Many see the criminal justice system as a helping hand and as a place where everything is correct to keep the lives of the American citizens safe and give sense of security. Although this is all very true, through thorough research it was prevalent that incarceration rates are indeed very biased and extremely racist which is calling for some change. Solely looking into the state of New York, one of America’s most well known states it is inevitable that a bigger change must take place. In one prison, not only is their prejudices against those behind bars but as well to those working as officers at the prison which can very easily affect the jail in it’s entirety. It was stated that only one out of 998 guards was African American which is clearly not an evenly present ratio (Winerip). Whether directly or indirectly caused by this factor it was also present in that same prison located in New York that the minority African Americans were about at least four times as likely as whites to be sent to prisons and were held there for an average of 125 days, compared to only 90 days for whites (Winerip). Why this occurs many do not know, this is one of many examples present in the United States of unjust criminal systems. The NY Times went to further investigate this issue and as stated found “[P]rison horror stories featuring guards who beat and torture inmates, knowing that their union will shield them from punishment and that district attorneys in towns dominated by prisons will look the other way. But wanton brutality is only one aspect of a prison system in which there is little respect for the rule of law or human rights” (The Editorial). Of course this came with much racial influence as the African Americans were prime targets. Not only is this a problem in that state of New York but in nearly every state has a disproportionately black prison. Also shows that officers are put above the rest as if they can’t do anything wrong. They are very closely protected by the laws. The prison system for the most part is behind closed doors and many are not bothered to help change the system, nor realize the significant impacts brought upon by time in prison.
In continuation, enduring prolonged amounts of time in prison is can be both mentally and physically strenuous on inmates which is an additional reason to shift some of these preconceived ideas on criminal systems. One great example is the inability to fit back into the mainstream of society once one is released from prison, because it is almost impossible to return to their customs; which, sometimes results in more trouble and sometimes it can even result in a visit back to jail. Although every race does indeed suffer from this lack of treatment and brutality inside of prisons it was found by ATTN that African Americans did have a 2.52 time ratio of being put into solitary over whites (Macarow). It isn't only those minorities such as the latinos or African Americans who end up in solitary; however, they appeared to much more often than white people in the United States. Furthermore, the minorities are also vastly less likely to receive the appropriate and necessary mental health care while in this lockup situation. This leads to greater mental health issues aswell, it can even keep them in solitary confinement for prolonged periods. So it seems in every aspect of the U.S. criminal system there is at least some form of racial presence.