5 Paragraph Essay


For this final essay question, you must discuss the contemporary constitutional challenges that impact Black America in a formal essay response. Your essay must have a clear introduction with a thesis statement, at least three body paragraphs, and a conclusion. In addition, your essay should include specific information from the readings and videos to help strengthen your claims. However, please make sure to cite any direct quotes you incorporate.

Michelle Alexander argues “the Constitution was designed so the federal government would be weak, not only in its relationship to private property, but also in relationship to the rights of states to conduct their own affairs. The language of the Constitution itself was deliberately colorblind (the words slave or Negro were never used), but the document was built upon a compromise regarding the prevailing racial caste system” (19). She goes on to identify the three major “racial caste systems” that have existed in the United States and how the Constitution has specifically been used in constructing these castes.

What are the three major racial caste systems discussed by Alexander? What constitutes the New Jim Crow and how does it impact the Black community? What distinguishes the New Jim Crow from the “old” Jim Crow? How have both Republican and Democratic party leaders been responsible for creating this new racial caste system? What is the specific relationship between the New Jim Crow and the rise of #BlackLivesMatter? Finally, why do you think most Black celebrities, athletes, and entertainers have been hesitant to publicly protest against police brutality and support Black Lives Matter in the way that Colin Kaepernick has done?