Friends! I leave you with this post until next week — I have to pick up my already-cooked, just-gotta-heat-it-up-tomorrow thanksgiving dinner and get ready to pick up my dad at the airport (read: clean the house!)!
Have a safe and happy holiday.
On Monday, the New York Times ran a piece titled “A Country of Inmates” that detailed our country’s mass incarceration epidemic.
This is an issue that I’m passionate about because it disproportionately affects minorities and consequently trickles down and affects entire communities. Overall, the article is a good read, especially if you have no familiarity with incarceration policies. Here are a few excerpts:
The United States has 2.3 million people behind bars, almost one in every 100 Americans. The U.S. prison population has more than doubled over the past 15 years, and one in nine black children has a parent in jail.
Proportionally, the United States has four times as many prisoners as Israel, six times as many as Canada or China, eight times as many as Germany and 13 times as many as Japan.
The prison explosion hasn’t been driven by an increase in crime. In fact, the crime rate, notably for violent offenses, is dropping across the United States, a phenomenon that began about 20 years ago.
The latest F.B.I. figures show that murder, rape and robberies have fallen to an almost half-century low; to be sure, they remain higher than in other major industrialized countries.
Read more here.
However, if you’re interested in learning more (and I hope you are), I recommend reading Michelle Alexander’s book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. I found it to be a compelling read full of statistics and information about our War on Drugs and the skyrocketing rate of incarceration in the U.S.
I’m always up for a chat about mass incarceration — let me know what you think!