Slavery by Another Name: Violating the Human Rights

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The rights of humans are shown throughout the laws made by human beings, you have the right to justice and freedom as given to us by our unbidden laws of being a citizen in the united states of America. The judicial system has the responsibility of giving every citizen a fair trial as well as a lawyer appointed to them by the state if unable to afford one, These laws where set in place to ensure the justice of human beings and give them a fair trial for a rightful outcome. Although no system is perfect there is still many flaws in the Criminal justice system in the united states of America involving the discrimination of citizens of color.

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Racism has been known throughout the United States, starting all the way back to the start of slavery; which started in the early 16th century it was a well-known divide in people which America was made upon. Racism is a result of Discrimination which we see now in every aspect of our lives such as our laws, education, living situations and etc. Studies have shown, that there is no racial biases in the system while other studies have provided evidence to their being racial biases in the system. Discrimination against majority POC has resulted in innocent people being convicted of crimes and wrongly imprisoned, throughout the United states of America. There have been many cases involving discrimination against minorities that result in wrongful convictions.


The civil war occurred during the years 1861- 1865 after this war president Abraham Lincoln issued Emancipation proclamation on January 1st, 1863. The emancipation proclamation was declared solely for the result of the third year of a bloody war in which they declared, ‘that all persons held as slaves’ within the rebellious states ‘are, and henceforward shall be free.’. ( Summer, 1993Franklin, Vol. 25, No. 2)2, 1993). The enslavement and cruelty continued after this declaration was an offense committed by the nation in which continued for about 80 years to enslave the black people of America through our laboring and prison systems. Slavery was initially abolished besides it being a punishment for crime. Meaning that the states were capable of imprisoning black people if they had committed a “crime”. Prison systems were connected to labor systems in the U.S. which most prisons were full of black men that were arrested and then later ‘leased’ by the states county governments. The U.S. Steel was one of many companies it had acquired for labor. Douglas A. Blackmon author of Slavery by Another Name stated, “The total number of workers caught in this net had to have totaled more than a hundred thousand and perhaps more than twice that figure. Instead of evidence showing black crime waves, the original records of county jails indicated thousands of arrests for inconsequential charges or for violations of laws specifically written to intimidate blacks—changing employers without permission, vagrancy, riding freight cars without a ticket, engaging in sexual activity— or loud talk—with white women….” (Blackmon 2012).

The civil war as well had an impact of the amount of vagrancy in the U.S (Depastino 2003). The increasing issue in the 1870s after the War had an epidemic issue of living amongst those of former veterans who had just finished with the war and were out of work, the result of homelessness was the inability to find a job due to the injuries, army crimes, etc. Abruptly after World War II occurred in the 1880s the severity of civilians being homeless hit an epidemic concern. The mid 1980s denoted the rise of what currently might be viewed as the advanced time of vagrancy.= The decline in housing affordability for ex felons on Release arranging, an extension of progress administrations, and the arrangement of focused lodging for ex-guilty parties can assume a basic job in improving lodging strength, particularly for those ex-wrongdoers who have a psychological wellness conclusion or a past filled with habit, or who have been indicted for a sexual offense. Significant powers that changed the composition of vagrancy in the advanced time incorporate improvement of the downtown, deinstitutionalization of the rationally sick, high joblessness rate, the rise of HIV/AIDS, an insufficient inventory of moderate lodging alternatives ( Rossi, 1989).

The prison systems worked around the declaration with using the 13th amendment in favor to enslave thousands of black citizens in the United states. Laws set by white leaders to prevent the freedom of black men in women prevented the reform of the nations. For example, the crime vagrancy which was the crime of being unemployed imprisoned many black people because of the large fine that was needed to be paid. W.E.B. Du Bois author of the book, Black Reconstruction in America made a statement that, “slaves went free; stood a brief moment in the sun; then moved back again toward slavery.” (Du Bois 2017).

In the year 1936, the U.S. Supreme Court demolished the convictions given to the three, arguing that involuntary confessions cannot be used as evidence in a court of law; The historic ruling had later paved the way for the Miranda rulings to come decades later. Henrey Sheilds, Ed Brown and Arthur Ellington were never fully exonerated due to the short plea deals that they went with solely based of the fear put in them of possibly facing another wrongful and unjust trial (Weinreb 1990). The criminal justice system works in factors, factors in which all are components of building a case against a possible suspect of a crime. A case which continues with the court system, that weighs the evidence against a suspect and evidence which is found and provided is then used to determine if the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt or determined not guilty of the charges: the term “innocent until proven guilty” If so, the corrections system will use the means act to their disposal, namely incarceration and probation, to punish and correct the behavior of the offender a form of rehabilitation.


Researchers have shown that throughout studies based on mass incarceration in prisons it was found that, 23% of the Black men used in the study were in prison, on parole, or on probation but in comparison only about 6.2% of the White males used in the study were accounted for to be imprisoned. The Rates of Hispanic males fell in between those for Black and White males at about 10.4% (Mauer 1990). Gross (2015), and Schlesinger (2008) both revealed in their research that the admission rates of black men being imprisoned have decreased throughout the centuries but have shown an amount of disparities regarding those of the opposite race of white. Moreover, Gross (2015) noted that in the state of Tennessee year 1868, it was accounted for there being 60 percent of male prisoners whom were black offenders. Therefore, the racial disparities have lasted well into the twentieth century, as said that black men in the South accounted for about 72 percent of male prisoners in the year 1880 as well, Black women accounted for about 85 percent. (Gross 2015).

Mass Incarceration of black men in the united states prisons is a significant factor of how racism plays a role in our criminal justice system. Researchers have shown that throughout studies based on mass incarceration in prisons it was found that, 23% of the Black men used in the study were in prison, on parole, or on probation but in comparison only about 6.2% of the White males used in the study were accounted for to be imprisoned.There is no exact percentage of people of color wrongly convicted but 50 % of African- American prisoners incarnated are more likely to be innocent than other convicted murders. 22% of most convicted people of color had some police involvement that resulted in an arrest or an accidental death. (Gross 2017) . The cause of racial disparity in the system has resulted to majority of 47% of African Americans incarcerated in the U.S. Many convictions involving Black Defendants have included a wide range of Discrimination towards ethnics, unknowingly act of racial biases and explicit racism having to do with the U.S criminal system. (Ebhardt.Hetey. 2018).

In a recent article published by The Sentencing project it was stated that, “Finally, studies of mock jurors have found that a defendant’s race has some impact on verdicts and sentencing.70) Mock jurors in one recent study even exhibited skin-color bias in how they evaluated evidence: they were more likely to view ambiguous evidence as indication of guilt for darker skinned suspects than for those who were lighter skinned.” (Ghandnoosh 2014).As well as other organizations supporting this accusation of racial disparity in the criminal justice system is well a well-known organization, The Black Lives Matter organization which was founded by Three Black women in the year 2013. This foundation was made on supporting and brining awareness to the Acquittal of Trayvon Martins murderer, George Zimmerman. Throughout the years they have worked to prove and protest the rights of Black Americans as a community and bring equal fairness. In the year 2017 They fought to bring awareness to the murder of Jordan Edwards a 15-year-old boy who was shot and killed by the police leaving a house party. This case was one of many that is discussed throughout their movement on police brutality. They said to believe that racism stems within the system and is resulting in the murders of many black young men under police force. (Yan 2017). 

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