America 's New Slavery : Increasing Incarceration Essay

America 's New Slavery : Increasing Incarceration Essay

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America’s New Slavery: The Increase In Mass Incarceration Of Black Men
Imagine 1.5 million people gathered together with something in common. You might picture an enormous stadium full of football fans, a state fair, or even a bustling city such as Phoenix or Philadelphia. Now imagine what these people all have in common is they are all black, and they are all men. Imagine they are all American. Finally, imagine they have all gone missing.
For every 100 black women living in America there are only 83 black men. This huge gap does not exist among white men and women, for every 100 adult women in the United States, there are 99 men. This imbalance is not naturally occurring, there are roughly as many black boys born as girls. But as they become teenagers, the gap emerges; it grows larger in the 20s and hits its peak in the 30s. Where are all these men going?
This phenomenon of 1.5 million missing black men is a result of the increasing incarceration rates for black men in the United States (Wolfers). This increase is due to discriminatory drug policies and the vast achieve gap, but most predominantly, poverty.
The incarceration rate is actually increasing for Americans of all racial backgrounds. In 2014, the National Research Council published a report which found a dramatic increase in incarceration in the past four decades in America (Prison Policy Initiative). This increase has made America home to the largest population of prisoners in the world. The United States has 5% of the world’s population, but 25% of the world’s prisoners (American Psychological Association).
Despite the fact incarceration rates have risen for Americans of all races, there is an imbalance between white and black men. Incarceration has risen among unedu...

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... federal drug crimes. Members of Congress have created a bipartisan effort to implement federal sentencing reforms to cut back on the number of prisoners in America. State governments have begun to ease drug laws and incarceration policies in an effort to save funds. Many lawmaker have started looking for more cost-effective criminal justice solutions, including drug treatment and parole programs (Wyler).
This mass incarceration problem is hurting African Americans the most, and we must work harder to enact these programs and policies to combat this. America is a first world country which champions freedom and liberty, and mass incarceration is reflective of neither of these. The mass incarceration of black men destroys the idea that “all men are created equal” and instead shows that America remains racist and unequal, just like it was when it was founded on slavery.

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