RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment
Print

Quigley writes: "We are far and away the world leader in putting our own people in jail. Most of the people inside are poor and black. Here are 40 reasons why."

What does it say about our society that it uses its jails and prisons as the primary detention facilities for poor and black and brown people who have been racially targeted? (photo: Murdo Macleod/Guardian UK)
What does it say about our society that it uses its jails and prisons as the primary detention facilities for poor and black and brown people who have been racially targeted? (photo: Murdo Macleod/Guardian UK)


40 Reasons Our Jails and Prisons Are Full of Black, Brown, and Poor People

By Bill Quigley, Reader Supported News

04 June 15

 

he US Department of Justice (DOJ) reports that 2.2 million people are in our nation’s jails and prisons and another 4.5 million people are on probation or parole in the US, totaling 6.8 million people, one in every 35 adults. We are far and away the world leader in putting our own people in jail. Most of the people inside are poor and black. Here are 40 reasons why. 

One. It is not just about crime. Our jails and prisons have grown from holding about 500,000 people in 1980 to 2.2 million today. The fact is that crime rates have risen and fallen independently of our growing incarceration rates.

Two. Police discriminate. The first step in putting people in jail is the interaction between citizens and police. For decades, police departments have engaged in campaigns of stopping and frisking people who are walking, mostly poor people and people of color, without cause. Recently, New York City lost a federal civil rights challenge by the Center for Constitutional Rights regarding their stop-and-frisk practices, in which police stopped over 500,000 people annually without any indication that they had been involved in any crime at all. About 80 percent of those stops were of blacks and Latinos, who comprise 25 and 28 percent respectively of NYC’s total population. Chicago police do the same thing, stopping even more people, also in a racially discriminatory way, with blacks at 72 percent even though the city is only 32 percent black.

Three. Police traffic stops also racially target people. Black drivers are 31 percent more likely and Hispanic drivers are 23 percent more likely to be pulled over than white drivers. In April 2015, Connecticut reported on 620,000 traffic stops that revealed widespread racial profiling, particularly during daylight hours when the race of driver was more visible. 

Four. Once stopped, black and Hispanic motorists are more likely to be given tickets than white drivers stopped for the same offenses.

Five. Once stopped, blacks and Latinos are also more likely to be searched. The DOJ reports that black drivers at traffic stops were searched by police three times more often and Hispanic drivers two times more often than white drivers. A large research study in Kansas City found that when police made investigatory stops, in which officers look into the car’s interior, ask probing questions, and even conduct searches, the race of the driver was a clear indicator of would be stopped: 28 percent of young black males twenty-five or younger were stopped in a year’s time, versus 12 percent of white men and only 7 percent of white women. In fact, not until black men reach the age of 50 does their rate of police stops dip below that of drivers who are white men twenty-five and under. 

Six. Traffic tickets are big business. And even if most people do not go directly to jail for traffic tickets, poor people are hit the worst by these ticket systems. As we saw with Ferguson, some of the towns in Missouri receive 40 percent or more of their city revenues from traffic tickets. Tickets are money-makers for towns. 

Seven. The consequences of traffic tickets are much more severe for poor people. People with means will just pay the fines. But for poor and working people, fines are a real hardship. For example, over four million people in California do not have valid driver’s licenses because they have unpaid fines and fees for traffic tickets. And we know unpaid tickets can lead to jail.

Eight. In schools, African American kids are much more likely to be referred to the police than other kids. African American students are 16 percent of those enrolled in schools but 27 percent of those referred to the police. Kids with disabilities are discriminated against at about the same rate: they are 14 percent of those enrolled in school and 26 of those referred to the police.

Nine. Though black people make up about 12 percent of the US population, black children account for 28 percent of juvenile arrests. The DOJ reports that there are over 57,000 people under the age of 21 in juvenile detention. The US even has 10,000 children in adult jails and prisons on any given day.

