John Legend Joins In On An Important Issue, Launches Campaign To End Mass Incarceration
John Legend has discussed the issue before and he is now taking action by launching a campaign that would work to end the mass incarceration that exists in the United States, a growing problem that many people have brought up in recent years.
The new initiative was just announced, and the Grammy and Oscar-winning singer is calling it FREE AMERICA. He will visit and perform at a correctional facility on Thursday in Austin, Texas, where he also will be part of a press conference with state legislators in order to discuss Texas’ criminal justice system.
It is a personal issue for someone like John Legend, who brought up the large number of African Americans that are currently behind bars during his Oscar speech that he accepted with Common for the song “Glory.”
John Legend and Common wrote the song for the historical film Selma about Martin Luther King, Jr., but, unfortunately, similar issues persist today, prompting them to make the bold statement “Selma is now.”
As he mentioned in the speech, there are now more African Americans in prison than the number that were serving as slaves in 1850, quite a disturbing statistic when you think about it.
In a statement from Legend regarding the mass incarceration that the United States is dealing with, he said “It’s destroying families, it’s destroying communities and we’re the most incarcerated country in the world, and when you look deeper and look at the reasons we got to this place, we as a society made some choices politically and legislatively, culturally to deal with poverty, deal with mental illness in a certain way and that way usually involves using incarceration.”
John Legend said that he plans to create more awareness on the issue and make some changes legislatively. His campaign is not the only one, and the issue has already been brought up by Senators Cory Booker and Rand Paul, who recently announced his bid for president in 2016.