Black Codes: Post Civil Rights Movement

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At the end of America’s “Civil War”, the 13th amendment was signed into law abolishing slavery in America, except as punishment of a crime.  During this time, “emancipation proclamation” was a global matter in majority of the nations that participated in the enslavement of African people.  Kidnapped Africans forced into servitude, were not emancipated because it was a “humane” thing to do but rather because slavery was an overly saturated market.  In other words: Everybody had one! A new form/type of slavery will be created, the “industrial slave”.

After the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, his successor was Andrew Johnson.  President Johnson was a known racist and after he came into office “Black Codes” came into existence.  “Black Codes” were unofficial laws used to restrict civil liberties of the “newly freed” African slaves in America.  While these “black codes” were being enforced (criminalizing newly freed slaves), this same U.S. President gave pardons to the remaining co-conspirators in the murder of his predecessor President Abraham Lincoln, and he also gave pardons to confederate soldiers that participated in the “Civil War”, which was a “criminal act”.  After being pardoned by President Johnson, these “criminals” came out of hiding and during this era large numbers of newly freed Africans were being murdered through lynching and race riots. (1898 Wilmington NC Race Riots, 1921 Tulsa Oklahoma Race Riots just to name a few.)

This era of American history is known as “The Jim Crow Era”, lasting almost a century.  The civil rights movement of the 1960’s would eventually bring an end to the “Jim Crow Era”, or so you thought.

In present day America, during the post civil rights movement, “over incarceration” or “mass incarceration” is termed by some activists as the “New Jim Crow”.  In fact the “War on Drugs” is currently being used as a weapon against “poor people” also known as the “War on the Poor”.

The goal of Victims of Misfortune is to boldly confront the problems of America’s criminal justice system, public policies, and the impact of prison labor on American workers and also provide valuable solutions to those people who are being discriminated against.   This feature-length documentary will be avail­able for use in order to raise consciousness and organize for reform.

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