Subject: History
Topic: Black Disenfranchisement in Policing
Language: English (U.S.)
Pages: 3
1-Discuss the documentary bowling for Columbine in the context of violence in America. According to the video, why are our murder rates higher than any other first world nation? What is the relationship between the United States and violence in other countries? Please speak specifically to examples from the documentary. 2. Discuss the Movie Sicko in the context of Marx and Engels theory. How would Neo-Marxist explain individual crime, organized crime, corporate crime and governmental crime? Is Sicko an example of one or all of them? Please explain. 3. Please explain “the Black Box” (Alexander’s book pages 151 – 154) and how it works to keep the already disadvantaged black male even more at a disadvantage as a black male with a felony conviction on his record. How does this lack of credentials to get a job impact their employment opportunities? And even more importantly, how does it impact their ability to generate income and contribute back to the communities they are released into? 4. Why does Michelle Alexander call this area of mass incarceration of Blacks the new Jim Crow? Please refer to her comments in Chapter 5 of her book. 5. Please discuss Michelle Alexander’s thoughts on “Rethinking Denial-or, where are Civil Rights Advocates when you need them?” (pages 223-229).

Bowling for Columbine- Documentary

The movie as narrated by Michael Moore explores what Moore suggests are the leading causes for the Columbine High School Massacre on 20th April 1999. It also depicts some other acts of violence with guns. According to the documentary, the crimes committed in the U.S. with firearms were substantially higher than any other country in the world. The documentary also tries to explain why the United States is faced with firearms crimes and rising levels of related offenses. The introduction shows a bank opening accounts for guns, provided one make a certain amount of deposit upon opening the bank account.

When conducting an interview with the Michigan’s Militia, they claim that they possess guns for self-security.

“Many people call the police because they do not own a gun.” Lack of legislation for guns and bullets control may be seen as the core cause of crimes.

Moore contrasts his portrayal of the U.S. attitude towards guns and violence with a similar attitude prevailing in areas of the neighboring Canada where gun ownership is at the same alarming levels as the United States. However, when he visits Canada he realizes there are fewer concerns about crime and insecurity unlike the U.S. the cause of high rates of crimes in the U.S. are related to Parental neglect, Televisions, movies, video games and radicalized music.

The government can also be blamed for failing to regulate the used of guns and the number of guns landing in the hands of juveniles. In the case of the Columbine shooting, the massacre was attributed to the aggressiveness of the gun possessing kids. From the documentary, racial profiling is also prominent with the black Americans Males imaged with the crime. The whites fear the African American males associating them with every kind of crime.

Sicko Documentary

Marxists see crime and deviance as defined by the ruling class and used as a mean of social control to which if you do not conform you will be punished. Existences of correction institutions like the justice system, prisons, and school are there to help the offenders to conform. Marxist also argue that the white collar crimes, which tend to be committed by the more powerful in the society, are more likely to be ignored. The crimes which are committed by less powerful people in the society such as pickpocketing, burglary, and other street crimes are focused and seen as more serious. Movie Sicko is just a representation of many corporate crimes, organized crimes, and governmental crime. There are a lot of embezzling of public resources such as drugs in the Health sectors. Sicko is an example of governmental cartels that collude to engage in organized, corporate and white collar crimes.

Black Box

The black ex-offenders are the most severely disadvantaged applicants in the modern job markets. Black men convicted of felonies are least likely to get jobs offers of any demographic group; the suburban employers are the most likely unwilling to hire them. According to the author, the employers are afraid of the violence by the black men about other groups. And although, many of the black offenders are put in the “Black Box,” there are no clear policies on retrieval of the box by, many employers. Employers, therefore, lack explicit measures of who is an ex-offender and who is not. They also may consciously or unconsciously treat all black men as though they have criminal records, effectively placing them as though they are all ex-offenders. Alexander argues that researchers suggest that banning the criminal box is not enough; we must change our mindset that puts the black men “in the box.”

The era of mass incarceration of Blacks the new Jim Crow

According to Jim Crows laws, the black Americans were relegated to the subordinate status for decades. She argues that things like literacy tests for voters and law designed that prevents the blacks from major public services such as education, work, and fair justice were in commonplace in nearly a dozen states. In her book, “The New Jim Crow”, Michelle Alexander, calls this era of mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness, the New Jim Crow. She claims that there exists numerous racial profiling on drugs and nonviolent crime in the U.S Department of Criminal Justice. In her statements in chapter five, she says, “The whiteness mitigates crime, whereas blackness defines crime.” She further writes that, “The absence of black fathers families across America is not simply a function of laziness, immaturity or too much time watching Sports Center. Thousands of black men have disappeared into prisons and jails, locked away for drugs crimes that are largely ignored when committed by whites”(180).

Rethinking Denial-or, where Civil Rights are advocates when you need them?

Michelle Alexander notes that the most sticking about the civil rights community’s response to mass incarceration of the black people is the relative quiet. Her argument is that regarding the scale of magnitude of the New Jim Crow, one would expect that the civil rights would be on the top war against the discrimination and 'criminalization' of the black on the drug war. She also points out that there a lot of colorblindness on the whites in crime and high rates or racial profiling and yet the human rights are indeed in silence.


Alexander, M. (January, 5 , 2010). The new Jim Crow: Mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness. United States of America: The New Publisher. doi: Criminal Justice, Racism, Social of Race and Ethnic Relation

NAACP image for Outstanding Literacy Work, Non fiction

C .N. Trueman (2016), "Marxism and Crime"http:/ The History Learning Site, 25 May 2015. 3 Mar 2016.

Moore, M. (Director), Moore, M., & O'Hara, M. (Producers), & Moore, M., & Moore, M. (Writers). (2007). Sicko [Motion picture]. United States: The Weinstein Company.

Moore, M. (Writer), & Moore, M. (Director). (2002). Bowling for Columbine [Motion picture].