Mass Incarceration Of African Americans Essay

1251 Words Apr 29th, 2016 6 Pages
The topic that will be discussed in this paper is the mass incarceration of African American males in the United States. However, before we can address the problem of the mass incarceration among African American males one needs to understand that mass incarceration is happening across the board for all groups in the United States. According to an article by Jim Webb, the US is only 5 percent of the world’s population but, this country now holds almost 25 percent of the worlds reported prisoners. So, going based off of that statistics it only makes since to say that the US has the highest rates of incarceration. Yet, out of a population of 2,220,300 adults who were incarcerated in the US, African American males make up 745,000 of that 2,220,300. (Bureau of Justice Statistic, 2013) In countless articles it mentions that rates of incarcerated among African American males in the US are one of the highest in the world. However, according to Gilda Graff (2015) this problem did not just appear out of thin air, it started with the War on Drugs in the 1980’s administered by Reagan. When looking at the rates of incarceration starting from the 1980’s till now, one could see the increase of African American males being incarcerated. “From 1980 to 2008, the number of people incarcerated in America quadrupled-from roughly 500,000 to 2.3 million people” (, n.d.) Which would confirm that the War on Drugs has done nothing but in prison more African American males while drug…

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