Posts Tagged ‘Crack Cocaine

17
Jul
15

A Life Changed For The Better. Thanks, President Obama

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Ali Meyer: Former Drug Dealer Released From Prison: “President Obama Saved My Life”

According to the White House, America spends about $80 billion each year on incarceration. They say that’s the same amount of money it would take to double every teacher salary in America or pay for every high school graduate to go to college. President Obama is focusing on criminal justice reform in his second term in office. This week, he commuted the sentences of more than 40 inmates convicted of low-level, non-violent drug offenses. Justice reformers say federal crack cocaine sentences unfairly put thousands of minority inmates behind bars for life prior to a change in federal law in 2010. The sentencing regime is costing taxpayers billions. Jason Hernandez was convicted in 1998 as a drug dealer in Texas.

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Because the drug was crack, Hernandez got life in prison without the possibility of parole. Hernandez filed the clemency paperwork himself; an eight-page application with the potential to save his life. He works as a mentor for juvenile offenders in the kitchen at Cafe Momentum, a restaurant for youthful offenders. He’s using his circumstance to help kids change the course of their own lives in a way he couldn’t almost two decades ago. Jason Hernandez has two jobs; mentoring youth, and working as a welder at a muffler shop… a trade he picked up at federal prison in El Reno. “I was practically a dead man walking and President Obama gave me my life back. I see him like a father now. Like any son, you want to make your father proud, and that’s what my aim is,” Hernandez said.

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