Mark Wahlberg Is Seeking a Pardon for His 1988 Assault Conviction | TIME


The 43-year-old former rapper says he is not the person he once was

The Transformers star is hoping to get his criminal record erased, stating in his application to the Massachusetts Board of Pardons that he has dedicated himself “to becoming a better person and citizen,” NECN reports.Hollywood actor Mark Wahlberg is seeking a pardon for an assault conviction stemming from a 1988 attack that left a man blind in one eye.

The application says the assault occurred as Wahlberg, then 16, tried to rob a man outside a convenience store.

Though he was a juvenile at the time, he was tried as an adult and sentenced to three months in prison, of which he served 45 days.

In his application, Wahlberg says, “I am deeply sorry for the actions that I took on the night of April 8, 1988, as well as for any lasting damage that I may have caused the victims.”

Wahlberg says his reasons for requesting a pardon include wanting to obtain a concessionaire’s license for his restaurant business and to be able to work more closely with local law enforcement helping at-risk children. [ … ]

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Blogger’s comment:

I have to start out by stating that I’ve enjoyed Wahlberg’s talents. I find his philanthropic endeavors admirable, and only wish him continued success.

That is where my admiration and support end. In a day and age where the conversation on white privilege has only just begun and the plight of million of incarcerated and former convicts plays out, I cannot find it in myself to support a wealthy white man’s quest for a pardon for a violent crime committed in his teens.

In these times of mass-incarceration for offenses that shouldn’t be crimes to begin with, and with the knowledge that millions’ lives have been ruined by a system that is unforgiving, even when one has settled their debt to society, I cannot abide by one rich man’s mission to cleanse himself of that one last stain.

The stain of a youthful infraction can no more be erased than his victim’s sight can ever be whole again. Mr. Wahlberg was fortunate and industrious enough to make a name and a career for himself, with the opportunities his family extended to him. There are millions like him who were never able to recover from their youthful mistake because our criminal justice system just doesn’t allow for complete redemption. Hell, the system ensures those who’ve been incarcerated that their downfall is almost perpetual. Wahlberg is one of the very lucky few to escape that fate.

Not everything can be overcome or forgotten with time. Not everything should. As harsh as it may sound to him, it’s just life; a life that, by all standards, has been lived quite well. Mark should just make do with that. Let’s not turn this into a cynical example of #CrimingWhileWhite.

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