Yes, apparently you can just do that.

Although it is too early to determine the effect on the crime rate, criminal justice reforms like Krasner’s has already manifested themselves in one area: The city’s jail population continues to plummet. Even more interestingly, the two cities have saved money.


In Philadelphia, for instance, Citylab reported that Comptroller Alan Butkovitz estimated that the city could save $75 million by eliminating cash bail. Overall, more than a third of the people in Philly jails in 2016 were there just because they couldn’t afford bail. The high jail numbers end up costing taxpayers and benefitting no one, even if the bail amounts are high.

That’s because unlike fines, court costs and legal reparations, bail money doesn’t go to cities, states or counties. If the defendant posts a bond and shows up to court later, it is returned to the accused. If the defendant pays a surety bond (usually 10 percent of the stated bail amount), that money goes right into the pockets of corporations, mostly large insurance companies.


Private bond and bail companies make between $1.4 billion and $2.4 billion a year in profits. The industry has grown so strong that it regularly makes six-figure donations to congressmen who allow them to write bail laws while fending off any calls for the end of cash bail.

No matter how one feels about the NFL protests, it is a proven fact that the cash bail system discriminates against poor and nonwhite people. In many cases, people are forced to pay odd high-interest loans, sell their cars or work multiple jobs to repay the debt for crimes for which they are technically presumed innocent of. Even if they are found not guilty or the case is dismissed, money bail can send some people into an endless spiral of debt and turmoil in an attempt to purchase their freedom.


There are cases like Demmorea Tarver, who has been making payments on his bond for a decade, even though his case was tossed out after the police officer was accused of widespread misconduct. The tales include travesties such as Cedric Smith, who sat in jail for 41 days until he was tried and found not guilty. Smith lost his job and now depends on food stamps to live.

In the wake of Kaepernick’s protests, angry objectors who felt like he dishonored some ethereal notion of liberty and justice, often reminded Colin that “freedom isn’t free.”


As if we didn’t know.

This is why they kneel