San Quentin News would like to honor and recognize these individuals for their work and contributions to social and criminal justice reform. There is no given order to the list; they all have selflessly and tirelessly worked for progressive changes in our criminal justice system, be it through donations, legislation or hard-nosed, on-the-streets, speaking truth-to-power advocacy work.
San Quentin alumni James King, the state campaigner for the Ella Baker Center, and Adnan Khan, executive director and co-founder of Re:Store Justice, who took to the airwaves, both radio and television, as major voices of the #StopSanQuentinOutbreak coalition. They have reached back, helping the incarcerated with commutation petitions.
Earlonne Woods, outside Ear Hustle host, is working to repeal California’s Three Strikes Law. He continues to use his platform to get our voices heard. He, along with other formerly incarcerated alumni, sends in support videos to be played on the institution’s TV channel.
Lisa Strawn, a trans advocate, and alumna, has also taken to the airwaves for the incarcerated LGBTQ community and others dealing with the prison COVID-19 outbreak. Strawn is fighting for their releases.
We thank Kim Kardashian for helping get legislation passed, fighting for incarcerated juveniles and Death Row incarcerated, and getting people released from prison. She visited San Quentin and helped with the release of our colleague David Jassy. We thank and honor the many social justice organizations — we appreciate you all. We thank all the incarcerated workers, the porters and kitchen workers.
If we missed anyone on the list, it was not intentional; it’s simply because we have limited resources. Most people who made our list we have a continuing working relationship with and know their work.
President Donald Trump was probably the only person we had for the list that caused debate, not for political reasons but for strictly criminal justice reform reasons. We recognize his signing the First Step Act and releasing Alice Johnson. But he also reinstituted the federal Death Penalty, which has killed at least eight people to date. And he established policies to detain and separate children from their parents at detention centers. There are still hundreds of kids who have not been reunited with their families.
So these actions may have negated the positive — you be the judge, but this list is for the forward-moving.
We thank you all again and keep up the good fight.