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Social Science Mass Incarceration Problem Within the Us Criminal Justice System Essay

Read Chapter 1 of Michelle Alexander, The New Jim
Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness (New York: The New
Press, 2011), 13. (available on Blackboard) Locate Alexander’s key argument in
the book. What is she arguing and why? Write an analytical essay in which you
discuss whether you or not you support Alexander’s position on mass
incarceration and race. Discuss specific points from the book that address
Alexander’s main arguments. What specific steps can we take as a society to
address mass incarceration. 2. Read John Pfaff’s “Locked In” first chapter (on
Blackboard) and this article
and listen to the following Podcast
What does Pfaff argue is the cause of current mass incarceration? What is the
role of t‌‌‍‌‌‍‍‌‍‌‍‍‍‍‍‌‌‍‌he prosecutor in driving mass incarceration? What
is the standard story? What data does Pfaff use to make his point? What is
Pfaff’s critique of Michelle Alexander and the reforms undertaken to date? Is
John Pfaff “color blind” or “tone deaf” on race and its role in the criminal
justice system? 3. What to do next? Assuming that John Pfaff is at least partly
correct in that violent crime is driving mass incarceration today, how can we deal
with the issue of mass incarceration? What is the best way to prevent violent
crime? What role can diversion or alternative actions by prosecutors make in
reducing mass incarceration? What is the proper punishment for violent crime
once a person has been convicted? Can people convicted of violent crimes be
rehabilitated? When is incarceration an appropriate punishment for crime? What
role does fear and electoral politics play in mass incarceration? Is there any
hope for a cultural shift in the United States away from mass incarceration and
a culture of punishment? Address specifically the challenges of dealing with
violent crime from the perspective of both defendants, victims, and
communities. How can we ensure public safety and uphold justice while reduc‌‌‍‌‌‍‍‌‍‌‍‍‍‍‍‌‌‍‌ing
mass incarceration?


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