Ending Mass Incarceration: Ideas from Today's Leaders

Ending Mass Incarceration: Ideas from Today's Leaders

A new report from the Brennan Center for Justice looks at calls from civil society and elected officials to reform the criminal justice system to address longstanding racial disparities and end the mass incarceration of African Americans. The report, Ending Mass Incarceration: Ideas from Today's Leaders, includes essays by author Ta-Nehisi Coates, who explores the power of myth in shaping America's criminal justice system; Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza, who calls for a paradigm shift from unjust punishment to restorative justice and rehabilitation; and NAACP Legal Defense Fund president and director-counsel Sherrilyn Ifill and senior deputy director of litigation Jin Hee Lee, who argue for the need to challenge narratives about black criminality. In other essays, Jared Kushner, senior advisor to President Donald J. Trump, cites high recidivism rates and costs as reasons for reform; Color of Change president Rashad Robinson calls for more accurate depictions of the current justice system in popular culture; #cut50 co-founder and REFORM Alliance CEO Van Jones calls for a halving of the prison population; and 2020 presidential hopefuls Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Bernie Sanders (D-VT), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Beto O'Rourke (D-TX), and Julián Castro (D-TX) offer a range of proposals, from ending the mass incarceration of women to abolishing for-profit prisons to providing more treatment for addiction.

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