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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Grant Making Division of Justice Department Will No Longer Use Word "Felons" to Describe Felons

Yesterday, Assistant Attorney General Karol Mason, who heads the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Justice Programs (OJP), announced in a Washington Post Op/Ed that OJP would no longer use the term "felons" to refer to criminals who had served their time and been released:
This new policy statement replaces unnecessarily disparaging labels with terms like “person who committed a crime” and “individual who was incarcerated,” decoupling past actions from the person being described and anticipating the contributions we expect them to make when they return.  We will be using the new terminology in speeches, solicitations, website content, and social media posts, and I am hopeful that other agencies and organizations will consider doing the same.
She noted that many of the people that had been imprisoned with which she has spoken say the harshest punishment they endure is being permanently branded a “felon” or “offender.”  The Post originally reported that the policy applied to all of USDOJ but apparently there was enough flack about it that the Post later noted the policy only applied to OJP.  OJP is the grant making arm of USDOJ.  No word as to whether Main Justice was trying to cover its rear or if Mason simply did not make it clear when she originally pinned the Op/Ed.

Cam Edwards of addressed this new policy on yesterday's program and made some great points about at a time when crime is at all time lows, we seem more concerned about the feelings of criminals than keeping those who commit most of the crime where they belong, behind bars, while at the same time trying to take away the rights of law abiding gun owners.

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