UT students and community attend second post-election forum - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

UT students and community attend second post-election forum

(Source: WTOL) (Source: WTOL)
TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) -

Students and community members were looking understand the effects of President Trump's recent actions at the University of Toledo post-election forum focused on criminal justice.

President Trump announced his nomination for the Supreme Court Tuesday and Monday night he fired and replaced the acting attorney general.

The meeting room at the West Toledo Branch Library was packed for the second post-election forum.

The topic was President Donald Trump's criminal justice outlook.

"It's actually exciting because in the past I've never really been that involved in everything that was going on," explained Tara Emery, a senior at the University of Toledo majoring in law and social thought. "I was too young or you know busy in school, I didn't really understand it so it's really exciting that I can understand what's going on and be a part of it."

Tara's mom attended the forum with her for her own reasons. 

"Whatever happens in the country affects me whether it's politics or law, my children, whatever," said Terry Emery, an Oregon resident. "Everything affects me so no matter what I am doing, my country affects me."

UT professors wanted to provide a dialogue to discuss major issues including: mass incarceration, local policing, disability and mental health within the criminal justice system and who will lead the U.S. Department of Justice.

"I think everyone is expecting that Jeff Sessions will be confirmed as the next attorney general," said Jelani Jefferson Exum, Professor of Law. "Of course you are not going to have everyone who is happy about that, but we expect that it will go forward. From that point on, there will be more consistency in carrying out the president's agenda when it comes to criminal justice."

While the president is still working on that agenda, several are trying to make sense of all the information. 

"That's why these forums are important because people are coming in with a head full of news and so much is happening so fast it is hard to process," said Renee Heberle, Professor of Political Science. "I am an advocate of processing issues like this face-to-face and having discussions and learning from each other."

Those in attendance could discuss their opinions about criminal justice in a small group setting as well as ask questions of the panelist at the end of the night.

The university will have another post election forum Feb. 13 titled "Our Bodies, Over selves in the Time of Trump: A Forum on Healthcare Justice, Reproductive Justice and GLBTQA+ Justice." 

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