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Monday, February 25, 2008

Changing Political Forecast- Part 1

Eddie Griffin Endorses Republican Louis Sturns for District Judge, 213th Judicial District

Monday, February 25, 2008

State District Judge Louis Sturns, 58, was appointed by Gov. Rick Perry in September to complete Bob Gill's four-year term on the 213th District Court bench, which ends in December.

In the 1980s, Sturns was the first African-American to serve as a criminal court judge in Tarrant County. In the 1990s, he was the first black person to serve on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, the state's highest criminal court.

Attorneys responding to the Tarrant County Bar Association's judicial candidate qualifications poll rated Sturns the best of the three candidates, with 95 percent of respondents saying he is qualified to highly qualified. Ray got 82 percent and Callaghan 51 percent.

Attorneys responding to the Tarrant County Bar Association's judicial candidate qualifications poll rated Sturns the best of the three candidates, with 95 percent of respondents saying he is qualified to highly qualified. Ray got 82 percent and Callaghan 51 percent.

"I don't see this job as being like a factory that is producing widgets," Sturns said. "I'm interested in the quality of the disposition of each case and every case that comes before me. I want to make sure that every case gets the attention it deserves."

From Louis Sturns to Eddie Griffin (Wed, 7 Jun 2006 12:27:11 EDT)

Eddie .
Thanks for a very thought provocative discussion of the problem. The devil is in the details of crafting a solution. We are all tired of losing so many of our young people to the criminal justice system. As one who has seen the system up close and for a long time. I certainly recognize the talent drain that our communities more and more are sent off to jails and prisons. I really believe that the responsibility rests at the parental level. But, so many parents are ill equipped to raise children.
Louis Sturns.

Reference to conversation

A Brick In the Wall
By Eddie Griffin

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

We dont need no education.
We dont need no thought control…
All and all, You just another brick in the wall.

We are looking at the direct line of our African-American youth flowing into prison, at a rate of 1 out of every 3___ a disproportionate number for in lieu of racism (6/6/06). The trend is so apparent that they have given this phenomenon a new and special name, not yet found in Webster: DISPROPORTIONALITY.

Where does it begin and where does it end? It begins with hypocrisy to our mutual obligation: It takes a village to raise a child. [Am I my brothers keep?] But, in fact, when the child proves difficult to teach, difficult to manage, and go out and make many foolish mistakes and criminal offenses, all of a sudden it is no longer village at fault. Its the individual parent at fault, like the 14-year old single mother, or the unemployed deadbeat dad, or the incarcerated absentee dad. Always, they loose sight of the child only to point a guilt finger at the parent.

Where does the burden fall when a child goes astray? And, how did they get away? How can it be stopped? Do we do more of the same hypocrisy and expect a different result? This is the classic definition of Insanity, Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Our public system is insane in its delivery system of education. In most classrooms in America today, the kids are in control. Education-per-hour of delivery is wasted with classroom management, i.e. handling behavior issues.

Who is the true victim here? The one only doing his or her job to teach and only earn a paycheck, or is it the child who is on his way to prison, and dont even know it yet? So, they make it the child’s fault for not learning and for being academically behind. Too much time, and too many resources are being diverted away from learning to discipline, and even those who would learn are losing out. The kids are in control, they say, too many children’s rights, and constitutional and legal issues, and arbitrary disciplinary decisions on both students and teachers. But administrative judgment favors the right of the student, as it should.

The failure is in an ineffective delivery system and the personal inabilities of educators to establish authority in the classroom over the children. After all, who is the educator? Who is in control? Who has command, the drill sergeant or the field commander? For some, its all about three hots, a cot, and a tv, after an 8-hour shift of stress managing a class of criminalized kids. It’s demoralizing and demeaning to the profession of teaching. Here is evidence of a lack of leadership at the top.

When Christene Moss was reelected to the FWISD School Board, she promised to present to the public a 10-year plan. It sounded as if the School Board was going to do something different, something new, not the same thing the same way expecting a different result as usual. So, we shall see how the FWISD operate in a climate of withdrawing support and unpopularity to the Robin Hood, share-the-wealth, plan, and a mean-spirited property tax reduction.

How will the FWISD survive when parents and students are looking for a way out of the punitive education model, which channel one-of-every-three black youth into the Criminal Justice and Prison System? Who would blame the kids and the parents for wanting an alternative delivery system, with a qualitatively different structure, for the sake of efficiency and in adaptation to new learning styles for a new generation?

A Think Tank is forming around an alternative educational system based upon the International Human Rights Schools now spreading around the globe. The FWISD has shown a remarkable inability to employ the learning techniques for a multimedia born and reared generation.

The classroom model of today dates back to the days of Henry Ford and mass production was the technology of the day. Since then, we have mass produced a nation of misfits, imbeciles, and idiots, like clones coming out of the school system machine, marching almost straight into prison, by age 18 or 21. In Quality Control, these would be declared defective as a result of a malfunction of the machine. The part is thrown away and the machine still not collaborated.

If you say poverty is not a factor, if you say social and environmental influences can been overcome by proper motivational factors, then how does the student overcome a fault of the school system itself, with it myriad of inefficiencies and top-heavy bureaucracies? The cog is forced to fix the machine.

Even as Mrs. Moss and the FWISD board prepare to present its 10-year plan, we will be laying the technical infrastructure of a new educational delivery system in place through the advance use of technology. We will also be drafting and certifying our curriculum, in collaboration with academia.

The student will be linked to the global world of education by internet, telecommunications, multimedia, and other future content delivery medium. We should prepare a multilingual generation, knowledgeable of other cultures, globally positioned to work and do business in anywhere there is an opportunity or job in the world. We should prepare a generation who are masters in technological and engineering subjects, and masters at the 3 Rs. The classroom should more outfield than infield, on individualized laptops for students educated in their specialized field, with an up-building component for advance learners.

Today, classrooms are described as boring, uninteresting, and uninspiring. Most inner-city students feel that their teachers are there only to make a paycheck. How do you change the state and quality of the classroom when there are teachers who are just another a brick in the wall? Who needs education, via FWISD?

[Editorial Footnote: Since writing this essay in June, 2006, much has changed in our collaborative workings with the FWISD. We gave the school district $590 million bond package to correct the technological and educational disparities]

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