John Legend Wants to End Mass Incarceration

He launched a campaign on Monday to do exactly that.

Photo by Flickr user PopTech.

Yesterday, John Legend, soft-spoken crooner and America’s boyfriend, launched FREE AMERICA, an initiative dedicated to ending mass incarceration in the United States. Legend broke the news to the Associated Press yesterday, effectively cementing himself in the American consciousness as a genuine Good Guy and earning himself all kinds of righteous karma from the universe.

"We have a serious problem with incarceration in this country," Legend told the Associated Press. "It's destroying families, it's destroying communities and we're the most-incarcerated country in the world. And when you look deeper and look at the reasons we got to this place, we as a society made some choices politically and legislatively, culturally, to deal with poverty, deal with mental illness in a certain way, and that way usually involves using incarceration."

The campaign has some pretty hefty work to do: the U.S. has the largest prison population in the entire world. Legend will inaugurate the campaign with a visit to a correctional facility in Austin, Texas where he will also perform. He’s also throwing a press conference with Texas lawmakers to talk about how to reform Texas’ criminal justice system. He’s also planning a trip to a prison in California as well.