Ten. The War on Drugs targets black people. Drug arrests are a big source of bodies and business for the criminal legal system. Half of the arrests these days are for drugs, with half of those are for marijuana. Despite the fact that black and white people use marijuana at the same rates, a black person is 3.7 times more likely to be arrested for possession of marijuana than a white person. The ACLU found that in some states black people were six times more likely to be arrested for marijuana than whites. For all US drug arrests between 1980 and 2000, the black drug arrest rate rose dramatically from 6.5 to 29.1 per 1,000 persons; during the same period, the white drug arrest rate barely increased from 3.5 to 4.6 per 1,000 persons. 

Eleven. Many people are in jail and prison because the US has much tougher drug laws and much longer sentences for drug offenses than most other countries. Drug offenders receive an average sentence of 7 months in France, twelve months in England, and 23 months in the US. 

Twelve. The bail system penalizes poor people. Every day there are about 500,000 people in jails who are still presumed innocent and awaiting trial, just because they are too poor to pay money to get out on bail. Not too long ago, judges allowed most people, even poor people, to be free while they were awaiting trial – but no more. In a 2013 study of New York City courts, over 50% of the people held in jail awaiting trial for misdemeanor or felony charges were unable to pay bail amounts of $2500 or less. 

Thirteen. This system creates a lot of jobs. Jails and prisons provide jobs to local, state, and federal officials. To understand how this system works, it is good to know the difference between jails and prisons. Jails are local, usually for people recently arrested or awaiting trial. Prisons are state and federal, and are for people who have already been convicted. There are more than 3000 local jails across the US, according to the Vera Institute, and together they usually hold about 500,000 people awaiting trial and an additional 200,000 or so convicted on minor charges. Over the course of a year, these local jails process over 11.7 million people. Prisons are state and federal lockups which usually hold about twice the number of people as local jails, or just over 1.5 million prisoners.

Fourteen. The people in local jails are not there because they are a threat to the rest of us. Nearly 75 percent of the hundreds of thousands of people in local jails are there for nonviolent offenses such as traffic, property, drug, or public order offenses. 

Fifteen. Criminal bonds are big business. Nationwide, over 60 percent of people arrested are forced to post a financial bond to be released pending trial, usually by posting cash or a house or paying a bond company. There are about 15,000 bail bond agents working in the bail bond industry, which takes in about $14 billion every year. 

Sixteen. A very high percentage of people in local jails are people with diagnosed mental illnesses. The rate of mental illness inside jails is four to six times higher than on the outside. In a study of over 1000 prisoners, over 14 percent of the men and over 30 percent of the women entering jails and prisons were found to have serious mental illness. A recent study in New York City’s Rikers Island jail found that 4,000 prisoners, 40 percent of their inmates, were suffering from mental illness. In many of our cities, the local jail is the primary place where people with severe mental problems end up. Yet treatment for mental illness in jails is nearly non-existent

Seventeen. Lots of people in jail need treatment. Nearly 70 percent of people in prison meet the medical criteria for drug abuse or dependence, yet only 7 to 17 percent ever receive drug abuse treatment.

Eighteen. Those who are too poor, too mentally ill, or too chemically dependent, though still presumed innocent, are kept in cages until their trial dates. No wonder it is fair to say, as The New York Times reported, that our jails “have become vast warehouses made up primarily of people too poor to post bail or too ill with mental health or drug problems to adequately care for themselves.”

Nineteen. Poor people have to rely on public defenders. Though anyone threatened with even a day in jail is entitled to a lawyer, the reality is much different. Many poor people facing misdemeanor charges never see a lawyer at all. For example, in Delaware more than 75 percent of the people in its Court of Common Pleas never speak to a lawyer. A study of Jackson County, Michigan, found 95 percent of people facing misdemeanors waived their right to an attorney and pleaded guilty rather than pay a $240 charge for a public defender. Thirteen states have no state structure at all to make sure people have access to public defenders in misdemeanor courts.

