Minorities remain overrepresented in crime, offending, victimization, and all stages of the criminal justice process especially confinement. Overrepresentation alludes to a situation in which a greater part of a particular group is present at various stages within the justice system than would be expected based on its part in the general population (Rosich, 2007). Minorities have always had a larger population in the prison system and after the Civil War they were overrepresented in American prison. There are a few reasons as to why races are disproportionately which are denial of jobs, poverty, and it is felt that police have bias and
A large reason for the writing of this book is that there is currently not much research concerning or call for a criminal justice reform. According to Alexander, the main goal of the book is to “stimulate a much-needed conversation about the role of the criminal justice system in creating and perpetuating racial hierarchy in the United States” (2012:16). Another premise for this research is that it is no longer socially correct to use race to discriminate against people, so Alexander argues that society as a whole is now
Whites are less likely to encounter with the police compared to African Americans. African Americans are twice likely to be arrested and almost four times likely to experience the use of force during police encounters (Costly, 2011). As stated earlier, other sociological factors need to be eliminated to attribute the high number of Black arrests to race. Poverty is known to be a predisposing factor for criminal acts according to the strain theory of
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.
Less is known about the extent of discrimination at the arrest stage, in part because underlying rates of criminal activity by race cannot be easily assessed. Some evidence comes from comparing the race distribution of offenders derived from victims’ surveys with the racial composition of individuals arrested for the same crime. Two studies have found that these distributions are roughly comparable for many violent crimes.
There are large racial disparities in incarceration and related detainments for African Americans. They are more likely to be under the supervision of the Department of Corrections than any other racial or ethnic group (H.West, Sabol, & Greenman, 2010). Institutional racism is believed to be the reason why African Americans, especially males, are disproportionately represented in the criminal justice system. On balance, the public believes that discrimination against black people is based on the prejudice of the individual person, correlates to the discrimination built into the nation’s laws and institutions (Pew’s Research Center, 2017). This belief is actually supported through several experimental studies that provide evidence that African Americans are to be seen as more criminal and threatening than others thus more likely to be arrested or even shot (Greenwald, Oakes, & Hoffman, 2003). Racism within the criminal justice system very much exists and is still relevant.
In order to understand the nature of the statistical disparity, the first aspect that must be examined is necessarily the statistics themselves. Recent data (1998) shows that more than two out of every three arrested persons are white (67.6%) and that African Americans account for only 30% of all arrests. More striking is the data adjusted per capita: African Americans are two and a half times as likely to be arrested as whites, and are even more over-represented in violent crimes, for which they are over three times as likely to be arrested. African Americans are five times as likely to be arrested in cases of robbery or murder (Walker et al., 39).
Policing and punishment in America is hardly colorblind. It is not a coincidence that minorities serve longer sentences, have higher arrest and conviction rates, face higher bail amounts, and are more often the victims of police use of deadly force than white citizens. When it comes to criminals, many people have a preconception of what a criminal is. Usually when people think of a criminal they picture a Black or Latino face. The thought of an Asian criminal is often related to Asian gangs. Interestingly enough, White people as a group are rarely associated with the thought of crime, even though they account for 70% of arrests and 40% of the prison population each year (Russel xiv). This seems to be
At the prosecution stage, African Americans are subject to racially biased charges and plea agreements (TLC, 2011). African Americans are less likely to have their charges dismissed or reduced or to receive any kind of alternate sentencing than their white counterparts (TLC, 2011). In the last stage, the finding of guilt and sentencing, the decisions of jurors may be affected by race (Toth et al, 2008) African Americans receive racially discriminatory sentences from judges (TLC, 2011). A New York study from 1990 to 1992 revealed one-third of minorities would have receive a lesser sentence if they were treated the same as white and there would have been a 5 percent decrease in African Americans sent to prison during that time period if they had received the same probation privileges (TLC, 2011). African Americans receive death sentences more than whites who have committed similar crimes (Toth et al, 2008). Because of the unfair treatment from the beginning to the end of the justice system there is an over represented amount of African Americans in prison (Toth et al, 2008). Some of the problems faced by African Americans in prison are gangs, racial preferences given to whites, and unfair treatment by prison guards (Toth et al, 2008).
Research shows that African Americans and Latinos have been the victims of racial profiling by the criminal justice system. African Americans and Latinos are at a higher risk of being arrested, prosecuted and sentenced that Whites. The main cause of racial disparities occurs because law enforcement agencies believe that African Americans and Latinos are at high risk of engaging in crime and violence. During prosecutions and court hearings, the jury and judges give harsher sentences to minority groups. As a result, minorities view the criminal justice system as unjust since it favors whites. This research paper reviews relevant literature to show white privileges and racial disparities in the criminal justice system. Additionally, the paper provides linkages between racial disparities in the United States criminal justice system and the law. In this regard, the main objective of the research paper is to give detailed insights on racial discriminations in the criminal justice system.
Based on the chapters read in “Race & Crime” I believe that the disproportionality of minorities stems from racism. The book gives a detailed account of early history. I’m embarrassed to say that I didn’t know much of the history as it relates to the Caucasians coming over here (pre Christopher Columbus). If I were a racist or raised to be one, I’d have a lot of hate in my heart! Crime started with the Caucasians as they stole the land, enslaved people, lied, cheated, murdered individuals, and passed judgement on individuals (humans) who weren’t like them.
Figures show that in 2006/07 the arrest rate for blacks was 3.6 times the rate for whites. By contrast, once arrested, black and Asians were less likely tan white to
“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.
While looking at the massive number of people incarcerated in the United States, it is easy to see that a major disparity presents itself when looking at the races of those incarcerated. The numbers are astonishing: “Though African Americans and Hispanics make up approximately 32 percent of the US population, they comprised 56 percent of all incarcerated people in 2015” (“Criminal Justice Fact Sheet”, n.d.). These questions arise: Is our criminal justice system discriminatory? Or, do minorities actually engage in more crime than whites? The statistics are clear:
One study reported that African-American males that were released into areas reporting these factors had a 10% higher-recidivism rate in the span of two years (Reisig, Bales, Hay, Wang, 2007). It can be reasonably stated that minorities trying to assimilate into society with these issues may have a larger setback to conquer, and thus fail to integrate as sufficiently as those without these challenges, such as Caucasians. Additionally, the article from Abate has shown that self-worth and stereotypes often combine to impact the actions of minorities, especially in regards to criminal action among youth (as cited in Cohen, Garcia, Apfel, & Master,