Atlanta rap icon T.I. and the Exonerated Five are looking to help end the mass imprisonment of African Americans with a project planned by late Martin Luther King Jr.’s home church, Ebenezer Baptist Church, in Atlanta.
The three-day End Mass Incarceration Conference will run Monday through Wednesday at the historic church and will address mass incarcerations. Rev. Raphael Warnock said the goal of the conference is to help communities fight the rise of the prison industrial complex in the United States and systems that unfairly imprison people of color.
Over the weekend, Rev. Warnock, T.I. and the men formerly known as the Central Park Five held a press conference and participated in a mass Freedom Day Bailout, kicking off the three-day Ending Mass Incarceration Conference.
Dr. Yusef Salaam, one of the Exonerated Five, said the time is right to continue pushing against the over-incarceration of people of color. “This conference is very important in ending mass incarceration and the systemic issues around black and brown people,” Salaam told The Root. “Since the film, ‘When They See Us’ has come out, a lot is being done to expose the trauma of being black in America; of being stigmatized in America, and I want to use my platform to expose this ugly reality, especially as it pertains to young people, so that there will never again be a Central Park Five, there will never again be a Kalief Browder, and we can finally change this system for good.”
According to The Root, the conference promises to be a comprehensive look at a substantial and far-reaching issue with breakout sessions to include:
* How to Confront Mass Incarceration in the Age [of] Afro-phobia & Anti-blackism
* How to Break the School to Prison Pipeline
* How to Hold Police Accountable as a Faith Community
* The Unique Impact of Mass Incarceration on the American Muslim Community
* How to Use Theologies and Religious Resources to Oppose Mass Incarceration
* Understanding and Challenging the Role of Implicit Bias in the Practice of Incarceration.