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Books

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness
Michelle Alexander, The New Press, 2010.
Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e 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 Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today… than were enslaved in 1850).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 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.

 

Pipe Dream Blues: Racism & the War on Drugs

Clarence Lusane, South End Press, 1999.

Addressing the political and racial angles, Lusane puts a new spin on the drug issue; his contention that the war on drugs is a racial battle is supported by a huge amount of research and historical background. He concludes with specific recommendation such as more treatment centers and new police methods, and with a call for political and economic power, which he shows to be the most vital weapons to win this war.

 

Video

 

Slavery by Another Name

Directed by Sam Pollard, produced by Catherine, Allan and Douglas Blackmon, PBS, 90 minutes.
Challenges one of Americans’ most cherished assumptions: the belief that slavery in this country ended with the Emancipation Proclamation. The film tells how even as chattel slavery came to an end in 1865, thousands of African Americans were pulled back into forced labor with shocking force and brutality.

 

Websites

 

 The Sentencing Project  has become a leader in the effort to bring national attention to disturbing trends and inequities in the criminal justice system.

 

Alternative Directions, Inc.  a Baltimore-based statewide nonprofit organization that helps men and women in prison and those leaving prison become independent, responsible citizens.

 

Out For Justice, Inc., a Baltimore-based grassroots non-profit, organizing for systemic change to remove barriers to re-entry for ex-offenders.

 

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