Dr. Zena Crenshaw-Logal, J. D., Executive Director at National Judicial Conduct and Disability
Yesterday, Sound Off Louisiana published a feature of a virtual press conference conducted by Louisiana United International (LUI) on that very day (April 27, 2020). LUI was founded by Belinda Parker-Brown, who serves as its CEO. The feature focused on the LUI position statement on COVID-19 as it pertains to imprisoned African Americans. One of the videos depicted the adamant opposition of LUI to recent statements by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry that he opposes the release of inmates from Louisiana’s prisons as a means of protecting those inmates from COVID infection.
Two days before that press conference, the national Black is Back Coalition (BBC) held a webinar (the full version of which is readily available at the preceding link). On that webinar, Dr. Zena Crenshaw-Logal, J. D., Executive Director at National Judicial Conduct and Disability took Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards to task for allegedly ignoring their pleas for him to meet with them and discuss the current state of Louisiana prisons and the impacts of COVID-19 on the inmates residing in those prisons. Let’s take a look at just what Dr. Crenshaw-Logal had to say:
Lisa Davis, Vice Chairman of the BBC, fields a question by online viewer Chris Williams, who asked, “How do we get JBE to hear us? We are the reason he is Governor!” After Parker-Brown provides an initial repeat of the question and elaboration to Dr. Crenshaw-Logal, Dr. Logal responds that African Americans need to, “mobilize and show our strength in numbers,” and to then have Gov. Edwards, “envision himself in one of those orange prison suits, and I bet he’ll listen then.”
Subscribers may recall Gov. Edwards’ authoritative declaration immediately upon making his victory speech for a second term as Louisiana Governor last year. That authoritative declaration was, “How sweet it is!” Heck, for anyone who maybe can’t recall it, here’s a 15-second replay for old-time sake:
Gov. John Bel Edwards steps to the podium to deliver his re-election speech and begins by emphatically declaring, “How sweet it is!”
Right now, Gov. Edwards faces an open clamoring by small business owners across this state imploring him to re-open Louisiana’s economy. That clamoring includes talk that Republican lawmakers may initiate an effort to override his “stay-at-home” order. When these developments are combined with the discontent clearly present among some African American voters to such an extent that he would be warned of being “one of the people wearing an orange prison jump suit,” we can’t help but wonder if Gov. Edwards is now viewing that “sweetness” he celebrated at re-election to have turned into the bitter waters of Marah.
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