NITV News in Australia interviewed Angela Davis, who argues that the best way to fight systematic racism is to abolish all prisons. Davis begins by pointing to the fact that blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans are disproportionately incarcerated relative to their overall share of the population. Conveniently, Davis forgets to mention that those groups commit violent crime at a higher rate than the overall population. She also fails to acknowledge that Asian-Americans are less likely to be incarcerated than non-Hispanic whites.
According to the Bureau of Prison statistics, 58% of prison inmates are white, 38% are black, 2% are Native American, and 1.6% are Asian. Hispanics of any race comprise 32% of the total prison population. However, according to the U.S. Census, whites make up 77% of the population, blacks make up 13%, Asians make up 6%, and Native Americans make up 1.3%. Hispanics of any race comprise 18% of the population.
Davis continues by paralleling the injustices she perceives in the United States to Australia, citing that indigenous Australians comprise a disproportionate amount of inmates in Australian prisons. Instead of accurately attributing the disproportionately high number of indigenous Australian inmates to their higher rate of violent crime, Davis argues that they are victims of institutional discrimination.
Following, Davis mentions that she is part of Sisters Inside, an advocacy group that supplies female inmates with needed resources. The organization also believes that a long-term solution to prison injustice is to abolish the prison system altogether, claiming it to be the modern abolitionist movement. Instead of prisons, Davis suggests that Americans and Australians need to think more creatively and critically about dealing with violence in their societies.
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