Twenty. When poor people face felony charges, they often find the public defenders overworked and underfunded and thus not fully available to provide adequate help in their case. In recent years public defenders in Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, and Pennsylvania were so overwhelmed with cases that they refused to represent any new clients. Most other states also have public defender offices that have been crushed by overwork and inadequate finances and do not measure up to the basic principles for public defenders outlined by the American Bar Association. It is not uncommon for public defenders to have more than 100 cases going at the same time, sometimes several hundred. Famous trial lawyer Gerry Spence, who never lost a criminal case because of his extensive preparation for each one, said that if he had been a public defender and represented a hundred clients he would never have won a case.

Twenty-one. Lots of poor people plead guilty. Lack of adequate public defense leads many people in prison to plead guilty. The American Bar Association reviewed the US public defender system and concluded it lacked fundamental fairness and put poor people at constant risk of wrongful conviction. “All too often, defendants plead guilty, even if they are innocent, without really understanding their legal rights or what is occurring.... The fundamental right to a lawyer that America assumes applies to everyone accused of criminal conduct effectively does not exist in practice for countless people across the US.”

Twenty-two. Many are forced to plead guilty. Consider all the exonerations of people who were forced by police to confess even when they did not commit the crime who were later proven innocent: some criminologists estimate 2 to 8 percent of the people in prison are innocent but pleaded guilty. One longtime federal judge estimates that there is so much pressure on people to plead guilty that there may easily be 20,000 people in prison for crimes they did not commit.

Twenty-three. Very few people in prison ever had a trial. Trials are rare in the criminal injustice system. Over 95 percent of criminal cases are finished by plea bargains. In 1980, nearly 20 percent of criminal cases were tried, but that number has gone down to less than 3 percent, because sentences are now so much higher for those who lose trials, there are more punishing drug laws and mandatory minimum sentences, and more power has been given to prosecutors.

Twenty-four. Poor people get jail, and jail makes people worse off. The poorest people, those who have had to remain in jail since their arrest, are four times more likely to receive a prison sentence than those who got out on bail. There are tens of thousands of rapes inside jails and prisons each year. The DOJ reports over 4,000 inmates are murdered each year while incarcerated. As US Supreme Court justice Anthony Kennedy told Congress recently, “This idea of total incarceration just isn’t working. And it’s not humane. We [society and Congress and the legal profession] have no interest in corrections, nobody looks at it.” 

Twenty-five. Average prison sentences are much longer than they used to be, especially for people of color. Since 1990, the average time for property crimes has gone up 24 percent and time for drug crimes has gone up 36 percent. In the US federal system, nearly 75 percent of the people sent to prison for drug offenses are black or Latino.

Twenty-six. There is about a 70 percent chance that an African American man without a high school diploma will be imprisoned by the time he reaches his mid-thirties; the rate for white males without a high school diploma is 53 percent lower. In the 1980s, there was only an 8 percent difference. In New York City, for example, blacks are jailed at nearly 12 times the rate of whites and Latinos at more than five times the rate of whites.

Twenty-seven. Almost 1 of 12 black men ages 25 to 54 are in jail or prison, compared to 1 in 60 non-black men. That is 600,000 African American men, an imprisonment rate five times that of white men.

Twenty-eight. Prison has become a very big private business. Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) owns and runs 67 for-profit jails in 20 states with over 90,000 beds. Along with GEO (formerly Wackenhut), these two private prison companies have donated more than $10 million to candidates and spent another $25 million lobbying, according to The Washington Post. They lobby all over the country, and over the past ten years have doubled the number of prisoners they hold.

Twenty-nine. The Sentencing Project reports that over 159,000 people are serving life sentences in the US. Nearly half are African American and 1 in 6 are Latino. The number of people serving life in prison has gone up by more than 400% since 1984. Nearly 250,000 prisoners in the US are over age 50.

Thirty. Inside prisons, the poorest people are taken advantage of again, as most items such as telephone calls to families are priced exorbitantly high, some as high as $12.95 for a 15-minute call, further separating families.

Thirty-one. The DOJ reports another 3.9 million people are on probation. Probation is when a court puts a person under supervision instead of sending him to prison. Probation is also becoming a big business for private companies, which get governments to contract with them to collect outstanding debts and supervise people on probation. Human Rights Watch reported in 2014 that over a thousand courts assign hundreds of thousands of people to be under the supervision of private companies. The companies then collect fines, fees, and costs for the supervision, or else the parolees go to jail. For example, one man in Georgia who was fined $200 for stealing a can of beer from a convenience store was ultimately jailed after the private probation company ran up over a thousand dollars in fees.

