In the wake of the Freddie Gray protests, many celebrities turned their attention to Baltimore. At least one has kept paying attention.
The chart-topping singer, who grew up in New York City, seems to feel a connection to Baltimore. Keys attended Prince’s free concert in May, along with Jay-Z and Beyonce. She was back in town again earlier this week, taking selfies with fans in East Baltimore. But this wasn’t just a publicity tour; she also met with the families of young people who had been tried as adults.
She then traveled to Washington, D.C., where she testified in front of Congress on behalf of criminal justice reform. “Nowhere in the rest of the western world are juveniles being tried as adults, or even worse, sentenced to life sentences without parole,” she said. “Is this who we are now? Is this who we want to be? These are just regular boys and girls, trying to find their way.”
After speaking to Congress, Keys granted an interview to the Guardian. “One of the most important things that I saw [in Baltimore] was people are guilty before they’re even proven innocent,” she said. “They’re not assumed to be innocent, they’re assumed to be guilty.”
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