GHOST BILLS

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Editorial and Opinion  |  House: Booksie Classic


Historically speaking, as it relates to Black America and any other group of impoverished people, the nation as a whole remains verbally committed to criminal justice reform. The nation remains verbally committed to releasing its citizens from these modern-day plantations, as they incarcerate more of their own people than any other country.
The state of New Jersey, along with numerous other states continues to introduce and pass legislation geared towards pushing nonviolent offenders out of the prison system. While many states including New Jersey acknowledge the fact that this piecemeal reform will only scratch the surface among the prison population, they continue to move forward with this misleading call to reducing the inmate population.
Long-term offenders remain trapped in the system with very little opportunity to be released at a time that gives them a meaningful chance to be productive and enjoy life.
Legislation continues to give false promises by enacting Ghost Bills that give the appearance that it's fighting for those who have done their time effectively and deserve modification in their sentence and a second chance. There is currently a law allowing youth to be considered as a mitigating factor but only applicable to those who have not been convicted. Thousands of men remain captured and denied relief simply because they were young when they caught their case but they caught their case at the wrong time. There is also pending legislation revamping the way juveniles are sentenced for serious offenses. Yet still, nothing has been set in stone while youthful offenders remain without any sense of relief. Once most bills are passed and signed by the Governor, the relief is restricted to a very small group from among the prison system so it seems like the fate of the prison population is in the hands of those who typically do what politicians do: say and promise what is politically correct and do nothing promised.
The Attorney General's Office for the state of New Jersey has since enacted a Conviction Review Unit formulated to assist those wrongfully convicted and stuck in the system. As to date, no one has been released under this pretext. Where and when does criminal justice reform begin in New Jersey? It's a wonder why New Jersey was one of the last states to abolish slavery. I guess they're just staying true to tradition.
Unfortunately, most Black and Latino men incarcerated in New Jersey remained marginalized and held in captivity without a valid voice in society fending for their day of justice. As a result, our community's Cuban Link remains broken. We need our men in society leading our misguided aright.


Submitted: June 30, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Jibreel68. All rights reserved.

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