The Kalief Browder story is one of the saddest cases of injustice within the police system and an unfortunate end to a young life gone far too soon. Many have watched this terrible story unfold by watching the Spike documentary about his life and its sad end, however that still hasn’t stopped others from being insensitive to the situation. Apparently a New York City politician thinks it’s a good idea to rename Rikers Island prison, where Browder was held, after him.
With the recent announcement that Rikers Island is set to close its doors within the next 10 years, NYC politician Letitia James wants to rename the prison after former inmate Kalief Browder. According to a report from Okayplayer, the proposed renaming of the prison has been met with mixed reviews, particularly from Browder’s family.
The full report about renaming Rikers after Browder is sure to evoke a host of emotions, both from family members and advocates of the justice system. James for her part, sees it as a tribute, saying “We must do everything in our power to ensure that our criminal justice system is fair, transparent and accountable.” James made these remarks during a press conference explaining a commission report that advocates for the prison to be shut down.
James’ intent is to rename the prison once it is officially shut down, but some of Browder’s family members are not too sure:
“It’s really appreciative and thoughtful,” Akeem Browder, Kalief’s older brother, said. “But it’s something we’d have to think over. The people should have this victory.” “Thankfully the time has come,” Akeem added. “Maybe people will look at the Kalief Island, if they want to dub it that, and remember the tragedy that my brother went through.”
Meanwhile Deion Browder, another of Kalief Browder’s older brothers, is not supportive of renaming Rikers Island after his deceased younger brother. “Naming Rikers Island after Kalief Browder is disrespecting to his name,” Deion said.
While the sentiment may be intended to pay tribute to Kalief Browder, it is probably too painful to rename the actual property after him considering the heartbreaking pain and loss it caused.
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