12% of Blacks and 1 in 147 in prison?

My friend told me today that 12% of blacks in America are in prison. This seems high, is it correct?

She said 1 in 147 people in America are in prison. Is this correct?

There is a higher percentage of blacks in prison than whites but I really dont think it’s that much. I mean that’s about 15 times more! Sounds like one of those statistics sad racist people make up, but I may be wrong…

Human Rights Watch (2000):

I can’t seem to find “national” statistics to easily on google. (go figure) however there are a few state sites available.

Google search “prison facts”

California has a site from 2002:

Statewide: CDC prisoners (male):
29% White
35% Hispanic
30% Black
6% Other

Love to see other numbers and sites!

I dont like that link because it just has figures for black and white people, no hispanic figures, no asian figures.

In UK there is a higher proportion of blacks in prison, but a lower proportion of asians than whites.

Bureau of Justice Statistics for 2002 (these cover federal and states):

The shocking stat,if true,is that MORE blacks are in the justice system-jail,prison,probation, parole,& diversion programs than college. True??

When I attended a mostly black (85%) public university, the figure I heard was that there were more black men in the justice system than in college.
That is less difficult for me to swallow than just “more blacks” being in prison than college. It seemed notable to me that my alma mater had waaay more guys than gals. I can’t quote enrollment numbers off the top of my head, but it seemed like all my classes had maybe two women for each guy.

Another stat from that page I gave: “More black males than white males among State and Federal inmates at yearend 2002.”

It’s been pointed out that the statistic that “there are more black men in prison than in college” is slightly deceptive. There are prisoners of many ages, while most people in college are from a narrow range of ages. Yes, there are more black males in prison than in college, but that’s perhaps not the best comparison. If you look at just black males who are 18 to 24 years old, there are almost three times as many of them in college as in prison.

Related thread a few months ago on same topic.

12 percent of all black males in the US between ages 20-39 are in jail

i wonder, does it cost more to keep somebody in jail than it does to attend college ? it probably does.

Kind of an apples and oranges question. The usual method of determining how much it costs to keep one person in prison is to figure in the total budget of the prison system and divide by the number of prisoners. There’s a few quibbles that could be made with that method, but let’s accept it as reasonable.

Meanwhile the most common method for determining the cost of keeping a persion in college is figuring out an average tuition. The pundit then declares that it cost more to keep a man in prison than it does to keep him in college. In reality, this is where the apple meets the orange.

The college figure doesn’t usually assume the cost of feeding and housing is included (certainly not year round). And even if they do, no college is going to provide clothing, medical services, or the other things prisons pay for.

CURRENTLY in college, or HAVE ATTENDED college at one point? The latter is the more relevent statistic, I think.

Little Nemo, its true that tuition does not include housing, food etc … but many people in college work part time (some full time), while people in prisons don’t. so college student largely pays for himself while a prisoner doesn’t.

my point is that if they supported the poor financially by paying most of their tuition then many of them would probably not end up in jails, and thus recover most of the money back.

JW-I was wrong.Of course it is black MEN. Thanks for correction.

College is usually just for 19-22 year olds. Compare almost anything to that and get a shocking “conclusion.”