The Soul of America 2020 & Beyond

“If the cost of silence is the soul of the country, if the cost of tacit support is that we lose the very things that make this nation the greatest in human history, then the price is too high.”
~ Spider-Man
Superhero
a.k.a. Peter Parker
Created by Stan Lee & Steve Ditko
~

Where Changes are Occurring

“If you are not in the room where changes are occurring,
you are in the yard where consequences are received. BE IN the ROOM!”
~ T. D. Jakes, Sr.,
Bishop/Chief Pastor of The Potter’s House,
Author & Filmmaker

To Give Love is To Gain

“There’s no bad consequence to loving fully, with all your heart.
You always gain by giving love.”
~ Reese Witherspoon,
Actress, Producer & Philanthropist

Criminalized for the Lack of Bail

“Money bail is ruining the lives of literally millions of poor people
and costing the country unnecessary billions of dollars
in incarceration costs every year.
Local jail populations grew by 19.8 percent just between 2000 and 2014,
with pretrial detention accounting for 95 percent of that growth. …
… The single feature shared by almost every defendant in pretrial detention is that they are poor.
Rich people make bail; poor people don’t.
Regardless of actual guilt or innocence,
poor people are criminalized for their inability to buy their way out of jail.”
~ Peter Edelman, ,
Lawyer, Policy Maker, Law Professor, Co-Founder – New Israel Fund, Author (Not a Crime to Be Poor: The Criminalization of Poverty in America),
Former United States–Japan Leadership Program Fellow, Former J. Skelly Wright Memorial Fellow at Yale Law School, Co-Founder – Parents United

Pleading GUILTY While Innocent

“The major shortages of judges, prosecutors, and public defenders,
coupled with the number of people being held in jail awaiting trial
has led to a crisis
in which it is not possible
for every defendant who wants a day in court to get one.
So, the courts need a way to keep the trials from taking place.
By imprisoning poor people who cannot put up money for bail,
the system uses the threat or reality of extended imprisonment
to extract guilty pleas, even from people who are innocent
or have other valid defenses.
Not able to get a timely trial, they have only one option – plead guilty.
It is a Hobson’s choice, more so even than many of the defendants realize,
because the guilty please have serious collateral consequences
they may not even be aware of and which stay with them for the rest of their lives.
But, pleading guilty is what they do by the thousands, every day, all over America.”
~ Peter Edelman, ,
Lawyer, Policy Maker, Law Professor, Co-Founder – New Israel Fund, Author (Not a Crime to Be Poor: The Criminalization of Poverty in America),
Former United States–Japan Leadership Program Fellow, Former J. Skelly Wright Memorial Fellow at Yale Law School, Co-Founder – Parents United

Equal Upon Principle

“I should like to know if, taking this old Declaration of Independence,
which declares that all men are equal upon principle,
you begin making exceptions to it,
where will you stop?
If one man says it does not mean a Negro,
why not another say it does not mean some other man?”

~ Abraham Lincoln,
Lawyer & 16th President of the United States

Democracy or Socialism: Choose Liberty or Choose Restraint & Servitude

“Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality.
But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty,
socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”
~ Alexis-Charles-Henri Clérel de Tocqueville,
Political Thinker & Historian