Equal Justice Initiative

I was honored this week to spend two days at The Global Leadership Summit. The event is broadcast live annually with partners across the United States-550 premier host sites reaching 150, 000 + leaders. It’s also broadcast in prisons and 128 countries. The speakers were all incredible. Make sure your country is a host site for next year.

The story that stood out for me the most came from Bryan Stevenson. A highly acclaimed activist and lawyer he has dedicated his life to helping the poor, the incarcerated and the condemned through his leadership of the Equal Justice Initiative. He has successfully argued several cases in front of the U.S. Supreme Court, and his TED Talk has more than 3 million views. He’s the best-selling author of Just Mercy. His own life story, a story of justice and redemption, is beyond humbling. He shared some hard facts, asked hard questions and offered meaningful solutions. Here’s a few points to ponder from Bryan’s talk ;

1. The U.S. has the highest rate of incarceration in the world. The Bureau of Justice has found that one in three black babies will go to jail.

2. America is a very broken society with very broken systems. Why do we want to kill all the broken people i.e. the poor, suffering, children, mentally ill, addicted, veterans?


3. In America we don’t talk about race.  A true narrative of racial difference can liberate us. We need to talk about the genocide of natives, slavery, and lynching in this country. Other countries make you listen to their past atrocities, for example, (Rwanda, South Africa, Nazi Germany, Northern Ireland are getting there).

4. The judicial system, in certain states, is sending kids to prison for life where they can be raped over and over and over again from the very first night they go to prison.

5. We need leaders who can lead through the uncomfortable and are willing to do uncomfortable things.

6. We need leaders who are not afraid to get up close to the poor and the suffering.



Published by Jeanette Dean

I'm a life long learner. I've been on a voyage of discovery since childhood so ask why a lot. I'm Irish and a bit American. I write because its freeing and healing. I love photography, theology, the natural beauty of Ireland and swimming in the sea year round. I see the world through the lens of Celtic Christianity but can try on other perspectives. The business of everyday spirituality has always fascinated me. I hope this blog challenges, inspires and encourages you. Perhaps you'd like to work with me. Please reach out to me if that's the case. I'd love to hear from YOU so please comment and let me know you are out there!

2 thoughts on “Equal Justice Initiative

  1. Thank you for posting this! The violation of human rights in the U.S. is heartbreaking. You may be interested in hearing Dale Recinella (“Now I Walk on Deat Row” author) discuss his lay ministry as a volunteer death row chaplain.

    Liked by 1 person

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