California Prison Segregation to End

Stephen Webster, American Renaissance, May 2005

On February 23, the United States

Supreme Court issued a ruling that is likely to stamp out the last

vestige of government-enforced racial segregation in the United States.

In Johnson v. California, it ordered the Ninth Circuit Court of

Appeals to review the housing policies of the California prison system,

and to apply legal standards that will probably lead it to ban the

practice of temporarily grouping new arrivals by race and ethnicity. At

issue was whether the California Department of Correction’s (CDC)

decades-old practice of giving prisoners initial cellmates of their own

race violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. The

policy, of course, was to keep inmates from killing each other, but

merely saving lives is less important to six Supreme Court justices than

promoting the myth that race is not supposed to matter.

A guard runs to break up a prison fight.

Prison Reality

The California prison system is not only the largest in the

country but also the most racially mixed. Of 160,000 inmates, men

account for 150,000 or 94 percent. In 2003, the system took in more than

112,000 men. The racial mix is an almost perfect recipe for friction:

37 percent Hispanic, 29 percent white, 29 percent black, and six percent

Asian, American Indian, and Pacific Islander. Race- and even

ethnic-based gang violence is the top security concern for prison

guards. California, in the words of one official, is “ground-zero” for

race-based prison gangs.

For prisoners in most states, aside from the fact of

incarceration itself, race is the central reality of life. For

California prisoners, race-based gangs are often the very key to

survival. Gangs protect members from other gangs, and are a source of

information on friends and enemies. Gangs supply food and cigarettes,

and arrange visits from people on the outside. Gangs dictate prison

etiquette, and enforce it with violence. Because prison is such a

dangerous place — a single misstep can provoke a beating or even death –

gang members form strong bonds.

There are two main Hispanic prison gangs in California: the Mexican Mafia or La Eme

(from the Spanish pronunciation of the letter “m”), which is a southern

California Hispanic gang, and Nuestra Familia, a northern California

Hispanic gang. The northern and southern Hispanics hate each other.

Nuestra Familia has a sub-group, Nuestra Raza, that operates in the

high-security housing units. The main black prison gang is the Black

Guerilla Family, although the Crips and the Bloods are also active.

There are two major white gangs, the Aryan Brotherhood and the Nazi Low

Riders. The Low Riders grew out of the Aryan Brotherhood in the 1980s

and tend to be younger. The Hells Angels have a minor presence.

Interestingly, the Aryan Brotherhood has a defensive

alliance with the southern Hispanics of the Mexican Mafia against the

northern Hispanics of Nuestra Familia and against the Black Guerilla

Family. Apparently southern Hispanics hate their northern kinfolk even

more than they hate white people. The Aryan Brotherhood also has

friendly relations with the other white gangs, the Nazi Low Riders and

the Hells Angels.

Southern Hispanic gangs hate northern Hispanic gangs more than they hate white people.

Gangs are inherently violent. They routinely rob other

prisoners or force them into prostitution. Some gangs make prospective

members kill another prisoner in order to join. This is known as “making

your bones.” Hispanic and black gangs are notorious for mayhem but the

Aryan Brotherhood is no stranger to violence, either. Prison authorities

describe it as “a singularly vicious prison gang that has a hostility

to black inmates.” Race-based gangs are such a problem in California

that the state built a special “Supermax” prison at Pelican Bay — in the

northwest corner of the state, as far from other prisons as possible –

to hold the worst cases. This is where the leaders live.

Gangs are the only significant prisoner groupings, which means there are no real affiliations that are not

race-based. Race and ethnicity are the boundaries of what amount to

warring armies. This is why California temporarily separates new male

inmates by race. Women are less violent, so they are never segregated.

Housing prisoners is complicated. There are 32 prisons in

the state, but only seven have what are euphemistically known as

“reception centers” that process newcomers and transfers. There is

segregation only in the reception centers, and a new convict

never stays in a center for more than 60 days before he is assigned

permanent quarters. These are either attached to the reception center or

in a prison that doesn’t have a center. Whenever a man transfers from

one prison to another, he makes a stop of no more than 14 days in a

center before he gets his new assignment.