Thirty-two. The DOJ reports that an additional 850,000 people are on parole. Parole is when a person who has been in prison is released to serve the rest of his or her sentence under supervision.

Thirty-three. The DOJ reported in 2012 that as many as 100 million people have a criminal record, and over 94 million of those records are online.

Thirty-four. Anyone can find out if someone has a record. Because it is so easy to access arrest and court records, people who have been arrested and convicted face very serious problems renting an apartment, or getting a job, public assistance, or an education. Eighty-seven percent of employers conduct background checks. Employment losses for people with criminal records have been estimated at as much as $65 billion every year. 

Thirty-five. Race is a multiplier of disadvantage in unemployment for people who get out of prison. A study by Professor Devah Pager demonstrated that employers who were unlikely to even check on the criminal history of white male applicants, seriously discriminated against all black applicants and even more so against black applicants with criminal records. 

Thirty-six. Families are hurt by this. The Sentencing Project reports that 180,000 women are subject to lifetime bans from Temporary Assistance to Needy Families because of felony drug convictions.

Thirty-seven. Convicted people cannot get jobs after they get out. More than 60 percent of formerly incarcerated people are unemployed one year after being released. Is it a surprise that within three years of release from prison, about two-thirds of the state prisoners were rearrested?

Thirty-eight. The US spends $80 billion on this big business of corrections every year. As a retired criminal court judge I know says, “The high costs of this system would be worth it if the system was actually working and making us safer, but we are not safer, the system is not working, so the actual dollars we are spending are another indication of our failure.” The cost of being number one in incarceration is four times higher than it was in 1982. Anyone feeling four times safer than they used to?

Thirty-nine. Putting more people in jail creates more poverty. The overall poverty rate in our country is undoubtedly higher because of the dramatic increase in incarceration over the past 35 years. One research project estimates that poverty would have decreased by 20 percent if we had not put all these extra people in prison. This makes sense given the fact that most of the people brought into the system are poor to begin with. It is much harder for them to find a job because of the barriers to employment and good jobs erected by a criminal record, the increased number of one-parent families because of a parent being in jail, and the bans on receiving food stamps and housing assistance.

Forty. Put all these problems together and you can see why the Center for American Progress rightly concludes, “Today, a criminal record serves as both a direct cause and consequence of poverty.”

What does it say about our society that it uses its jails and prisons as the primary detention facilities for poor and black and brown people who have been racially targeted and incarcerates them with the mentally ill and chemically dependent? The current criminal system has dozens of moving parts, from the legislators who create the laws, to the police who enforce them, to the courts that apply them, to the jails and prisons that house the people caught up in the system, to the public and business community who decide whom to hire, to all of us who either do something or turn our heads away. These are our brothers and sisters and cousins and friends of our coworkers. There are lots of proposed solutions. To learn more about the problems and the solutions, go to places like The Sentencing Project, the Vera Institute, or the Center for American Progress. Because it’s the right thing to do, and because about 95 percent of the people we send to prison are coming back into our communities. 



Bill Quigley teaches law at Loyola University New Orleans and can be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner
 

Comments   

A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

 
+26 # Merlin 2015-06-04 17:28
Where do you start to undo this immensely complex and overwhelming distortion of public life? It is like everybody is involved either actively or passively. (As he notes.) Every solution involves almost every part of the total system. It is very difficult to separate out any individual problem from the whole, as they all involve and affect each other.

It is an ugly representation of our society, and much of the rest of the world sees that!
 
 
+22 # Johnny 2015-06-04 18:34
It's capitalism. Everything is for sale, especially lawmakers and law enforcement.
 
 
+7 # think4once 2015-06-05 07:08
Its NOT capitalism! ITS PSYCHOPATHY!!!

I'm a capitalist... I like making money...
Im NOT a psychopath,,,, I DON'T LIKE HARMING PEOPLE IN THE PROCESS!!
 
