Michelle Alexander

michelle alexander ferguson reportMichelle Alexander is a highly acclaimed civil rights lawyer, advocate, and legal scholar. In recent years, she has taught at a number of universities, including Stanford Law School, where she was an associate professor of law and directed the Civil Rights Clinics. In 2005, she won a Soros Justice Fellowship, which supported the writing of The New Jim Crow, and that same year she accepted a joint appointment at the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity and the Moritz College of Law at The Ohio State University. Since its first publication,The New Jim Crow has received rave reviews and has been featured in national radio and television media outlets, including MSNBC, NPR, Bill Moyers Journal, Tavis Smiley, C-SPAN, and Washington Journal, among others. In March, the book won the 2011 NAACP Image Award for best nonfiction.
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Michelle Alexander Joins Union Theological Seminary

An announcement from Michelle Alexander on social media (September 16, 2016): Something Greater At Stake I am taking a long break from social media, but tonight I want to thank the Heinz Foundation which offered me today a large monetary award (along with several amazing individuals). I am enormously grateful for this award and look forward to sharing it with organizations and advocates who are committed to courageous and creative work for racial justice. My book, The New Jim Crow, would … [Read more...]

Michelle Alexander: Sentence Enhancement for Drug Offenders Is a tool of Community Destruction

Ten years ago in Los Angeles, Theresa Martinez was finally making progress in her long, painful struggle against drug addiction and the cycle of incarceration it fueled. But in order to continue her methadone program, she needed $200. Homeless, unemployed, and terrified of falling back into heroin addiction, she tried to get the money the only way she knew: selling drugs. Martinez was arrested for a $5 sale of cocaine, a felony that, absent aggravating factors, carried a three-year prison … [Read more...]

Apologizing for the Clintons’ Crime Bill Isn’t Enough, We Must Now Rebuild Our Communities

It is often said that if we do not learn from our history we are doomed to repeat it. I applaud Rep. Bobby Rush's apology for supporting Clinton's crime bill. He doesn't apologize for the fact he desperately wanted to do something about crack addiction and crack-related violence, and of course he shouldn't apologize for that. Instead he apologizes for supporting a bill that contributed to the destruction of our most vulnerable communities. He apologizes for voting for an approach that offered no … [Read more...]