Power, Politics, and Crime

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9780813334875: Power, Politics, and Crime

In the United States today, we are on the verge of fulfilling a nightmare scenario. Parents are fearful of letting their children play in their own yards and elderly people are afraid to leave their homes. The bogeyman in this rampant panic about crime is the young black male, who, in the media and public image, is a superpredator” lurking on every street corner ready to attack any prey that is vulnerable. But is crime in America really as bad as the public has been made to believe?Power, Politics, and Crime argues that the current panic over crime has been manufactured by the media, law enforcement bureaucracies, and the private prison industry. It shows how the definition of criminal behavior systematically singles out the inner-city African American. But urban minorities aren't the only victims. Although crime rates have been declining for 25 years, vast amounts of money pour into the criminal justice-industrial complex, diverting scarce resources from other social services such as education, social welfare, and health care. While in recent years downsizing has affected almost every segment of the public sector, the criminal justice bureaucracies have seen an unprecedented expansion.Through ethnographic observations, analysis of census data, and historical research, William Chambliss describes what is happening, why it has come about, and what can be done about it. He explores the genesis of crime as a political issue, and the effect that crime policies have had on different segments of the population. The book is more than a statement about the politics of crime and punishment it's a powerful indictment of contemporary law enforcement practices in the United States.In addition to updating the data the author has added a discussion of the "declining crime rate." Contrary to presentations in the media and by law enforcement agencies, the rate has been declining for over 25 years and therefore cannot be attributed to any "get tough on crime" policies so dear to the hearts of prosecutors and politicians. Chapter Seven, "Crime Myths and Smokescreens" has been completely revised and updated. Updates include a discussion of the recent scandal in the Los Angeles Police Department which has resulted in criminal charges against police officers and the release of numerous convicted felons because of falsified evidence and testimony on the part of police officers. The attack on Louima in the police station in New York as well as the shooting of Diallo are discussed in some detail as well as other recent exposures of police brutality and corruption. The sections on white collar, corporate, and state crimes have been updated and recent examples added to the text.

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About the Author:

William J. Chambliss is professor of sociology at George Washington University. He is past president of the American Society of Criminology and of the Society for the Study of Social Problems. He has held visiting professorships at the Universities of Uppsala, Stockholm, and Lusaka (Zambia), and at the London School of Economics. Professor Chambliss has published over fifteen books in the areas of law and criminology.

Review:

"An excellent guide that provides various tools and methods for thinking about how crime is perceived, defined and punished in American society." -- Southland Prison News

"Chambliss's lucid, incisive, and highly informative study leaves the reader with little doubt that crime is a very serious problem in the United States, though not in the manner that the population has been induced to believe by intensive and politically-motivated indoctrination that has had a dire effect on the society, helping to forge a virtual war against the poor. One basic problem is the manipulated perception of crime, uncorrelated with its actual course. A second is the vast category of harmful and dangerous crime that goes largely unpunished because of the power and privilege of the perpetrators. This is a wake-up call that is badly needed, offering insight and guidelines for people who care about their society, its serious flaws, and what it could become if citizens were to take the real issues into their own hands." -- Noam Chomsky, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"In a sweeping indictment of over forty years of crime policy, Chambliss marshals evidence to show that America's war on crime has been a costly failure with terrible side effects. The work documents how, starting with Barry Goldwater's campaign, conservative politicians consciously sought to link crime problems to the civil rights movement. By the 1990s, this cynical and racist campaign has been so successful that even Democrats have enthusiastically embraced justice policies that have replaced a third of young African American males under correctional supervision. The war on drugs is a special target of Chambliss' analysis: not only has this war been a spectacular failure, it has spawned corruption while creating a correctional industrial complex. Casualties of the war on drugs are easy to find, Chambliss documents, with higher education leading the list. The most dramatic result, however, is that America now shares with the newly created state of Russia, the world's highest incarceration rate." -- Meda Chesney-Lind, University of Hawaii at Manoa

"William Chambliss is upset, and based on the data he amasses, the rest of us ought to be. The crime industry is every bit as wasteful and destructive of American values as the military industrial complex of a generation ago. Together with increasingly pliant and self-interested politicians and media, they take us into the new millennium strapped for cash and burdened by fear and prejudice." -- David Kairys, Temple University School of Law; editor, The Politics of Law, Third Edition

