Race politics opinion paper

In Masked Racism, Reflections on the Prison Industrial Complex (1998), Angela Davis, the eminent African American social activist and intellectual, notices that among the almost two million people incarcerated, 70 percent are blacks and Latinos, although, together, they only represent 28.7 percent of the US population. She continues by saying that To deliver up bodies for profitable punishment, the political economy of prisons relies on racialized assumptions of criminality—such as images of black welfare mothers reproducing criminal children—and on racist practices in arrest, conviction, and sentencing patterns (642). To the contrary, John McWhorter, another prominent African American Linguistic Professor, states in his 2001 book, Losing the Race, that a deeply cult of victimology grips the entire black community. Rejecting the assumption that the police and judicial system are biased against blacks, he supports the “differential involvement hypothesis,” which maintains that minorities are overrepresented at every stage of the criminal and juvenile justice system because they commit more crimes, for more extended periods of their lives, and more of the types of crime, such as violence, that lead to processing within the criminal justice system. He further adds that Victimology, separatism, and anti-intellectualism underlie the general black community’s response to all race-related issues.… Today, these three thought patterns impede black advancement much more than racism; and dysfunctional inner cities, corporate glass ceilings, and black educational underachievement will persist until such thinking disappears. In my experience, trying to show many African-Americans how mistaken and counterproductive these ideas are is like trying to convince a religious person that God does not exist: the sentiments are beyond the reach of rational, civil discourse (129). As you see it, which one of the two eminent African American intellectuals’ statements concerning the overrepresentation of the minority groups in our jails and prisons is correct?