Following the news of Felicity Huffman’s 14 day prison sentence related to the infamous “Varsity Blues” college scandal, John Legend has decided to enter the conversation. Huffman has currently concluded trial for paying $15K to have her daughter’s SAT scores altered so that she could attend a top university. In addition to prison time, the 56-year-old actress must also pay a $30K fine plus 250 hours of community service.
Many have compared the fairness of Huffmans sentence with that of Tanya McDowell, a mother sentenced to 5 years in prison for using a friends address to enroll her child in school. Legend has taken into consideration the viral comparison and has some thoughts on the American judicial system.
“It’s insane we locked a woman up for 5 years for sending her kid to the wrong school district. Literally everyone involved in that decision should be ashamed of themselves.”
His arguement is that we should not be advocating for people to receive more time behind bars, but rather the opposite.
“It’s unconscionable that we locked a woman up for voting when, unbeknownst to her, she was ineligible. Her sentence shouldn’t be fewer years. It should be ZERO,” he writes.
“I get why everyone gets mad when rich person X gets a short sentence and poor person of color Y gets a long one,” Legend posted on Twitter.
“The answer isn’t for X to get more; it’s for both of them to get less (or even none!!!) We should level down not up.”
He built upon his Twitter thread stating that as Americans, our mindset in how we look at the prison population is skewed.
“Americans have become desensitized to how much we lock people up.”
Prison reform has become an increasingly hot topic lately with the wave of A-list celebrities taking the front lines to fight against perceived injustices. If you’ll recall earlier this year, rappers Meek Mill and Jay-Z partnered together to create “an organization dedicated to battling injustice” called REFORM Alliance.
The Preach singer continued his argument, “Prisons and jails are not the answer to every bad thing everyone does, but we’ve come to use them to address nearly every societal ill,” the singer tweeted.
“And no one in our nation will benefit from the 14 days an actress will serve for cheating in college admissions. We don’t need to lock people up for any of this stuff,” Legend said.
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