Wealth doesn't protect US blacks from greater chance of incarceration

March 10, 2016

The chances of incarceration in America are always higher for blacks than for whites or Hispanics, regardless of their level of wealth, according to a new study led by Khaing Zaw of Duke University in the U.S. In addition, blacks and Hispanics who had previously served jail time were significantly poorer than their white counterparts.

The study¹ corroborates previous research that describes the close connection between race, prison time and , both before and after incarceration. It is part of the special March issue² of Springer's journal Race and Social Problems on race and wealth which is freely available online.

Zaw's team analyzed the data from the 1979 cohort of the National Longitudinal Study of Youth, which gathered data between 1979 and 2012 from 12,686 and women. When first interviewed in 1979, the respondents were between 14 and 22 years old. Since 1985, the study has also included data on the wealth of the individuals and their families.

The researchers looked at young men and women who had not yet served jail time by 1985. The respondents' personal net worth and their likelihood of being incarcerated at some stage during the study period were taken into account.

"Americans who experience incarceration come from a lower wealth background compared to those who do not," Zaw said. "When it comes to wealth and incarceration outcomes, the disadvantages of being black or Hispanic compound the disadvantages of poverty."

The findings indicate that although higher levels of wealth were associated with shorter jail stays, the likelihood of incarceration still was higher for blacks at every level of wealth compared to whites. At some wealth levels, the likelihood of Hispanics doing jail time was even lower than it was for whites. The data also show that as the wealth of black women grows, their chances of being incarcerated decline and were similar to the chances of whites and Hispanics.

Even though the obvious racial disparity does shrink as levels of wealth grow, it is never fully eliminated. According to Zaw, this might be because of other economic factors, such as the wealth of extended family members, or factors such as education, job experience and social connections.

"To the best of my knowledge, this is the first study to look at the impact of prior wealth on the odds of and to demonstrate that wealth does not provide the same degree of insulation from imprisonment for black and Hispanic males as it does for white males," said co-author William A. Darity. Darity is a professor of public policy, African and African American studies and economics at Duke University.

Explore further: Disparity in student loan debt between blacks and whites

More information: Khaing Zaw et al. Race, Wealth and Incarceration: Results from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, Race and Social Problems (2016). DOI: 10.1007/s12552-016-9164-y

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TheGhostofOtto1923
3.4 / 5 (5) Mar 10, 2016
One needs to consider the effects of tribalism as it relates to crime.

Crimes committed against fellow tribal members are not considered crimes if committed against outsiders. They are instead encouraged and rewarded within the tribe.

So the question is, how do you strengthen identity with society as a whole? How do you convince tribalists to give up their gang, neighborhood, and extended family loyalties in favor of the universal tribe?

Tribalism is natural for the human being but enemies are implicit in the dynamic.
COCO
5 / 5 (2) Mar 11, 2016
I thought the OJ case proved wealth means never having to say you are sorry even after butchering two people. Memories seem short to these 'researchers'.
kochevnik
2.3 / 5 (3) Mar 11, 2016
Well, they are caught because American blacks are not immune from being dumb, fascist yanks. Many Africans return from USA because the USA melting pot stinks
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 11, 2016
Well, they are caught because American blacks are not immune from being dumb, fascist yanks. Many Africans return from USA because the USA melting pot stinks
Yeah there was even a country created on the African continent for them - liberia.

You see what a mess that turned into.

The melting pot is the only way to mitigate tribalism and the Urge of our species to diverge.

It's not a new concept - Rome at one time was 80% slave, and those slaves had the chance to earn their freedom and become citizens if they were clever, hard-working, and ambitious enough.

Alexander founded his eponymous new city on the southern shore of the Mediterranean and populated it with people from around the globe. He knew for instance that a way of reducing the grip of religion was to bring believers of many faiths together and get them talking to one another. They soon realize that they're all the same crap.

That's exactly why all faiths are welcome in the west and all are protected.
kochevnik
2.3 / 5 (3) Mar 11, 2016
USA doesn't believe in a religous melting pot. Quite the opposite: the West recently murdered the one unifying leader in Africa Gaddafi, and Hiltery Clinton openly bragged about the murder. Now Africans refugees are streaming into the West as there is nothing to stop them, despite France moaning about the now nonexistant Libyan navy not doing their job Melting pot is must more USA propaganda to pacify the bottom and rapidly-growing 80% brainless majority there. But soon their offspring will be ridden with Asperger syndrome so they will be incapable of ingesting USA propaganda

Only true religion in USA is Nazism, ruled by murdering psychopaths
TheGhostofOtto1923
4 / 5 (4) Mar 13, 2016
Hey commie

You ought to write a comic book. You know like your posts, only with pictures.

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