Why Kim Kardashian-West REALLY went to see President Trump
Carol Ozemhoya| OW Contributor | 6/1/2018, 6 p.m.
A lot of people were scratching their heads when it was announced that reality star Kim Kardashian-West, wife to rapper Kanye West, was going to the White House to talk to President Donald Trump about prison reform. What could she possibly know about it? It turns out that Karsashian-West had a different motive, and that was to get the President to pardon a prisoner named Alice Marie Johnson, according to several news sources including CNBC and the BBC. The reality star apparently has taken up the cause of getting Johnson released. The great grandmother is actually a great example of why prison reform is on a lot of people’s minds. She is serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for a non-violent, first-time offense involving drugs. Kardashian had a tough task ahead of her, considering Trump recently took a hard stand against drug dealers, saying they should be executed. Johnson was sentence in 1996, so she has already served 20 years. Kardashian-West first heard about Johnson’s case through a video produced by Mic. According to the Associated Press, Johnson helped lead a multimillion-dollar cocaine ring from 1991 to 1994. At her sentencing, U.S. District Judge Julia Gibbons said that Johnson was “the quintessential entrepreneur” in the operation, “and clearly the impact of 2,000 to 3,000 kilograms of cocaine in this community is very significant.” She was tried on cocaine conspiracy and money laundering charges. Johnson told the producer of the Mic that she got involved in the drug trade at a particularly bad time in her life. Her son had died in a motorcycle crash, and her marriage had ended in divorce. She also had lost her job, causing financial strain. “I couldn’t find a job fast enough to take care of my family,” she said. “I felt like a failure.” The damage done by the prison sentence is permanent, Johnson said: “I missed the birth of my grandchildren, being able to be in their life. I just had a great-grandson. I missed that. Both of my parents had passed away. I was not able to be by either of their sides in their final days. That’s an ache that I can’t — that never goes away.” Kardashian-West said of the case on her Twitter account,” This is so unfair.” Reports say she has actually contacted Johnson, and Johnson wrote her a thank-you note for taking up her cause. This is an ongoing story.