 
+2 # Merlin 2015-06-05 12:31
think4once 2015-06-05 07:08

Well stated! People that blame the tool (capitalism) are limited in their ability to tell the difference between a symptom and a cause. (A subject I have ranted about several times here on RSN.) As you succinctly say here blame the person who misuses the tool… don't blame the tool.
 
 
+1 # Krackonis 2015-06-07 09:17
Quoting Merlin:
think4once 2015-06-05 07:08

Well stated! People that blame the tool (capitalism) are limited in their ability to tell the difference between a symptom and a cause. (A subject I have ranted about several times here on RSN.) As you succinctly say here blame the person who misuses the tool… don't blame the tool.


Don't apologize for them. They do not deserve it. They are not people, they are paper. Totalitarian Paper which is trying to get up and over the democratic system. We should stop that. If they were subservient to the people this would be the world we would like. But unfortunately we need to rein them in.
 
 
+1 # Krackonis 2015-06-07 09:16
Quoting think4once:
Its NOT capitalism! ITS PSYCHOPATHY!!!

I'm a capitalist... I like making money...
Im NOT a psychopath,,,, I DON'T LIKE HARMING PEOPLE IN THE PROCESS!!


According to the Documentary "The Corporation" they are psychotic. They would kill their own mothers for a percentage.
 
 
-24 # MidwestTom 2015-06-04 21:49
Severely limit, or eliminate any government support for having children.

Instead of ridiculing men on television and i the movies, start showing men as heads of households. Change the culture.
 
 
+6 # CelticNavigator 2015-06-05 08:38
You are correct, Merlin. This is a typical Machiavellian "divide and conquer" ploy to continue American slavery. Almost all prisons are work camps with inmates working for pennies on the dollar for huge corporations.

And it goes far beyond our so-called system of justice, of course. Many ghettos are "food deserts" where poor folks have to travel over 10 miles, often by bus, to find good, inexpensive food. In Dayton, Ohio, where I live, the public libraries in the ghettos are full of books and videos glorifying the "gangster and ho" lifestyle; keeping kids in an endless self-destructiv e feedback loop.

Where to start reforming this vicious BEAST of a system? Clearly, indisputably, by re-creating our educational system NOW, for the benefit of ALL Americans - white, black, rich and poor.

Imagine THIS class being required study in every grade school in America. The solution really IS that simple: because of undifferentiate d brain stem cells, before age 7, all kids can learn several different languages at the same time, and they can learn ANYTHING much quicker than we brittle-brained adults can. This class teaches group problem solving, using very real and ever-changing scenarios. Imagine our world's think tanks 40 years from now, with two entire generations of American kids having taken John Hunter's World Peace Game class! Let's DO this, America!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lCq8V2EhYs0
 
 
-17 # perkinsej 2015-06-04 17:57
I don't deny any of the above, but I was recently surprised to see a reliable source claimeing that only about 20 percent of minority criminals are in jail for durg offenses. If the rate is much higher, the I would like to hear about it. You can contact me at perkinsej@aol.com
 
 
-39 # babaregi 2015-06-04 18:43
Sure, all those reasons why there are so many men of color in prison are completely valid, no doubt.

Where is the supply of seriously hoodlum men coming from?

The State makes it financially possible to breed them and the single mothers get a complete pass on pumping out these bastards that become thugs.

Liberals (a copious source of White Knight enablers) refuse to hold women accountable for the immense damage their choices are making to society.

Let a couple of good brothers lay it out for you:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCsnsPgfSgo
 
 
+10 # futhark 2015-06-04 19:10
Ir is disturbing that so many young people of color chose to identify themselves as hoodlums. Once they are born, society must deal with them. Creating more opportunities for educational, economic, and social advancement seem to me the best way of dealing with this problem.

I also believe that parenting skills can be taught and should be a part of secondary school education. Putting a burden of blame on people who already are struggling to survive is not likely to produce positive results.
 
 
-16 # babaregi 2015-06-04 23:39
To futhark
"Putting a burden of blame on people who already are struggling to survive is not likely to produce positive results."

