Black Agenda Report, “the journal of African American political thought and action,” recently published its index of 2008’s Ten Worst Places to Be Black. The criteria? Incarceration rates.
Bruce Dixon, the Report's managing editor, explains:
America's prison system, the world's largest houses some 2.2 million people. Almost half its prisoners come from the one eighth of this country which is black. African American communities have been hard hit by the social, political, and economic repercussions of the growth of America's prison state. Its presence and its reach into Black life is a useful index of the quality of life in Black America itself.