In the study about the Condemnation of Blackness: Race, Crime and the Making of a Modern Urban America, is an exciting book and research that deals with the groundbreaking of history in the United States of America pegged on the racial aspects. In the novel, the author takes part in tracing the differences and civil discourses that are found to be linked with different ethnic groups. The black public discourses that are placed on the linkage and a relationship link of race and crime is pegged in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Khalil also takes part in the examination of different social sciences that take place and also understands the use under which different progressive reforms were being conducted on and done. Through this book, then it becomes evident on how there was a deep embedding of crime and the linkage to the race is done. 1Thus, the black race, in particular, became the new yardstick and reason for oppression. Before this period, it should be understood that there was no association of crime with black people. The process then saw the emergence of slavery as an option to handle the growing nature of black people and criminal activities.
There was an influx of immigrants and establishment of rapid industrialization that saw different cities in the United States of America expand. Through such actions, policymakers ended up making progressive laws which were supported by social science and this was a platform for case developments on how black people would be condemned for criminal activities and forcing them to start engaging in ghetto life and not the life that the whites in the society were allowed to enjoy and live.
In the text that is written by Muhammad, there is an elaboration explaining to the audience the importance attachment available between racialization crime statistics and the great migration of black racial grouped in the United States of America.2 Through the article, there is an explanation and determination of why there were segregation and separation in the country. It should be noted that as the black racial groups were migrating from the northern region and moving in high numbers, they were faced with different injustices such as labor market discrimination, exclusion from institutions of higher learning in education, social welfare separation, and housing segregation. The blacks ended up becoming isolated from the society with increasing threats and being treated as dangerous individuals. With the developments of these inequalities, the societal members during that time held the thought that the crime statistics were objective and neutral. Different authors and whites racial groups started reading ace alongside crime, and they believed that the black racial group was the problem which resulted in the increasing crime rates. The black writers also saw the importance of defining crime while talking about the black life through entering into debates such as determining high and low crimes aspects.
Reading the text, the audience can understand on why there were cases and notions of racial superiority and inferiority in the United States of America and why it was easier to link the black racial groups with crimes. It is also established why a crime was not linked with the white racial group. The white race saw themselves as superior to the black race and that they were to enjoy all the societal amenities without equally allowing the black race to enjoy these services. Generations kept growing with this knowledge of separation and segregation that saw different impacts between the Whites and the black racial groups. For example, by putting the whites to the thought that they are superior own large plantations and have a job, they saw it difficult for such an individual to commit the crime. Thus, the black immigrants who had no formal jobs nor necessary skills were thought to be in a position to cause crime which resulted in negative perceptions and hatred between these racial groups.
In the other reading material that is the New Jim Crow by Alexander Michael, there is an explanation and discussion about the racial issues that were experienced in the United States of America. Alexander comments the criminal justice systems that was highly discriminatory. As discussed above, there was racial segregation among the blacks with crime being directed and stated that it was caused by the black community. In the New Jim Crow, there was an explanation and development of a judicial system that was deemed to listen to the established cases and to attempt to find justice in the society. However, the established system was unequal with the black racial group being treated with discrimination and separation that saw the blacks complain and feel oppressed about the system. These injustices in the judicial systems are what have contributed to the present challenges that are seen in the United States of America. It is clear that if the whites during that time were treated in a manner that the blacks in that time were treated, then the laws that were developed would have been reversed appropriately and immediately.
Consequently, their book notes that the consistent targeting of the black men and stating that these individuals were contributing to crime, the United States of America judicial system has to serve as a system that controls racial issues.1 However, it is at the systems that color blindness is highly neglected. The book aims to challenge the civil rights community and al the readers to ensure that there is a placement of a new movement to redefine the justice system in the United States of America. The United States of America thought that it had overcome the issues of racial separation and segregation at the time when they elected the 44th President who was from the black community. When President Barrack Obama was elected in the United States of America, there were celebrations with writings and discussions that America was the first country to triumph over race. However, with such actions, there were still thousands of the black men who were in their young lives who were locked behind bars, and they have been termed as life felons. These show the racial issues that need to be addressed in the country.
An interesting revelation in the book is that not only the number of black people in prison is a factor of discussion but the curtailing and hindering these members from the black origin from enjoying their rights after they leave these confinements are what creates the issue and problems of hopelessness in the country. When felons are named in the country, then they end up being excluded from aspects like welfare, housing difficulties in finding employment opportunities and in other sections they are denied the right to vote.2 And with the felons in prison, the significant population are black ethnic group members, and these are the categories that are excluded from the America’s freedom regions. Alexander notes that the mass incarceration that was seen in America was emerging from the civil right gains that were experienced in the 60’s period and the 70’s. The unleash on a war on drugs that was caused by Regan was what put the Law and Order process of controlling crime in America to operation. Richard Nixon in 1968 promised the black people law and order by saying that it would have strict measures and be tough on the blacks indicating segregation on laws and who the laws applied to in the country.1 The judicial system was left to handle cases where the majority of pieces of evidence were placed on lies, and the results were imprisoning of young blacks in the American prison.2 To date, there is a high number of prison occupants in the United States of America, and these are filled with the black origin people. In 1990’s, the President Bill Clinton signed a crime Bill that was voted for by Bernie Sanders. These are what the system that is judicial system holds upon up to the present day and which causes these increase in mass incarcerations.
The two books, condemnation of blackness and the New Jim Crow are similar in the theme that the authors attempt to explain and bring to the audience. These books further are engaging in the history of the United States of America as it communicates the racial segregation and separation. The blacks were not treated equally to the Whites. The white race saw themselves as superior to the black race, and thus they had to enjoy all the superior amenities and activities that were being conducted in the United States of America.
Incidences such as limiting the social amenity used by the blacks, separation in transport and educational facilities and using the blacks as slaves in plantations is an example of how there was mistreatment of the black people. The whites lived separately from the black who was treated as an inferior race. These actions led to negative perceptions and developments of different thoughts and hatred with constant wars as the blacks attempted to fight for their rights that they believed they should be left to access. However, the whites were adamant and further developed laws and policies that were directed at separating the blacks further. The establishment of a war on crime and drugs saw a majority of blacks suffering from crimes that they did not commit.2 The judicial systems were underrepresented with the majority of the jury being whites. Thus, when cases of backs were taken to the judicial system, the blacks did not get a fair hearing resulting in them being imprisoned and termed as felons. Felons were restricted to their freedoms that they would enjoy and practice.
Thus, these books educate the society on the differences between the blacks and whites and attempting to put a relationship on why some racial issues are still recorded in the United States of America. Equality should be practiced at all times, and when laws and order are developed, they should aim at promoting equality rather than acting only on one side.
Alexander, Michelle. New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. Harvard University Press. New Press, 2016.
Muhammad, Khalil Gibran. The Condemnation of Blackness Race, Crime, and the Making of Modern Urban America. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 2011. .
1. Alexander, Michelle. New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. Harvard University Press. New Press, 2016.
2. Muhammad, Khalil Gibran. The Condemnation of Blackness Race, Crime, and the Making of Modern Urban America. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 2011. .
The Condemnation of Blackness. (2018, Dec 17).
Retrieved December 7, 2021 , from
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