Saturday, June 25, 2011

Bishop L.J. Guillory Honors John Brown As "St. John Brown....He Was More Than Just A Martyr He Was A Saint

Yes, I know that many of my readers will not agree. However, facts are what they are! Right?! Yes, they are! But, here are others point of view.....

Freddie X. – A martyr is someone who is willing to die for what they believe in. I believe that John Brown was, at heart, a sincere martyr. Even though he performed some extreme acts, they were for a good cause. Mr. Brown believed that the slave community “was in a state of war”. He was willing to lose everything, including his life, just to make sure that his belief became true. Mr. Brown perfectly fits the definition of a martyr. He freely accepted death as it would only stir his cause even more. This proves his dedication to abolishing slavery. He believed that death was just a small hurdle that needed to be crossed in order to completely end slavery. Mr. Brown said that, “Now, if it is deemed necessary that I should forfeit my life for the furtherance of the ends of justice, and mingle my blood further with the blood of my children and with the blood of millions in this slave country whose rights are disregarded by wicked, cruel, and unjust enactments, I say let it be done.” This showed his willingness and acceptance of dying in order for his beliefs to continue on so that, in the end, slavery would be abolished.

Joey L. - I believe John Brown was a martyr. I think this because John Brown did what he did because he had such a profound belief. He believed with all of his heart that slavery was an injustice. He believed all were created equally and never doubted his beliefs. Many would consider John Brown a violent, messed up terrorist. But, he fought for a passion and never gave up, even though he stood nearly alone being one of the few whites who believed slavery was wrong—which it was. John Brown helped slaves to a free life. John Brown was brave and compassionate because of the things he did for slaves. Even though the raid he led was rather violent, it doesn’t make him a violent man. He let the train coming through go by without holding them hostage, and as soon as someone who he was trying to help was killed, and stopped and realized that what he was doing wasn’t right.He risked his own life for the freedom of others. John Brown was killed because of the things he did for slaves. This is why I consider John Brown a martyr.

Nick M. - I believe that John Brown was a martyr. I think this because he died for the cause he was fighting for. He was a devout Christian, and an active abolitionist. It is also said that he “practiced what he preached.” His main dream in life was to free all slaves and freed many by being active on the Underground Railroad. He believed that slavery was an abomination and risked his safety in order to free slaves. But, I believe that he did go too far with the Pottawatomie Massacre and was a little harsh to all pro-slavery people. In his speech before he was hung he said that he would “forfeit his life for the furtherance of the ends of justice” which means he would die to end slavery, making him a martyr.

Mariah O. – I Believe John Brown was a Martyr because, before he died this is what he said: “Now, if it is deemed necessary that I should forfeit my life, for the furtherance of the ends of justice, and MINGLE MY BLOOD FURTHER WITH THE BLOOD OF MY CHILDREN, and with the blood of millions in this Slave country, whose rights are disregarded by wicked, cruel, and unjust enactments — I say LET IT BE DONE.” I think John Brown wanted to die to help other people. Four of his sons said that John had not done any of the killing himself but had decided who would be spared. John Brown thought that his actions would encourage slave to rise up and help the fight for freedom. John Brown was tried and hanged along with six other of his men. John Brown was not a terrorist because he died for what he believed in.

Samuel L. - It is in my belief that John Brown is a martyr. Yes, there are some conflicts that did not have the need for aggression, like the Civil Rights Movement, but most conflicts need force. Some people are very stubborn in their ideologies and a lasting impression needs to be raised. War was fought over democracy in the US. War was fought to end Nazi reign in WWII. And this in itself is a small war that was fought for a group of people who could not speak for themselves against another group of people. Although the opposition would obviously think that John Brown was a terrorist, as his actions were rather terrorist-like. To the people who do not believe in unethical treatment of another human being, however, he would be a martyr who died for their cause. He even said himself, during the trial after the Harper’s Ferry raid, that quote, “I have not done wrong, but right.” This shows he is very devout in his ideology. A terrorist is someone who uses terror to battle against a cause. Yes he was that. But even more so was he a martyr. He truly believed in the equality of every human being. That’s why, in my opinion of course, I think he is a martyr.

