Critical Race Theory



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Link – Race of Author

One’s identity is intrinsically linked to their scholarship – One must disclose to understand perspective


Chang 93 – (Robert S. Seattle University Professor of Law and Executive Director of the Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality “Toward an Asian American Legal Scholarship: Critical Race Theory, Post-Structuralism, and Narrative Space” California Law Review, Vol. 81, No. 5 (Oct., 1993), pp. 1241+1243-1323 http://www.jstor.org/stable/3480919 , cayla_)

When the legal academy was made up exclusively of white males, a legal scholar did not have to reveal the context from which he spoke because everyone occupied the same context. This shared context fostered a false sense of acontextuality, where one could pretend to be aperspectival because only one perspective was represented.142 With the entry of women and persons of color into the legal academy and with their use of personal narratives in scholarship, whether perspective matters has become a contested issue. Other disciplines recognize the importance of perspective.'43 Even science, once the model for the study of law,'" has recognized that the perspective of the observer matters.'45 For example, there was a longstanding dispute among physicists about whether light was a wave or a particle.'46 Adherents of the wave theory, limited by their perspective, were unable to see that light sometimes behaved like a particle. Likewise, adherents of the particle theory were unable to see that light sometimes behaved like a wave. Each group was unable to see what the other group saw; the groups were unable to see that light could be both wave and particle. 147 Just as science has learned that the perspective of the observer cannot only affect, but can also determine, what is observed, law must also recognize the importance of perspective. Professor Laurence Tribe reminds us, "[d]ifficult as it is to view the world from someone else's perspective, not to make the effort is to ignore what science learned long ago."148 The lesson from science for the legal academy is simple: Listen.

The Race of the author is important to know


Delgado 95 -- (Richard, Founder of Critical Race Theory, civil rights and critical race theory at University of Alabama School of Law Critical Race Theory: The Cutting Edge Philadelphia : Temple University Press, 1995. cayla_)

In an article published with them, Williams describes her exclusion from a New York Store as follows: [. . .] [When editing her account,] “the editors initially deleted all references to [William’s racial identity informing her that references to physiognomy [sic] were irrelevant . . . . [But] if the racial identity of the speaker is not included, the point of the story is unintelligible.” Had the editors prevailed, Williams would have appeared irrational for being so angry at a store clerk over a minor incident. The editors sought to suppress the existence of race from a narrative in which race was the center of the incident. Their attempted use of nonrecognition would have produced a misleading “nonracial” narrative.


Link -- Surveillance



Surveillance policies are not colorblind – They disproportionately subjugate blacks and people of color – The impact is massive criminalization


Beckett and Sasson 2k (Katherine and Theodore, Beckett: Professor of Law, Societies & Justice Program

Department of Sociology, University of Washington/ Sasson: Professor of International and Global Studies at Middlebury College The Politics of Injustice: Crime and Punishment in America pg. 179-181 2000 Sage Publications, Inc., cayla_)


All Americans are experiencing stepped-up surveillance. Suspect populations, however, are kept under far tighter scrutiny. Black men, regardless of their involvement with the justice system, are routinely subjected to motor vehicle stops for the crime of DWB—Driving While Black. Members of minority groups are often stopped in airports, bus terminals, and other public places and questioned about drugs, a practice legitimated by typically ambiguous “drug courier profiles,” which open the door for unlimited police discretion. Since September 11, 2001, racial profiling of Arabs and people believed to have ties to the Middle East has become especially widespread. For individuals of all races who have been sentenced by a court, forms of surveillance range from regular probation, which might entail nothing more than a notification requirement concerning change of address, to electronic monitoring, day reporting, halfway house residency, and house arrest. Probationers and parolees suspected of substance abuse problems must submit to regular drug and alcohol testing. Sex offenders must register with local police, who in turn, in may jurisdictions, notify area residents and prospective employers. In the United States, on any given day, nearly 1 in 3 young black men is under one form or another of criminal justice supervision. In many U.S. cities, the proportion is even more dramatic. As noted in Chapter 1, in 1997, 50% of black males in Washington, DC, between 18 and 35 years old were in jail or prison, on probation or parole, out on bond, or wanted on an arrest warrant. In neighboring Baltimore, Maryland, in 1991, the comparable statistic was 56%. In high-poverty, racially segregated neighborhoods, the percentage is still higher. One unsurprising consequence of the expansion and intensification of community surveillance (e.g., probation and parole) is the burgeoning number of people sent to prison for violating the conditions of community release. In 1980, new court commitments were responsible for 82% of prison admissions; parole and probation violations were responsible for 17%. By 1997, the share of prison admissions from the courts had declined to 60%, and the share stemming from conditional release violations surged to 40%. Many of these violators are detected through drug tests. Although probation and parole were conceived, at least in part, as mechanisms for reintegrating offenders into community life, they now help to explain why U.S. prisons are bursting at their seams.


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