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The Lost Voting Potential of Millions of 'Disappeared' African Americans

A new study shows how the high early death and incarceration rates of African Americans skew election outcomes.
relates to The Lost Voting Potential of Millions of 'Disappeared' African Americans
Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Last April, The New York Times reported that there were 1.5 million African-American men “missing” due to early deaths or incarceration. Or, as NYT summarized it: “More than one out of every six black men who today should be between 25 and 54 years old have disappeared from daily life.”

These are men who should be alive and accounted for, but who have instead been vanished due to multiple strains of racism enshrined in the nation’s health and criminal justice systems. The impacts of their erasure are felt not only in families and communities, but also in the workforce, schools, and the electorate.