Megana C. to Bryan,

I totally agree with what you said. A defintion is just the beginning of a story. The rest of the journey is your opinion. You should use the defintion to guide you like a teacher guides students. John Brown does sound like a terrorist but overall he really is man who was only trying to support his cause. John Brown was just a man who wanted everyone to have the same rights. Your reasons are good reasons to agree with.

Sean D. – OK yes, by Webster’s definition John Brown was a terrorist because he used fear and terror as a weapon. But he was definately a martyr too! he died for his cause, to oppose slavery which again, by definition, makes him a martyr. All terrorists who die in their terrorist acts are dieing for their cause. But i think he is a martyr because his cause was morrally right as opposed to say being socially accepted. Everyone (except those among us who are mean and stupid) knows that it doesnt matter what people look like. Appearence has nothing to do with someone treating someone else differently. The slaves did nothing to deserve what was done to them, and John Brown, in his acts, punished those who oppressed the slaves with death or injury. Think for a moment if their places were switched. Say the people were mistreating white men as opposed to black. The law would be liable to punish them. If John Brown had rode in and stopped them and freed them, he would be commended for his actions. He said, “If I had done what i did for white men, I would be given a metal, not hanged”. He is so right its not even funny. And THAT is why I think John Brown is a martyr.

Nicholas M. - A martyr and a terrorist are often thought of as very similar, but in reality they are actually very different. A martyr is someone who chooses to make sacrifices, even die for their cause. A martyr’s cause is good and just, in which violence is necessary at some points. A terrorist is someone who deliberately hurts innocent people to strengthen his cause. I say that John Brown was a martyr. I say this because he fought for the abolitionist’s cause, which was all about freeing the slaves, not about hurting the South. He devoted his life to freeing slaves like in Bleeding Kansas and Harper’s Ferry. He was violent when he killed pro-slavery men, but it wasn’t directed at the southern people and he only used violence to show that slavery was evil. Overall, John Brown was a good man; Abraham Lincoln said he had “great courage, rare unselfishness” and he treated all people with respect no matter what race they were. In the book, John Brown his Fight for Freedom, by John Hendrix, it said John Brown would even have dinner with black people. He was very religious, went to church, and believed God called him to end slavery. He accepted his death and didn’t go against his beliefs to escape being hung. A terrorist would deliberately use violence to make people afraid but John Brown was just trying to make people see what he believed in. Also, do we think of a comic book super hero as a terrorist? They use violence, but it is for a good cause so we think of them as good. That is exactly what John Brown was like. Another reason John Brown was a martyr was because he made sacrifices for his cause. He lost two of his sons fighting to free the slaves. Finally, John Brown used violence only for what he thought was right, he chose to die for what he thought was right and is remembered for fighting for the abolitionist cause. That is why I say that Brown is a martyr.

Sandy G. – ” I will raise a storm in this country that will not be stayed so long as there is a slave on its soil! ” These powerful words were once said by a brave man, John Brown. John Brown was an abolitionist, which slave owners and others thought his actions led him to be a terrorist, or the abolitionist who believed he was a martyr. In my opinion, I believe John Brown was a martyr because he suffered for religious beliefs and did what he believed was right. There are some views in his life were John Brown proves himself a martyr. “If i am dying for freedom, i couldn’t die for a better cause. I had rather die than be a slave.” This means that if the only way to stop slavery was to be sentenced to death, then so be it! This also shows how serious and brave he was about making a change. John Brown backed up his inspiring words with strong actions to prove slavery was wrong. An example of that would be when John Brown and his family went to church. He then noticed the entire back pew was filled with his black friends. John Brown was not happy, he knew that was racism and wrong in so many ways. Starting small to make a change, he proudly stood up and escorted his black friends to the front of the pew; ignoring the consequences. John Brown was a brave abolitionist who fought against slavery, proving himself a martyr. His actions, his words, and his way of trying to stop slavery was inspiring from my part, even though Brown’s plan didn’t work, i still believe suffering and dying for a noble cause is a big part to making a change!

