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13th Amendment

The 13th Amendment Legalizes Slavery; Many States Have Their Own Version

The 13th Amendment of the US Constitution makes an exception to the abolition of slavery in order to permit the use of “involuntary servitude” as punishment for a crime. The modern system of mass incarceration depends on this exception to justify paying millions of incarcerated people subminimum wages that many advocates say is virtually indistinguishable from forms of slavery. Various US states also have their own constitutional “exception clauses” that mirror the language of the 13th Amendment, providing an additional layer of legal justification for the exploitation of prisoners.
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