The president and congress should not leave out youth behind bars in efforts to reform criminal justice this year and their actions must focus on reforms at both the federal and state level. Kalief Browder and Andre Sheffield's deaths are a sobering reminder to the president and the congress of the urgency and the need to ensure youth behind bars are not left behind.
To join with a symphony of justice, I am calling faith communities to participate in a national #DialInForJustice during the month of December. The goal is to call the Unites States Department of Justice and local police departments, communicating our desire to see systemic reforms to policing in America.
President Obama may have "delayed" his promise for major immigration reform to accommodate the politics of the Nov. 4 midterm elections, but there remains an opportunity for massive improvement to the immigration "court" system. The reason that such measures can gain consensus support is the same reason that "court" must be in quotation marks.
This is America in 2014 -- a nation that has two separate and ridiculously unequal systems of justice. The wealthy and the well-connected are by now well aware that there are zero consequences for their insider trades and their financial chicanery, or their corrupt dealings, or, if they have enough juice, even for their rank crimes like ransacking a bodega or groping a cornered women.