Racial Inequality & the United States Judicial System


This paper will examine the United States criminal justice and legislative systems and how they have become a disproportionate system for racial and ethnic minorities, specifically African Americans. Looking back over the past century will help understand what led to this cultural and racial divide in one of America's oldest systems. Statistical analysis of rising prison populations and the American criminal justice system's inequalities will be explored to understand better what is being done to improve the current criminal justice system and climate. Problems facing this system are generally well-known but require a greater depth of learning to address them at a more realistic level. Legislative measures and judicial proceedings that have been enacted to either further or yield the cause will also be examined. In part due to increased judicial leniency and sway of public opinion, recent actions will be examined to show how there has been a decreased incarceration rate over the past decade, specifically within the African American community. Recent legislative passages and initiatives will show how the past century placed an unnecessary burden on many African American communities' lives.

Keywords: Inequality, Justice, Minorities, Racism, Discrimination, Racial Disparities

Year Manuscript Completed

Spring 2021

Senior Project Advisor

Tricia Jordan, PhD

Degree Awarded

Bachelor of Integrated Studies Degree

Field of Study

Human Services

Document Type


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