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    “The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander Review

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    I think the reading choice I am going to focus on this week involves The New Jim Crow, a book written by Michelle Alexander. To me, this is one of the more intriguing readings we have read this semester and has allowed me to dig deeper into the age of color blindness that exists within America and the damage it has done to a certain population. I believe Alexander does a good job throughout the book illustrating the effects of mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness because she uses different examples such as African Americans denied basic rights back in slavery comparing that to our prison system. In my opinion, Alexander’s main point here is for us to understand that the prison system created in America today’s is based on keeping certain groups of people, specifically people of color, under certain financial and economic states. Why is this important?

    I feel like this reading is important because it goes along with some of the other readings in our semester focusing on how certain groups of people, specifically white people, put laws/policies in place that keep them amongst the elite status compared to African Americans. For example, we know that if the United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, which it does, and they house more African Americans by a large number than white people then the results will remain the same from a financial perspective. Form a financial perspective we know this is one of the easiest ways to shift classes because it allows for people to make money and better their life however if African Americans are rapidly being arrested and thrown into prison at alarmingly higher rates than whites then it makes it extremely difficult to move financial classes. Do you think this is strange too America would do something like this? How could a country that calls itself the most democratic nation in the world be so one-sided? Interestingly enough this is an argument that Alexander makes in her book because when we think of democracy we think of things as being fair and equal rights however from the book we read we understand this not so much to be the case. What is a possible solution?

    I think a possible solution has to start at the form of the legal system and working towards rewriting, remaking, and creating new laws/policies because this is the only way change can happen in my opinion. I think it was easy to see a long time ago the discrimination that was taking place in America however in the age of colorblindness so much of discrimination takes place through laws and policies. To my way of thinking, if more African Americans are being placed in our legal system then it is also making more people ineligible to vote thus not allowing for certain candidates to be chosen because the people that might vote for them are in prison/jail. I feel like there is a long hill to climb however one of the most important things we can do as educators is to cone examine things like this in our society and works towards undoing these wrongs. I think the process for something like this will be slow and long but the results will be very rewarding.

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