Summary Of The Fire Next Time By James Baldwin

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The U.S. has had its fair share of violent and oppressive history. The darkest times in history for the U.S. is not often highlighted because it criticizes white dominance. It necessarily does not put America in a negative light, but it becomes critical of whites. In James Baldwin’s “The Fire Next Time”, the claim that white people are “slightly mad victims of their own brainwashing” is due to the misunderstanding of their own history and social situation. This can be illustrated through the social and political control of conflict leasing and the War on Drugs. There are countless examples in history that showcases the grave control that white people had over black people. One example is of convict leasing, mentioned in Slavery by Another …show more content…
White crime has always been deemed individualized, while black crime was collectivized. Criminalizing the black life has been done for more than a century. The media is always quick to point out “crime rates” and “black on black” crimes to the point that it becomes normalized. As a result, racial stereotypes become used to ‘explain’ the nature of black people. Baldwin points out the actuality of white people talking about black people is simply because they are talking about themselves. White people fool themselves into thinking they know more about non-whites when they actually barely know anything at all. They do not know anything about themselves therefore they express that by picking on the blacks at every single thing they do; trying to come up with excuses to prove that they are inferior (44). It has gotten to the point that the term criminal is synonymous to the black man. With the results of the War on Drugs, mass incarceration is used to discipline the black population. It has become the legal means of a racialized social control. The reason for mass incarceration is not because of crime rates increasing, but of the changes in law and policy. This is what so many fellow Americans, mostly white, have failed to learn. The propagation of racist stereotypes and assumptions of black people has lead the average American into likely believing that black people are prone to using drugs more than their white counterparts. In reality, there is no difference in the amount of drug use between blacks and whites but that does not get

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