Claudia C. - Back then, John Brown was a terrorist to the southerners, and a martyr to some of the abolitionists in the north. I’m sure his actions stirred up a lot of drama in the U.S. back then (and even these days on this blog)! However in the end, in my opinion, I think that John Brown was a very heroic martyr. I think that even though some of his actions may have been violent, his violence was only to help the injustices the African Americans suffered. A martyr is a person that died for what he or she believed in; that is exactly what John was. Although he killed some white people, in the long run he saved more African Americans. I say this because without John Brown and his statement- making actions, the banning of slavery may have been delayed, causing more slaves to die under the horrible conditions given them. And besides that point, John did help lead several African Americans to freedom. If John Brown is considered a terrorist that means every soldier that killed someone in the Civil War is a terrorist. After all, a terrorist is someone who uses violence for political purposes. You can almost consider John Brown as a soldier that fought to try to end slavery.

Summing up my post, I believe John Brown was a martyr. He fought for what he believed in, and died for it. Only few people would have the guts to lead a fight for what he or she believes in.

John Brown


Harboring a fury that was fueled by profound religious devotion, John Brown carried his hatred of slavery into action, creating a legacy of bloodshed and violence that remains at once inspiring and appalling to this day.

Born in Torrington, Connecticut in 1800 into a deeply religious family, Brown spent much of his childhood in the anti-slavery stronghold of Ohio. Setting out in life as a businessman, he went from mild success to repeated failure, and from 1825 to 1855 moved his large family ten times, shifting his occupation from tanner to shepherd to farmer and working at whatever odd jobs he could find. Always a committed abolitionist, during these years he offered his homes as waystops on the Underground Railroad and insisted that his churches admit African-Americans as full members of their congregations.

In 1855, Brown followed five of his sons to Kansas when they appealed to him for help in fighting off the Missouri "border ruffians" who were gathering there to force slavery on the citizens of the territory. Brown arrived with a wagonload of weapons and the conviction that all free-soil Kansans stood in mortal peril. In 1856, Brown felt compelled to take action. During the night of May 24, he led a group which methodically killed five pro-slavery settlers living along Pottawotomie Creek, dragging the men out of their cabins and butchering them with swords.

This massacre shocked even Brown's fellow abolitionists and led to a string of violent deaths which gave rise to the name "Bleeding Kansas." Brown successfully fought off all attempts to apprehend him, and maintained publicly that his acts were not only justified, but directly ordered by God. Finally, in October, he left Kansas for a tour through the Northeast, where he was acclaimed for his militant opposition to slavery.

But by this time Brown had formulated an even more militant plan: he would incite a massive slave insurrection and thereby destroy the hated institution once and for all. To provide the funding for this ambitious undertaking, he turned to wealthy abolitionists who had grown frustrated by the failure of peaceful means and shared his view that it was time to wage war.

After returning to Kansas briefly in 1858, where he led a raiding party into Missouri which liberated eleven slaves, Brown moved in early 1859 to a rented farm near Harpers Ferry, Virginia, site of a federal arsenal with which Brown planned to arm the slaves he would inspire to rebellion. In October, he led twenty-one followers in a raid on Harpers Ferry and quickly occupied the federal arsenal, but was just as quickly trapped there by troops under the command of Robert E. Lee. The next morning, Lee's forces overran Brown's band of raiders, killing half of them, including two of Brown's sons.

Brown's ensuing trial for treason gave him the opportunity to vigorously condemn slavery and to again defend his actions as ordained by God. Before his hanging in December, popular support poured out from the North. The white South, however, was only more deeply convinced that remaining in the Union meant the end of slavery. Yet both sides could agree that, as he had in Kansas, John Brown had sharpened the issue dividing them into a weapon that would not be sheathed until it had drawn blood.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Bishop L.J. Guillory Reads The Bio of The Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

The Bishop L.J. Guillory, D.D. Host of The Ombudsman Press Show - KNET 95.7 FM 1450AM: Questions why the Media Continues to Disrespect The Hon. Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

The Media is now calling him "Jeremiah" Lets Read his Bio and find out why some people call him Reverend.

