Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Prison Industrial Complex

Michelle Alexander explains how the get-tough-on-crime policies were enacted in the 1970's were an effort to push back the gains of the Civil Rights Movement.

From Publishers Weekly "Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama's political success and Oprah Winfrey's financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today... than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits. Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don't know the truth about mass incarceration—but her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that." Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Michelle Alexander is an associate professor of law at Ohio State University.
Source: BookTV: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

Next week Tom Friedman lays out why a carbon tax could save America.

Download or Play Alexander Part 1
Download or Play Alexander Part 2
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Music includes The Producers - Springtime for Hitler, Roy Zimmerman - Socialist!, In The Dark, Joan Baez - One Tin Soldier, Buffalo Springfield - For What It's Worth, Crosby Stills Nash & Young - Ohio, John Kennedy - Civil Rights, The Beatles - Piggies, Phil Ochs - There But for Fortune, Its A Beautiful Day - White Bird, Stephen Longfellow Fiske - Earth Anthem, Peter, Putumayo Presents - Jamaica Midnight in Ethiopia

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