There is great variety in prison housing, with many men

double- and triple-bunked in great, barracks-like rooms that hold as

many as 225. In “reception centers,” however, prisoners get two-man

cells, where they are evaluated to see what kind of permanent housing

(general population, maximum security, etc.) they should get. These

two-man, reception-center cells where men are held for brief evaluation

are never integrated. Most men probably don’t even know there is a

segregation policy; they get a cellmate of the same race and think

nothing of it.

What is the purpose of the evaluation? First, the

authorities have to decide how violent a prisoner is likely to be. They

consider his physical and mental health. They check his criminal

history, and if he is transferring from another prison, they read his

prison record. Low-security men — the most numerous — go to dormitories.

Medium-security men get permanent two-man cells, and maximum-security

threats get single cells. If a man is known to have testified against

another prisoner, to have shot someone’s best friend, or to have some

other reason to hate or be hated, this affects his housing assignment.

Convicted police officers and child molesters — whom all other prisoners

despise — get special treatment, too. The prison system tries to be

very thorough in its evaluations, and has a 75-man unit that does

background checks both inside and outside the walls.

The men in centers are therefore new additions to a

population, and guards want to look them over before deciding what to do

with them. They are probably complete strangers to each other, sharing

living quarters that are more cramped and intimate than anything most of

us will ever experience, and prison authorities want cellmates to get

along. Size and physical condition are part of the calculation, since no

one wants to put a weakling in with a gorilla. The idea is to give a

man a cellmate he is unlikely to hate — someone of his own race.

In many cases, officials even subdivide prisoners along

ethnic lines. “You cannot house a Japanese inmate with a Chinese inmate.

You cannot,” says Linda L. Schulteis, Associate Warden at California

State Prison-Lancaster. “They will kill each other. They won’t even tell

you about it. They will just do it,” She says the same is true for

Laotians, Vietnamese, Cambodians, and Filipinos. Likewise, a Hispanic

from northern California cannot be put in the same cell with a Hispanic

from southern California. “They already have a conflict before they come

to prison,” explains prison spokesman Margot Bach, “and it’s going to

intensify when they come to prison.”

No other part of the California prison system is segregated,

not the recreational facilities, dining halls, work areas or job

assignments. Nor are dormitories reserved for certain races, though the

authorities make sure they are racially balanced to reduce tension. If a

prison is 50 percent Hispanic, 30 percent black and 20 percent white,

dormitories should reflect those proportions. If there are just a few

prisoners of one race in a dormitory dominated by another there is

likely to be trouble. But even in mixed dorms, no prisoner is ever

assigned a bunk directly over a prisoner of another race. Fights have

broken out when this happened.

What about the two-man cells for medium-risk offenders? In

order to increase compatibility and reduce violence, the system lets

inmates choose their own permanent cellmates. Both men sign forms saying

they want to share a cell, and authorities grant the request unless

there are security reasons not to. Needless to say, no one can think of a

case in which someone asked for a roommate of another race. Miss Bach

of the prison system says, “there is peer pressure when you get to

prison to align with a [racial] group for protection.” Charles Hughes, a

corrections lieutenant at the Lancaster prison is blunter: “If a black

inmate asked for a white celly [cellmate] there is no way in hell that I

would do that. I’d refer them both for a mental-health evaluation.”

Given the extraordinary level of racial tension in

California prisons, guards would clearly like to segregate the entire

system. Initial segregation, before authorities have a sense of whom

they are dealing with, appears to be the minimum of common sense, and

the California system stands behind it. Prisoners never willingly share a

two-man cell with someone of another race. The system wisely refrains

from forcing them to do so.

“You cannot house a Japanese inmate with a Chinese inmate. You cannot. They will kill each other.”

What is the origin of the challenge to the practice?