Do you support the Media Attacks and Disrespect to any person? Should the Media Just Report the News? Should the Media help Make the News?  Should the Media be allowed to Pick Sides Republican or Democrate? Should the Media be allowed to attack people based on a Story?

Life, Love and Legacy

Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

The Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. is a man of faith, a homiletic genius, a theological scholar and a pastor’s pastor. He is a family man who enjoys spending quality time with his wife, children, grandchildren, extended family and friends.

Steeped in Family Tradition and Educational Achievements

Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Dr. Wright is a son of the parsonage and hails from a family steeped in educational achievements. A third generation family member to matriculate at Virginia Union University, Dr. Wright followed in the footsteps of his maternal grandfather, Dr. Hamilton Martin Henderson who graduated from Virginia Union with a Bachelor of Arts degree in the late 1800s and finished seminary at Virginia Union in 1902. His father, Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Sr., also graduated from Virginia Union with two undergraduate degrees and from the seminary with a Master of Divinity degree in 1938. The senior Wright also received a Master of Sacred Theology degree (S.T.M.) from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia.

Dr. Wright’s mother, Dr. Mary Henderson Wright, also graduated from Virginia Union and earned her first master’s degree before age 19 from the University of Chicago. She also earned a second master’s degree and her doctorate in education from the University of Pennsylvania.

Foundational Strengths

With four earned degrees, a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in English from Howard University, a Master of Arts in The History of Religions from the University of Chicago Divinity School and a Doctor of Ministry from the United Theological Seminary, Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. grew up in a home where reading books was a daily way of life. Wright read a wide range of sources from the Greek philosophers and Shakespeare to African American authors such as Carter G. Woodson (the Father of African American History) to Sterling Brown (one of the Harlem Renaissance artists), as well as one of Dr. Wright’s college professors.

A student of Black Sacred Music, ethnomusicology and African Diasporan studies, Dr. Wright is trained as an historian of religions. He came from a family where diverse ideas were discussed and lessons were learned. In that context, his faith was formed and his commitment to the continent of Africa and social justice were born. These foundational strengths shaped Dr. Wright’s vision for prophetic ministry.

Pastoral Ministry

As senior pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, IL, where he served 36 years, Dr. Wright combined his studies of African Traditional Religions, African music, African American music and the African American Religious Tradition with his studies of Judeo-Christian thought to create ministries which addressed the needs of the community and enriched the lives and faith of his congregants by moving ministry, as stated in his own words, “from theory to praxis.”

Dr. Wright said in a published article: “I have tried to bring those two different worlds together [the academy and the pew] in the context of pastoral ministry in an effort to move an ignored people from hurt to healing and from hate to hope. My mission at Trinity has been to bring those worlds together by using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the life of Christ as a model for what is possible, of what might be, and of what our faith really is—‘the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.”

Dr. Wright’s efforts made Trinity – long considered, in theological circles, a model for the Black church – one of the most politically active and socially conscious churches in the nation. When he retired the church had over 50 active ministries with social justice advocacy at the core of its theological perspective.

From HIV/AIDS outreach programs and two senior housing complexes, to a federally funded childcare program for low-income families and the church’s newly formed Kwame Nkrumah Academy to serve students on Chicago’s South Side, the congregation has put into practice the Gospel that was preached every week.

Commitment to Education

As a result of Rev. Wright’s commitment to higher education, Trinity has provided scholarships for graduating high school seniors since 1977. Over 1000 students have been recipients of these scholarship awards and have finished both college and graduate schools. Over the past several years, the amount of scholarships awarded each year has been over $100,000 a year.

