In the United States, history repeats itself on a daily. From a young age, schools teach us about several events that make America what it is today. From learning about Revolutions to Slavery, we are tricked into thinking that it is all over. We learn the lesson, take the test, and throw all the knowledge away.
The Thirteenth Amendment, is known by most people as the Amendment that abolished slavery. It stated, “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime where of the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
This Amendment however did not completely abolish slavery because slavery is still being expressed in several ways such as in prisons. The United States has the highest rate of incarceration per 100,000 in the world. People of color make up about 37% of the US Population and 63% of Prisons. One in three black men will end up in jail.
This is supposed to be the land of the free but it is not and we still have people believing that slavery is over when it is not. The United States holds only five percent of the world population, however it has approximately 25 percent of its prisoners. Not only is this happening because of people of color are being stopped by police more, it goes beyond racial profiling. Low income black urban communities are populated with many more police officers than white neighborhoods. The way these neighborhoods are policed is unjust because the people are stopped for the same things that someone driving through a rich neighborhood wouldn’t be stopped for. The officers are harsh and something so simple could turn into a large crime ending with another prisoner who is of color. People are stopped without being part of a crime but because of their background they are automatically a suspect.
In traffic, drivers that are of color are more likely to be stopped and given tickets than white drivers. Many of the times they are unable to pay the ticket which leads to their driver license being revoked and possibly jail.
We can not deny that this isn’t enough proof that white privilege exists.
The war on drugs plays a role in these unfair incarceration’s. It is shown that whites and blacks use drugs at around the same rate yet blacks get arrested for it more than 3.73 times than whites. Although whites are actually more likely to sell more drugs.
Furthermore bail is usually too pricey for people arrested from poor neighborhoods to pay. Therefore they are left in jail until their trial. Some people do not even go to trial because they can not afford a lawyer.
Slavery has not ended yet has been replaced with unfair mass incarceration’s in the United States. The 13th amendment did not abolish slavery and this needs to be included in educational lessons because change is what is needed.