Activists React To President Obama’s Address On Criminal Justice Reform

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Roslyn Brock, Chairman of the NAACP, spoke with NewsOne Now host Roland Martin immediately following President Barack Obama‘s keynote address at the NAACP National Convention yesterday, and shared her thoughts about Mr. Obama’s comments on criminal justice reform.

When asked if the nation will see comprehensive criminal justice reform before the end of President Obama’s term in office is over, Brock said, Mr. Obama “made an affirmative statement this day, and the NAACP stands behind him to make sure we get it done.”

Social Justice Activists React To President Obama’s NAACP Convention Keynote Address On Criminal Justice Reform

NewsOne Now host Roland Martin spoke with a group of activists following President Barack Obama’s speech on criminal justice reform.

Derrick Johnson, President of the Mississippi NAACP Chapter, told Martin, “We won’t be able to address all of the social issues until we address the prison population. It is a financial drain on our resources, we cannot properly fund education and many individuals who are locked up are locked up for crime(s) that if provided the necessary preventions, they would not be there.”

Brendien Mitchell, member of the NAACP National Board of Directors, said it is “warming” to know that President Obama found “that the educational issues affecting our communities directly tie to the prison population, and is willing to close that gap.”

Civil rights lawyer Barbara Arnwine told Martin that piecemeal criminal justice reform “is not the answer.”

She added, “It’s too late for that. We gotta have comprehensive, full-scale, total reform of the criminal justice system. We can’t settle for less.”

AFL-CIO’s Tiffany Dena Loftin said, “Moving forward, I think that we’re going to have to figure out how we’re going to strategize, how we’re going to organize, how we’re going to include the Journey for Justice, the upcoming election and everything thereafter to make sure we push him (Pres. Barack Obama) and everybody else in office and all elected officials to do what we need them to do.”

Be sure to watch “NewsOne Now” with Roland Martin, weekdays at 9 a.m. EST on TV One.

Subscribe to the “NewsOne Now” Audio Podcast on iTunes.

SEE ALSO:

Civil Rights 2.0: NAACP President Talks Young Activists In The Social Justice Movement & Criminal Justice Reform 

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