In addition to the scholarship awards, the congregation has ordained 40 seminary graduates under Pastor Wright’s leadership and currently has over 30 members of the church who are students in fully ATS-accredited seminaries, working on their Master of Divinity degrees as they prepare for full-time service to the church of Jesus Christ. The congregation gives in excess of $250,000 a year in theological education reimbursements to augment the seminarians’ efforts to acquire those degrees. The M.Div. is required for ordination for ministry in the United Church of Christ.

The Connection

In an effort to help his congregation make the connection between their faith, history and heritage, Dr. Wright led study tours each year for 15 years while he was pastor. Those tours took African Americans to Africa, the Caribbean and Brazil to learn more about their past, the Bible and the role of Africans in the history of Christianity and the history of the development of the cultures in the Colonial Diaspora. He still leads tours as Pastor Emeritus.

He also led the congregation of Trinity United Church of Christ to support mission work around the world. In addition to the church sponsored special mission projects in Ghana, Ethiopia, South Africa and Bahia, each year the congregation gives more than $200,000 to the denomination’s Mission work.

Dr. Wright also led the congregation to be strongly committed to ministry and mission work in the Continental United States above and beyond its ongoing denominational commitments. In the aftermath of hurricanes Rita and Katrina, for example, the church gave $100,000 to the United Church of Christ’s denominational effort to help with the rebuilding of the Gulf Coast region and they also gave an additional $100,000 to help with the restoration of Dillard University, an HBCU started by the denomination immediately following the Civil War.


Following in the path of his mentor, Dr. Samuel DeWitt Proctor, the legendary preacher of Abyssinian Baptist Church in New York, Dr. Wright has taught hundreds of young seminarians the art of preaching and how to examine the Gospel and make it relevant to the listener.

Dr. Wright has authored numerous articles for academic journals and has published four books of sermons widely used in seminaries: What Makes You So Strong?, Good News: Sermons of Hope For Today’s Families, Africans Who Shaped our Faith and When Black Men Stand Up For God. His newly released (February 25, 2010) book A Sankofa Moment: The History of Trinity United Church of Christ is his first written work!

A Model to Emulate

Each Sunday, churches from around the country and from various denominations visit Trinity. When Dr. Wright was serving as pastor, they came to hear him preach and to experience a worship service that feeds both the intellect and the soul, and both the “head and the heart,” to use the words of Howard Thurman.

Describing Dr. Wright’s preaching style, Rev. Otis Moss III, the pastor of Trinity and Dr. Wright’s successor, says, “The weight of the holy is upon his words.”

Dr. Gardner C. Taylor, the “Dean of Black Preaching” in the United States of America for the 20th century and the Pastor Emeritus of the Concord Baptist Church of Christ in Brooklyn, New York, had this to say about the Pastor Emeritus of Trinity United church of Christ and its impact nationally and internationally:

“People who love the Lord and who embrace the noblest concepts of our democracy will enthusiastically applaud the establishment of the Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. Lectureship. The Lectureship appropriately salutes the Pastor and mentor who prepared President Barack Obama for the role of President of the United States.

“Mr. Obama had hardly any grasp of the meaning of being a Black person in the United States. By example and exhortation, Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., cured that deficiency, sending to Washington a President qualified to give America a chance to actually become a democracy!”

Dr. Taylor sent those words of encouragement as the Center for African American Theological Studies inaugurated its Annual Lecture in honor of the preaching and ministry of Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

For all of Wright’s work and contributions to Trinity and the global church community, he has received numerous awards, commendations and appointments, including nine honorary doctorates. He has served on a variety of boards, including the Amistad Commission of the State of Illinois, the Trans-Atlantic Slave Commission of the State of Illinois (appointed to both Commissions by the Governor of Illinois), and he continues to serve on the Board of Trustees of Virginia Union University, the Samuel DeWitt Proctor Conference, Inc. and the Kwame Nkrumah Academy.

The Continuation

At the end of May 2008, Dr. Wright retired as senior pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ. He became Pastor Emeritus and now spends his time preaching, teaching, leading study tours to Africa, Brazil and the Caribbean.

