Set The Captives Free, Hillary

Set the captives free, Hillary. If you sincerely get what the #BlackLivesMatter group from Massachusetts  had to say about the original American sin transitioning black Americans from chattel slavery on a plantation to penal slavery in federal and state penitentiaries; then set the captives free.

Set the captives free on day one of your administration. Just like your husband wasted no time in fulfilling a pledge to the LGBT community and issued an executive order, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” on day one of his administration; you can with one stroke of your pen, set the captives free.

You asked for less finger pointing at the culprits of racial division and more specific proposals for legislation geared to solving the problems Bill Clinton’s crime legislation birthed.

During a recent speech before the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, your husband, the 42nd President of the United States said that his crime bill was responsible for incarcerating low level criminals for far too many years.

Hillary Clinton seeking to become the first woman president of the US meet privately with members of the #BlackLivesMatter Movement and told them to come up with solutions to solve issues that are important to their movement.  Photo from Internet Files
Hillary Clinton seeking to become the first woman president of the US meet privately with members of the #BlackLivesMatter Movement and told them to come up with solutions to solve issues that are important to their movement.
Photo from Internet Files

Former President Clinton offered the NAACP membership an apology. He probably offered it to keep your campaign viable with black voters. At any rate, he has admitted that federal legislation enacted during his presidency did far more collateral damage to black Americans by extending sentences for low level crimes than good. Not to mention the damage done to the black family due to the absence of black fathers in their homes and a general shortage of black men in black neighborhoods.

Apologies are fine and dandy, but they fall short of  compensating men locked away from their families merely because of the political rhetoric coming from Republicans that Democrats were soft on crime. That crime package bought your husband precious time to build his reputation as a centrist Democratic leader. He used this political capital to gain a second term as President. The drive-by shootings that his legislation was designed to decimate, continue to happen. Violence continues in the black community because of two reasons: (1) black men have been taken away from the home and from their children and; (2) there is an absence of jobs and enterprise opportunities in these neighborhoods.

There comes a time when reparatory justice is the order of the day. That day has come. Not only should you set the captives free, those who are held in federal prison under the three-strikes and you are locked out of society for life legislation, and other enhanced sentencing under the Clinton crime initiative, but these men and women should be compensated for being removed from their families for essentially political reasons.

Each person freed under “Hillary’s Reparatory Justice Initiative” should be granted $50,000.00, housing for a year, free medical care for a year, and funding to incubate a business based upon the skills they acquired while in federal prison. State governments should be encouraged to do the same thing with the non-violent offenders they started locking away for long stretches of time in the 1990’s.

Their children, whose lives have been wrecked, due to the extended incarceration of their fathers should be compensated as well.

This is the type of legislation that is needed to begin to make the black community whole as a result of the pain and suffering that federal governmental policies, some of which can be linked back to your husband, have inflicted upon inner city communities.

Once you get this done by executive order, then we can get serious about reparation for the enslavement period of time for all Africans living in America who are citizens by virtue of the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution.


Harold Michael Harvey, is the author of the legal thriller “Paper Puzzle,” and “Justice in the Round: Essays on the American Jury System,” available at Amazon and at He can be contacted at





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Published by Michael

Harold Michael Harvey is a Past President of The Gate City Bar Association and is the recipient of the Association’s R. E. Thomas Civil Rights Award. He is the author of Paper Puzzle and Justice in the Round: Essays on the American Jury System, and a two-time winner of Allvoices’ Political Pundit Prize. His work has appeared in Facing South, The Atlanta Business Journal, The Southern Christian Leadership Conference Magazine, Southern Changes Magazine, Black Colleges Nines, and Medium.

2 replies on “Set The Captives Free, Hillary”

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