This Rapper Wants To Call Out The Bail Bond Industry By Bailing Out Men For Father’s Day
On Friday (June 16), TIME published an op-ed written by none other than lauded recording artist, philanthropist and father Jay Z. The topic? Father’s Day and his idea to use the celebration honoring fathers and celebrating fatherhood, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society to reveal the crooked nature of America’s bail bond industry.
“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,” he wrote.
Jay Z went on to explain that big bail companies prosper by the over-policing and arresting black and brown people, in which turns into them being “forced to pay for their freedom before they ever see trial.” A devastating reality for many families, the rapper went on to drop staggering statistics.
In particular, he reported that “One in 9 black children has an incarcerated parent. Families are forced to take on more debt, often in predatory lending schemes created by bail bond insurers. Or their loved ones linger in jails, sometimes for months—a consequence of nationwide backlogs. 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.”
To further lament the dangerous nature of the bail industry, he references the tragic deaths of Kalief Browder and Sandra Bland, who served as as examples of how not being able to make bail can end horribly.
To show his support and effort, the Magna Carta Holy Grail artist shared that he will be partnering with Southerners on New Ground and Color of Change, who recently did a major fundraising drive to bail out 100 mothers for Mother’s Day, ” to bail out fathers who can’t afford the due process our democracy promises.”
“As a father with a growing family, it’s the least I can do, but philanthropy is not a long fix, we have to get rid of these inhumane practices altogether,” he concluded. “We can’t fix our broken criminal justice system until we take on the exploitative bail industry.”
Salute, Jay Z! Head over to TIME.com to read Jay Z’s full op-ed.