Essay on How Race And Privilege Affect Criminal Sentencing

1246 Words Dec 1st, 2016 5 Pages
Privilege and race, two strong factors that have influenced the verdict in sentencing and punishments for decades. These relations represent how race and privilege affect criminal sentencing and how it relates to social justice issues. As defined in class, social justice is “the view that everyone deserves equal economic, political and social rights and opportunities” (CMU BLACKBOARD), however through research this is not always the case when dealing with the race and privilege of a defendant facing sexual assault charges. Some defendants were stripped away their civil rights and dignity due to stereotypes and bias that were formed in relation to their race and standing with privilege.
Some of the historical context supporting these causes date back all the way to post civil war times. For example, Angela Davis, an American political activist, academic scholar and authors wrote an excerpt “Women, Race, & Class” that discussed “in the history of the United States, the fraudulent rape charge stands out as one of the most formidable artifices invented by racism. The myth of the Black rapist has been methodically conjured up whenever recurrent waves of violence and terror against the Black community have required convincing justifications”. (Davis, A) Lynching increased as a social response to perceived assaults focused around these bias, and at one point “legal lynching” occurred to justify the unequal treatment of black men. As stated, “lynching, in turn complemented by the…

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