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Book Description The Perseus Books Group, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. In the United States today, we are on the verge of fulfilling a nightmare scenario. Parents are fearful of letting their children play in their own yards and elderly people are afraid to leave their homes. The bogeyman in this rampant panic about crime is the young black male, who, in the media and public image, is a superpredator lurking on every street corner ready to attack any prey that is vulnerable. But is crime in America really as bad as the public has been made to believe? Power, Politics, and Crime argues that the current panic over crime has been manufactured by the media, law enforcement bureaucracies, and the private prison industry. It shows how the definition of criminal behaviour systematically singles out the inner-city African American. But urban minorities aren t the only victims. Although crime rates have been declining for 25 years, vast amounts of money pour into the criminal justice-industrial complex, diverting scarce resources from other social services such as education, social welfare, and health care.While in recent years downsizing has affected almost every segment of the public sector, the criminal justice bureaucracies have seen an unprecedented expansion.Through ethnographic observations, analysis of census data, and historical research, William Chambliss describes what is happening, why it has come about, and what can be done about it. He explores the genesis of crime as a political issue, and the effect that crime policies have had on different segments of the population. The book is more than a statement about the politics of crime and punishment,it s a powerful indictment of contemporary law enforcement practices in the United States.In addition to updating the data the author has added a discussion of the declining crime rate. Contrary to presentations in the media and by law enforcement agencies, the rate has been declining for over 25 years and therefore cannot be attributed to any get tough on crime policies so dear to the hearts of prosecutors and politicians. Chapter Seven, Crime Myths and Smokescreens has been completely revised and updated.Updates include a discussion of the recent scandal in the Los Angeles Police Department which has resulted in criminal charges against police officers and the release of numerous convicted felons because of falsified evidence and testimony on the part of police officers. The attack on Louima in the police station in New York as well as the shooting of Diallo are discussed in some detail as well as other recent exposures of police brutality and corruption. The sections on white collar, corporate, and state crimes have been updated and recent examples added to the text. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780813334875

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Book Description The Perseus Books Group, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.In the United States today, we are on the verge of fulfilling a nightmare scenario. Parents are fearful of letting their children play in their own yards and elderly people are afraid to leave their homes. The bogeyman in this rampant panic about crime is the young black male, who, in the media and public image, is a superpredator lurking on every street corner ready to attack any prey that is vulnerable. But is crime in America really as bad as the public has been made to believe? Power, Politics, and Crime argues that the current panic over crime has been manufactured by the media, law enforcement bureaucracies, and the private prison industry. It shows how the definition of criminal behaviour systematically singles out the inner-city African American. But urban minorities aren t the only victims. Although crime rates have been declining for 25 years, vast amounts of money pour into the criminal justice-industrial complex, diverting scarce resources from other social services such as education, social welfare, and health care.While in recent years downsizing has affected almost every segment of the public sector, the criminal justice bureaucracies have seen an unprecedented expansion.Through ethnographic observations, analysis of census data, and historical research, William Chambliss describes what is happening, why it has come about, and what can be done about it. He explores the genesis of crime as a political issue, and the effect that crime policies have had on different segments of the population. The book is more than a statement about the politics of crime and punishment,it s a powerful indictment of contemporary law enforcement practices in the United States.In addition to updating the data the author has added a discussion of the declining crime rate. Contrary to presentations in the media and by law enforcement agencies, the rate has been declining for over 25 years and therefore cannot be attributed to any get tough on crime policies so dear to the hearts of prosecutors and politicians. Chapter Seven, Crime Myths and Smokescreens has been completely revised and updated.Updates include a discussion of the recent scandal in the Los Angeles Police Department which has resulted in criminal charges against police officers and the release of numerous convicted felons because of falsified evidence and testimony on the part of police officers. The attack on Louima in the police station in New York as well as the shooting of Diallo are discussed in some detail as well as other recent exposures of police brutality and corruption. The sections on white collar, corporate, and state crimes have been updated and recent examples added to the text. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780813334875

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Book Description Westview Press. Paperback. Book Condition: New. This item is printed on demand. Paperback. 192 pages. In the United States today, we are on the verge of fulfilling a nightmare scenario. Parents are fearful of letting their children play in their own yards and elderly people are afraid to leave their homes. The bogeyman in this rampant panic about crime is the young black male, who, in the media and public image, is a superpredator lurking on every street corner ready to attack any prey that is vulnerable. But is crime in America really as bad as the public has been made to believePower, Politics, and Crime argues that the current panic over crime has been manufactured by the media, law enforcement bureaucracies, and the private prison industry. It shows how the definition of criminal behavior systematically singles out the inner-city African American. But urban minorities arent the only victims. Although crime rates have been declining for 25 years, vast amounts of money pour into the criminal justice-industrial complex, diverting scarce resources from other social services such as education, social welfare, and health care. While in recent years downsizing has affected almost every segment of the public sector, the criminal justice bureaucracies have seen an unprecedented expansion. Through ethnographic observations, analysis of census data, and historical research, William Chambliss describes what is happening, why it has come about, and what can be done about it. He explores the genesis of crime as a political issue, and the effect that crime policies have had on different segments of the population. The book is more than a statement about the politics of crime and punishmentits a powerful indictment of contemporary law enforcement practices in the United States. In addition to updating the data the author has added a discussion of the declining crime rate. Contrary to presentations in the media and by law enforcement agencies, the rate has been declining for over 25 years and therefore cannot be attributed to any get tough on crime policies so dear to the hearts of prosecutors and politicians. Chapter Seven, Crime Myths and Smokescreens has been completely revised and updated. Updates include a discussion of the recent scandal in the Los Angeles Police Department which has resulted in criminal charges against police officers and the release of numerous convicted felons because of falsified evidence and testimony on the part of police officers. The attack on Louima in the police station in New York as well as the shooting of Diallo are discussed in some detail as well as other recent exposures of police brutality and corruption. The sections on white collar, corporate, and state crimes have been updated and recent examples added to the text. This item ships from La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9780813334875

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