The War on Drugs is a War Against Race

Steve Kinsman By Steve Kinsman, 5th May 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/93ec.y.h/
Posted in Wikinut>News>Crime

The War on Drugs is a manifestation of institutional racism. It specifically targets African-Americans and Latinos.

Wars are fought against people

Wars are not fought against words, concepts, objects or diseases. Wars are fought with armed might against people. You can fight a war against terrorists, but you cannot fight a war on terror. You can apply research to find a cure for cancer, but you cannot fight a war on cancer. Neither can you fight a war on drugs, but you can fight a war against people who sell or use drugs, a war which has been conducted in America since the days of Richard Nixon.

It's all about race

Michelle Alexander, author of the book The New Jim Crow, has written an article for the web site alternet.org in which she states "...African Americans have been admitted to prison on drug charges at a rate up to 57 times higher than whites. In some states, up to 80 or 90 percent of all drug offenders sent to prison have been African Americans. The rate of Latino imprisonment is staggering as well. Although the majority of illegal drug users and dealers are white, three-fourths of all people imprisoned for drug offenses have been black or Latino."

The war on drugs is not being fought against young whites in suburbia. It specifically targets young men of color in inner city neighborhoods. Swat teams and special task forces invade the ghettos and barrios and make mass round ups, large scale sweeps and mass arrests. Police run stings and make undercover buys. Thousands of young blacks and Latinos are caught up in the process, becoming branded as criminals for the rest of their lives,

Economist Glenn Loury, in his book The Anatomy of racial Inequality, writes that "...it is nearly impossible to imagine anything remotely similar to mass incarceration happening to young white men. Can we envision a system that would enforce drug laws almost exclusively against young white men and largely ignore drug crime among young black men? Can we imagine large majorities of young white men being rounded up for minor drug offenses, placed under the control of the criminal justice system, labeled felons, and then subjected to a lifetime of discrimination, scorn and exclusion? Can we imagine this happening while most black men landed decent jobs or trotted off to college? No, we cannot. If such a thing occurred, it would occasion a most profound reflection about what had gone wrong, not with them, but with us - all of us. It would never be dismissed with the thought that white men were simply reaping what they have sown. The large-scale criminalization of white men would disturb us to the core."

You won't hear about it on CNN

The mainstream media will not touch this story, so we hear not a word of it. There isn't a politician anywhere - not Barack Obama, not the Republicans or Democrats, not the Libertarians, Independents or Tea Party folks - that will say a word about it.

We are creating, through this insane, immoral, misguided war, a permanent underclass of thousands of black and Latino men. America is said to be the land of opportunity, but for these young men the American Dream is a cruel and heartless joke.

Tags

African-Americans, Blacks, Crime, Latinos, Race, Steve Kinsman, War On Drugs

Meet the author

author avatar Steve Kinsman
I live in California with my wife Carol, where I have been practicing professional astrology for 35 years. I write articles on astrology, but I enjoy writing on a variety of other subjects as well..

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Comments

author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
6th May 2011 (#)

Steve could we also say that the war on drugs is a war against lower classes? I am sure drug use is more common among wealthy people, but nobody seems to go after them.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
6th May 2011 (#)

Right on, Mark.

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author avatar Songbird B
6th May 2011 (#)

Wow...this is pretty powerful...talk about making you think! Insightful share my friend..

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
6th May 2011 (#)

Yes, Songbird B. It is a shame, beyond shame, what is being done in America in the name of the war on drugs.

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author avatar Carol Kinsman
6th May 2011 (#)

You made some great points in the article. Thank you, Steve.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
6th May 2011 (#)

You're welcome, my love

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author avatar Jonathan
6th May 2011 (#)

Very interesting article. Tupac Shakur tried to tell "you" about these things long ago, but people didnt listen, i guess they were too busy worrying about his tatoos and his macho image to see what he was really about. Sad things.. If you go on youtube and watch "Tupac Amaru Shakur "interview" in jail", you will see that he is basically talking about some of the things you are talking about in your article.
Thanks for sharing

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author avatar Jerry Walch
6th May 2011 (#)

This is a very well written article Steve, but I think that you are overlooking many important factors. The war on drugs really isn't a war on race although many would like to see it that way. I'll grant you that more Blacks and Latinos end up in prison for drugs than whites do but that's because more Blacks and Latinos than whites choose to peddle the poisons on the streets. They are the ones that become involved in drive-by shootings where many innocent people have been caught in the deadly gun fire. They are the ones who recruit school children to sell their poison to other school children. As for the ratio of non-whites to whites in prison for drugs and drug related crimes, there are more Blacks and Latinos in state prisons than whites but if you look at the stats for the Federal Bureau of Prisons, there are more whites in federal prisons for drugs than there are non-whites. The reason for the discrepancy is that the sate get all the users and street level dealers while the Federal System get all the big boys who are mostly white. The interesting thing about statistics is that they can be made to show whatever the researcher wants them to show. What I have said is based on what friends and relatives who work in law enforcement and in the departments of corrections have told me and on what I have seen when I toured a few prisons. It is not a war on race, it is a war on drugs. Blacks and Latinos make the choice of their own free will to become involved in the trade. No white man puts a gun to their heads and forces them to become street dealers.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
6th May 2011 (#)

Jerry, if all drugs werer legal, we wouldn't be creating this underclass of people. People should be free to put whatever they want into their bodies, as long as it doesn't harm others. Legalize all drugs and save the taxpayers billions and crimme would be reduced exponentially. It'll never happen of course, because the prison-indusrial complex needs those bodies to keep coming to their jails so the profits can continuue, particularly since we now hve for-profit prisons.
Thanks for your comments - always appreciated.

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author avatar Goodpal
29th Jun 2011 (#)

Interesting discussion. Drugs are bad for people; that's why state bans it. Legalizing it means giving up the fight and saying that sorry we can't prevent its use or supply, so we are making it legal because we failed.

How about fighting the battle right where it originates: the users. If users, whether white, black or brown, are reformed through psychological counseling and other means, suppliers will go out of business.

Therefore, if the current practice of chasing suspects and putting them in jails is not working for whatever reason, commonsense demands that innovative ways of combat are discovered.

US is certainly a land of opportunities but not for those in the business of hallucination in broad day light !!

Thanks Steve, for touching upon an important problem people want to solve without an effective strategy.

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