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Excutions - Essay Example

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Civilizations define themselves by how, when and whom they punish. These choices are important especially in a society like ours, the United States; which has a long history of both violence and official racism. For many centuries throughout the world and in the USA, the ethnocentric beliefs have shaped social relations based on class, race/ethnicity and gender…
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Extract of sample "Excutions"

Download file to see previous pages Keeping in view this social condition, the sociologists try to explore crime, crime control and the administration of criminal justice from the point of social constructionism. They view 'crime' and 'criminals' a product of social and political interests and where besides other, the most dominating factor are class, race and gender. They also take into consideration the historical and contemporary practices of criminal justice which is shaped and experienced by the racial and ethnic minorities and majorities, the rich and poor and by men and women, so as to help us understand the numerous social realities of justice in the United States; as this essay will try to examine the pattern of execution based on race, gender and class.
The study of social inequalities has always been the central focus of sociologists. They are not only interested in issues related to race/ethnicity, gender and class but also the intersections of these dimensions by employing a wide variety of methods from the ethnographic fieldwork and in-depth interviews to multilevel social and networks methods and statistical models. According to The ABA Kennedy Commission Report (June 23, 2004), the United States puts more people behind bars than any other country in the world and needs to eradicate the disproportionate impact 'tough on crime' laws it has for minorities. This is not because of higher criminal behavior among blacks, but because as compared to non-whites, they are more likely to be imprisoned especially as drug users. Though white drug dealers outnumber the black ones but 86.8% of those imprisoned for drug charges are blacks.
In the 1980s, the media talked about drug-addicted mothers, perpetuating the racial stereotypes of African American women who trading sex for drugs rather than a white middle class woman snorting the more expensive cocaine powder. While the poor black pregnant women became targets of the criminal justice system, the middle and the upper class women escaped scrutiny of the criminal justice agents into the private facilities of detoxification. Similarly, most studies on crime take a narrow approach to the subject by treating a crime as simply a violation of legalized social norm that carries a penal sanction.
The figure among black males was 3,405. Much of the history of sentencing reform both in capital and non-capital punishment has been influenced by implicit concerns about racial disparities and discriminatory decision making in the criminal justice system. In a study carried out to find whether the four delinquency theories, strain, social learning, low self-control and control theories could better explain juvenile offending in comparison to gender, race and class impact on delinquency. The findings suggested that the quantitative analysis is an effective tool for detecting intersectional differences resulting from gender, race and class to support feminist assertions that general theories are less universal than claimed by their proponents. Based on the unfair racial disparities in federal sentencing, a report released in 1984 by the United States Sentencing Commission confirmed, that the average federal prison sentence for black offenders was about five months longer than for whites. By 2001, the average sentence ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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