On the heels of his production of the docuseries Time: The Kalief Browder Story, Jay Z is taking charge against the “exploitative” bail bond industry. Jay penned an op-ed for Time about it, which disproportionately impacts American people of color.
Jay Z will not pony up his own money, as far as we know, but he is showing support for organizations on the front lines like Southerners on New Ground and Color of Change, which did a fundraising drive last month to bail out 100 mothers for Mother’s Day.
Jay Z reminisced on his own history and how he relates to people impacted by the bail bond situation.
“If you’re from neighborhoods like the Brooklyn one I grew up in, if you’re unable to afford a private attorney, then you can be disappeared into our jail system simply because you can’t afford bail,” Jay Z wrote. “Millions of people are separated from their families for months at a time—not because they are convicted of committing a crime, but because they are accused of committing a crime.”
Hov also shared Kalief’s story, which led him to be “obsessed with the injustice of the profitable bail bond industry.”
“When black and brown people are over-policed and arrested and accused of crimes at higher rates than others, and then forced to pay for their freedom before they ever see trial, big bail companies prosper,” he wrote. “Every year $9 billion dollars are wasted incarcerating people who’ve not been convicted of a crime, and insurance companies, who have taken over our bail system, go to the bank.”
Jay Z is supporting the aforementioned organizations for Father’s Day as they now aim to bail out fathers.
It’s a powerful essay. You can read the full thing here.