In an act of philanthropy and to mark father’s day celebration, American rapper, Shawn Corey Carter, professionally known as Jay Z choose to pay the bail of fathers who have been held in prison for their inability to afford bail.
Speaking to the Time in an interview, Jay Z identified the for-profit bail bond industry as a “predatory lending scheme” as well as one of the major factors contributing to the United States being one of the most incarcerated countries in the world.
The famous rapper also pledged to give money to organizations that would help bail out men currently being held pending bail.
In his statement, he wrote:
“If you’re from neighbourhoods like the Brooklyn, one I grew up in if you’re unable to afford a private attorney, then you can be disappeared into our jail system simply because you can’t afford bail.
“Millions of people are separated from their families for months at a time — not because they are convicted of committing a crime, but because they are accused of committing a crime.”
Referencing organisations in the US that bailed out women for Mother’s Day, Jay Z continued:
“As a father with a growing family, it’s the least I can do, but philanthropy is not a long fix, we have to get rid of these inhumane practices altogether. We can’t fix our broken criminal justice system until we take on the exploitative bail industry.”
The new father of twins stated further that the quest is something he became obsessed with after the assisted with a docuseries about Kalief Browder, a 22-year-old black man whose family could not afford to post bail when he was accused of stealing a backpack. He spent three years on Rikers Island in solitary confinement and later died by suicide.
In his note, Jay Z stated that over 400,000 people, convicted of no crime, are held in jail because they cannot afford to buy their freedom, adding that one out of 9 black children has an incarcerated parent and families are forced to take on more debt, often in predatory lending schemes created by bail bond insurers.
He described the “pre-incarceration conundrum” as “devastating to families.”
Meanwhile, the record breaker listed second on Forbes list of richest Hip Hop Artists and his wife Beyoncé have announced the birth of their twins on Monday. The twins – a boy and a girl were reportedly born on June 12 at UCLA Medial Center, but the couple kept the births under wraps for almost a week pending when they could be allowed to leave the hospital.
It was a rumour at first but the twins’ birth was confirmed by Beyoncé’s father, Mathew Knowles, who took to his Twitter page with an image of balloons to captioned:
“They’re here! #beyonce #twins #jayz #happybirthday. “love, granddad.”
Both families, the Knowles and Carters, are said to be philanthropic in their domain.
Beyoncé recently celebrated the one-year anniversary of her Peabody Award-winning visual album Lemonade by starting the Formation Scholars scholarship program, aimed at young women studying creative arts, music, literature, or African-American studies at Berklee College of Music, Howard University, Parsons School of Design, and Spelman College.