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Michelle Alexander: Roots of Today's Mass Incarceration Crisis Date to Slavery, Jim Crow

http://democracynow.org - The U.S. Justice Department has concluded that the police and city courts in Ferguson, Missouri, routinely engaged in a pattern and practice of discrimination against African Americans. Despite comprising about 66 percent of the local population, African Americans accounted for 93 percent of arrests, 88 percent of incidents where force was used, 90 percent of citations and 85 percent of traffic stops. The Justice Department, which launched its report after the police killing of Michael Brown, also uncovered at least three municipal Ferguson emails containing racist language or images. "The report does not give me hope. What gives me hope is that people across America are finally waking up," says Michelle Alexander, author of the best-selling book, "The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness." "There is a system of racial and social control in communities of color across America. … What we see now that we do have the power to make things change. The question is are we going to transition from protest politics to long-term, strategic movement building?”

This video is an excerpt of the Democracy Now! interview with Michelle Alexander. Watch the full 45-minute discussion here: http://www.democracynow.org/appearanc...

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