See, there you go like a typical liberal that just can't hold people (especially women) accountable for their actions and the consequences they suffer thereby.

You call it blame;
feminists (and feminized men) can't bear the thought that women have anything to do with the degradation we see happening all around us.

Fatherless kids aren't "just born"; women are making the choice to have kids with irresponsible men because it's socially acceptable these days and subsidized by the State.

I focus on this since you guys have a lot of cognitive dissonance around it because of the feminist view that men aren't necessary to raise healthy families and communities.

Liberals want to talk about every other factor but that and "protect" women from the harsh truth of their own complicity.

Most women won't want to admit it and men tend to agree with women because men lose sexual access to women by challenging their games.

Good black men are rebelling against this and you aren't doing anyone any favors by giving women a free pass on this.

The feminist playbook (in league with the State) disenfranchises men. Uninitiated young men will rip your town apart because they are wild without manly role models (not just thug culture).
 
 
-2 # futhark 2015-06-06 01:31
I found it ironic that the two presenters in the recommended YouTube video epitomized in visual and verbal approach the persona of the thugs and hoodlums they claimed to deplore, using aggressive, accusative language laced with crude epithets. It seemed they thought they would gain credibility by such a stance and lose it if they spoke respectfully and grammatically.

They were not the role models of the kind of men they suggested should appeal to women. The medium is always part of the message.
 
 
-2 # babaregi 2015-06-06 10:22
Well, I understand your feelings but they didn't offend me at all. Maybe that's because I'm a man and understand their frustration and have a lot of sympathy for the black man's situation in our anti-male culture.
They have it worse than white men but we're not far behind.
The women won't change their act until the men refuse to play.
 
 
+15 # economagic 2015-06-04 19:39
Ignorance is curable, belief and bigotry are not.
 
 
+32 # futhark 2015-06-04 18:59
“Today, a criminal record serves as both a direct cause and consequence of poverty.”

The flip side of that is that extreme wealth serves as a cause and consequence of unpunished criminal activity.
 
 
+22 # Vardoz 2015-06-04 19:22
We have become a ruthless, abusive and inhumane Oligarchy waging genocide on our poor and people of color, in the richest nation in the world, using people as currency as we destroy lives and saps our economy of tens of billions of much needed revenues. Privatizing is away to use our tax dollars with no oversight, accountability or check and balances. This is why corporations are so hot to privatized!

Sanders wants a revolution and if we all join in we can turn the tables on this hideous regime whose only agenda is to destroy people's lives, our environment and our gigantic gulag that is the envy of any brutal dictatorship !!!!! Do we want an Oligarchy or a Democracy? We have to take a stand!!!!
 
 
+13 # jazzman633 2015-06-04 21:40
A significant number of the 40 are directly or indirectly related to the war on drugs. But adopting more humane, tolerant, less punitive drug policies is politically impossible in our prudish, frightened, brainwashed society.
 
 
+6 # Merlin 2015-06-05 01:18
jazzman633 2015-06-04 21:40

“But adopting more humane, tolerant, less punitive drug policies is politically impossible in our prudish, frightened, brainwashed society.”

Yes, we have a “prudish, frightened, brainwashed society,” but that has little to do with drug policy. It is incorrect to blame the people for drug policy. Drug policy is set by the government for its own agenda. Look into the many stories where the CIA has used the excuse of drugs to effect some policy in foreign countries (like South and Central America.) Often those policies are at the behest of corporations who want to exploit the resources of those countries. (One of the biggest abusers is United Fruit.) Without the excuse of drugs being illegal, the CIA would be neutered.

Also consider the government’s response to medical marijuana going against the overwhelming desires of the people in the country.

Reads Smedley Butler’s book called “War is a Racket.” Butler was a 4 star marine general in the early 1900s. It is an eyeopening expose if you haven’t read it.
 
 
+6 # think4once 2015-06-05 07:23
Cojent as ever Merlin...

