UN: US Jail Practices Racist, an 'Affront to Human Dignity'

    UN: US Jail Practices Racist, an 'Affront to Human Dignity'
    Last updated Sep 29, 2023
    Image credit: Unsplash


    • In a report published Thursday, three UN-appointed experts called for the overhaul of the US criminal system to combat alleged systemic racism in American prisons.
    • The UN report claims that US jail practices are an "affront to human dignity," citing instances including incarcerated Black pregnant women being shackled during labor.
    • According to the report — which contained the testimonies of 133 individuals from five different detention centers — Black Americans are 4.5 times more likely to be incarcerated than whites.
    • As part of the publication, the experts issued at least 30 recommendations to the US administration and the country's 18K police agencies nationwide, stating that "attitudes in the US police and criminal justice system [reflect] attitudes found in US society."
    • In May, UN experts called for a "whole government approach" to fight police brutality and racial discrimination which they claimed permeates US law enforcement.
    • The UN report resonates with a study published in November 2022, which alleged that, in cases of firearm homicides, Black males were victimized at a rate close to ten times higher than white males.


    Left narrative

    US authorities must put the recent momentum behind reforms in the US criminal justice system, sparked by Black Lives Matter, to full use. These UN experts have placed before the nation oft-repeated stark truths that must be heeded if authorities want avoid social unrest from spiraling out of control.

    Right narrative

    Mindless radical reforms to the US criminal justice system could backfire badly on the very people progressives are trying to help. Even marginal reforms in some US cities have led to a spike in crime rates, the burden of which falls disproportionately on low-income, minority communities. There are more pragmatic ways to address this issue.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that the US will achieve racial unemployment parity between black and white people by 2060, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Political split



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