Social Stratification In The Legal System English And Anthropology Essay

1016 words - 5 pages

Now, I don’t want to scare anyone in this room, but you walk past 5 murderers in your life time. Katie right here has already walked past one murderer. She is lucky to be alive. But I’m not here to sympathize with the victims today. I am here to advocate for the desperate ex-convict, the homeless crack-addict, and the frightful minority mother whose son may not come home. Many of you in this room, right now, believes that the word of a judge is law. You believe that the judicial system is fair for everyone. There must be a nagging at the back of your mind that this isn’t true. I can show you with proof that this system is corrupted with social stratification. In truth, “criminals” are just as at fault as the criminal system that failed them. Unfair distributions of power and wealth amongst society create caste groups, and the subordinate group must endure more hardships, for example, injustice in court. Prejudice and discrimination in legal systems source from class competition, social disparities, and racial profiling. Is Canada and America really the land of freedom, diversity, and equality? Or is this flawless front hiding something sinister below?
Let’s start with a tragedy of the infamous Scottsboro Boys. Ninety years ago, nine black boys were on a train. They were accused of raping two white girls and sentenced to death by electric chair. This is an example of prejudice resulting from class competition. The legal system is supposed to serve all right? But, it’s ironic how it was first invented as a tool to protect white interests and keep blacks down. Doesn’t it scare you that the ethnocentric white society back then condemned murder rather than admitting that their own lied?
Fast forward to today. Men in power are still abusing the legal system to keep their competition down. In 2017, Trump revoked legal status from more than one million Americans by terminating Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). He claims that immigrants of color were hurting the economy by competing for jobs and interfering with the white nationalist agenda. What? problem with the US economy? Let’s lock some minorities up. I am creating jobs in jail and ICE. American is doing great. Whenever there are hardships, immigrants are always made scapegoats, and another crackdown on immigration begins. This is how social stratification in the legal system, fed by politicians who fear competition from minorities, comes to be.
The second cause of inequality in legal systems is social disparity. According to the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality, 50 percent of all African Americans and Latinos fall below the official poverty lin. Are we really surprised that social disparity land more minorities in jail? The U.S. News and World Report states that minority men under 40 whose economic opportunities have suffered in last 30 years make up 80 percent of American and Canada’s inmates. These people do not have education, job...

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