Bail: A Harmonica of Oppressive Tunes

Was this judge also a lawyer?¹ I had a feeling he wasn’t. I’d heard him before I saw him perched upon the bench — but I’d grown up around hogs, so I knew how people screamed at animals. I leaned…

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Justice Can’t Wait!

Have you ever been intimated or have had a loved one face a fatal encounter with police?  These encounters seem to be happening more and more likely in Brown and Black communities despite people of color being the least likely…

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Processed or Due Process? Make It Make Sense

I’d been charged with felony theft, which I didn’t understand whatsoever at the time. But these hard faces full of hatred inside of the police department, informed me of a more conflicted time ahead of me. I was struggling to…

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Let Them Stay

I worked in Jordan, which is an Arab country in southwest Asia.  Jordan is bordered by Israel to the west, Syria to the north and Iraq to the east. I lived in a tent with 100 other women. There was…

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Prisoner’s: The Last American Population Fighting Against Slavery

Juneteenth, signifies the day of freedom for all slaves. It is known as the longest running African American holiday, a day long celebration for our independence. In honor of recognizing our ancestors history, it feels befitting to also recognize those…

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WHEN BEING TALL AND DARK IS SEEN AS A THREAT

I have lost count of the many times I have heard women, both family members and friends coo over men they considered “tall, dark, and handsome.” And for some of those women, the taller and darker, the better! These characteristics…

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Cash Bail: A Structural Racist and Legal System Racket

The fifth and fourteenth amendments of the U.S Constitution declares protections for the accused. It says defendants are “Innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.” So why is it that 6 out of 10 people are housed in jail…

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Surviving a Criminal Record

People with criminal records in America struggle systematically in many different ways, including, but not limited to voting, education, and even housing. What is arguably the worst part of this is that criminal records are very common in our country….

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Room for Rent

In December 2005, at the age of 22, I agreed to 7-years deferred adjudication in lieu of facing a prison sentence. Naively, I thought I dodged the bullet and assumed probation was nothing more than a monthly urinary analysis. I…

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Mandatory Sentencing: The False Masked Scare Tactic

In 1984 the Sentencing Reform Act was passed into legislation introducing mandatory sentencing to the criminal justice system. Essentially this means that a committee got together and discussed different crime violations and decided on a non-negotiable amount of time an…

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