Growing up in the South Bronx, my favorite uncle used to tell me “never be anyone’s trick, and when the Jesus train comes, make sure you’re on it.” When I was 12 years old, he went away to prison for life. I never saw him again, but the good things he taught me shaped who I am today. I know he was on the Jesus train when he died.
It’s hard to see the good side of people who are known for doing bad things. The label “felon” is like a tattoo across the forehead for someone looking for a job, which is made that much worse when the same person comes from a rough upbringing, with limited education and no discernible job skills or work history. Getting out of prison with nothing more than a bus ticket and $100 isn’t a recipe for success. With no training or work experience, and no change of outlook mentally or spiritually, it’s no surprise that most people who come out of prison go back again.
President Trump recently held a Prison Reform Summit, to listen to a wide variety of perspectives and determine what needs to be done to slow down the revolving prison door for inmates who commit crimes after release. The proposals include funding for counseling, life-skills programs and job training, as well as increasing “good time” credit for good behavior inside prison, all of which are geared toward improving the lives of current and future inmates by giving them the tools they need mentally, spiritually and financially after release.
While Democrats claim to care about prison reform, their actions behind the scenes suggest otherwise. Last week, the news reported that President Obama called billionaire rapper Jay Z and asked him to act as an enforcer who made sure other rappers didn’t participate in President Trump’s summit. Jay Z reportedly told Meek Mill, a rapper with his own experiences in the criminal justice system, that he should rescind his invitation to the summit, which would be bad for his career “creatively.” This was obviously a threat. Meek Mill canceled.
There is no way that a genuine “community organizer” on Chicago’s south side wouldn’t understand the need for prison reform, even if he chose not to do anything about it while he was president. President Obama using Jay Z as his “trick” to stop people at the bottom from benefitting is the ultimate expression of the plantation mentality, protecting the illusion that “real” blacks don’t agree with Trump on anything–even good things–which is simply brainwashing to preserve votes for Democrats who haven’t done anything on the issue themselves.
Who are Obama and Jay Z trying to help? What could possibly be the motive to silence someone with real experience in prison, like Meek Mill? If outcomes matter, then it shouldn’t matter who those outcomes come from.
In 1962, Malcolm X said, “The prisons aren’t set up to rehabilitate negroes, they’re set up to perpetuate the criminal tendencies of negroes,” which he attributed to the high rates of unwed motherhood, drug addiction, prostitution, and juvenile delinquency in the black community. He said this 56 years ago, but the same problems exist–for all races and creeds–everywhere benevolent Democrats are in control today.
The problem isn’t racism. It’s narcissism.
The First Step Act passed in the House of Representatives this week, with bipartisan support and without Meek Mill’s input on the problems prisoners face.
My uncle may have done bad things, but he had a good heart. Can Obama and Jay Z say the same thing, or are they just “tricks” for the Democratic Party?
God Bless You Mr. President and God Bless America.