%. The drug offender admissions rate for black men ranges from 60 to an astonishing 1,146 per 100,000 black men. In contrast, the white rate begins at 6 and rises no higher than 139 per 100,000 white men. Drug offenses accounted for nearly two out of five of all black admissions to state prisons (Human Rights Watch, 2000).” The disproportionate rates at which black drug offenders are sent to prison originate in racially disproportionate rates of arrest.
African Americans are targeted by law enforcement more often than any other race (Toth, Crews & Burton, 2008). Because of this the term racial profiling was created to explain the process of targeting people for criminal activity because of race not evidence (Toth et al, 2008). African Americans are over represented in the criminal justice system based on their population amount compared to whites (Toth et al, 2008). African American males are incarcerated at a rate 9 times that of white males in most states, in others that number may be as high as 12 to 26 times more (Toth et al, 2008). Nationwide statistics show in most states 1 in 20 over the age of 18 are in prison, while 5 other states report 1 in 13 or 14 compared to the 1 in 180
The United States features a prison population that is more than quadruple the highest prison population in Western Europe (Pettit, 2004). In the 1980s, U.S. legislation issued a number of new drug laws with stiffer penalties that ranged from drug possession to drug trafficking. Many of those charged with drug crimes saw longer prison sentences and less judicial leniency when facing trial. The War on Drugs has furthered the boom in prison population even though violent crime has continued to decrease steadily. Many urban areas in the U.S. have a majority black population. With crime tendencies high in these areas, drugs are also prevalent. This means that a greater percentage of those in prison are going to be black because law
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
Racial Disparity in Sentencing Racial disparity in sentencing in the criminal justice system is a problematic issue. Individuals often believe that racial disparity in sentencing does not exist; however, substantial proof in the criminal justice system proves otherwise. According to statistics of Marc Mauer, “unprecedented rise in the populations of prisons over the past three decades is a six fold increase, resulting in the incarceration of nearly two million Americans.” The breakdown of statistics is as follows: “One in every eight African-American male groups between 25-34 year old is a result of incarceration and 32% of African-American males born to society can expect to spend a term in a federal or state prison if the current
African Americans now constitute nearly 1 million of the total 2.3 million incarcerated; that is 60% of 30% of the African American population. African Americas are incarcerated at nearly six times the rate of whites. “Between 6.6% and 7.5% of all black males ages 25 to 39 were imprisoned in 2011, which were the highest imprisonment rates among the measured sex, race, Hispanic origin, and age groups." (Carson, E. Ann, and Sabol, William J. 2011.) Stated on Americanprogram.org “ The Sentencing Project reports that African Americans are 21 percent more likely to receive mandatory-minimum sentences than white defendants and are 20 percent more likely to be sentenced to prison.” Hispanics and African Americans make up 58% of all prisoners in 2008, even though African Americans and Hispanics make up approximately one quarter of the US population. (Henderson 2000). Slightly 15% of the inmate population is made up of 283,000 Hispanic prisoners.
In 1950, 70 percent of whites were imprisoned and in 1990 it flipped to 70 percent of African Americans and Latinos imprisoned. In 2008 a study showed that 68 percent of those in prison were African Americans and among drug offenders who were released, 92 percent were black (Vogel, 2016). Nearly 14 million whites and approximately 2.6 million African Americans report using an illicit drug (Criminal, 2016). In 1980 whites were more likely to sell drugs than blacks by 45 percent. In 2012, 6.6 percent of whites sold drugs compared to just 5 percent of blacks. However, blacks are 3.6 times more likely than whites to be arrested for selling drugs and 2.5 times more likely to be arrested for possession of drugs. (Rothwell, 2014). Blacks make up 12 percent of the total population of drug users, but 38 percent are arrested for drug offenses. African Americans essentially serve as much time for drug offenses as whites do for violent offenses. Yet blacks are incarcerated at six times the rate of whites (Criminal, 2016). “Jerome Miller analyzed arrest statistics from several American cities to determine the impact of the War on Drugs on policing. He found striking racial disparities in how drug arrests were made. In many jurisdictions, African American men account for over eighty percent of total drug arrests. In
African Americans constitute 12% of the U.S. population, 13% of the drug using population and fully 74% of the people sent to prison for drug possession. Studies have shown that minorities are subject to disparate treatment at arrest, bail, charging, plea bargaining, trial, sentencing, and every other stage of the criminal process. These disparities accumulate so that African Americans are represented in prison at seven times their rate in the general population; rates of crime in African American communities is often high, but not high enough to justify the disparity. The resentment destabilizes communities and demeans the entire nation. (Justice, 2004)
Introduction The trend of African American males between the ages of 25 and 29 has seen a dramatic increase of incarceration. Attention has been focusing on areas of housing, education, and healthcare but the most prominent problem for African American males is the increase in the incarceration rate. African American males between the ages of 25 and 29 incarceration rate has been thought, by many, to be caused by economic factors such as under employment or unemployment, poor housing, lack of education, and lack of healthcare. Yet, others believe it is due to the imbalance of minorities within the criminal justice system, such as judges, lawyers, and lawmakers.
Of the many tribulations that plague Americans today, the increase in the amount of African American men and women in prisons is unbelievable. It would be naïve to say that the increase is due to the fact that more African Americans are committing crimes now than before. When in actuality it has very prevalent connections to a systematic plan to incarcerate a race of people by creating harsh drug laws to
African American Male and Crime Justice System [Author's Name] [Institution's Name] African American Male and Crime Justice System Introduction The past quarter century has seen an enormous growth in the American incarceration rate. Importantly, some scholars have suggested that the rate of prison growth has little to do with the theme of crime itself, but it is the end result of particular U.S. policy choices. Clear (2007) posits that "these policy choices have had well-defined implications for the way prison populations have come to replicate a concentrated occurrence among specified subgroups in the United States population in particular young black men from deprived communities" (p. 49).
Mass incarceration is a problem around the world, but nowhere else is it more plague than the United States of America, which has one-fourth of its population locked up behind bars. The cause for this problem in the U.S. can be blamed on many things, the "war on drug", private
Mass Incarceration: From Jim Crow to Public Enemy Number One “The United States imprisons a larger percentage of its black population than South Africa did at the height of apartheid. In Washington, D.C., our nation’s capitol, it is estimated that three out of four young black men (and nearly all those in the poorest neighborhoods) can expect to serve time in prison” (Alexander, 2012). The numbers tell the story better than words can: black people are more likely to go to prison than any other race in the United States, shown by the fact that more than 60% of the prison population is composed of people of color (The Sentencing Project, 2016). These statistics can be traced back to several different cause, including the Era of Jim Crow and the War on Drugs, both of which led to higher policing in minority areas.
Literature Review The Mass Incarceration in the United States is a major topic of discussion in our society and has raised many questions about our criminal justice system. There are few topics disputed as much in criminal justice as the relationship between race, ethnicity, and criminal outcomes. Specifically, the large disparities that minorities face regarding incarceration in our country. Minorities such as Hispanics and African Americans are sentenced at far higher rates than their white counterparts. There are multiple factors that influence this such as the judicial system, racial profiling by law enforcement, and historical biases (Kamula, Clark-Coulson, Kamula, 2010). Additionally, the defendants race was found to be highly associated with either a jail or prison sentence; with the “odds increasing 29 percent for black defendants, and 44 percent for Hispanic defendants” (King, Johnson, McGeever, 2010).