THE DEATH PENALTY, RACE AND MASS INCARCERATION
THE DEATH PENALTY, RACE AND MASS INCARCERATION
The booming population of prison in the United States is a major issue of conflict between masses and the criminal justice system. In 2016, it has been estimated that approximately 2.2 million incarcerated people are present in American jails or prisons. The numbers of people who graduate from honors degree are equal to people with criminal records. If the US contributes to the five percent of the world's population, then its prisons contain 25 % of the population (Bellin, p.835). This state of affairs is hugely disappointing for the social and political spectrum of the Americans, and they agree with the fact that mass incarcerations, the death penalty, or prosecution of criminals causes little good than bad and it also costs too much. The main argument of this essay is the inadequacy of the criminal justice system in punishing the law offenders and it is integrally flawed and corrupt. Therefore, this argumentative essay will analyze and explore the other arguments in view or in contrast to this argument.
The supporting fact of the flaws and corruption in the US criminal justice system and its faults include the category of financial demands capability. It means that if a person is rich and can afford bail it is easy for him to get out of jail than a poor person who is not capable of giving financial compensations. Statistically, it has been perceived that people who are convicted of felonies and crimes are usually poor and people from racial minorities (Spohn, p.330). The biases are shown from the attitudes of the judges for whom certain people are worthy of bail and others are not. Hence, people who cannot afford bail are subjugated to get imprisoned and around 6 million people are every year in jail just because they cannot afford bail. Even for minor offenses, the bail is so high that it is unaffordable for the poor persons to take bail and get out of the jail.
The criminals are not punished enough for the crimes they have committed or other people are punished more than its needed due to these unequal circumstances between both classes, i.e., upper and lower. The racial discrimination is another factor which is worth considering for while arguing about differential treatment on the bases of class, race or ethnicity. The US has been considered among the countries which have a dual system of criminal justice which has helped in maintaining the social and economic hierarchy based on the criminalization of blacks, known ad hyper-incarceration of black people (Alkon, p.191). It occurs due to the reason that society and criminal justice system chooses to be more punitive while dealing with the people of lower or racial backgrounds. The laws dealing with tough-on crimes are only maintainable through this dual system of legality which allowed the society in avoiding the trade-off among the society by enforcement of unequal treatment of law to retain the civil liberties.
There may be various counter-arguments in contradiction to the main argument that the US justice system is flawed and corrupt based on the practice of financial bail that I presented. Communities tend to sometimes financially or economically benefit from the practice of mass imprisonment and then bailing out on money. Firstly it helps in pushing the global markets and financial systems; secondly, it will help in circumventing the recession's threat (Covey, p.920). The financial bail from rich people will help in focusing on the rehabilitation of poor people and people who are from minority races and cultures and are subjugated to discrimination. The finances on the prisoners cost the whole country a lot, therefore such finances are equaled out when a rich person is out on bail. It helps in keeping the poor person good in jail. Then again I’ll argue that it will bring no good to the poor people as they are imprisoned.
Furthermore, there is no justifiable counterargument against the mass incarceration of poor or black people as what good will it bring to the country by incarcerating the people who cannot afford bail in contrast to the people who are rich and can afford plea bargain or bail ((Spohn, p.334). Children of black and poor people who are imprisoned suffer from homelessness, financial crisis and they are more likely to become criminals like their parents (Npr.org). This will bring no good to the community as well as those families who suffer at the hand of incarceration of their parents, siblings or relatives. The rehabilitation of incarcerated masses is not properly in action in the criminal justice system or else it would have been beneficial for the society.
In conclusion to this argumentative essay, it can be seen that there is no justification for the corrupt and flawed justice system in the US. No matter researchers and various studies have been defending the act of mass incarceration still it is not justifiable through any act or by any law. The bias and prejudice applied to the black people while in the criminal justice system is undeniably unjust and unfair. Therefore, the fairness of law and regulation is necessary for the betterment and wellbeing of society. The inadequacy of the criminal justice system in punishing the law offenders and it is integrally flawed and corrupt, thus there is need to eliminate the errors in the judicial system of criminals, as it will help in raising a crimeless country.
Alkon, Cynthia. "An overlooked key to reversing mass incarceration: Reforming the law to reduce prosecutorial power in plea bargaining." U. Md. LJ Race, Religion, Gender & Class 15 (2015): 191.
Bellin, Jeffrey. "Reassessing prosecutorial power through the lens of mass incarceration." Michigan Law Review 116 (2018): 835.
Covey, Russell D. "Plea Bargaining and Price Theory." Geo. Wash. L. Rev. 84 (2016): 920.
NPR Choice page. (2019). Npr.org. Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/2019/04/10/711654831/charged-explains-how-prosecutors-and-plea-bargains-drive-mass-incarceration
Spohn, Cassia. "Reflections on the exercise of prosecutorial discretion 50 years after the publication of The Challenge of Crime in a Free Society." Criminology & Public Policy 17.2 (2018): 321-340.
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