Dr. Wright is married to the Rev. Ramah Wright and has five children, Janet, Jeri, Nathan, Nikol and Jamila; and three grandchildren, Jeremiah, Jazmin and Steven.

For more information about The Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., D.Min., visit his Web site,

Thursday, June 23, 2011



A One-Stop Shop for Programs that Work in Criminal Justice, Juvenile Justice and Crime Victim Services
WASHINGTON - The Department of Justice's Office of Justice Programs (OJP) today launched This new website is a central, credible resource to inform practitioners and policymakers about what works in criminal justice, juvenile justice, and crime victim services. The site includes information on more than 150 justice-related programs and assigns "evidence ratings" – effective, promising, or no effects -- to indicate whether there is evidence from research that a program achieves its goals.

"We all have tight budgets today. helps us take a 'smart on crime' approach that relies on data-driven, evidence-based analysis to identify and replicate justice-related programs that have shown real results in preventing and reducing crime and serving crime victims," explained Laurie O. Robinson, Assistant Attorney General. is a searchable online database of evidence-based programs covering a range of justice-related topics, including corrections; courts; crime prevention; substance abuse; juveniles; law enforcement; technology and forensics; and victims. The site is a tool to understand, access and integrate scientific evidence about programs into programmatic and policy decisions.

The new website is part of the Evidence Integration Initiative (E2I) launched by Assistant Attorney General Robinson in 2009. The Initiative's three goals are improving the quantity and quality of evidence OJP generates; integrating evidence into program, practice and policy decisions within OJP and the field; and improving the translation of evidence into practice.
OJP, headed by Assistant Attorney General Laurie O. Robinson, provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has six components: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking. More information about OJP can be found at

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Bishop L.J. Guillory Reports:The Supreme Court Rules Against Longer Prison Sentences in Order to Rehabilitate




Supreme Court rules against longer prison sentences in order to rehabilitate

By David G. Savage, Washington Bureau
Reporting from Washington— Judges may not send criminals to longer terms in federal prison with the aim of rehabilitating them, the Supreme Court ruled.

The 9-0 ruling Thursday is a victory for a San Diego-area woman who questioned a judge's decision to give her more time behind bars so she could participate in a drug treatment program.

Supreme Court says age matters in police questioning

Inmate may be first to be set free under 'medical parole'

Supreme Court weighs in on car chases

More than 80,000 convicted criminals are sentenced by federal judges each year, and until Thursday, the courts were split over whether defendants could be given more time behind bars for their own good.

Citing the words of the federal sentencing act, the justices said the law forbids using imprisonment as a "means of promoting correction and rehabilitation."

The ruling will likely shorten the sentence of Alejandra Tapia. She was arrested at San Ysidro in 2008 and charged with trying to smuggle two illegal immigrants across the border from Mexico. When she did not appear for a court hearing, agents went to her apartment and found methamphetamine.

The minimum sentence for her crimes was three years, but U.S. District Judge Barry Moskowitz decided on the maximum term of 51 months, just over four years. "She needs help," the judge said. She needs to be in prison "long enough to get the 500-hour drug program" so she can "start to make a recovery," he said.

Meanwhile, in a case out of Alabama, the court warned again that it is determined to narrow the scope of the "exclusionary rule" and its requirement for throwing out evidence resulting from illegal searches.

"Society must swallow this bitter pill when necessary, but only as a last resort," wrote Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. The exclusion of evidence "is not a personal constitutional right," he said for a 7-2 majority, but only a means to "deter future" wrongdoing by the police.

In Davis vs. United States, the high court upheld gun charges against Willie Davis, an Alabama man who was a passenger in a car stopped on suspicion of drunken driving. He was handcuffed, and an officer searched the car, found a weapon and arrested him on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Two years later, the Supreme Court ruled that the police may not search cars when a motorist is stopped, unless there is an apparent danger. Davis said his gun was found through such an illegal search, and he said his conviction should be overturned.

The high court disagreed.