I would add.... the gvt via the CIA is the BIGGEST drug running organization on the planet... they bring the drugs in and sell them to dealers at enormous(off-th e-books) profit... then the other LEO agencies lock up those who engage in drug related behavior- again, fit profit...

Lets recall our tax dollars are used to pay military personnel to PROTECT Afghan POPPY FIELDS!
 
 
+2 # Merlin 2015-06-05 12:34
think4once 2015-06-05 07:23

Thanks!

Thanks also for expanding the CIA usage of drugs, and to include Afghanistan which is hardly ever mentioned!
 
 
-17 # MidwestTom 2015-06-04 21:43
All products of the War on Poverty, and Aid for Dependent Children. Over 80% of prisoners come fro single parent homes.
 
 
-12 # babaregi 2015-06-05 00:26
Quoting MidwestTom:
All products of the War on Poverty, and Aid for Dependent Children. Over 80% of prisoners come from single parent homes.


Sorry Tom, but the liberals here will call that "blaming the victim".

They don't think that African Americans can be (or are) responsible for their own community. This is a very patronizing (and in fact racist) point of view to hold these days, IMO.

Liberals have a hard time with the concept of morals and moral authority since they view all authority as an oppressive and suppressive evil force like the cops shooting innocent people. People are supposed to be free to do anything they want to without any cultural expectation to check their asocial and narcissistic tendencies.

Thugs in the Black community are glamorized like the pirates on Wall Street are in their community. We can't say these things here because it's not politically correct in progressive circles.

The irony of it is that it's anything but progressive. It's a huge blind spot for the liberal mind just as it is difficult for conservatives not to be rigid traditionalists and authoritarian.

Since liberals have this blind spot, they arrogantly dismiss tradition and moral codes of behavior as harmful "parental" control systems of the power elite (known affectionately as the patriarchy).
 
 
-13 # babaregi 2015-06-05 01:39
(cont)
They learned from feminists that men are the problem and it often appears that they are. What is harder to see are the women feeding off the resources men provide. Men provide what women want to get sex so women have tremendous power behind the scenes and have a lot of control in society by their choice of men.
Feminized men are loathe to broach the subject lest they lose access to pussy.

So this RSN crowd will talk truth to power like the great social justice warriors they fancy themselves to be but sexual power is off the table for a very understandable reason. They come to the rescue of women whenever there is a hint of an attack on women's role in this messed up society. It's a completely feminized group here, well trained!

You see, racism and fascist power structures, victim-hood, etc. are popular subjects and open to lively debate here but you'll have to go elsewhere if you want to talk about what women are doing and how they exersize their power over men and how it shapes society.

So the most we can expect from this crowd is that they will oppose the corporate and police tyranny in the Black community(which is good) but they have drunk deeply of the feminist Kool-Aid so certain problems will not be acknowledged or tolerated for discussion in this forum.

You may be called a racist if you criticize what women of color are doing in their community even if you are correct.

Some Black men are dealing with it and we have to deal with our own.
 
 
+15 # MJnevetS 2015-06-05 05:13
Dear babaregi, you ask "Where is the supply of seriously hoodlum men coming from?" Which shows your failure to read and/or comprehend the article. The majority of the minority people in jail aren't thugs, they're not even criminals; they are poor people in a cycle of poverty created by corporations and government for profit. You then state "Fatherless kids aren't 'just born'". True, they are helped into this world by policies that forgo scientific sex education in favor of religious based abstinence education which doesn't work, then deny people access to contraceptive services and limit availability of abortion. Hell, it's understandable, you need (brown) bodies to fill those private jails. Your next quip is "Thugs in the Black community are glamorized like the pirates on Wall Streetare in their community." The difference is pirates on Wall Street don't go to jail. (Read 'The Great Divide' by Matt Taibbi). You, as our society has done, are blaming the victim. (FYI, before you throw an ad hominem label at me, I am a gun carrying, retired, prosecutor)
 
 
-5 # babaregi 2015-06-05 17:03
To MJnevetS;
(FYI, before you throw an ad hominem label at me, I am a gun carrying, retired, prosecutor)

OOh, Gun carrying! Well good for you.

