Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., defended her call for potential “prison abolition” as part of broader restructuring of the criminal justice system, in a series of tweets Monday.
“Mass incarceration is our American reality. It is a system whose logic evolved from the same lineage as Jim Crow, American apartheid, & slavery,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in reaction to a tweet from comedian Chelsea Handler. “To end it, we have to change. That means we need to have a real conversation about decarceration & prison abolition in this country.”
The Democrat recalled a conversation she had with a woman who was “thrown into Rikers [Island] as a teenager” and was “put in solitary confinement for months,” which she called “torture.”
“The conditions were so bad, she too had drank out of toilets,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “A cage is a cage is a cage. And humans don’t belong in them.”