The New Jim Crow : Mass Incarceration

1361 Words Dec 13th, 2015 6 Pages
Book Review
Michelle Alexander, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

The premise of the ‘The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness’ by Michelle Alexander, is to refute claims that racism is dead and argue that the War on Drugs and the federal drug policy unfairly targets communities of color, keeping a large majority of black men of varying ages in a cycle of poverty and behind bars.
The author proves that racism thrives by highlighting the African Americans ' reality as it is today. Virtually in many states, convicted felons cannot vote resulting in an extraordinary amount of African Americans barred from voting. A large number of blacks have served time in prison as a result of drug (acts of being found guilty of crimes) and are called/labeled violent criminals for life. Voting is also barred for those now in jail.
In Alexander’s ‘The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness’, she illustrates how mass incarceration serves the same purpose “as pre-Civil War slavery and the post-Civil War Jim Crow laws: to maintain a racial caste system.” – The Center for Law & Justice. Her definition of racial caste is a racial group locked into a mediocre position by law and custom. She asserts that slavery and Jim Crow were both caste systems, as well as the current caste system of mass incarceration. After slavery ended, the original Jim Crow laws promoted racial discrimination in public housing, voting,…
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