"It is one thing for the criminal 'to go free because the constable has blundered.' It is quite another to set the criminal free because the constable has scrupulously adhered to the law," Alito wrote.

Since the police in Alabama did nothing wrong under the law at that time, the evidence need not be excluded, he said.

Only Justices Stephen G. Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg dissented.

In a third criminal case, Carol Bond, a Philadelphia-area chemist, won the right to challenge her conviction under a federal anti-terrorism law. When she learned that a friend had an affair with her husband, she allegedly tried to poison the woman by putting caustic chemicals in her mailbox and on a car door handle.

Rather than charge her with a domestic crime, a federal prosecutor charged her under a chemical weapons provision, and she was given six years in prison.

To no one's surprise, the high court agreed that Bond had a right to challenge this prosecution as an unconstitutional use of federal power. But Justice Anthony M. Kennedy took the opportunity to write a broad opinion on the need to restrain federal power to protect individual liberty.

"By denying any one government complete jurisdiction over all concerns of public life, federalism protects the liberty of the individual from arbitrary power," he wrote. "When government acts in excess of its lawful power, that liberty is at stake."

Kennedy is seen as holding the crucial vote if the high court takes up a constitutional challenge to President Obama's national healthcare law and its mandate that all Americans have health insurance. Critics of the law were quick to cite Kennedy's words as bolstering their legal attack.

By Whitney Grunder CENTER, TX (KTRE) and Bishop L.J. Guillory, Ombudsman Press News

Prison or Education? That's a choice some first time and repeat offenders will have in three East Texas Counties.

Judges from Nacogdoches, Center, and Henderson, Texas toured the region to promote youth preservation colleges.

It was once a segregated high school. This historic building has since taken on many names. Now it's getting a second chance, just like the offenders it will house.

"We can educate and train our parolees, our first time offenders to do those jobs to save America from paying more taxes on the recidivism rate," said Bishop L.J. Guillory, Ombudsman General to Ombudsman International, Inc. a not for profit United States Government Oversight Agency.

"I see the offenders that come before me that are first time offenders and you know, they make a mistake, but I believe in giving someone a second chance," said Shelby County Judge Rick Campbell.

Offenders can earn an Associate degree, or get their GED. Students can even study a specific trade. After graduating, students will return to court, to have their records erased.

"Our students, 17 through 24. Well you can make a choice, a conscious decision to go to college for two years and get an education, become a productive citizen, rather than a burden on the state or you can go to prison," said CEO, and creator of the school's curriculum, Dr. Merilyn Session.

"Their tuition's, their housing, their food. Everything is going to be paid for by the tax dollars that are already paying for them to be on parole or be in prison," said Guillory.

"They've got the grants to get the school up and running but organizers say this building still needs help."

"We need this place cleaned up. We need it painted. We need the roofs re-done, we need some maintenance work on the building that the grants are not going to cover," said Session.

With the community behind them, organizers believe the colleges will transform lives.

"Just show them we care and that we love them and they can become productive citizens again," said J.P. of Precinct 2 for Nacogdoches County, Dorothy Tigner-Thompson.

It will help those who've done wrong, make right.

Organizers hope the first preservation college can get underway by September.

Again, they do need volunteers to get this building ready.

If you'd like to help, contact Bishop L.J. Guillory at (310) 980-0816

By Erin McKeon, Staff Writer, Nacogdoches Daily Sentinel (TX) and Bishop L. J. Guillory, Ombudsman Press News
What started as a life mission to help rehabilitate and reintegrate first-time criminal offenders into society has taken off and will soon lead to three accredited colleges and dormitories for men, women and juveniles.

The "Youth Preservation Colleges" will be in Nacogdoches, Center and Henderson and could be ready this year for first-time offenders to move into, but won't likely be opened as colleges yet, said Nacogdoches County Precinct 2 Justice of the Peace Dorothy Tigner-Thompson

The Nacogdoches facility will be for women, the Henderson facility for juveniles and the Center location for men, she said.

