On October 25, Holman UMC hosted Justice Not Jails’ Turning the Page conference on charting a new path for criminal justice.  See a writeup of outcomes from the event below:

Why We Support Prop 47

By Rosemary Jenkins, JusticeNotJails.org | October 29, 2014

In case there is any confusion over dubious advertising, I must go on record urging all of you to Vote Yes on 47 (let alone to place your mark on the entire ballot—many of us sometimes inadvertently forget to do that).

In a separate article, I am going to write about the cover-up regarding the misguided (and deliberately deceptive) war on drugs. But for now, I must offer clarity to what passage of this proposition (with all its ramifications) will establish.
Turn The Page

I was at the recent “Turn The Page” conference, led by a number of prominent speakers, that addressed this and related issues. Karen Bass (former Speaker of the Assembly and current Congresswomen from the Los Angeles area) launched the panel session, which was moderated by ACLU Southern California Executive Director Hector Villagra. She reminded us that the drug war, carried on over far too many unsuccessful years and dating back at least to the Reagan Administration (remember, Just Say No!), led to massive incarcerations. Caught in the web was a disproportionate number of people of color convicted of mostly non-violent crimes, such as possessing an ounce of marijuana or selling drug paraphernalia or stealing a slice of pizza (the latter of which infamously placed the offender in jail for 25 to life under the mandatory-minimum laws).

In fact, the infamous 3-strikes law led to building 12 more prisons in our state, many of which were profit-driven, private enterprises whose operators urge Sacramento to pass more laws (with very broad, wide-sweeping parameters) which would, in turn, populate our prisons with ever-larger numbers. As President Eisenhower once said upon leaving office, Beware the military-industrial complex! Well, Attorney General Eric Holder is similarly warning, Beware the prison-industrial complex!

Read the full article here: JusticeNotJails.org: Why We Must Support Prop 47.