Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
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The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime.
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- At the end of the Civil War slavery was for the first time authorized by the US Constitution in the 13th Amendment, which authorized the government to treat convicts as slaves. So the newly “freed” Blacks were simply targeted with criminal prosecutions and then placed right back into bondage to serve as contract laborers, on chain gangs, and on prison plantations.
- Kevin Rashid Johnson, "Amerikan Prisons Are Government-Sponsored Torture," Socialism and Democracy, vol. 21, no. 1 (2007), p. 87