Presenter Information

Caitlin Troyer, Carroll College

Start Date

10-4-2021 10:45 AM

End Date

10-4-2021 12:00 PM

Disciplines

History

Subjects

Drug control -- Political aspects, Discrimination in law enforcement -- United States, Crime -- Political aspects -- United States -- History -- 20th century, Crime prevention -- United States -- History -- 20th century, Imprisonment -- Government policy -- United States -- History

Description

Abstract: The purpose of this study is to examine the ways in which the War on Drugs was wielded as a tool for political suppression, more specifically, how Ronald Reagan used the War on Drugs to suppress the African American male vote during his presidency, and thereafter. This paper focuses solely on the years 1982-1988. The study will consist of examining primary sources such as Ronald Reagan’s speeches and writings, bills passed during his presidency, demographics, and statistics of those incarcerated for drug use, as well as demographics of those who voted for Ronald Reagan. The study seeks to draw a correlation between the drastic incarceration of Black men and the fact that this demographic was not representative of Reagan's voter base to prove that incarceration was used as a tool for voter suppression. Reagan first mentioned the drug issue in a speech in 1982. Thereafter he frequently addressed it and pushed to create more drug policy. The War on Drugs in the United States eventually led to the US having the largest incarceration rate in the world. This means that an incredibly large group of Americans were disenfranchised and a disproportionate number of these individuals were Black men.

PART OF SESSION 6B. SYSTEMIC RACISM:

Comment: Roger Wiblin, Brigham Young University-Idaho
Chair: Marie Stango, Idaho State University

Neave Carroll, University of Washington, undergraduate student
“The LA Uprising on Camera: The Changing Mediascape and Its Influence on Conceptions of Race and Poverty”

Jacob Taylor, Boise State University, undergraduate student
“The Revival of Termination: Fragmenting John Collier’s Bureau of Indian Affairs”

Caitlin Troyer, Carroll College, undergraduate student
“Suppressing the Black Male Vote: Ronald Reagan and the War on Drugs”

Persistent Identifier

https://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/35246

Included in

History Commons

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Apr 10th, 10:45 AM Apr 10th, 12:00 PM

Suppressing the Black Male Vote: Ronald Reagan and the War on Drugs

Abstract: The purpose of this study is to examine the ways in which the War on Drugs was wielded as a tool for political suppression, more specifically, how Ronald Reagan used the War on Drugs to suppress the African American male vote during his presidency, and thereafter. This paper focuses solely on the years 1982-1988. The study will consist of examining primary sources such as Ronald Reagan’s speeches and writings, bills passed during his presidency, demographics, and statistics of those incarcerated for drug use, as well as demographics of those who voted for Ronald Reagan. The study seeks to draw a correlation between the drastic incarceration of Black men and the fact that this demographic was not representative of Reagan's voter base to prove that incarceration was used as a tool for voter suppression. Reagan first mentioned the drug issue in a speech in 1982. Thereafter he frequently addressed it and pushed to create more drug policy. The War on Drugs in the United States eventually led to the US having the largest incarceration rate in the world. This means that an incredibly large group of Americans were disenfranchised and a disproportionate number of these individuals were Black men.

PART OF SESSION 6B. SYSTEMIC RACISM:

Comment: Roger Wiblin, Brigham Young University-Idaho
Chair: Marie Stango, Idaho State University

Neave Carroll, University of Washington, undergraduate student
“The LA Uprising on Camera: The Changing Mediascape and Its Influence on Conceptions of Race and Poverty”

Jacob Taylor, Boise State University, undergraduate student
“The Revival of Termination: Fragmenting John Collier’s Bureau of Indian Affairs”

Caitlin Troyer, Carroll College, undergraduate student
“Suppressing the Black Male Vote: Ronald Reagan and the War on Drugs”