Garrison Johnson, who filed the original complaint, is a career criminal

and former Crip, who was convicted in 1987 of murder, robbery and

assault, and sentenced to 25 years to life. Mr. Johnson has been

transferred five times, and at each stop along the way he got a black

cellmate. In 1995, Mr. Garrison filed a pro se (meaning he

represented himself) complaint with the Central District of California

against the prison system, arguing that always being paired with a black

violated his 14th Amendment rights to equal protection. After several

years of procedural give-and-take, including appeals, in 2000 the Ninth

Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco instructed the district court

to assign Mr. Johnson a lawyer and hear the case. When the district

court upheld the segregation policy, he appealed to the Ninth Circuit,

which, in 2003, also upheld the policy. That was when he took the case

to the Supreme Court.

Since Mr. Johnson is a violent, medium-security prisoner, he

lives in a two-man cell. This means he gets to choose his celly — and

he has always asked for a black. He says he simply could not ask for a

white: “You can’t cross races. That will start racial tension right

there. So I know I can’t go to a white guy and say, ‘Hey, I want to move

with you’ because he is not going to move with me.”

Mr. Johnson’s reasoning for challenging the system is the

following: Racial tension in prisons is so bad it is impossible for him

to make friends with anyone who is not black. Blacks would turn on him

if he tried, and non-blacks would spurn him. This, he says, puts in him

danger whenever there is racial violence, because he does not have a

single friend of another race to stick up for him in a riot. If,

however, he spent 14 days with a white cellmate when he was transferred,

he might make a bosom friend who would protect him the next time blacks

and whites are fighting. Mr. Johnson has 25 years to life to make white

friends. In effect, he is saying he wants the prison system to make

friends for him.

Pelican Bay prison
Pelican Bay: the worst of the

racial gang leaders live here.

The Ninth Circuit Ruling

Like so many court cases, Johnson v. California has a

complex but interesting legal background. The equal protection clause,

on which Mr. Johnson hung his case, has generally been interpreted to

require that government pretend race does not exist. In Shaw v. Hunt

in 1996 (which challenged the creation of two largely black North

Carolina congressional districts), the Supreme Court wrote, “Racial

classifications are antithetical to the Fourteenth Amendment, whose

central purpose was to eliminate racial discrimination emanating from

official sources in the States.” The Court has established a standard of

“strict scrutiny” when it comes to race (or religion, national origin,

and sometimes sex), meaning a government agency must have a very

compelling reason to take any notice of race at all.

The Supreme Court did not formally end prison segregation until the 1968 case of Lee v. Washington,

when it ruled that Alabama could no longer segregate cellblocks. The

court did note that “prison authorities have the right, acting in good

faith and in particularized circumstances, to take into account racial

tensions in maintaining security, discipline, and good order in prisons

and jails,” but never offered guidelines for when racial classification

was legitimate. Several lower courts have cited Lee to argue that

“unsubstantiated” fears of racial violence do not justify segregation.

These courts have usually limited racial separation to lockdowns

following race riots or other violence.

In 1987, however, the Supreme Court ruled in Turner v. Safley

that prison administrators may limit constitutional rights of inmates

if limiting those rights serves a “legitimate penological interest.” Turner

had nothing to do with race — the question was whether prisoners could

write letters and get married — but the Court held that the standard of

“legitimate penological interest” applied to all constitutional

claims, which would include equal protection. The justices wisely

pointed out that “courts are ill equipped to deal with the increasingly

urgent problems of prison administration and reform,” and that “the

problems of prisons in America are complex and intractable, and, more to

the point, they are not readily susceptible of resolution by decree.”

In Turner, the Supreme Court established four rules

for deciding whether a prison policy that limits inmate rights meets the

standard of “legitimate penological interest.” The first is whether

there is a “valid, rational connection” between the policy and the goal

it is supposed to achieve. The second is whether there are “alternative

means” by which prisoners can exercise the rights they lost because of

the policy. The third is how much trouble it will make for a prison if

inmates exercise their rights, and the fourth is whether there are any

“ready alternatives” to the policy in question.

Mr. Johnson’s lawyers argued that segregation did not meet the Turner

standard because there was no rational connection between temporary

segregation and preventing violence. They claimed — amazingly — that

since California prisons could not point to a single act of violence

that had been caused by integrating two-man cells, the system’s reasons

for segregation were “unsubstantiated fears” of racial violence and

therefore unconstitutional. Of course, there have been no such acts of

violence because two-man cells are never integrated.

The Ninth Circuit found a clear Turner standard

connection between the segregation policy and its objective of reducing

racial violence. It noted that one of the worst prison riots in US

history was triggered in large part by the forced integration of cells

(see next article). “Under Johnson’s view,” it added, “the same violence

would have to occur within the CDC [California Department of

Corrections] in order to permit race to be considered as a factor in

making initial housing decisions. We disagree

The CDC simply does not have to wait until inmates or guards are

murdered specifically because race is not considered in assigning an

inmate’s initial cell mate; instead, Turner allows the

administrators to stave off potentially dangerous policies without first

‘seeing what happens.’” In other words, California was under no

obligation to integrate prison cells just to see if its decades-old

segregation policy really was preventing murder.

The Ninth Circuit also refuted Mr. Johnson’s argument that the policy of temporary segregation increased

racial animosity by perpetuating racial stereotypes. It pointed out

there was already plenty of racial tension in prisons with or without

segregation, and that it was silly to argue that a measure designed to

keep violence down was actually increasing it. Mixing up the races in

cells would probably lead to more racial violence, not interracial

friendship. The court also went to great pains to point out just how

pervasive racial tension is in California prisons. It listed case after

case in which racial gangs attacked each other, and noted that some

prisons have been kept locked down for years at a stretch because race

riots would erupt if there was the slightest contact.

Meal time.

At the end of this grisly recitation, the court noted dryly,

“In short, this is hardly a case where the prison administrators are

acting on an unsubstantiated record.” Therefore, “administrators are

well within their discretion to attempt to rectify or to reduce further

violence by taking reasonable measures.”

The second Turner test is whether there are

“alternate means” for a prisoner to exercise his rights, that is,

whether blacks and whites have other opportunities to get acquainted

despite the segregation policy in the reception centers. The Ninth

Circuit found this was obviously true, since the same-race cell

assignment never lasted more than 60 days. Mr. Johnson can meet all the

whites he wants in the dining hall or the recreation yard.

The third Turner standard, whether granting prisoners

constitutional rights would make a lot of trouble for the prison

authorities, was met by testimony from prison officials. Then-California

prison system director Steven Cambra told the court, “If race were to

be disregarded entirely there will be

problems within the individual cells. These will be problems that the

staff will have a difficult time controlling. I believe there will be

fights in the cells and the problems will emanate onto the prison yards

[I]t would be very difficult to assist inmates if the staff were needed

in several places at one time.” In other words, there would be fights

in the cells, violence would spill into the rest of the prison, and the

guards would be overwhelmed.

As for the fourth Turner standard, whether there was a

simple alternative to segregation, it was the responsibility of Mr.

Johnson, as plaintiff, to offer one. His solution? Ask prisoners if they

have ever been in a racial gang or if they don’t like people of other

races. The Ninth Circuit called this “disingenuous,” adding, “There is

little chance that inmates will be forthcoming about their past violent

episodes or criminal gang activity so as to provide an accurate and

dependable picture of the inmate.” That, of course, is why the system

has a staff of 75 investigators — prisoners lie.

The Ninth Circuit therefore concluded that the 14th

Amendment permits temporary segregation. Because of the special

circumstances of prisons, this form of racial classification need meet

only the looser standards of Turner and not the “strict scrutiny”

standard that prevails elsewhere. Mr. Johnson did not accept this

ruling and appealed to the US Supreme Court.

A prison dormitory.

