Stars ask to help Obama change drug, jail policy
LOS ANGELES (AP) - April 9, 2013 (WPVI) -- Lil Wayne, Ron Howard, Scarlett Johansson and Kim Kardashian are all on the same page when it comes to criminal justice reform.
They're among more than 100 entertainers calling on President Barack Obama to focus on changing drug laws. Rap mogul Russell Simmons helped assemble the coalition of celebrities and civil rights leaders that presented a letter to the president on Tuesday.
The group praises the president's efforts toward drug incarceration reform but insists "the time is right" to move toward replacing jail sentences with intervention and rehabilitation for non-violent offenders. The starry group, which also includes Jennifer Hudson, Nicki Minaj, Susan Sarandon and Will Smith, also asks Obama to form a panel to handle clemency requests and to support a measure that allows judges to waive mandatory minimum sentences.
"It is critical that we change both the way we think about drug laws in this country and how we generate positive solutions that leave a lasting impact on rebuilding our communities," Simmons said, citing Department of Justice data that shows that the United States jails more of its citizens than any other country in the world.
Drug offenders comprise nearly half the federal prison population in the U.S.
drugs, president barack obama, kim kardashian, washington, d.c., entertainment
Also SeeMore:Bizarre News
- Arctic Blast and Possible Weekend Storm
- WATCH: Action News Online
- 2013 Troop Greetings
- Get the 6abc StormTracker app
- PennDOT clears roads of snow, preps for ice
- Limo driver charged in wreck that killed newlyweds
- Police search for burglar targeting Philly restaurants
- Police: Mom was DUI in chain-reaction crash
- Possible abduction caught on camera in Spring Garden
- No bail for 2 charged in Philly collapse
- Obama hails Mandela as "last great liberator"
- $344M Mega Millions numbers drawn
- 6 missing adults, children found alive in Nevada
- Photos: Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2013 (Photos)