The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench

“It is easier to build strong children than repair broken men”


You’d be hard-pressed to find a more heartening and hope-filled story for a Monday: the tale of a lawyer who traded in the courtroom for the school room: 

“Pick your head up, buddy,” Tom Dunn said to Darius Nash, who had fallen asleep during the morning’s reading drills. “Sabrieon, sit down, buddy,” he called to a wandering boy. “Focus.”


Mr. Dunn’s classroom is less than three miles from his old law office, where he struggled to keep death row prisoners from the executioner’s needle. This summer, after serving hundreds of death row clients for 20 grinding, stressful years, he traded the courthouse for Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School.


The turmoil of middle school turns many teachers away, said the school’s principal, Danielle S. Battle. Students’ bodies and minds are changing, and disparities in learning abilities are playing out.

“A lot of people will say, ‘I’ll do anything but middle school,’ ” she said.


But this is precisely where Mr. Dunn chose to be, having seen too many people at the end of lives gone wrong, and wanting to keep these students from ending up like his former clients. He quotes Frederick Douglass: “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.”


Check out the rest.  This fella is one of the good guys.  Bless him.  

Photo: by David Walter Banks / New York Times

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posted October 21, 2009 at 12:29 am

Fellow Chrisitans: As a society we are failing our children and creating gangs and drug dealers. We fail to recognize our mistakes. We need to concentrate on single parents and giving them the help they need. We need to increase the minimum wage, this will give single parents additional few dollars for their childrenand the children are not left at home by them self. Parent will have more time to spend with them helping them with their home work. We also need to have small business, ma and pa operations dedicate themself to their comunity by hiring a high school students to work part time. This will keep the kids out of trouble bystaying busy and out of trouble. These kids will have a few dollars to buy school cloths or suply and help their mom or dad. We cannot depend on our government to do anything we must take the first step Presently we have 87 % of the people that are in county jails or state prisons because of drug related crimes. Time has come to ligelize marijuana and all drugs and open treatment centers where these individuals can get their drugs by prescription given by a doctor. If we treat our drug problem as an illness we can cure it. We cannot continue building new prisons for it takes about $83,000.00 per year to keep a person in county jail or inprison. We need to treat our drug problem as an illness and we need to educate these young men and women. The drug related crimes will be to a minimul, crim3e will drop and we will eliminate the armed roberries and murders that are drug related. Education is a way of making a change, and if you are a christian you will agree to help your a neighbor or a friend or family member this is the way. We can have them in trade schools or community colleges and universety if we begin to organize and become united in changing our country and the world we live in. Your Christian Brother Branko Belichesky

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