Before the Supreme Court

By this time, of course, Mr. Johnson had a hot,

court-appointed lawyer, a prominent litigator named Bert H. Deixler with

the nationally-known firm of Proskauer Rose. Mr. Deixler argued that

the Ninth Circuit was wrong to apply the Turner standard and that

by doing so, the lower court had “carved out a wholesale ‘prison

exception’” when it came to race. He repeatedly invoked the Supreme

Court’s ruling in the University of Michigan affirmative action cases, Gratz and Grutter (see “What the Supreme Court Did,”

AR, August 2003), pointing out that “all nine Justices were in

agreement that strict scrutiny applies whenever the government

classifies based on race” and arguing that this should be the standard

everywhere and without exception.

Mr. Deixler bought Mr. Johnson’s claim that even brief

segregation fed dangerous racial stereotypes, and proposed that the best

way to undermine the influence of race-based gangs in prison was to

integrate two-man cells. Justice John Paul Stevens, one of the Court’s

most liberal members, was especially pleased by this silly argument.

Mr. Johnson found an ally in the Bush administration, which

sent the acting solicitor general, Paul D. Clement, to argue that given

the country’s “pernicious history of race” — from which prisons are not

exempt — it is vital that all racial classifications be subject to

strict scrutiny. Otherwise, he implied, the innate racism of prison

administrators would take over.

A convict’s shiv.

During oral arguments, the justices seemed most concerned

that the segregation policy applied to prisoner transfers as well as

newcomers, wondering why they needed to be segregated when they had

already been under prison system control, and had already been

evaluated. The response of California senior assistant attorney general

Frances T. Grunder was weak. She said it was often hard to get a

prisoner’s records transferred at the same time as the prisoner. Justice

David Souter wondered if instead of segregating transfer prisoners, the

system should just send the papers more quickly. Miss Grunder could

have made a different argument: No one already in the prison system ever

asks for a roommate of a different race, so the system should not court

trouble by forcibly integrating two-man cells.

The segregation policy also seems to have suffered because

of its success. The justices wanted to know if there had ever been

racial violence because people of different races were put in a

reception cell. No, there hadn’t, because the cells are never

integrated. Rather than see this as proof the policy works, some

justices seemed to think it showed the prison system’s fears were

exaggerated.

The Decision

In its February ruling, Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, Kennedy

and Souter joined Sandra Day O’Connor in sending the case back to the

Ninth Circuit where the segregation policy will be subject to “strict

scrutiny.” In her view, any consideration of race by government is

“immediately suspect” and must clearly promote a “compelling state

interest.” Any lower standard will fail to “ferret out invidious uses of

race.” Justice O’Connor also fell for Mr. Johnson’s claim that

segregation — even for as few as 14 days — may increase interracial

violence by “perpetuating the notion that race matters most.”

perp walk
Doing the perp walk.

Justice John Paul Stevens issued a dissent, but only to

insist that the housing policy was unconstitutional on 14th Amendment

grounds and did not need any further “strict scrutiny” review. He wants

the cells integrated right away.

Chief Justice Rehnquist was sick with thyroid cancer during

the case, and did not participate. Justice Clarence Thomas issued a real

dissent, in which Justice Scalia joined.

Justice Thomas pointed out that the case required the Court

to choose between two conflicting lines of precedent. On the one hand,

the Court has stated that all racial classifications by government must be subject to strict scrutiny. At the same time, the Court has said the Turner standard applies every time a prison policy limits a prisoner’s constitutional rights.

Which precedent should the Court choose? To Justice Thomas,

decisions about race and violence “are better left in the first instance

to the officials who run our nation’s prisons.” He accused his

colleagues of indifference to the reality of prison life, writing, “The

majority is concerned with sparing inmates the indignity and stigma of

racial discrimination. California is concerned with their safety and

saving their lives.” Justice Thomas even wrote that he thought temporary

segregation might survive “strict scrutiny.” Keeping Americans from

killing each other is surely a “compelling state interest.” If the Ninth

Circuit decides it is not, the California prison system will start

mixing up the two-man cells. Mr. Johnson’s white celly might turn out to

be a 200-pound Skinhead who has always wanted to strangle a black man

in his sleep. As Justice Thomas put it, somewhat more delicately, Mr.

