What is going on in Wisconsin?
A new study from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee that looked at the prison population there found that the state has the highest percentage of incarcerated black men in the country. About 1 in 8 black men of working age (13 percent) are in state prisons or jails. The national average is 6.7 percent.
According to census figures, African-Americans make up 6.5 percent of the state's population.
Wisconsin also leads the nation in the percentage of Native men behind bars; 1 in 13 Indian men are incarcerated there.
Wisconsin, though? Really?
And Wisconsin's lead on this count is pretty big: It beats the state with the next-highest rate of imprisoned black men by nearly 3 percentage points — a gap bigger than the total distance between the second- and 10th-place states.
A big chunk of the state's black male prison population comes from Milwaukee, Wisconsin's biggest city. According to the researchers, more than half of all black men in their 30s and 40s had been incarcerated at some point. That means there's a large population of men in the state's biggest city who are essentially unemployable, which puts a huge drag on the economy — and a big reason Milwaukee is one of the poorest big cities in the country. (Milwaukee's metro area also boasts one of the biggest gaps in incomes between blacks and whites.)
And Milwaukee's poor felons are concentrated in the same neighborhoods: The study also found that almost two-thirds of Milwaukee County's incarcerated black men come from the city's six poorest ZIP codes.
"I do think that a lot of it has to do with sentencing policy," said Jeanne Geraci, who runs the Benedict Center, a Milwaukee-based organization that advocates for community-based responses to criminal justice. Geraci said that the state has a much more aggressive stance to incarceration; Minnesota, which has similar demographics and crime rates, has a prison population half the size of Wisconsin's prison population.
UPDATE: A commenter wondered if it might be helpful to know what kinds of crimes the people in Milwaukee County were being incarcerated for committing the breakdown of incarceration in Wisconsin between various racial groups. These are good points, so we're adding some of that contextualizing info from the study.
Here's some of it, which looks back at Milwaukee County's recent history.
"8,287, or one-third, of the African American men incarcerated since 1990 showed only non-violent offenses."
"Forty percent(N=10,497) of the African American males from Milwaukee County incarcerated since 1990 were drug offenders. In the early 1990s African Americans had 4 times as many annual admissions for drug-related offenses as white men. As drug offenses soared in the 2002 to 2005 years African American men had 11 to 12 times as many drug-related prison admissions as white men."
You can also take a look at the bar graph from the study showing the relative rates of incarceration of men by race both in Wisconsin and nationally. The rate of black male incarceration in Wisconsin is 12.8 percent and 6.7 percent nationally; the rate of Native male incarceration is 7.6 percent in Wisconsin and 3.1 percent nationally; 1.7 percent for Latino men in Wisconsin and 2.0 percent nationally, and 1.2 for white men in Wisconsin and 1.3 nationally.
This is Moses Official Birthday Party!!!! Get Your Asses out for this one!!!!!
Its time for a very special show this time around as Cosmic Railroad makes its return to the Route 20 Outhouse.
This place is the best venue, with the best sound and lighting in the area...and because of this we will be doing a very rare 2 full set performance. Heres the cool thing...The first set will be all acoustic and the second set will be all electric. We have never done this before so mark those calendars and come out for what will surely be a night of great night of music and good times.
Here are the details:
Route 20 Outhouse
14001 Washington Ave
Racine, WI 53177
Box Office Phone:
This show is 21+
Last time we played this venue it SOLD OUT...Get tickets online, or by box office phone...or...get there early
White House drug czar Gil Kerlikowske recently gave an interview with Canada's Maclean's Magazine and appeared to candidly criticize President Barack Obama's administration for falling short in its effort to address marijuana policy.
"The administration has not done a particularly good job of, one, talking about marijuana as a public health issue, and number two, talking about what can be done and where we should be headed on our drug policy," he told the magazine. "There are significant health concerns around marijuana from all the science, not ideology. I don’t see the legalization of drugs and making them widely available as a good thing, and I don’t think locking everyone up is a good thing either." ~Huffington Post
Kerlikowske, who has said the nation is "in the midst of a serious national conversation about marijuana," also spoke out against legalization efforts on a state-by-state basic, arguing that a "patchwork of policies" was not the best approach. State legalization efforts passed in Colorado and Washington last November.
