[SOLVED] respond to two peers

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[SOLVED] respond to two peers
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Respond to two classmates concerning their article that has to do with race/ethnicity. 150 words, 1 reference each.

Response 1: Alex

The article I have chosen is entitled “Race and Criminal Justice,” which was published in 2018 by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). It focuses primarily on the criminal justice system and how it is racially biased. The evidence it uses pertains to the infamous War on Drugs. The article asserts that even though whites use illegal drugs more often than blacks (no idea how they can prove that), blacks are arrested at much higher rates (nearly 10-1). Furthermore, it discusses how new laws passed by Congress, such as the Fair Sentencing Act, target this discrepancy and help to combat systemic racism in our criminal justice system. I selected this article because as a political science major, I often hear from people about the problems with our criminal justice system – specifically, how it is racist. The article is relevant to this week because it discusses how race is a contemporary social problem in the criminal justice system.

While I agree with the core premises of the article, I disagree with its conclusion. Listing specific instances of racism, which we all know exist, does not in any way prove that there is a systemic problem. For example, I often hear people on the right use the actions of a single illegal immigrant to justify that the U.S. should deport all illegals within the country. Obviously, many people in this country regardless of their legal status contribute to the country in a positive way. Using one example of a police officer pulling over a black man because of blatant prejudice does not mean that every police officer adheres to that ideology. Likewise, one act of racism by law enforcement is not conclusive evidence that the criminal justice system is racist.

As a member of the football team here at RMU, the majority of my team is black. They are definitely at risk of being the subjects of one of these biased attacks by law enforcement. Prejudices absolutely exist, and nobody denies that. However, it is important to keep in mind that the society does not systematically benefit whites over blacks. We are not living through the Jim Crow era, thankfully.


Response 2: Elizabeth

The article I’ve chosen is originally written for the New York Times. Two high school 17 year old boys are being accused of harassing four middle school aged African American girls. The boys used racial slurs against the young girls and even went as far as urinating on one of them. The article focuses the idea of race as a social construct, only fabricated by our minds and the roles we assign to others as a society. It is clear to the author that the young boys involved in this feel resentment towards these girls. The author believes that the boys were fueling their actions with empowerment they have received from cultural racism and empowerment they have both found in society and fabricated in their minds.

This article speaks to because I have African American friends who are parents. I often speak to these friends about their parenting woes and they confide in me. We often speak of racial issues and how their experience differs. I cannot imagine having to go through this with my own children, and having to have a conversation with them as to just why these boys felt they should take action like this. This could be interpreted as a serious hate crime. These girls will have ti go through life with this awful memory and experience. They will forever have this assault and trauma, leaving a very poor impression of “whiteness” as the article states.


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