Johnson, “who concedes that California’s prisons are racially violent

places, and that he lives in fear of being attacked because of his race may well have won a Pyrrhic victory.”

Justice Clarence Thomas
Once again, the justice

with the most sense.

In fact, it is whites who will suffer most from forced

integration. Blacks and Hispanics have a well-documented history of

raping whites, especially the young and the weak. For many convicts,

night after night of uninterrupted sodomy with a terrified white

cellmate would be a dream come true (for a discussion of prison rape,

see “Hard Time,” AR, April 2002).

Whites who have served time know how much race matters.

Joshua Englehart is a white man who served 37 months in San Quentin on

drug charges. He wrote in the Los Angles Times that prisoners

will pay the price for this foolish decision “because the truth is that

mixing races and ethnic groups in cells would be extremely dangerous for

inmates.” “[P]rison is an undeniably racist place, and court rulings

aren’t going to stop it,” he explained. “Rule No. 1: The various races

and ethnic groups stick together.” Mr. Engelhart concluded that

segregation “is looked on by no one — of any race — as oppressive or as a

way of promoting racism. It is done for their own safety, and they know

it This ruling will strike dread in the hearts of all California inmates when they read about it.”

This Supreme Court decision is a particularly dangerous

example of how our nation lets ideology blind it to reality. That Sandra

O’Connor and five other justices of the Supreme Court of the United

States could actually think that briefly separating blacks from whites

from Hispanics during evaluation adds to racial tensions in

prison simply beggars belief. Can they really believe convicts show up

without strong racial feelings, notice they got a same-race roommate in

the reception center, and then decide the races are not supposed

to get along? These six justices — who hold more power than even the

President — have a completely fantasy-land view of what race means,

either in prison or in the country at large. This is the view that

guides them and our other rulers when they make important decisions that

affect our very survival as a nation and a people. AR

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  • White Police Officer

    This actually is not all bad for Whites. Prison is so horrible for anyone but a hardcore Aryan Brotherhood serial killer that White criminals have voluntarily reduced their crime rate to avoid going to prison.

    I have always thought that is why there are so few Whites in the California prison system. Going straight is far preferable to the horrors of listening to blacks howling and yowling 24/7.

  • Jake

    You don’t have to be a very smart person to realize that this is an outrageously stupid decision. Justice O’Connor’s appointment to the court was one of the major mistakes President Reagan made during his tenure. In Gratz and Grutter, a school affirmative action case, O’Connor wrote the majority opinion and said that the need for diversity was so great that it trumped the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment. She said we would only have to violate the Constitution for 25 years or so to accomplish AA. AND,the usual suspects also supported O’Connor in the prison case and will share the blame for the carnage that will flow from this asinine decision.

  • Seneca the Younger

    Over the past several decades racial segregation was tried here and there in many different prison systems. The result? Prisons were taking away blacks’ “civil rights” to harass the white minority prisoners.

    It has been shown across the board that racially segregated prisoners has made it easier on everyone. The reason why this cannot stand is because people will start thinking that if it works in prisons will it work in schools. And that is the real reason why prisons cannot be segregated.

  • Anonymous

    “They are probably complete strangers to each other, sharing living quarters that are more cramped and intimate than anything most of us will ever experience, and prison authorities want cellmates to get along. Size and physical condition are part of the calculation, since no one wants to put a weakling in with a gorilla.”

    If size and physical condition may be part of the calculation, then why not also ethnicity? Seriously, WHY NOT?

    It’s a question that shouldn’t even have to be asked. But then, most of the questions on AmRen shouldn’t need to be asked, either. The answers to these questions are mostly common sense. Of course, common sense is in short supply in BRA (Black Run America*), isn’t it?

    Just like the common sense of keeping prisoners amongst their own kind… so as to keep them from killing each other. The idea that activist judges can somehow legislate away ancient racial animosities — in the racially-charged atmosphere of California prisons, of all places! — would be laughable if it didn’t have such serious consequences.

