Finals ps129.docx - 1 Medium Answer#1 During the era of...

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1) Medium Answer #1 During the era of slavery Blacks were looked at as Sambos; happy, silly and stupid and generally no complaints about their lives. As Blacks increasingly became free and independent from oppressive systematic slavery, they began to demand total legal equality through a civil rights movement. The success of the movement triggered racial resentment, and put a target on the backs of Blacks all across America. Throughout the 1950’s, President Richard Nixon declared an all out war on public enemy number one, drug use. Nixon recruited former Southern Democrats to join the criminalization of drugs through subtle racial codes about getting tough and establishing law and order in the inner cities. Blacks became associated with heroin and were slandered in the media. The war on drugs and crime just became more prevalent in the 1980’s, as the crack epidemic ravaged inner city Black communities. The government declared a war on drugs and crime, and created unfair mandatory sentences for crack possession. These mandatory sentences became a burden on Blacks, bills passed throughout the 1990s lead to the prison population surpassing two million with Blacks being disproportionately targeted. Racial attitudes about Blacks being subhuman violent criminals became prevalent throughout public opinion about the criminal justice system, due to the framing of the government and media. The racialization of the criminal justice system occurred through the 1950’s-2000’s, from Nixon’s all out war on crime and drugs, to Clinton’s war on drugs. Political figures during this era all took tough stances on crime and drugs, and built the stereotypes to dehumanize Blacks as super predators, and criminals. These political figures used the media to racialize the criminal justice system policies through subtle racial codes such as the ones Nixon used throughout the 1950’s. Crime has played into the politics of racial resentment because as Blacks began to seek legal equality and protection through the civil rights movement, President Nixon began to call for setting the inner cities “straight” and establishing “law and order”. These calls wiped out leaders
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