Racial Disparity in the Criminal Justice system.brianne.thompson
As a person of color, a women of color at that, this hits home for me. I am not a person to talk about my experiences a lot of the time, but I feel as though this is an appropriate time to do so. Racial Disparity, “the proportion of a racial or ethnic group within the control of the system is greater than the proportion of such groups in the general population (Sentencing Project).” Is a big problem that I myself, and many others face on a day to day basis. When we look at color and position in society, white men are at the top, then Black men, then White women, and then lastly Black Women. Black people, or minorities for that matter are not valued like those of our peers.
We can see examples of this with police officers and racial bias and profiling. The picture on the left of Justin Bieber and Richard Sherman is a good example of this. As a society we are so quick to think that an African American is a “Thug”, uneducated, not a law abiding citizen hampered to his white counter parts. in this photo we can clearly see that is not the case. This is not a rare picture either, this is a reality. Because of the disproportionate representation of African Americans, especially African American males incarcerated it makes it hard to believe that there are quote on quote “good” African Americans out there. I myself as well as many of my uncles have been racially profiled. It infuriates me more than anything else.
In the video right below this, she talks about many of the disparities that we can see in the criminal justice system. many being that of the crack cocaine and powder cocaine disparity, as well as the incarceration disparity, and jury selection bias. She goes on to tell explain more of the disparities that many African Americans face on a daily basis. We can also see this with traffic violation bias. A police officer might pull someone over for a minor traffic violation but then go on to abuse his power and search the car for weapons or drugs because of the color of the person they pulled overs skin.
What the women in this video is talking about like i said is the truth for many African Americans in this country today. It breaks my heart that many of my brothers and sisters are pressed and have a harder time living in a society that doesn’t even want them here in the first place.
1. Should/would cultural competency trainings be of help to law enforcement including those of lawyers, judges, etc. when dealing with minorities in the criminal justice system?
2. If the Crack Cocaine vs. Powder Cocaine disparity dropped, how would we get racial disparity to not be a problem in this country at the level it is today?
3. What systematic change would it take for minorities to not be presses, as well as face a disparity when in the criminal justice system?