A monthly reality-check on the issues Americans care about most. Host Warren Olney draws on his decades of experience to explore the people and issues shaping – and disrupting - our world. How did everything change so fast? Where are we headed? The conversations are informal, edgy and always informative. If Warren's asking, you want to know the answer.
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EPISODE 2: July's episode of The Thread features interviews with Maya Schenwar, author, activist, and the editor-in-chief of Truthout, as well as the second part of our interview with Kinetik Justice, a leader of the Free Alabama Movement. Maya talks extensively with Matt about how to approach prison and criminal justice reforms. They discuss the long-term vision of transformation from a system of isolation, confinement, and marginalization to a new vision for justice that would include rebuilding our communities and restructuring the economy and budgets. Maya (http://www.mayaschenwar.com/)has written for multiple publications including the New York Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/09/opinion/too-many-people-in-jail-abolish-bail.html?_r=), The Guardian (https://www.theguardian.com/profile/maya-schenwar), and is the editor in chief for Truthout (http://www.truth-out.org/author/itemlist/user/45138). She is also the author of Locked Down, Locked Out: Why Prison Doesn’t Work and How We Can Do Better (https://org2.salsalabs.com/o/6694/t/17304/shop/item.jsp?storefront_KEY=661&t=&store_item_KEY=2906) and edited Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect?: Police Violence and Resistance in the United States (http://www.haymarketbooks.org/pb/Who-Do-You-Serve-Who-Do-You-Protect). Kinetik Justice is currently incarcerated at Holman Correctional Facility, and because of his involvement with the prison strike, is being held in solitary confinement. Kinetik and Matt talk about the proposed reforms to the Alabama state prisons, the same that Maya discusses, that would have cost $800 million and vastly expanded the prison system. The prison workers went on strike in part to kill this bill, which they did on day 3 of the strike. Kinetik also shares how he became political after going to prison, his extensive legal education on the inside, and mentors and moments that influenced his political perspective. For more information about Kinetik Justice and the Free Alabama Movement, check out their homepage. You can also read their Freedom Bill that Kinetik mentioned in his previous interview. You can also see Kinetik in the news. If you’re interested in any of the groups that Maya mentions, follow these links: Californians United for a Responsible Budget (http://curbprisonspending.org/) Ella Baker Center for Human Rights (http://ellabakercenter.org/) Here are Links to articles that Maya mentioned if you’re interested in learning more: “When Prison Reform Means Prison Expansion” (http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/35594-when-prison-reform-means-prison-expansion) “Decades Later, Victims Of Chicago Police Torture Paid Reparations” (http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/05/462040444/decades-later-victims-of-chicago-police-torture-paid-reparations) “The Prison System Welcomes My Newborn Niece to This World” (http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/18776-the-prison-system-welcomes-my-newborn-niece-to-this-world) If you're interested in prison organizing, check out part 1 of our interview with Kinetik Justice in episode 1 of The Thread. Political prisoner that trained Kinetik, Richard Mafundi Lake [http://www.cbpm.org/prlistal.html] Theme music is from the Die Jim Crow EP, available at http://diejimcrow.com/ . We'll keep posting relevant links to our social media, so check out our Facebook [www.facebook.com/TheThreadpodcast] or follow us on Twitter @DefeatMassInc[twitter.com/DefeatMassInc].