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“I’m a Human Being”: Former Inmate Helped by Kim Kardashian Talks Prison Reform

A year after her release from prison, Alice Marie Johnson joined Bold TV to discuss her life post incarceration and her relationship with President Donald Trump.

“Only God knows the true heart of a man,” Johnson told Bold TV when asked about criticisms against the president. “All I know is this. Is that I’m a black woman, and I was granted my freedom by President Trump and I will be forever grateful to him for believing in me, and this goes so much beyond anyone’s policies [and] politics. I’m a human being.”

Johnson spent 21 years behind bars for a first time non violent drug offense. Under President Barack Obama’s administration, Johnson’s request for clemency was denied. She described being denied by the clemency initiative in 2014 despite meeting the criteria. Johnson said that she held out hope until Kim Kardashian, who Johnson now considers to be a very close friend, championed for her freedom. Johnson told Bold TV, “the reason that I am free today is not just about me. It’s for so many other people, and I don’t believe that purpose could have been fulfilled if I had been released under the Obama administration.” 

When the case rose to Trump and Johnson was granted clemency, she began to advocate for former inmates’ right to vote as well as drug and prison reform.

“Once that person has been released from prison, and you say that you’re giving them a second chance, they’re a returning citizen. How can you be a returning citizen when you don’t even have a voice? When you can’t even vote? So, I believe strongly that ex-felons should be immediately — when their time is complete — given their right to vote back. That restores them not just in words, but in deeds also.”

Not only has Johnson written a book about her journey called “After Life: My Journey from Incarceration to Freedom,” but she is now able to enjoy her family as well as become a public speaker and advocate for change.

“I can’t tell you what it means to be able to hold my grandchildren, some for the very first time,” Johnson said. “I do have to pinch myself sometimes.”

Photo Credit: Wikimedia

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