By JONATHAN BRILL
October 1, 2017
“Up until 2011, getting caught with one gram of crack (disproportionately favored by poor blacks) got the same sentence as 100 grams of cocaine (disproportionately favored by middle and upper class whites). “
Aside from the mountains of data that any unbiased observer can get their hands on such as arrest rates, sentencing time, experiments around hiring preferences, and even things such as favorability rates in the media, you just have to spend time with people of color to understand that there’s an awareness of threat that I just don’t have to live with. But first, data!
Arrest rates for marijuana possession. If you’re black and get caught with weed, you’re 3.5x more likely to get arrested than the white person standing next to you.
1g of crack got the same penalty as 100g of coke. Up until 2011, getting caught with one gram of crack (disproportionately favored by poor blacks) got the same sentence as 100 grams of cocaine (disproportionately favored by middle and upper class whites). Can you believe that if you were caught with 5g of cocaine you got probation while the same amount of crack gets 5 years? This was not changed in 1911, but 2011! That’s 4 years ago!
Sports fans are mostly white people who like watching white people more and this means white athletes get paid more relative to performance, etc. Or, LeBron James got more hate for leaving Cleveland than Ben Roethlisberger got for maybe raping a bunch of women.
You can read any of the fun (by that I mean not fun, and really just depressing) stories I pulled together on a blog at Quora:
We could go on and on and talk about the massive amounts of evidence painting a picture of systematic and comprehensive oppression in every possible way, but if you need that, then it probably wouldn’t do any good. A curious person with a diverse group of friends would just hear the stories.
There was a family friend who moved away because she wanted her kids to go to a whiter school.
I remember hearing stories of friends in junior high getting chased by bands of racist teenagers in “white” towns near our area. There was a family friend who moved away because she wanted her kids to go to a whiter school. I had great, patient friends who were happy to tell me about the crime and gunshots and crack dealers in their neighborhood, despite us all getting rides into the same school. I had a boss who described having to carry a note in his violin case that identified him by name from the music teacher because he kept getting pulled over and accused of stealing it on the way home from school. To deny the negative impact of these kinds of experiences would require some kind of world class level of cognitive dissonance.
Jonathan Brill is a writer at Quora