Racial Politics and Policies of Reentry
Since the passage of the Second Chance Act of 2008 and the publication of Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, there has been a lot of discussion about the reintegration process for citizens returning home from prison. Black males are at the center of this discussion, given that they account for a disproportionate share of those who are incarcerated and, therefore, shackled in reintegration processes. Thus, this chapter contextualizes the effects that reentry processes and policies have on Black males as they navigate from prison to home. This chapter will briefly assess the politics and policies of mass incarceration and prisoner reentry, examining the legal barriers and social obstacles, and the potential for reforms and eventual abolition as the ultimate long-term solution. Additional policy solutions will be put forward in the chapter as well.