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The IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI in conjunction with the
Department of Sociology presents

The 27th Joseph T. Taylor Symposium
Thursday, February 25, 2016
IUPUI Campus Center, 420 University Blvd.

Mass Incarceration and the Destruction of Community: Beyond the Post-Racial Myth

As inequality widens and opportunities narrow for the bottom 90 percent of the American population, the disenfranchised face mass incarceration and social isolation. In a nation where nearly 25 percent of the world’s prisoners reside, can we still continue to be the land of the free? The American dream is increasingly at risk and is becoming unattainable for man hard-working people. What can be done to break this pattern and create opportunity, particularly for African Americans?

Download the full 2016 schedule - [PDF]

8:15 am - 8:45 am  Registration
Campus Center Theater (lower level)

8:45 am - 9:00 am  Welcome
Campus Center Theater (lower level)
Thomas J. Davis, Dean; Professor of Religious Studies, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI

9:00 am - 9:45 am The Post-Racial Myth
Campus Center Theater (lower level)
A post-racial American society has proven to be a myth. Our social institutions continue to be racialized with devastating consequences for marginalized populations.

Hosts: Najja Modibo, Associate Professor of Sociology, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI
           Peter Seybold, Associate Professor of Sociology, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI

9:45 am - 10:00 am Break

10:00 am - 10:45 am             The Impact of Incarceration on Families and Children
Campus Center Theater (lower level)

Incarceration has a wide reaching impact on the health and well-being of families and children. This session explores the experiences of those who are imprisoned at a young age, and programs designed to strengthen families with incarcerated family members.

Participant: Matthew C. Aalsma, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, IU School of Medicine

Moderator: Devon Hensel, Assistant Professor of Sociology, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI; Assistant Research Professor of Pediatrics/IU School of Medicine

10:45 am - 11:00 am             Break     

11:00 am - 11:45 am             Fatal Encounters: Racial Bias in Shootings by Police

Campus Center Theater (lower level)

The relentless killings of civilians-overwhelmingly of black males-by police officers across the nation reflects an even broader pattern of racial bias in law enforcement. This panel will discuss the implicated legal, practical, and policy issues thereby raised and offer suggestions for affecting change.

Participants: Jane Henegar, Indiana Executive Director, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
                    Florence Roisman, William F. Harvey Professor of Law, Robert H. McKinney School of Law
                    Detective Andre Smith, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department

Moderator: Robert Aponte, Associate Professor of Sociology, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI

11:45 am - 12:00 pm            Break

12:00 pm - 2:00 pm  Luncheon
Campus Center 450 (fourth floor)
Seating is limited. Reservations are required.

Presentation of the Joseph T. Taylor Excellence in Diversity Awards
Nasser Paydar, Chancellor, IUPUI; Executive Vice President, Indiana University;

Luncheon Keynote

The War on Drugs and Mass Incarceration: Racist, Destructive, and Unwinnable
Major Neill Franklin (Ret.), Executive Director, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP)

Major Neill Franklin (Ret.) is a 34-year veteran of both the Maryland State Police and the Baltimore Police Department who oversaw 17 separate drug task forces. He retired from his long career in law enforcement in 2010 to become the executive director for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP). LEAP is an organization of police, prosecutors, judges and other law enforcement officials who want to end the war on drugs. Franklin’s own experiences, especially the murder of a close friend and law enforcement colleague, long ago convinced him that the Drug War is an enormous human tragedy that must be ended.

Major Franklin will discuss how the decades of law enforcement experiences have verified the realities of the futility of the so-called Drug War. He will expound on the racist nature of its execution, if not an inevitable feature of its very design. He will also discuss the unsustainability of the Drug War’s continued funding, given the obvious futility of the wasted trillions in expenditures thus far, and the many strands of evidence supporting a system of legalization, with appropriate regulations in place, as the only sensible solution.