The rapper Meek Mill has recently raised his concerns for criminal justice reforms. He has announced the launch of a foundation to support prison reforms.
Why US Prisons Need Reform: I Know How it Feels
Meek Mill, in an editorial for The New York Times, spoke about how he was a victim of injustice that was carried out by two individuals. Those in question were a unreasonable officer and an harsh judge in Pennsylvania.
Meek Mill’s Prison-Worthy Crime: Wheelie Popping
Mill says he was caught for popping a wheelie on a motorcycle in Manhattan. The case was dismissed in a court in New York. But despite this, a judge in Philadelphia felt that his interaction with the police was a violation of his parole.
He was on parole from his 2007 arrest where he was sentenced for 2-4 years. Mill maintains that he was incarcerated for a crime he did not commit. He was also denied bail as the judge described him to be a danger to the community and a flight risk.
Mill served 5 months for violation of his parole. He has also been incarcerated for drug and weapon possession. After his arrest for these crimes, he was scrutinized by the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office. The office filed a response towards Mill request for dismissal.
Incarceration Statistics in the US
The U.S. is leading in world incarceration. It has about 2.2 million incarcerated people in both prisons and jails.
These numbers also show the racial disparities in the country. People of color make up to 37% of the U.S. population. The shocking thing is that these people of color make up for 67% of the prison population.
African-Americans are at the most likely to be arrested, convicted and be given longer sentences. Black men are 6 times more likely to be incarcerated than white men. Hispanic men are twice as likely to be incarcerated as compared to non-Hispanic white men.
Meek Mill’s Thoughts on Prison Statistics
Mill states these statistics as he acknowledges that he is lucky. He says that it is unfair and unfortunate that people of color are treated unfairly by the criminal justice system. For this, he plans to launch his foundation and help them.