Once the residents complete the program or receive their associate's degree, they can go back to the courts and ask for their records to be expunged so they can re-enter society with no setbacks, she said.

"It's for those women who are getting charged with Misdemeanor C and Misdemeanor B (offenses) to try to deter them from going to prison," Tigner-Thompson said. The programs are also for people with addictions and for first-time felony offenders, depending on the nature of the crime, she said.

The county judges in Nacogdoches, Henderson and Center are all supportive of the proposed schools, she said.

"This is a cycle, and when you see 90 percent of those people are revolving, then the only way to break that cycle is for someone to get involved and say, 'No, we're going to help you with housing, and we're going to help you with a job,'" Nacogdoches County Judge Joe English said. "Some of those obstacles they're facing on their own, there are now people that are helping them with it."

The colleges and dormitories

The home, which will house up to 12 women at a time, will be a place where they can learn how to fill out applications, go to job interviews, receive spiritual guidance and counseling and learn other life skills, Tigner-Thompson said.

Once the colleges are instituted, the people at all three locations will be able to receive their high school diplomas or associate's degrees, said Bishop L.J. Guillory, the Ombudsman General to Ombudsman International, Inc., the non-profit organization which is heading the program.

"We decided that what we would do to help curb people from committing future offenses, is that for first-time offenders re-entering the communities, that we would give them an opportunity which many felons are not afforded," Guillory said. "That is No. 1, housing and then education. Many felons are denied federal and state housing, employment and grants for college."

Angelina County's Dr. Merilyn Session is working to get the schools accredited and will be a teacher there once it all comes together, Guillory said.

"We feel with a clean record and a degree in hand, these young people will have a fighting chance to make it," she said in a prepared statement. "Most paramount, we move them from wards of the court to taxpaying, productive citizens."
Each dormitory and college will have strict rules and a daily schedule, Judge Tigner-Thompson said.

"At the time they come out (of jail), we will be there to house, feed and counsel them" at no cost, she said.

In return, each resident must attend scheduled meetings, show improvement and do their fair share of cleaning, cooking and other work, she said.


The three locations have been supported through various outlets, organization treasurer Anita Farr said.

"The building (in Nacogdoches) was donated by me, the funding we have received thus far has come from the Deep East Texas Council of Governments and local businesses," she said.

In the future, the colleges will be supported through donations, grants and federal Second Chance Act monies, she said.

"In fiscal year 2010, $114 million was appropriated for prisoner re-entry programs in the Department of Justice, including $14 million for re-entry initiatives in the Federal Bureau of Prisons and $100 million for Second Chance Act grant programs," according to the National Re-entry Resource Center, which supports the successful return of prisoners to the community.

Tigner-ThoWhat started as a life mission to help rehabilitate and reintegrate first-time criminal offenders into society has taken off and will soon lead to three accredited colleges and dormitories for men, women and juveniles.

The "Youth Preservation Colleges" will be in Nacogdoches, Center and Henderson and could be ready this year for first-time offenders to move into, but won't likely be opened as colleges yet, said Nacogdoches County Precinct 2 Justice of the Peace Dorothy Tigner-Thompson

The Nacogdoches facility will be for women, the Henderson facility for juveniles and the Center location for men, she said.

Once the residents complete the program or receive their associate's degree, they can go back to the courts and ask for their records to be expunged so they can re-enter society with no setbacks, she said.

"It's for those women who are getting charged with Misdemeanor C and Misdemeanor B (offenses) to try to deter them from going to prison," Tigner-Thompson said. The programs are also for people with addictions and for first-time felony offenders, depending on the nature of the crime, she said.

The county judges in Nacogdoches, Henderson and Center, Texas are all supportive of the proposed schools, she said.

"This is a cycle, and when you see 90 percent of those people are revolving, then the only way to break that cycle is for someone to get involved and say, 'No, we're going to help you with housing, and we're going to help you with a job,'" Nacogdoches County Judge Joe English said. "Some of those obstacles they're facing on their own, there are now people that are helping them with it."