The Age Of Mass Incarceration Essay example

1973 Words Nov 8th, 2016 8 Pages
In the age of mass incarceration, a failed criminal justice system has left the United States with the largest imprisoned population in the world. There are many different elements that have helped play a part in this flawed criminalization regime which can all be traced back to the early history of the country. The 14th amendment though serving as a protection for citizens has with the addition of the war on crime helped disenfranchise much of the population in turn giving whites surrounding prisons unanticipated power. It is the creation of power relations throughout the country 's history that have helped cement the current criminal justice system into what it is today. Power relations such as the concept of “Property”, “Social death”, and the use of slavery as a business have all helped promote and form the current foundations of the U.S incarceration system.
Back when slavery was running rampant in the United States people, specifically slaves were not seen as human beings anymore but were instead considered “property”. To properly understand how the concept of property is continuously perpetuated in the foundation of the current criminal justice system one must define slavery as more than how it’s described in current modern legal terms. Most definitions of slavery place heavy emphasis on the property aspect of slavery which to many must be primary in what differentiates slavery from all the other forms of dependency and involuntary labor. The problem with this as a…

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