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Incarceration Rate at 40% For Black Men in Their 20′s and 30′s Without a High School Diploma

If you take a serious look at why so many blacks are trapped in poverty, then you can’t escape the role that the prison industrial complex plays in tearing black families apart. Black men are often arrested at an early age, many for non-violent drug offenses, and locked away for decades. During that period, the families they leave behind are often trapped in a cycle of government assistance and poverty.

Carl Harris and Wife Charlene. Credit: New York Times

Carl Harris and Wife Charlene. Credit: New York Times

The New York Times reported the story of Carl Harris, who was jailed for two decades for selling crack,thus  leaving his wife and kids to fend for themselves for two decades. Harris worked while in prison, but the $1.15 per hour he earned wasn’t nearly enough to support his wife and family, which left his wife, Charlene Hamilton,  homeless more than once.

Hamilton also laments the toll her husband’s imprisonment had on her and her family psychologically.

“Basically, I was locked up with him,” she said. “My mind was locked up. My life was locked up. Our daughters grew up without their father.”

 Sadly this is not an isolated incident. The New York Times offers the staggering statistics as it relates to the mass incarceration of black males:

Among African-Americans who have grown up during the era of mass incarceration, one in four has had a parent locked up at some point during childhood. For black men in their 20s and early 30s without a high school diploma, the incarceration rate is so high — nearly 40 percent nationwide — that they’re more likely to be behind bars than to have a job.

And remarkably, no one in Washington D.C. is dealing with the epidemic of mass incarceration and the toll it’s taking on black families.

 

 

 

 

10 Responses to Incarceration Rate at 40% For Black Men in Their 20′s and 30′s Without a High School Diploma

  1. Gagner de l argent en bourse facilement

    May 2, 2014 at 10:33 am

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    April 6, 2014 at 9:27 am

    Continuez dans cette direction, c’est un veritable bonheur de vous suivre.

  3. Joe Harris

    February 21, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    I agree with Ann W., if Mr, Harris had not been selling crack he would not have been arrested. No one forced him to sell crack. If you don’t
    want to do the time don’t do the crime.

  4. missmargris

    February 20, 2013 at 12:33 am

    My opinion is that these black males aren’t the ones who initially brought the drugs in the hoods or low income black neighborhoods. The government did . We don’t have plans or boats to get that stuff in here. So the blame shouldn’t be put on them.

  5. James Alexander

    February 19, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    I think what is remarkable is that this writer of this article want’s everybody to think of these inmates and their families as victims. The victim(s) are the people who the crime(s) were committed. If somebody breaks into my house and steals the things I’ve worked for (and it’s happened more than once), and if somebody sells my kid or any family member some drugs and get them hooked, I want them put in jail and I really don’t care how long they’re there; the longer the better. If you have a family and commit a crime at whatever age when you know you could possibly go to jail; how can you say that you love your family? It’s always easier to defend criminals when their crimes aren’t against you. It’s a different story when you’re the victim.
    Our priority should be to do whatever is necessary to keep Black men out of prison and not get caught up in ones that are already there. With unemployment among Blacks as high as it is, what are these inmates going to do when they get out? Break into somebody’s house, sell some more drugs and end up right back in prison.

  6. Marla Kelly

    February 19, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    The anwser lies in the delivery of evidence-based clinical services within our communities. These services are currently very few, but must be supported and provided professionally. These services are proven successful in promoting graduation rates for underpriviledged largely African Americans who are likely to drop out of high school. Of course bettterschools will also be very helpful. Part of the real problem is the bureaucracies are exploiting these young men who also do not have legal representation. Both public and private prisons in cahoots with the criminal courts are all making their livlihood from incarceration of these defenseless young Black persons and also destoying their mental health.

  7. Marla Kelly

    February 19, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    The anwser lies in the delivery of evidence-based clinical services within our communities. These services are currently very few, but must be supported and provided professionally. These services are proven successful in promoting graduation rates for underpriviledged largely African Americans who are likely to drop out of high school. Of course bettterschools will also be very helpful. Part of the real problem is the bureaucracies are exploiting these young men who also do not have legal representation. Both public and private prisons in cahoots with the criminal courts are all making their livlihood from incarceration of these defenseless young Black persons and also destoying their mental health.

  8. Christopher

    February 19, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    What I find curious about the commentary about this particular issue is that people who have not been in these referenced “shoes” seem to make it seem as though it is so easy to get around this situation by just “not doing it”.

    Not having an education is already a problem which is an issue that should be dealt with in an another discussion, but addressing the incarceration issue, how do you explain the fact that a Black law abiding citizen has a harder time finding a job than a white ex-con? Or how about the persistent discrimination issue of Blacks within the workforce?

    I could go on about this issue, but I don’t think there’s anyone that has commented on this particular part thus far (David Beach, Ann G.) that can offer any particular intellect to this conversation.

  9. Ann G.

    February 19, 2013 at 8:05 pm

    I think there is only one thing to be said; Black men DO NOT
    have to be in prison not even for one day unless they have been falsely accused. Don’t do the crime, therefore you won’t do any time. You cannot complain about the time you are getting if you did the crime. If they were working and taking care of the babies they have produced they would not have the time to do wrong! Black men are aware of the unfair laws in this country so why do they continue to put themselves in these situations? It is a recurring cycle, the same ones continue to go in and out of prison. Why?

  10. BigWill

    February 19, 2013 at 7:36 pm

    Although this subject is super critical, the black community does not consider it important as evidenced by the lack of responses. History shows us If the topic was about Bey once or sports there would be nearly a hundred comments.