Tomorrow: Police Chief at New Jim Crow

Discussions of justice system continue on Dec. 1 at Mother African Union

Wilmington Police Chief Bobby Cummings

Wilmington Police Chief Bobby Cummings

The Coalition to Dismantle the New Jim Crow will have Wilmington Chief of Police Bobby Cummings as its guest on Monday, Dec. 1, at 6:00 pm at Mother African Union Church, 812 N. Franklin St. in Wilmington. Chief Cummings will speak about policing in the city and take questions from the audience.

“We have had many productive discussions with state officials and law enforcement officers from New Castle County and look forward to hearing from Chief Cummings,” says Joan Priest, a member of First Unitarian and a leader of the coalition.

What is “The New Jim Crow?” And what is this Coalition?

New Jim Crow bookAccording to Rev. Paula Maiorano, the New Jim Crow is the latest structural form of racism in the U.S. The term was coined by civil rights attorney and author Michelle Alexander in her 2010 book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness.

Slavery and Jim Crow were earlier versions. Mass incarceration disproportionately directed to African American males with the War on Drugs used as the delivery vehicle. The outcome has decimated families and urban neighborhoods.

The Coalition was formed to address this structural racism and bring about change. It began several years ago with an interracial study group that read and discussed Alexander’s book. The study group’s meetings alternated between Mother African Union Church and First Unitarian. It has grown into a broad coalition that seeks reforms across the criminal justice system.

The Dec. 1 meeting is free and open to all. Meetings on the first Monday of every month continue to alternate between the two churches. Last month’s meeting drew more than 40 participants.

 

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