Pros And Cons Of Felon Disenfranchisement

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Felon disenfranchisement is the inability to vote after conviction of a felony occurring in certain states. Although this seems contrary to anti-discrimination policies prevalent in the American Constitution, the American Supreme Court has established that disenfranchisement is only forbidden if based on “race, ethnicity, and sex, failure to pay a poll tax, or age over eighteen” (1). They do not translate into a universal right to vote. After committing a felony crime, a person is no less a citizen of America than they were before committing the crime. “Citizens who commit crimes cannot be forced to leave the country or legally declared noncitizens” (2).Committing a social wrong does not mean that one is any less American, or any less able to participate in legal life. Since the founding of the United States, the right to vote has been rooted into the core of…show more content…
Although crime rates have remained relatively stable, the number of those incarcerated has increased as a result of new policies such as mandatory minimum sentencing and three strike laws (4). Between 1970 and 2006, state imprisonment rates quadrupled from 87 inmates per 100,000 residents to 445 inmates per 100,000 residents” (2). They also argue that determinate sentencing, a process which eliminates the option for parole boards to release prisoners before the end of their sentencing date, has been a major transformation in over incarceration as inmates who have served an appropriate amount of time based on good behavior or rehabilitation must remain incarcerated until released at the end of their sentence by the state. This mass incarceration trend that rolling over America directly corresponds to the disenfranchised. More people become ex-convicts, more people become disenfranchised, and less people have a say in the mass-incarceration boom and over incarceration policies having a direct relation to

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