The arrogance on your part is laughable for you to tell me I don't understand what I read. You must have been a hell of a prosecutor judging from the way you jump to conclusions about what I need (bodies to fill jails, lol) or what I should read (as if I haven't been following Matt Taibbi).

The article above was very simple and I agreed with it (and said so) but there are other factors that you refuse to acknowledge.

IMO, this is the result of being an indoctrinated feminist and I explained how it works but to no avail.

As I said, that is the problem with liberals with your self-righteousn ess and blind spots. You can't see the big picture but you think you do and think you're smarter than everyone else. It's like talking to members of a cult that howl when confronted with an inconvenient truth.

At the beginning, I put a link of a couple of black men talking about the problem I was speaking of and I could provide dozens more that speak even more directly about it.

That won't make a dent in your perception and for most here it won't.

I knew that already dealing with the very idealistic, self-selected crowd here.

Since you guys would rarely tend to consider such things on your own, I posted it even though you don't like it simply for the sake of bringing in relevant evidence, Mr. Prosecutor!
 
 
+6 # ConsciousOne 2015-06-05 08:39
To the close-minded, brainwash educated narcissistic privilege mindset: “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”
― Martin Luther King Jr.

HOW DARE YOU SIT IN JUDGEMENT SEAT OF WILLFUL IGNORANCE/PRIVILEGE..

You dare NOT talk about your poor white counterparts who are vulgar, violent, and uneducated but do not go to prison in high numbers. EDUCATE YOURSELVES if you dare handle truth in your arrogant judgement seat.

"The media's is the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses." - Malcolm X
 
 
-1 # babaregi 2015-06-05 17:28
Quoting ConsciousOne:
To the close-minded, brainwash educated narcissistic privilege mindset: “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”
― Martin Luther King Jr.

HOW DARE YOU SIT IN JUDGEMENT SEAT OF WILLFUL IGNORANCE/PRIVILEGE..

You dare NOT talk about your poor white counterparts who are vulgar, violent, and uneducated but do not go to prison in high numbers. EDUCATE YOURSELVES if you dare handle truth in your arrogant judgement seat.

"The media's is the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses." - Malcolm X


Yeah, I know (according to you) whites like me aren't supposed to hold anyone responsible for choosing a life of crime.

Criminals come in all colors and all of them feel justified, one way or another.


I would like to see complete solutions, not hear excuses to not deal with what is in your actual ability to control.
 
 
+9 # Robbee 2015-06-05 08:57
Six ... even if most people do not go directly to jail for traffic tickets, poor people are hit the worst by these ticket systems ...
Seven. The consequences of traffic tickets are much more severe for poor people. People with means will just pay the fines. But for poor and working people, fines are a real hardship ... And we know unpaid tickets can lead to jail.

- black folks are preferentially selected and introduced into a legal system that is rigged against poor and middle class folks - criminal injustice is just the tip of the injustice system iceberg

by contrast the introduction of poor and middle class white folks' to our injustice system is mild and less transparently oppressive - frankly our injustice system depends on poor and middle class white folks perciving that the system inobtrusively favors them - poor and middle class white folks can support a system that appears, at least to them, to afford justice - at core, in a system that is racist, poor and middle class white folks are lead to pretend that the system is fair - poor and middle class white folks can have their cake and eat it too

if bernie does not understand why the legion of southern poor white folks, that zomblicans create, have no solidarity with their black and latino brethren, and cannot explain to them how their interests lie in solidarity, i fear dems are condemned to continue to share power with zomblicans

of course if bernie succeeds, we are all better off
 
 
+7 # Robbee 2015-06-05 09:04
re: (How) do you start to undo this immensely complex and overwhelming distortion of public life?

- to me, bernie's democratic socialist, populist politics seem to be key
 
 
+5 # ChrisCurrie 2015-06-05 12:33
A 41st reason in states that prohibit convicted felons from voting even after they have served their sentence, dreaming up excuses and methods to put minorities and poor people with felony convictions serves as a means of "voter suppression" of minorities and poor people who might otherwise vote for Democrats.
 

THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.

RSNRSN