Black Women: Lighter Skin, Lighter Prison Sentence

Lighter Skin Lighter Prison SentenceAn extensive new research study provides compelling evidence that lighter skin color is strongly associated with receiving a lighter prison sentence.

The research is presented in a new article called, “The impact of light skin on prison time for black female offenders,” and is published in The Social Science Journal (Volume: 48, Issue: 1, Pages: 258-250). The study’s authors, Jill Viglione, Lance Hannon, and Robert DeFina, are researchers at Villanova University.

To conduct this study, the researchers examined the records of 12,158 women incarcerated in North Carolina prisons between 1995 and 2009.

The North Carolina Department of Corrections tracks certain information about each inmate to faciliate prisoner identification. This information includes inmate hair color, eye color, height, weight, and body build. Most relevant to this study, skin tone is also recorded. Light skin tone is assigned a code of 1, and dark skin tone is assigned a code of 0.

black womenUsing statistical analysis, researchers were able to “control for” (or, hold constant) factors such as prior record, conviction date, prison misconduct, and being thin, as well as whether the woman was convicted of homicide or robbery since these crimes usually carry lengthy prison sentences.

With regard to prison sentences, their results indicate that women deemed to have light skin are sentenced to approximately 12% less time behind bars than their darker skinned counterparts.

The results also show that having light skin reduces the actual time served by approximately 11%.

The study confirms other research that shows similar results for Black men, that is, that the lighter skin color, the lighter prison sentences (e.g., Gyimah-Brempong, K. and Price, G. N., “Crime and Punishment: And Skin Hue Too?” American Economic Review, (2006), 96; 2, pages 246-250).

jessie danielsThis research also confirms the common knowledge in much of the black community about lighter skin color. When Harry Reid “inartfully” pointed out that Obama had a better chance at being elected to high office because of his lighter skin, it was Colin Powell who agreed with Reid.

The reality is that lighter skin color makes navigating a racist society easier.

Jessie Daniels
Racism Review


  1. says

  2. AllPeople says


    THE FACTS are as follows:

    1) It is often a surprise for people to learn that, in reality, there
    is actually No Such Thing As a “Light Skinned Black” person.

    2) Very few people seem to be aware of the fact that the term
    “Light Skinned Black” is really nothing more than a racist
    oxymoron created by Racial Supremacists in an effort to
    forcibly deny those Mixed-Race individuals, who are of
    a Multi-Generational Multiracially-Mixed (MGM-Mixed)
    lineage, the right to fully embrace and to also received
    public support in choosing to acknowledge the truth
    regarding their full ancestral heritage and lineage.

    3) The people who have been slapped with the false label and
    oxymoronic misnomer of “Light Skinned Black” person are simply
    Mixed-Race individuals — who are from families that have been
    CONTINUALLY Mixed-Race THROUGHOUT multiple generations.

    4) Seeing that every other Mixed-Race group is allowed the dignity
    of receiving support in having itself referred to by the term that
    it most prefers – the question becomes “Why should the
    situation be any different for those Mixed-Race
    individuals who are of an Multi-Generational
    Multiracially-Mixed (MGM-Mixed) lineage?”.

    5)[/b] If an MGM-Mixed individual would like to be referred to by the
    term ‘Mixed-Race’ (which is what they actually are) rather than by
    that of “Light-Skinned Black“ (a term, which, once again, has the
    racist-origin of being nothing more than an oxymoronic-phrase that
    was both created and coined by Racial Supremacists in an effort to
    try to deny these Mixed-Race people their right to and support in
    publicly acknowledging and also embracing their FULL-Lineage)
    there is no reason that they (like every other group on the planet
    — whether Mixed-Race or not) should not be allowed the right
    to choose the term that society uses in referring to them
    (and to have their full-lineage acknowledged within that term).



  3. -Nate says

    Although this is true , I wonder about Ms. Jessica’s motivations here .

    I live in The Ghetto and yes , color is an extremely important issue amongst not only Blacks but Hispanics as well , both Groups are much more racist in house than White people know .

    Color makes no difference ~ it is how you comport yourself that important .

  4. Michaelc says

    This is downright scary. Perhaps supplying black people going to trial with makeup to lighten their skin could help them for relatively low cost.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *