What's Happening In Your World

Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock Support Dr. Boyce Watkins and Russell Simmons’ Campaign Against Mass Incarceration

trioA coalition of over 150 celebrities and public figures all came together to support an open letter to the president written by Dr. Boyce Watkins and Russell Simmons.  In the letter, Simmons and Watkins ask President Barack Obama an Attorney General Eric Holder to address the mass incarceration epidemic, which has impacted millions of families across America.

Other celebrities, scholars and public figures from all walks of life have signed onto the open letter, including Ron Howard, Nicki Minaj, the presidents of Morehouse and Spelman College, Mark Wahlberg, John Legend and Michelle Alexander (author of “The New Jim Crow”).

The coalition is asking that the president double down on his efforts to change the United States’ criminal justice policy from that of a punitive, suppression-based model to one that favors evidence-based prevention and rehabilitation. According to Department of Justice data, the U.S. leads the world in the incarceration of its own citizens, both on a per capita basis and in terms of total prison population. More than 500,000 of the 2.3 million people behind bars in the U.S. are incarcerated for nothing more than a nonviolent drug offense.

“It is critical that we change both the way we think about drug laws in this country and how we generate positive solutions that leave a lasting impact on rebuilding our communities,” said Russell Simmons. “We need to break the school to prison pipeline, support and educate our younger generations and provide them with a path that doesn’t leave them disenfranchised with limited options.”

Other activists, humanitarians and celebrities have endorsed the letter, including: Sir Richard Branson, Will Smith, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Scarlett Johansson, Ron Howard, Jennifer Hudson, Demi Moore, Eva Longoria, Rev. Al Sharpton, Mark Wahlberg, Harry Belafonte, Jada Pinkett Smith, Cameron Diaz, Urban League President Marc Morial, Nicki Minaj, Chris Rock, Russell Brand, John Legend, Michelle Alexander (author of The New Jim Crow), Rev. Jesse Jackson, John Wilson (President of Morehouse College), LL Cool J, NAACP President Ben Jealous, to name a few (to see a full list of public figures who’ve signed the letter, click here). The coalition suggests that the President continue to take a number of reformative actions, including extending the Fair Sentencing Act to all inmates who were sentenced under the 100-to-1 crack/powder disparity, supporting the principles of the Justice Safety Valve Act of 2013 (which allows judges to set aside mandatory minimum sentences when they deem appropriate), and supporting the Youth PROMISE Act.

Dr. Boyce Watkins added: “The letter is intended to be a respectful appeal to the Obama Administration asking that we develop productive pathways to supporting families that have been harmed by the War on Drugs. Countless numbers of children have been waiting decades for their parents to come home, and America is made safer if we break the cycle of mass incarceration. Time is of the essence, for with each passing year that we allow injustice to prevail, our nation loses another piece of its soul. We must carefully examine the impact of the War on Drugs and the millions of living, breathing Americans who’ve been affected. It is, quite simply, the right thing to do.”

Misguided drug laws and draconian sentencing requirements have produced profoundly unequal outcomes for communities of color. Although rates of drug use and selling are comparable across racial and ethnic lines, blacks and Latinos are far more likely to be criminalized for drug law violations than whites. 2.7 million children are growing up in U.S. households in which one or more parents are incarcerated. Two-thirds of these parents are incarcerated for nonviolent offenses. One in nine black children has an incarcerated parent, compared to one in 28 Latino children and one in 57 white children.

“So called ‘tough on crime’ policies have failed our nation and its families, while ‘smart on crime’ policies work,” said NAACP President & CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous. “When we know that drug treatment is seven times more effective than incarceration for drug addicts, basic human decency demands our nation makes the switch. The fate of hundreds of people and the children who need them home and sober hang in the balance. Great progress is being made in states from New York to Georgia with strong bipartisan support. The time has come for all of us to do all that we can. The future of our families, states, and nation demand it.”

The coalition hopes their letter will not only spark more meaningful conversations about the War on Drugs in the White House, but also encourage the public to be more actively engaged on these pressing issues.

To read the full letter to President Obama and to view the complete list of supporters, please visit http://www.yourblackworld.net/lettertothepresident/

 


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47 comments

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  2. Un travail d orfevre, merci pour ce bon plaisir.

  3. J avoue qu il y a sacre bout de temps que je n avais pas trouve un article de cette trempe !!!

  4. charles e. murray

    praeivet prison is another from of slavery and they are target our young blackman 18 to 25 strong men. need solution to problum

  5. Why is it that the black community considers our leaders to be celebrities? That is not heard of in other groups.

  6. Author K A Holmes

    I used to be involved with a drug-dealer and wrote about that experience in a book. Part of the problem is most don’t understand WHY people decide to use and/or sell drugs in the first place. I don’t make excuses for anyone. A crime is a crime, but it’s a lot more to it than most realize. Locking people up adds more to the problem than it does the solution. It is financially draining on the economy and it destroys families and communities. There needs to be more rehabilitative and educational programs in place. Most drug dealers aren’t criminally minded. We have to understand each other before we can help each other.

  7. Rev. George Brooks

    Okay, I’m certainly with you black leaders on this. But
    when are the massive marches going to take place, and continue until justice is achieved, rather than this mere
    talk and begging campaign, which is all we blacks do now,
    that is not ending up with any results. Also, when are
    these black leaders going to call on the president and
    government to track down whoever is bringing the drugs
    (and guns) into black neighborhoods in the first place,
    and demand that they be caught and long-termed JAILED. Are the leaders afraid to take on this last issue? And lastly,
    when are all of us blacks going to get a handle of these
    weak-minded, uneducated black youth of ours and get them
    to stop making fools of themselves by getting involved in
    drugs in any way (use or sales) in the first place. Which
    they continue to do, even though they already see what is
    taking place with other blacks down at the courthouses.
    How weak and stupid can we be? — Rev. George Brooks

    — Rev. George Brooks

  8. This is a fight worth taking up. Just be specific in how to turn the tide. Americans WILL change the gun laws and anything else, they decide to change. It doesn’t matter if change doesn’t come tommorrow. When we keep pushing for and demanding change, it comes. Just look at all of the social taboos of the past that are now the norm. Just never give up.

  9. This is long over due I have a love one there who were just at the scene of the crime and was sentence to 15 years at the age of 19 years old. He has spent mostly the beginning of hi adult life in prision and I notice that he has a hard time socializing with others face to face. H feels that he is left in the dark in some case he is even though he is shared of daily activities of the outside world. I love him dearly and want him to be able to have a conversation with me on his visit,you see I live in Ohio and he is way in Marenisco,Michigan a 10 hour drive and he is worth every second of it. The bible stes that It is not good for man to be alone or left to himself.

  10. I applaud the effort, however it is secondary to our #1 problem that makes situations like this worst.The Federal Reserve has existed long enough, we have been taken, long enough.Lets give them some attention, and when we get our country back we can genuinely fix these problems of greed and oppression, Research Fed.

  11. We are so tangled in this WEBB of SOCIAL ILLS–I don”t think we know if we’re COMING or GOING—or both—I am sure there are many innocent persons incarcerated , the question is–Who are the innocent?—-There will never be a 100% correct answer to that question—unless everybodys freedom is compromised in an attempt to flush out drug dealers –It’s almost impossible–Let’s start with the schools–what happened to WOOD WORK for the Guys?, DRAMA, MUSIC, SCHOOL PLAYS and other activities to keep our children interested— these BORING schools are just as bad as prison for our children–A good check up on our TEACHER’s (HUMAN BEING NEVERTHELESS and so called ADULTS) to make sure School is not about “teacher’s PETS and other unfair happenings in our schools —This “MESS” is gonna take a “MIRACLE’ to UNRAVEL—-and a computer blog will never work–“-HANDS ON EVERYBODY –“HANDS ON”!! PEACE!!!

  12. “As his day in court approached, Brian says that his lawyer feared that he wouldn’t get a fair trial, based on his age, size & race. So she, an African-American herself, convinced Brian to plead no contest to a crime he insisted he didn’t commit.”.

    -Attorney Elizabeth Harris should have been fired on the spot, and barred from practicing law.

    http://www.africanamerica.org/displayForumTopic/content/318657432973369821/

    Source: "This is why it is so important the our elected black leaders, civil lawyers, organizations, etc., etc., are competent, to hold any jurisdiction financially liable through filing civil claims based upon actual facts, Constitutional violations! by TheRealDeal,

    Selected comment:

    “As his day in court approached, Brian says that his lawyer feared that he wouldn’t get a fair trial, based on his age, size & race. So she, an African-American herself, convinced Brian to plead no contest to a crime he insisted he didn’t commit.”.

    -Attorney Elizabeth Harris should have been fired on the spot, and barred from practicing law.

    "You don't understand the system of white supremacy racism do you?" by Yemaya.

    -Yemaya

    http://www.africanamerica.org/fileSendAction/fcType/0/fcOid/128788938051977186/filePointer/128788938052440503/fodoid/128788938052440501/THE_LA_SENTINEL_.pdf

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-893985

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-855386

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-921922

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-169225

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-871749

    Playing the race card and saying or claiming that the demise of blacks is all the fault of "White Supremacy" racism/Racist Caucasians/Racist Republicans, etc., etc., is as far from the truth and reality, as it can get.

    Just as surely as Caucasians or other individuals other than Black have violated the rights of law abiding U.S. born descendants of slavery, the same if not worse can be said for the many treasonous individuals who are also U.S. born and Black too.

  13. Dont sell drugs. Mass incarceation won't matter. People who are not personally responsible are repeat offenders. Until black do that they will never be successful as a whole in america.

  14. BOYCE WATKINS INCARCERATED BROTHER

    I SUPPORT IT TOO, FOR OBVIOUS REASONS.

  15. http://www.ireport.com/docs/DOC-182700

    "I agree Mr. Alexander 99% with your statement, except for the part where you stated "people are committing crimes". I have 1 example that will shatter that hypothesis, where the State of New Jersey is literally kidnapping black people and incarcerating them…."-T Assata King.

    -T Assata King.

    http://www.ceyseauinc.com/

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-949295

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-953247

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-921922

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-769637

    This is why it is so important the our elected black leaders, civil lawyers, organizations, etc., etc., are competent, to hold any jurisdiction financially liable through filing civil claims based upon actual facts, Constitutional violations, and not useless "racial profiling" nonsense/Bull Crap.

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-877507

    http://articles.latimes.com/2011/mar/30/nation/la-na-court-prosecutors-20110330

    “Supreme Court rejects damages for innocent man who spent 14 years on death row” In a 5-4 ruling, justices overturn a jury verdict awarding $14 million to John Thompson, who had sued then-New Orleans Dist. Atty. Harry Connick Sr. because prosecutors hid a blood test that would have proved his innocence in a murder case.” By David G. Savage, Washington Bureau, March 30, 2011, Los Angeles Times.

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-916114

    When our own black elected officials and lawyers are inept, play games of deceit, or become co-conspirators with the original perpetrators, this kills any chance of redress, and allows the original perpetrators to escape with impunity. When there are absolutely no penalties on the back end, it will be business as usual.

    ******************************************

    THE JOB OF A CONGRESSMAN.

    “There are cases where an individual has been wrongfully treated by his government and about the only way, unless the individual resorts tocourt, and even in some cases the courts are not able to give proper relief, the only area or avenue open to the individual is through his representative. When you find a bona fide error has been made, I suggest that you make a maximum effort to remedy it. This I feel is a vital and important function of those of us in the House of Representatives”.

    Authors: Donald G. Tacheron and Morris Udall, from the book entitled, “The Job of the Congressman”, pages 65 and 66.

    (The above excerpt “The Job of the Congressman” holds true for all elected office officials).

    Article VI, USC: This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

    “……Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and Members of several State legislatures (all elected officials), and all executive and judicial Officers of the United States and of the several states, Shall be bound by oath of affirmation, to support this Constitution.

    14th Amendment, USC, Section 1: “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”.

    14th Amendment, USC, Section 4: “……But neither the United States public debt of the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave: but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.”.
    *****************************************************
    Oath of Office,: "I, (President, Supreme Court Justice, Congressperson, Assemblyman, Mayor, City Councilperson, Judge, ), during such times as I hold the office, I, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States (the Constitution of the State of California, Maryland, Illinois, etc., etc.), against all enemies foreign (terrorist enemies of the U.S., illegal immigrants, un-American or un-Constitutional anything and everything, etc.) and domestic (treasonous individuals or organizations, any Police Chief who condones this and the Police Chief's rogue police officers, unethical or criminal elected officials or public servants, illegal aliens or his or her advocates, un-American anything and everything), and that I will bear true faith and allegiance, to the Constitution of the United States , (State Constitution), and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter."

    http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/common/briefing/Oath_Office.htm

    U.S. Senate and Congressional Oath of Office: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God."

  16. Source: "Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock Support Dr. Boyce Watkins and Russell Simmons’ Campaign Against Mass Incarceration".

    Selected comment:

    "You have Black court appointed attorneys convincing their clients to plea guilty, instead of the attorney doing their job to investigate a case; I guess it is a lot easier to get $30,000.00 to convince your own race to plea guilty, then to have to work for the money and help convince a jury they are not guilty"-PB Short.

    PB Short

    There is one positive solution, and that is using the influence necessary to insure that any inept court appointed attorney or otherwise, especially a Black court appointed attorney who has a history of recommending his or her client and/or to any judge of the court that his or her Black and truly innocent client "plead no contest/guilty" be fired on the spot, or disbarred from ever practicing law again.

    **************************************
    http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50143485n
    http://www.cbsnews.com/2102-18560_162-57575891.html

    60 Minutes, Sunday, March 24, 2013, “Blindsided: The exoneration of Brian Banks”.

    The woman, Wanetta Gibson, who made the false claim of rape against Brian Banks is black.

    “As his day in court approached, Brian says that his lawyer feared that he wouldn’t get a fair trial, based on his age, size & race. So she, an African-American herself, convinced Brian to plead no contest to a crime he insisted he didn’t commit.”.

    -Attorney Elizabeth Harris should be disbarred from practicing law.

  17. http://www.yourblackworld.net/2013/04/black-news/will-smith-jesse-jackson-chris-rock-support-dr-boyce-watkins-and-russell-simmons-campaign-against-mass-incarceration/

    Source: "Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock Support Dr. Boyce Watkins and Russell Simmons’ Campaign Against Mass Incarceration".

    Selected Comment:

    "Although this cause and this letter appears to be great on the surface but what is it really saying? Blacks have been disproportionately affected by this mass incarceration without question but what is it exactly that the President can do about it? The fact that a large list of celebrities have signed on to it doesn't particularly impress me. How many of the people on this list are actually willing to use themselves or some of their resources to actually do something about the problem? As long as people are committing crimes they will be going to prison. Writing a letter to the President isn't going to stop the behavior that keeps putting us behind bars but a collective effort of the people on this celebrity list to create educational, business and job opportunities for more Blacks just might have do some good."-James Alexander.

    Indeed Mr. Alexander,

    http://www.ceyseauinc.com/

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-949295

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-941757

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-936676

    It would definitely be more productive for President Barack Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, our competent Black lawyers?, Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock, Dr. Boyce Watkins, Russell Simmons’ and/or anyone to step up to the plate to serve or represent innocent Black men and women wrongfully convicted, fined, imprisoned, egregiously violated by unethical city prosecutors or other public servants.

    http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/54169

    It would be more productive to improve the quality of life in the black community, especially the "inner-city" by promoting free enterprise to reduce "high unemployment", a solution that will reduce the chance that black men and women will commit any criminal act to provide the necessities of life, such as food, clothing, and shelter for themselves or any family member. Here again, President Barack Obama, multiple members of the Congressional Black Caucus, and/or others rarely use his or her influence to resolve problems to reduce high unemployment of Black men and women throughout the U.S.

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-953247

    Unfortunately, President Barack Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, our competent Black lawyers?, etc., etc., rarely, if ever step up to the plate for these individuals, a truly worthwhile endeavor that can truly bring forth positive results, truly earned redress, and send a strong message to any perpetrator that there will be a price to pay for unlawfully violating the Constitutional rights of innocent black men and women.

    5th Amendment, U.S. Constitution

    "No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."

    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-chief-justice-20130312,0,1769450.story

    "Re: A chief justice's lament in a legal history lesson, California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye shares the landmark case of indigent Floridian Clarence Gideon in decrying the closures of courts up and down the state because of budget cuts." by Maura Dolan, Los Angeles Times, March 12, 2013.

    Selected excerpt:

    "Cantil-Sakauye told lawmakers at the state Capitol that the landmark case of Gideon vs. Wainwright, whose 50th anniversary is next week, not only ensured that all criminal defendants would have legal representation but stood as a reminder that courts were often the last resort for people."

    http://www.pbs.org/wnet/supremecourt/rights/landmark_gideon.html

    Although it was not stated by Justice Cantil-Sakauye, in addition the Gideon vs. Wainwright decision also required criminal defendants have legal representation, who or whom, are also competent in upholding the Constitution, and the “rule of law”.

    About all that President Barack Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, our competent Black lawyers, Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock, Dr. Boyce Watkins, Russell Simmons’ and/or anyone can do for anyone who has truly committed a criminal act, is use his or her influence to promote the ideal of Constitutional protections to insure that the defendant(s) concerned get a fair and impartial trial.

  18. If this Referendum is implemented immediately as the war on drugs was a nation wide implementation and did not take 50 yrs. to get that ball rolling, it’s one step of many others needed in leveling the playing field.But if it takes 50 to 100 years of filibustering before any reforms and reviews of not only none violent drug convictions but also those convictions on controversial and circumstantial evidence as well as those conviction based upon a past conviction being the heaviest burden of proof prosecutors had to render guilty verdicts as if once convicted a person will never change but is hopelessly forever cultivating criminal mental and social dispositions.If this ball is not immediately effective,then it’s no more than a false flag carried by leading figures only out to covertly serve themselves and present statuesque.Case and point:voters ID the modern face of the pole Tax,only the illusion that progressive steps have been taken while stuck at a stand still.

  19. Dr. Boyce I commend you on your effort to fight mass incarceration of our people. Also the effort of bringing celebrities into the fold to bring much needed media attention. As you are well aware that this system of policing is based on the oppression and control of the former slaves.

    Ive been in law enforcement for 23 years and the elders of black law enforcement all know that Eric Holder is PRO- POLICE. His is not or have yet to address the prevalent issue in oversight of policies procedures and criminal law in our Justice System from Police to Courts to Incarceration.

    As far as our President. With all the love and respect with his accomplishments, he back stepped on the Henry Gates incident when he had the opportunity to create national dialogue on Police Criminality and Accountability. His statement for Trayvon Martin was noble but a little too late!

  20. Dr. Watkins I have been trying to contact you regarding many issues facing our people without success, so I will briefly outline some here. Even though your current big push is to effectively combat the explosion in mass incarcerations that is happening accross the country, piling on celebrities will certainly attract attention, but in the last analysis will produce no tangible results.

    As many commentators have written in response to this post – — black folks themselves are the prime contributors to this problem, mainly through ignorance. I agree, but I don’t “blame the victim”. African-Americans suffer from the one social nourishment that they need to improve and take control of their lives. That vital missing social
    “vitamin” is COMMUNICATION that addresses the UNIQUE NEEDS of our ethnic group. Many decades ago we had a strong middleclass group of Negro Newspapers that served regions sround the nation. The later generations obsessed by the ultimate prize of our FULL integration with all of the institutionalized social mechanisms created to service the evolutionary needs of the majority white population neglected the struggling black newspapers, and they all virtually disappeared. Now our current and future generations are dependent on the existing social communication channels that have little concern for our social needs except to provide amusement for white folks in concert with their evolutionary needs.

    We have been handed the means for building our own unique communication network, and the kicker is that virtually all of our youth know how to effectively use the hardware and
    apps that form the framework of the most intense experience of this new technology. What is required the actual structuring of the communications vehicle capable of meeting the great diversity of the evolutionary needs of our African-American youth. The time for doing such a communication project is NOW. If we delay we may not be able to match up the components, namely the structure to the user population..

    Such a communication facility would be able to inform our people that the looming threat for continues growing mass incarceration will not be fixed by petitions to our first black president. The two largest private prison corporations hmade over 2 billion dollars last year. Both GCA and CCA are in the process of becoming REITS (Real Estate Investment Trusts) for one single reason – to make their Wall Street Stock attractive to the LARGE STATE PENSION FUNDS. You see when these private prison corporations become REITs they will start paying DIVIDENDS to stock holders. When you consider that bank CDs pay lesss than a tenth of one percent interest , an offering of a 10% DIVIDEND (or higher) becomes a very attractive investment for the pension funds. Now check this out , how many black folks work for state and city municipalities, where they have a weekly deduction going into a pension fund towards their retirement? If these pension funds start picking up GCA or CCA stock, then the money from a lot of black folks is flowing into these private prison corporations for expansion to build new prisons which have to be filled by more people. This accounts for so many states now resorting to new “stop and frisk” laws aimed at young black men. Local law enforce needs to increase the flow of bodies into these new GCA and CCA prisons. So there it is the sweat of many hard working black employees could wind up financing the great expansion of the MASS INCARCERATION that you all are fighting against. However, we must organize to petition these state and city pension funds NOT TO INVEST IN ANY PRIVATE PRISON CORPORATION, and if they are invested DIVEST NOW!!

  21. Thats what I’m talking about. All it takes is the RIGHT 1 to step forward. Russell Simmons is him, obviously!

  22. I find the language and tone of the letter to be disappointing at bust. President Obama has done little or nothing around this issue. To have a so-called celebrities sign on means nothing without them committing their resources, money, and time. Fredrick Douglas states" Power concedes nothing without demand, never has never will" Dr. Boyce your letter sound far from demanding and more like the brothers and sisters you call out for not holding President Obama accountable. What happen to you voice when you penned this letter. To be honest I had such hope when you stated you were starting this coalition. I would like to have seen Harry Belanforte sign on. But after seeing the letter I understand. Where is the radical thought on this issue? No mention of the blatant racism and misconduct black males face in the justice system, and etc. I agree with Mr. Alexander about everything but the issue of crime.

  23. Dr. Boyce I commend you on your effort to fight mass incarceration of our people. Also the effort of bringing celebrities into the fold to bring much needed media attention. As you are well aware that this system of policing is based on the oppression and control of the former slaves.
    Ive been in law enforcement for 23 years and the elders of black law enforcement all know that Eric Holder is PRO- POLICE. His is not or have yet to address the prevalent issue in oversight of policies procedures and criminal law in our Justice System from Police to Courts to Incarceration.
    As far as our President. With all the love and respect with his accomplishments, he back stepped on the Henry Gates incident when he had the opportunity to create national dialogue on Police Criminality and Accountability. His statement for Trayvon Martin was noble but a little too late!

  24. Mario Jorell Robinson

    Real talk

  25. Mario Jorell Robinson

    deep

  26. YEA I HAVE BEEN TRYING FOR MANY YEARS TO GET A INVESTIGATION INTO MY ILEEGAL IMPRISONMENT AFTER ALMOST BEING MURDERED AFTER MY FAHTER WAS MURDERED AND OUR FAMILY ROBBED AND EXTORTED AND OTHERS MURDERED TOO! I THINK THAT WE ALL OUGHT TO MURDER AND TORTURE CATS AND DOGS IN ORDER TO GET THE ANIMAL RIGHTS GROUPS TO HELPS US PROTEST BECAUSE OF ANIMALS BEING VICTIMIZED LIKE US HUMANS! DOUGLAS K. STEWARD IN WASHINGTON DC FOR TRUTH AND JUSTICE FOR ALL NOT JUST SOME! 2023617415

  27. In order to get a positive result with high incarceration, let me give you your first hurdle. Start with Alabama and I I promise you the road will be made easy. There is no justice here, no quality education, and no jobs.

  28. Peter D. Slaughter

    A vast % of black people who watch way to much tv and do not read have no clue as to how this situtation on a large scall
    e is very sinister.
    For the most part right in the faces of many black people and the world is basically updated slavery and genocide in full effect.

    In spite of a so-called black president being elected and relected people are to blind to even see genocide,eugenics and population going down now.
    You mean we have to get some black entertainers to say something and make some noise about this and we can’t get enough regular black people to being so passive and apathe
    tic. Right now if Ida B. Wells she could see just how disgrasraceful this has become on a large scale.
    It might be to late for real…

  29. Well what can I say….I have been on this planet for 73+1 years. I just want to know why we let “white” peoples tell us not to get educated? Why since we became “integrated” I graduation rate has fallen? Our black teacher ratio to black kid have fallen? I read Willie Lynch’s letter to slave owners in the 17th Century? when he said SO you are burning up your property, hanging them, and mutilating them. u are losing money on your property. I have a great solution used in Europe Start telling your overseers to begin selling the idea to your slaves,,pit the young slaves against the old slaves, the women against the men (saying black men are no good) (black women are no good) fair skin against dark skin people, dark skin people are bad, ugly, and dumb…(our black children hate themselves, they pick the white doll over the black doll). our young men hate themselves, therefore they kill anyone that look like themselves Plantation mentality is still here…the prisons are the new factories (35 cent/hr) the projects & new housing are the breeding farms…babies have the same fathers. OUR black people make the least money, We still do not have civil rights (MLK) human rights(Malcolm X) Freedom (Frederick Douglass, WWB, H Tubman) the devil is busy don’t let him WIN!

  30. Well what can I say….I have been on this planet for 73+1 years. I just want to know why we let “white” peoples tell us not to get educated? Why since we became “integrated” I graduation rate has fallen? Our black teacher ratio to black kid have fallen? I read Willie Lynch’s letter to slave owners in the 17th Century? when he said SO you are burning up your property, hanging them, and mutilating them. u are losing money on your property. I have a great solution used in Europe Start telling your overseers to begin selling the idea to your slaves,,pit the young slaves against the old slaves, the women against the men (saying black men are no good) (black women are no good) fair skin against dark skin people, dark skin people are bad, ugly, and dumb…(our black children hate themselves, they pick the white doll over the black doll). our young men hate themselves, therefore they kill anyone that look like themselves Plantation mentality is still here…the prisons are the new factories (35 cent/hr) the projects & new housing are the breeding farms…babies have the same fathers. OUR black people make the least money, We still do not have civil rights (MLK) human rights(Malcolm X) Freedom (Frederick Douglass, WWB, H Tubman) the devil is busy don’t let him WIN!

  31. Please offer solutions rather than attack Mr. Watkins. When you do that it shows that you have been part of the problem all along.

  32. We cannot buy into the mercantilism of evil and expect to prosper or have God’s favor. The gambling, tobacco, alcohol, drugs, pornography and other vices that have caused so much harm and death to Americans should not be the vehicles that we use to uplift ourselves. Why not build our own factories?We have invented everything in this nation anyway, so why not completely take back our culture, our inventions, our labor and our peace?

  33. I have 1 example that will shatter that hypothesis, where the State of New Jersey is literally kidnapping black people and incarcerating them. Fabricating and manufacturing cases, and blatantly disregarding the so-called constitution all in the name of racism. Some one I now is doing 18 years in a New Jersey state Prison for CONSPIRACY to sell and distribute Marijuana in that state where he never entered, never was arrested or committed any crime in. The origin of the case started in Arizona, he being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Arrested yes, Convicted NO in the state of Arizona dismissed the charges both at the federal and the state level. Due to co defendants in NJ, the state of New Jersey brings in the person 3 years after his case in Arizona was dismissed, on conspiracy of knowing the co-defendants in New Jersey. Sounds like something from out of the twightlight Zone? It is. I have all the case records and transcripts to prove that you don't have to commit a crime anymore to be thrown in Jail. You just have to be black! After slavery, the Jim Crow era, where you could be arrested for vagrancy and not having a job? yes who's helping those who are being falsely accused of committing crimes? The prosecutor Tells the Judge as stated on record, "your honor, we don't have the jurisdiction to bring this evidence into this case to charge the defendants with." Judge Patrolle: " Well, its one thing not to charge, and another thing to render it not charged". Charge it anyway"….End quote.
    As the great Reverend J. Wright said so well, "Not God Bless America, God DAMN America" and all those who sit quietly and aid and abet this injustice.

  34. My father always told me if we do not discipline ourselves then someone else will. Black men must step up to the plate to put a halt to the rotten behavior of some of their sons who have devastated our communities with the lewd, the crass and the wicked behavior.

  35. Also, those who chose to use drugs and distribute the drugs must end their behaviors and learn how to use their mind, hands and the knowledge that is readily available to create legal and satisfying work for themselves, so that, they will be able to take care of their families and themselves. Black America must become industrious again like our fathers and grandfathers were. The kids must learn to paly instruments and compose music like so many of us did back in the day, because the evil rap music is bringing them down and shedding a bad light on us all around the world as the FCC allows this form of entertainment to flourish. We must take immediate steps to turn this all around.

  36. What a stupid letter. I can’t believe someone actually wrote:

    “Your hard work and leadership on issues affecting the unrepresented classes of people in our nation have served as an inspiration to many of us who hope for brighter futures for all Americans..”

    What hard work and leadership? What hard work is it to keep you own personal kill list? His “leadership” consisted of supporting the illegal invasion of Libya with US taxpayer’s $$$ and without the approval of Congress. His “leadership” consists of him being complicit in the deaths of more Africans than any US president in recent history. His “leadership” includes deporting more aliens (1.4 million) than Bush, Clinton, Nixon combined…and increasing the use of predatory drones from 54 (during the 8 years of Bush in the White House) to over 400 in the first 3 Obama years in the White House. His “leadership” includes the deaths of over 3000 men, women and children..including the 16 year old American who went searching for the remains of his father who had been murdered in a previous drone strike. Did that inspire the writers of the letter to Obama? Does this?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqqz_KLU4Ys

  37. I think that this is a great cause, but if the law enforcement community is not ridden of the Nazi like behavior of its membership, then nothing will change. So, the FOP leadership must be approached and warned about the continuance of their wickedness and evil that they impose upon the people and what consequences there are if they do not change their practices of discrimination, racism and the intimidation of black people in America. http://lnkd.in/UDJ7Z3

  38. Mr. Watkins will stop at nothing to get his name before the President. He is determined to be noticed for something.

    BTW, if you think all these folk incarcerated ” for nonviolent drug offenses” are there for the FIRST time, you’re going to be in for a rude awakening. None of these people will be first-offenders, and while their incarceration rests upon a final “drug” charge, they will have had multiple arrests for a variety of other infractions.

    Have you ever noticed that law-abiding working-class people aren’t looking for reduced prison sentences or plea deals?

  39. The problem with MASS-INCARCERATION is not the USA JUST_US system…

    The problem is with Black people; as the old saying goes, ignorance of the law is no excuse…

    When you nine (9) out of ten (10) Blacks taking plea deals, and pleading guilty because of their ignorance, then there is nothing you can do about that…

    You go to any city in America, and Black folks will tell you, you better take that deal, these white folks don’t play here…and this is all too common among Blacks…

    1) Never give up your right to “REMAIN SILENT”…

    2) Never give up your right to a “SPEEDY TRIAL”…

    These are the most common rights we give up as a whole…I have been charged with every crime under the SUN, just for being Black…held in jail with a high bond for months waiting to go to trial…put in cells with thugs, and had to fight daily, because the people think that I will plea guilty to their erroneous charges…

    NEVER, to strong for that, my mind is not week…

    You have Black court appointed attorneys convincing their clients to plea guilty, instead of the attorney doing their job to investigate a case; I guess it is a lot easier to get $30,000.00 to convince your own race to plea guilty, then to have to work for the money and help convince a jury they are not guilty…

    There is nothing your “NOT the Black people’s President” can do for you…it is like education, it must start in the home…but for some reason, families are first one’s to convince you to take the deal…

  40. I agree Mr. Alexander 99% with your statement, except for the part where you stated "people are committing crimes". I have 1 example that will shatter that hypothesis, where the State of New Jersey is literally kidnapping black people and incarcerating them. Fabricating and manufacturing cases, and blatantly disregarding the so-called constitution all in the name of racism. Some one I now is doing 18 years in a New Jersey state Prison for CONSPIRACY to sell and distribute Marijuana in that state where he never entered, never was arrested or committed any crime in. The origin of the case started in Arizona, he being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Arrested yes, Convicted NO in the state of Arizona dismissed the charges both at the federal and the state level. Due to co defendants in NJ, the state of New Jersey brings in the person 3 years after his case in Arizona was dismissed, on conspiracy of knowing the co-defendants in New Jersey. Sounds like something from out of the twightlight Zone? It is. I have all the case records and transcripts to prove that you don't have to commit a crime anymore to be thrown in Jail. You just have to be black! After slavery, the Jim Crow era, where you could be arrested for vagrancy and not having a job? yes who's helping those who are being falsely accused of committing crimes? The prosecutor Tells the Judge as stated on record, "your honor, we don't have the jurisdiction to bring this evidence into this case to charge the defendants with." Judge Patrolle: " Well, its one thing not to charge, and another thing to render it not charged". Charge it anyway"….End quote.
    As the great Reverend J. Wright said so well, "Not God Bless America, God DAMN America" and all those who sit quietly and aid and abet this injustice.

  41. I think this is about addressing policy related to drug offenses. Clinton implemented the 'three strikes' law. Obama can make some changes, if he wanted to…

  42. Get all of the specific information about your friend to the group of celebs on the petition. I'm willing to bet that at least one of them would try to pick up the story and get it televised. No, this is not a slam dunk guarantee for your friend, but it is a great way to spread his story. Perhaps somebody watching his story on TV can actually help.

  43. http://www.yourblackworld.net/2013/04/black-news/will-smith-jesse-jackson-chris-rock-support-dr-boyce-watkins-and-russell-simmons-campaign-against-mass-incarceration/

    Source: "Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock Support Dr. Boyce Watkins and Russell Simmons’ Campaign Against Mass Incarceration"

    Selected Comment:

    "Although this cause and this letter appears to be great on the surface but what is it really saying? Blacks have been disproportionately affected by this mass incarceration without question but what is it exactly that the President can do about it? The fact that a large list of celebrities have signed on to it doesn't particularly impress me. How many of the people on this list are actually willing to use themselves or some of their resources to actually do something about the problem? As long as people are committing crimes they will be going to prison. Writing a letter to the President isn't going to stop the behavior that keeps putting us behind bars but a collective effort of the people on this celebrity list to create educational, business and job opportunities for more Blacks just might have do some good."-James Alexander

    Indeed Mr. Alexander,

    http://www.ceyseauinc.com/

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-949295

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-941757

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-936676

    It would definitely be more productive for President Barack Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, our competent Black lawyers????, Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock, Dr. Boyce Watkins, Russell Simmons’ and/or anyone to step up to the plate to serve or represent innocent Black men and women wrongfully convicted, fined, imprisoned, egregiously violated by unethical city prosecutors or other public servants.

    http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/54169

    It would be more productive to improve the quality of life in the black community, especially the "inner-city" by promoting free enterprise to reduce "high unemployment", a solution that will reduce the chance that black men and women will commit any criminal act to provide the necessities of life, such as food, clothing, and shelter for themselves or any family member. Here again, President Barack Obama, multiple members of the Congressional Black Caucus, and/or others rarely use his or her influence to resolve problems to reduce high unemployment of Black men and women throughout the U.S.

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-953247

    Unfortunately, President Barack Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, our competent Black lawyers????, etc., etc., rarely, if ever step up to the plate for these individuals, a truly worthwhile endeavor that can truly bring forth positive results, truly earned redress, and send a strong message to any perpetrator that there will be a price to pay for unlawfully violating the Constitutional rights of innocent black men and women.

    5th Amendment, U.S. Constitution

    "No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."

    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-chief-justice-20130312,0,1769450.story

    "Re: A chief justice's lament in a legal history lesson, California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye shares the landmark case of indigent Floridian Clarence Gideon in decrying the closures of courts up and down the state because of budget cuts." by Maura Dolan, Los Angeles Times, March 12, 2013

    Selected excerpt:

    "Cantil-Sakauye told lawmakers at the state Capitol that the landmark case of Gideon vs. Wainwright, whose 50th anniversary is next week, not only ensured that all criminal defendants would have legal representation but stood as a reminder that courts were often the last resort for people."

    http://www.pbs.org/wnet/supremecourt/rights/landmark_gideon.html

    Although it was not stated by Justice Cantil-Sakauye, in addition the Gideon vs. Wainwright decision also required criminal defendants have legal representation, who or whom, are also competent in upholding the Constitution, and the “rule of law”.

    About all that President Barack Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, our competent Black lawyers, Will Smith, Jesse Jackson, Chris Rock, Dr. Boyce Watkins, Russell Simmons’ and/or anyone can do for anyone who has truly committed a criminal act, is use his or her influence to promote the ideal of Constitutional protections to insure that the defendant(s) concerned get a fair and impartial trial.

  44. http://www.ireport.com/docs/DOC-182700

    "I agree Mr. Alexander 99% with your statement, except for the part where you stated "people are committing crimes". I have 1 example that will shatter that hypothesis, where the State of New Jersey is literally kidnapping black people and incarcerating them…."-T Assata King

    -T Assata King

    http://www.ceyseauinc.com/

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-949295

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-953247

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-921922

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-769637

    This is why it is so important the our elected black leaders, civil lawyers, organizations, etc., etc., are competent, to hold any jurisdiction financially liable through filing civil claims based upon actual facts, Constitutional violations, and not useless "racial profiling" nonsense/Bull Crap.

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-877507

    http://articles.latimes.com/2011/mar/30/nation/la-na-court-prosecutors-20110330

    “Supreme Court rejects damages for innocent man who spent 14 years on death row” In a 5-4 ruling, justices overturn a jury verdict awarding $14 million to John Thompson, who had sued then-New Orleans Dist. Atty. Harry Connick Sr. because prosecutors hid a blood test that would have proved his innocence in a murder case.” By David G. Savage, Washington Bureau, March 30, 2011, Los Angeles Times

    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-916114

    When our own black elected officials and lawyers are inept, play games of deceit, or become co-conspirators with the original perpetrators, this kills any chance of redress, and allows the original perpetrators to escape with impunity. When there are absolutely no penalties on the back end, it will be business as usual.

    ******************************************

    THE JOB OF A CONGRESSMAN

    “There are cases where an individual has been wrongfully treated by his government and about the only way, unless the individual resorts tocourt, and even in some cases the courts are not able to give proper relief, the only area or avenue open to the individual is through his representative. When you find a bona fide error has been made, I suggest that you make a maximum effort to remedy it. This I feel is a vital and important function of those of us in the House of Representatives”.

    Authors: Donald G. Tacheron and Morris Udall, from the book entitled, “The Job of the Congressman”, pages 65 and 66.

    (The above excerpt “The Job of the Congressman” holds true for all elected office officials)

    Article VI, USC: This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

    “……Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and Members of several State legislatures (all elected officials), and all executive and judicial Officers of the United States and of the several states, Shall be bound by oath of affirmation, to support this Constitution.

    14th Amendment, USC, Section 1: “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

    14th Amendment, USC, Section 4: “……But neither the United States public debt of the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave: but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.”
    *****************************************************
    Oath of Office,: "I, (President, Supreme Court Justice, Congressperson, Assemblyman, Mayor, City Councilperson, Judge, ), during such times as I hold the office, I, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States (the Constitution of the State of California, Maryland, Illinois, etc., etc.), against all enemies foreign (terrorist enemies of the U.S., illegal immigrants, un-American or un-Constitutional anything and everything, etc.) and domestic (treasonous individuals or organizations, any Police Chief who condones this and the Police Chief's rogue police officers, unethical or criminal elected officials or public servants, illegal aliens or his or her advocates, un-American anything and everything), and that I will bear true faith and allegiance, to the Constitution of the United States , (State Constitution), and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter."

    http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/common/briefing/Oath_Office.htm

    U.S. Senate and Congressional Oath of Office: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God."

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