To many, the end of the Civil War in 1865 represented the end of slavery; at least, that’s what the history books tell us. In January of 1865, the Thirteenth Amendment was passed, freeing millions of black citizens as they finally received emancipation. The Thirteenth Amendment reads: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
It is clear that a loophole exists, which allows slavery to continue within the confines of prison walls. The documentary 13th explores how slavery was never abolished, but actually shifted into the modern prison system, ultimately fuelling mass incarceration of black citizens. In fact, 1 in 3 black males will serve jail time at some point in their lives, whereas only 1 in 17 white men will. Don’t let government propaganda fool you: The only reasons for mass incarceration in the U.S. are racism and profit.
Hollywood and Mainstream Media Vilify Black Citizens
The seemingly obvious motive behind imprisoning black citizens is racism, which didn’t just disappear post-Civil War. The documentary starts off by exploring the incredibly racist 1915 Hollywood film Birth of a Nation. Headline after headline glorified the movie, as it marked a huge step for cinematic realism. The mainstream media loved it and so did an overwhelmingly large section of the U.S. population, including the White House, which held a private screening of the film. The movie featured many horrific acts of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) against the black community, and actually dignified their behaviour. The film was partly blamed for the rebirth of the KKK in years to follow and made it clear that racism was still widespread.
It’s no secret that governments, corporations, and the elite control mainstream media so they can produce and feed propaganda to the public. The documentary explains that most of the arrests televised are about people with darker skin colours and the media constantly vilifies black citizens, adding to the mythology of black criminality. You never see any of the positive news, or real news for that matter, on these outlets, especially regarding black people. This has been evident throughout history and remains an issue to this day, which you can see within the Black Lives Matter movement and police brutality. Cops aren’t held accountable for their actions, innocent black people that havedied as a result of police brutality are wrongly blamed by mainstream media for their own deaths, and Black Lives Matter protests are largely ignored by the media.
Here’s a trailer for the documentary, 13th, available on Netflix: