Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Geneva Convention

The Geneva Convention, established in 1949, is a set of rules that applies to prisoners of war and how they are treated by the U.S government. This convention includes the forbidding of “cruel treatment”, “humiliating and degrading treatment”, and torture. But, some of these prisoners of war are held in countries outside of the United States; this raises the question in regards to if these detainees should receive the same rights that a U.S citizen would receive.  Mora brings up the argument in which there should be no difference in in the way U.S Citizens and noncitizens are treated. My friend and I agree; if the United States is a place in which life, liberty, and pursuit is glorified, why should there be a difference in the way people are treated based on their citizenship status. Also, according to my friend and me, the standards of the Geneva Convention should be applied to each and every prisoner of war regardless of their citizenship status. But, torture is still done to these prisoners of war. However, these methods of torture haven’t and most likely won’t get the detainee to release any information. Due to this, my friend and I believe that it would be most beneficial to find alternative methods in trying to gain information from the prisoners of war.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Korematsu vs. United States

During World War Two in 1944, the case of Korematsu vs. The United States took place and was just another way that America found to discriminate against another race. It was a 6-3 case in which 6 were for the United States and three were against. This case dealt with the exclusion of Japanese Americans in order to protect the security of the country. The government had first placed a curfew on the Japanese Americans living on the West Coast; they had to stay in their houses from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. After America realized that treating these people as teenagers wasn't going to work, they decided to isolate them into internment camps in order to make sure the disloyal members of their group weren't working with the Japanese government and planning an attack.

Although it was important for the government to protect the security of the nation during the time of war, there could have been a 100 different approaches the government could have taken. Instead of specifically finding those who were involved with working with the government, they targeted the whole group. And even though the government believes that these internment camps would provide the right security, "Japanese Americans were forced to sell their homes and personal belongings and move." Also, the camps were basic or barracks and "many of them didn't have running water or cooking facilities" which made them difficult to live in. This shows that this was a way that the government was discriminated against this race since they didn't bother placing them in livable camps after these people had to sell their homes and belongings.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

racial caste

Racial caste is society's way of putting people in a ranking system. An obvious example of racial caste we see today is Men higher than Women. Similarly another racial caste that exists in society today, some may argue not as extreme as before, is White people over all the other minorities. The minorities tend to get grouped in one big category but it is usually White Men, White Women, Men of a minority, Woman of a minority. However, with mass incarceration, we continue this racial caste. As discovered, the minorities, especially black people, make up most of the population in jails. Being a person in jail automatically puts you way below any rank in society since you are now considered a "criminal" or a "felon". But, since it is not legally and societally okay to say White people on top everyone on the bottom, a way to create this racial caste is by taking minorities and making them automatically part of the lowest class by making them "criminals". There are many rights that are taken away from felons: such as the ability to vote and jury service. These were rights that were taken away from blacks during the Jim Crow era, and are taken away now by mass incarnation. We are going in a circle and finding a way to make minorities, especially black people, "rightfully" the lowest class.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


Justice is not colorblind; justice is determined by race. Although this is an extreme statement supported by Michelle Alexander, it is backed up with plenty of facts. Starting from the War on Drugs, race played a big issue. Looking at some facts, Alexander explains how white people are equally and sometimes more responsible for selling drugs, yet only black people get caught for it. “Where do whites get their illegal drugs?" she asks. "Do they all drive to the ghetto...No...Whites tend to sell to whites; blacks to blacks” (Alexander, 2). This is just one example of how one race is targeted and constantly suppressed due to race.

Although some may say that their is no racial caste system today, I believe there still is. Clearly the white race is regarded as superior to all other races. They are the majority, and there are ways to target every other group. Whether is would be the War on Drugs for blacks, “illegal” Mexicans and them “taking jobs away” like other “illegal” immigrants, there is a racial caste system still today. This plays into the idea of the era of colorblindness. People still use race today to justify their actions, stereotypes, or microaggressions. Although people try to be “colorblind” to race, it does not, and will not mask the racial caste that is present in society. To conclude this post, Alexander wrote this quote that sums this blog post up, “...evidence will almost never be found in the era of colorblindness, because everyone knows -- but does not say -- that the enemy in the War on Drugs can be identified by race" (Alexander 2).

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Law and Order

When I think of law and order I immediately associate that with the judicial system and/or crimes. Likewise, this was a “tactic” used around the 1950s to keep racism alive. For the people of color, especially those who were black, being targeted by the law for crimes was the new thing. This created another separation between the low class and lower-middle class whites. This not only made it socially acceptable for even the poorest out of the white class to be “higher in rank” than the people of color, but also sometimes punished them with minor crimes. This was new racial bribe that existed and functioned in society.

Another issue politically was the divide in political parties. At this time period, most Southerners were part of the Democratic party. And since racial bribes pretty much alienated the people of color from the whites, it made it impossible for them to easily fit in politically. Southern white moved to the Republic Party in response to the calls for "law and order" and the new racial bribe it offered.


Monday, February 6, 2017

The New Jim Crow

As Alexander states, Reconstruction occurred from around 1863 with freeing the slaves and ended around 1877 when the federal troops from the South were removed. Although many actions were in place during that time period, one of the most problematic issues came in place after which was known as Jim Crow. Jim Crow is referred to as a time where lots of laws were created in making it legal and okay to segregate Whites from Blacks. Alexander explains that legal segregation came to end due to the Brown v. Board of Education decision. This was a trial that started in 1952 in order to get equality in the educational system as a start. “It signaled the end of ‘home rule’ in the South with respect to racial affairs," Alexander writes. The decision "threatened to not only abolish segregation in public schools,but also, by implication, the entire system of legalized discrimination in the South” (Alexander, 3). And with this trial came a decision that supported what this trial had sought: racial equality. The ruling sparked violent outbursts, which led to rebellions since whites, especially those in the South, “[searched] for a new racial order that would conform the needs and constraints of the time” (Alexander, 5). But, then as now, crime was used in order to keep the blacks slaves. It is another way for slavery to be justified in today’s society. Although we have moved on from awful time like slavery and Jim Crow, the new Jim Crow is referred to as “demanding ‘law and order’ rather than ‘segregation forever’” (Alexander, 5).

Racial Bribe

When I researched the term racial bribe, the definition I found was something along the lines of “parceling out special privileges to middle class and poor whites to drive a wedge between slaves and white and Black bond workers.” I found this quite interesting that this term actually had a definition and how it was present through many phases in the United States. It was present throughout slavery, then the Jim Crow, and finally the “New Jim Crow.” The New Jim Crow is how particularly in the minority races, especially blacks, are targeted through the criminal justice system in a way to “justify” a reason to attack this group.

This idea of “racial bribe” created a new momentum of keeping the caste system present since slavery. And these ideals of democracy, that are present in many constitutional documents, was trying to be reconciled by the white population in America in reference to slavery. They tried to do this by finding every possible way with loopholes to keep blacks and other races much lower than the whites. Whether it was with poll taxes and literacy rates, certain laws, or the rights that come with citizenship, it all had one goal with is still present today: white supremacy.