As the ONDCP puts it, the drug czar's department is tasked with using "community-based prevention programs, early intervention programs in healthcare settings, aligning criminal justice policies and public health systems to divert non-violent drug offenders into treatment instead of jail, funding scientific research on drug use, and, through the Affordable Care Act, expanding access to substance abuse treatment."
Kerilikowske brings up his third option policy and treating abuse as a health issue, however he dodges every question regarding re-scheduling Cannabis or the fact that legalization, regulation and taxation would help end the violence and curb profits to cartels and gangs. While admitting the social damages caused by alcohol, legal alcohol, and then regard Cannabis as a more harmful substance that hasn't been studied enough to be FDA approved. Yet, will not have a discussion in regards to re/de-scheduling Cannabis that would allow the FDA and other testing facilities that would declare once and for all the medicinal effects of Cannabis and all of the Cannabidiols not just the THC and/or CBD that the pharmaceutical companies are claiming to be their fix to the problem so they can profit from an all natural healing herb.
Milwaukee City, Chief of Police Edward A. Flynn brings up Alcohol and compares the traumatic social expense it takes on society with domestic abuse, drunk driving accidents; innocent deaths in these accidents, the cost put on the public from alcohol related health issues. Then asks why would we want to open another flood gate for problems by legalizing another "drug".
While doing nothing about an admitted social burden in alcohol he blames Cannabis for being the worst drug they have problems with? Then jokes about me questioning the real reason the "drug houses" get home invasions. Because they can't call the police and report it like they could if it were legalized and regulated. "You'd be surprised, they do call..." IGNORANCE! As long as these people are in a position to make these policies and further tarnish the reputation of a plant that is doing wonders when allowed, it even works when not allowed but might cause you some legal trouble, we still have a fight to win.
So when they try and tell you they are no longer fighting a "War on Drugs" and they "can't arrest their way out of this drug problem." The ignorance towards Cannabis and it's health benefits still scare me. Their is more to this Cannabis prohibition than them worrying about our health and safety. It's a plant for goodness sake!
I fear that our fight against the bigger beast, the corruption behind prohibition, may be Wisconsin's biggest hurdle yet. Let's not forget we have Kimberly-Clark fighting silently from the north woods also. Not to mention our lack of ability to have an initiative placed on the ballot for the PEOPLE to vote on. If Wisconsin isn't legal in a few years we can't say it was for lack of trying.
Keep fightin' this good fight with me!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SE Wisconsin N.O.R.M.L (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws)
SE Wisconsin NORML
South Eastern Wisconsin N.O.R.M.L. is proud to present "Breaking the Taboo" a documentary Narrated by Morgan Freeman. Find out why several world leaders - including two former US Presidents - are calling to end the War on Drugs.
SE Wisconsin NORML
Breakin' The Taboo
The Miramar Theatre
2844 N. Oakland Ave.
Friday, March 22nd
**Only $5 at the door**
8p - 9:30p Smooth Operators
9:30p - 10p First half of Breaking the Taboo
10p - 11:30p Mark Hubing & The Band of Lights
11:30p - 12p Second half of Breaking the Taboo
12a - 1a Mister E (DJ)
1a - 2a Alfonz Delamota (DJ) M.I.A. (Chicago) and MC Questionmark M.I.A. (U.K.)
Presented by Southeastern Wisconsin NORML:
With support from Fresh Batch:
Join us in what will be the largest pro-marijuana-legalization
The route will be as follows:
East across Locust Ave.
South down Oakland Ave.
West across North Ave.
North up Humboldt Blvd. back to the park
The route is approximately 3 miles long, and will probably take between an hour and an hour and a half.
We are also hoping to have other activities before and/or after the march, so stay tuned for more details