    Excellent article, BTW. Thanks for reprinting.

    * h/t: SBPDL

  • joe

    That was along article, but we don’t know how they are going to apply this decision by the high court. That will be interesting.

    This is such a whacky decision and unrealistic that they should just ignore the decision, and run the prisons as best they can.

    From what I know the Mexican prisoners run the CDC. They are well organized and I can see real bloodshed moving forward.

    Again, the court doesn’t have the insight on such an important situation and the decision should just be ignored. Hey, what are they going to do – fine the state? It’s already broke.

  • Anonymous

    I feel sorry for any White that has to go to prison or jail in today’s America. The “crimes” that many commit are drug charges and although I HATE drugs and what it has done to our young, it is such a BAD addiction that jail is no place for Whites to be. It would be cheaper to put them into a LOCKED rehabilitation camp (segregated, of course) than to put them with hardened black criminals.

    Don’t forget that the guards in these jails and prisons are now mostly black or Mexican and hate Whites and they have also been accused of bringing the drugs into the prisons to begin with! They have also set up Whites to be attacked and beaten or worse by the black/Mexican inmates.

  • Mick

    Those numbers are a lie. There is no way Whites are almost a third of prisoners. I have watched those prison shows many times. At most Whites are 10%. The changing of numbers for PC is very disturbing.

  • The Bobster

    Going straight is far preferable to the horrors of listening to blacks howling and yowling 24/7.

    ______

    Howling and yowling? Black-on-White rape occurs more frequently in prisons than all the other rapes in the outside world. It’s the unfortunate White prisoners who will be doing the howling and yowling.

  • Ben

    @ White Police Officer

    One of the main arguments in opposition to why blacks are in prison disproportionately is because they are specifically being targeted more (white police cars don’t go after rich white, etc).

    While Mr. Taylor disproves this with victimization studies correlating with FBI reports, I wonder what your take is on the argument mentioned above?

    Thanks for taking your time to respond.

  • Togo East

    “In Gratz and Grutter, a school affirmative action case, O’Connor wrote the majority opinion and said that the need for diversity was so great that it trumped the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment. She said we would only have to violate the Constitution for 25 years or so to accomplish AA.”

    That was over 25 yrs ago and she has since renewed her lease on that statement. Big surprise.

    BTW, Reagan appointed O’Connor as a favor to his daughter who wanted a woman. He also extended “affirmative action” to Hindus and Hasidic Jews (Muslims are currently lobbying to be included). Then there was the disastrous amnesty for illegals. Reagan has convinced me that we shall not find salvation in the Republican Party.

  • Anonymous

    Do we have an update at the 5 year+ point?

    Were they able to substantively disprove an ‘assumed’ racist bias in favor of the greater needs for security for the inmates in this transfer/evaluation period?

    If I didn’t know better, I’d assume that they were setting up a system whose emminent crisis-point violence was a justification for outside intervention but I haven’t heard California declare ‘moral or economic failure’ in the prison system yet.

    Can’t say the same for the schools…

  • Anonymous

    Perhaps the next time that a liberal politician goes to jail, he or she can be placed in an integrated cell block to enjoy all the strengths of diversity?

  • Roy

    Why stop at racial segregation?

    Let’s eliminate gender and age discrimination too, by putting male, female and juvenile offenders all together in the same prison cells.

    They could even make a movie about it to show that it’s a really good idea, and maybe someone like Sandra Bullock could have a lead role. Then we’d just have to sit back and wait for reality to change and reflect liberal fantasy instead.

  • Periapsis

    Prisoners should be segregated from each other by race for two reasons. One is they will kill, rape, assault and harass each other every chance they get. A white inmate especially is in danger of being attacked by dozens of black or Hispanics behind bars, but no inmate who is among the minority in a particular prison or jail’s population is safe. This leads to the second reason for separating prisoners by race. The racial violence will spill over into the streets, this is where blacks, Hispanics and whites alike develop intense hatred towards each other, and that will lead to more trouble in the outside world.