There have been many conversations and debates about defunding the police and abolishing prisons. Also, currently there are official conversations about Black reparations. This past Friday, Japanese American communities celebrated their Day of Remembrance for those imprisoned in concentration camps during WWII. I agree that we should abolish prisons and defund the police. But our positions also require us to think about fundamental questions related to justice about people who are injured, traumatized, sexually assaulted, and otherwise violated, and people who have harmed them. One of the creative and grassroots responses is the transformative justice movement emerging in several places in this country. Today, I am in conversation with Dr Xhercis Mendez to learn about and understand better what transformative justice is, its values and principles, and its practices.
Along with being a professor at CSU Fullerton, Dr. Mendez is a popular educator, organizer, decolonial feminist philosopher, and founder of The Campus Transformative Justice Project that started in 2017 in the aftermath of the Larry Nassar case at Michigan State University. She describes herself as the Boricua (Puerto Rican) child of factory workers and a bruja by ancestry, who lives to inspire the next generation of “troublemakers” and believers that a better world is possible.