Upcoming Events of Interest
Now Through June 30, The African American Museum in Philadelphia, 701 Arch Street,
Philadelphia, (215) 574-0380featuring The Mary Wilson Supremes Collection clothing worn
during the Supremes hay day
Now Through June 2, National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia, South
Independence Mall East, “Beyond Swastika and Jim Crow: Jewish Refugee Scholars at
Black Colleges” tells the story of some Jewish academics from Germany and Austria who
came to the U.S. after being dismissed from their teaching positions in the 1930s and
found positions at historically black colleges and universities in the Jim Crow South.
March 9 Saturday, 8:30-12:30 PM, The New Jim Crow: A Community Discussion,
Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Fahs Theater, Cherry Hill Road. Several confirmed
guests, including Roseanne Scotti, from the NJ Drug Policy Alliance; Aula Maarufu Sumbry
from the Integrated Justice Alliance in Trenton; King Downing, Esq., from the Campaign to
End the New Jim Crow (NYC); and Angelo Pinto from the Raise the Age Campaign (NYC).
They also hope to have one or more individuals who were previously incarcerated and are
now engaged in the extremely difficult task of navigating their return to their family,
their community and to their interrupted lives.
Please sign up at the AFD table on Sunday morning at the UU congregation or by
registering online at: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/409094EA9A82FA57-thenew1
March 14 Thursday 7 PM Princeton YWCA Discussion, “Now Hear This” looking
at the New Jim Crow as it relates to women, children and their families. http://
March 14 Thursday, 7 PM (and every second Thursday of the month), Black Voices Book
Group, Princeton Public Library, second floor Princeton room. March selection, A-Train:
Memoirs of a Tuskegee Airman, by Charles W. Dryden and Benjamin O. Davis. For more
information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 16, Saturday, 10 AM-5 PM Philadelphia, PA – International House, Ibrahim
Theater, 3701 Chestnut Street Conference: “Breaking Down Walls: Intersections of
Mass Incarceration and its Implications”. This conference aims to create a platform
for innovative responses to criminal justice issues in Philadelphia. Features panel
discussions that humanize the experience of mass incarceration, deconstruct social
problems connected to the criminal justice system, and create action plans to address
criminal justice issues within Philadelphia. Sponsored by the Goldring Reentry Initiative
(GRI) which is based out of the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and
Practice, and works to break the recidivism cycle for those leaving the Philadelphia Prison
System. Through a continuum-of-care model, GRI students support individuals as they
transition out of jail and into the community. Please register for the event at http://
breakingdownwalls2013.eventbrite.com/ See the Breaking Down Walls Facebook
at http://www.facebook.com/events/406483809437616/?ref=ts&fref=ts for more
April 1, Monday, 7:30 p.m. Michele Alexander’s book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, will be the topic for the next session of Continuing Conversations on Race at the Princeton Public Library. These monthly forums provide a safe and friendly atmosphere to talk about issues of relevance to our community and nation.
April 7 Sunday, 12:30, Princeton Friends Meeting will host Delia Pitts to lead a discussion
of the book, The New Jim Crow.
April 7 Sunday after the worship service: Book discussion on “The New Jim Crow” at
Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church, 124 Witherspoon Street. The discussion is open
to anyone who wishes to attend. email@example.com 609-924-1666
April 7-13, 5-6 PM Sunday-Saturday, New Jim Crow “Read Out”; Hinds Plaza next
to Princeton Public Library. Testimonies by people who have been or are presently
incarcerated and readings from the book by Michelle Alexander, The New Jim Crow. For
more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or JuliaDenny@aol.com.
April 11 Thursday, 7 PM (and every second Thursday of the month), Black Voices Book
Group, Princeton Public Library, second floor Princeton room. For more information, e-
April 14, Sunday, 8 a.m. Rev. Jack Johnson will speak on Guns and Incarceration: a Perpetuation of Violence at Princeton United Methodist Church. Co-founder of the Coalition for Peace Action when he was the pastor at PUMC, Rev. Johnson founded Ceasefire New Jersey and is now the New Jersey Project Director for the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. $5 suggested donation. 609-924-2613 or email email@example.com
April 19, Friday, 9 AM-5 PM Inside/Outside: Communication and Incarceration
Conference on Communication in the Prison System Princeton University
McCormick Hall 101
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is sponsoring this conference focusing on communication
in and out of the American carceral system. The conference is being held in conjunction
with the University Center for Human Values and Princeton’s Prison Teaching Initiative.
Inside/Outside consists of four panels, each focusing on a different aspect of
incarceration in the United States. The first panel, on prison pedagogy, features
faculty of several major prison teaching programs. The second panel, focusing on legal
representation in the prison, includes practicing lawyers and activists working on inmate
issues. The third panel is devoted to scholarship on issues related to incarceration in
America and is composed of speakers conducting research on prisons across disciplines.
The fourth panel addresses personal experiences within the prison system, featuring
formerly incarcerated students of Princeton’s Prison Teaching Initiative. Contact Matthew
Spellberg (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Sarah Brayne (email@example.com).
April 21, Sunday, at 7pm, at the Friends Meeting, Professor Candace McCoy (John
Jay College of Criminal Justice) will speak on the criminal justice system giving special
consideration to plea bargaining.
POSTPONED until Spring: Lutheran Church of the Messiah, 407 Nassau St. “I Was in
Prison: Re-Membering Jesus in the U.S. Lockdown, lecture by Professor Mark Taylor
of Princeton Theological Seminary. Professor Taylor has been active in working on issues
related to incarceration for many years.
A March 6 New York Times oped piece tells of when the actor, Forest Whittaker, was accused of shoplifting at a tony New York deli and was frisked. Whitaker had stolen nothing. On the contrary, he’d been robbed. . . The idea that racism lives in the heart of particularly evil individuals . . . haunts black people with a kind of invisible violence that is given tell only when the victim happens to be an Oscar winner.”
If you find yourself having to defend the idea that racism might actually exist in Princeton, deemed as among the most liberal towns in the United States, this guest oped by Ta-Nehisi Coates, senior editor at the Atlantic, is useful source material.
Today on Radio Times, three experts talked about the scandals associated with mass incarceration — exactly the focus of Princeton’s The New Jim Crow initiative.
As a result of stricter drug laws and more rigid sentencing guidelines enacted in the 1970s, the U.S. prison population has grown by 500 percent over the past thirty years. Over 2 million Americans are in jails today — about half of them for non-violent crimes — and the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the world, five times more than in England; 12 times more than in Japan. U.S. prisons are overcrowded and governments at all levels are overwhelmed by their costs. Furthermore, many studies show that mass incarceration may in fact increase crime and that it has devastating effects on poor families and communities. In this hour of Radio Times we’ll explore the legacy of mass incarceration in the U.S. and look at why it may be time to rethink laws and policies intended to ensure public safety. We turn to three local researchers for perspective and analysis — KEITH REEVES of Swarthmore College, JANE SIEGEL of Rutgers, and HEATHER ANN THOMPSON of Temple.
One take-away from this program — the business community (are you listening, chambers of commerce?) could help to solve this social justice problem with one simple change: Take “have you ever been in jail” off the initial employment application. Give the person a chance to present himself and save that question for the interview.