Mass Incarceration In The State Prison System

1076 Words 5 Pages
The practice of mass incarceration in the state prison system is an epidemic that stretches far beyond the stringent sentencing guides that are imposed by the state legislatures. This crisis is one that is attributed throughout all levels of the government. As a result, America has suffered both economically and socially because of mass incarceration. The United States prison population has more than quadrupled due to harsher penalties for non-violent offenses (Mass Incarceration in the USA). The data shows that one out of every four human beings are locked up in the “land of the free”. In 1972 the prison population was 300,000. Today, the U.S. has the highest rate of incarceration in the world. (Duvernay, 2016). Ultimately, mass incarceration …show more content…
Those who are in a position to make a change are unsure on what needs to be done and how changes should be implemented. Statistics show that the U.S. incarcerates more people, per capita, than any other nation. Therefore, over 2.3 million people are locked up in local jails, prisons, immigration detention facilities, etc. The era of mass incarceration can be attributed to several reasons such as the “tough on crime” approach and the start of the “war on drugs” during the Nixon period. The numerous attempts by the government to modify policies have failed and actually lead to the increase in the incarceration of non-whites. Nonetheless, despite the drastic numbers, Americans as a whole have been desensitized to the entire process and something needs to be done to fix the crisis of mass incarceration (Reid, …show more content…
From their perspective, in the 1970’s public officials focused on violent crime as being a problem. They suggested that African Americans were becoming more violent and were a threat to whites. This information was disseminated to the public by the media. The media does not always provide us with the reality of what’s going on but instead puts emphasis on news that’s going to grab our attention. Particularly, violent crime. Especially those committed by African Americans against whites. This indeed caused fear within the people (Ismaili,

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