What “Race-Neutral” Policy Preserves

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The growing scholarship that illuminates the evolution of this cultural and discursive transformation refers to it as the rise of a “color-blind” era in which policy becomes officially “race-neutral” (see, e.g., Bonilla-Silva, 2010; Brown et al., 2003). In the post- Civil Rights era, race-based discrimination is illegal, thus, the logic goes, if we choose not to “see race” then racism will be eliminated. Yet, as Bonilla-Silva (2010) maintains, color-blind policy serves as an ideological armor for a covert and institutionalized system of racism and preservation of white privilege. In regard to crime control, Alexander (2010) illustrates how color-blind policies permit us to label people of color as “criminals” and then engage legally in similar exclusionary and discriminatory practices, that when explicitly based on race, have been outlawed.

From Kathleen Nolan (2015), “Neoliberal common sense and race-neutral discourses: a critique of ‘evidence-based’ policy- making in school policing,”Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 36:6, 897.

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What “Race-Neutral” Policy Preserves

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