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NCJ Number: 49843 Find in a Library
Title: BLACK PEOPLE AND THE TYRANNY OF AMERICAN LAW
Journal: ANNALS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE  Volume:407  Issue:34  Dated:(MAY 1973)  Pages:156-166
Author(s): H BURNS
Corporate Author: American Academy of Political and Social Science
United States of America
Date Published: 1973
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: American Academy of Political and Social Science
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Type: Historical Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE HISTORY OF THE USE OF LAW IN AMERICA TO ESTABLISH SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC CONTROL OVER BLACKS IS BRIEFLY PRESENTED, AND THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION OF CIVIL RIGHTS LAWS IS ASSESSED.
Abstract: THE AMERICAN LEGAL SYSTEM HAS NOT MANAGED TO ESCAPE THE RACISM THAT PERMEATES AMERICAN LIFE. BOTH HISTORICALLY AND CONTEMPORANEOUSLY, THE LAW HAS BEEN THE VEHICLE BY WHICH THE GENERALIZED RACISM IN THE SOCIETY HAS BEEN MADE PARTICULAR AND CONVERTED IN POLICIES AND STANDARDS OF SOCIAL CONTROL. NOTWITHSTANDING MANY COUNTERVAILING EXPERIENCES, MANY BLACK AMERICANS SEE THEIR DOMINANT EXPERIENCE WITH THE LAW AS THAT OF THE LAW'S VICTIM. PRESENT EFFORTS AT USING THE LAW AS AN INSTRUMENT OF SOCIAL CHANGE IN ORDER TO RELIEVE THIS VICTIMIZATION ARE ENCUMBERED BY A LACK OF BLACK DIRECTION OF AND CONTROL OVER THE RESOURCES, POLICY, AND PERSONNEL OSTENSIBLY ORGANIZED TO COMBAT RACISM. THE TYRANNY OF A RACIST LEGAL STRUCTURE AND THE POWERLESSNESS OF BLACKS IN THE FACE OF WHITE HEGEMONY OVER MOST OF THE MAJOR LEGAL INSTITUTIONS -- PUBLIC AND PRIVATE -- WHICH HAVE BEEN ESTABLISHED TO ATTEMPT TO ERADICATE WHITE RACISM, MUST BOTH BE ANSWERED BY THE REASSERTION BY THE BLACK BAR AND THE BLACK COMMUNITY OF THEIR INTERESTS IN SHAPING THE DECISIONS WHICH SO PROFOUNDLY AFFECT THEIR LIVES. IF LEADERSHIP OF THIS CHARACTER ARTICULATES BLACK PRIORITIES FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF THE COMMUNITY CENTRALLY AFFECTED, THAN ALL WILLING ELEMENTS OF THE SOCIETY CAN CONTRIBUTE USEFULLY TO THE ATTAINMENT OF THE GOALS OF FREEDOM WITH DIGNITY FOR ALL. (AUTHOR ABSTRACT MODIFIED--RCB)
Index Term(s): Black/African Americans; Civil rights; Laws and Statutes
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49843

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