In the media room

Tuesday, Week six. Everyone is busy typing away, preparing for a hoped for verdict. People talk about whether or not it will come today. There is a sense of anticipation. The media room is hot, the air conditioning isn’t working properly. There are jokes about it being fixed soon after the verdict is delivered. People talk about wearing their verdict suits today, and the room is packed today.

As we sit and wait for a verdict, the monitor is showing Judge Walton’s courtroom. He is currently hearing the case of some young black man who has violated parole, or something like that. I haven’t been paying close. Then, over the speaker comes Judge Walton speaking forcefully, “I find it deplorable for a young black man want to put himself in chains. If that is all you think you are worth, then we will do that to you.” The defendant asks to be sent to a facility that provides mental health and asks to have other health issues addressed.

Judge Walton orders the young black man back to jail, and makes sure that the health and mental health issues are addressed. I add my little prayer that Judge Walton’s little sermon will provide motivation to the young man to take advantage of mental health services at the penitentiary and get his head together.

To the next parole violator, he delivers a similar verbal lashing:

“I get sick and tired of locking up young black men. If you don’t want to get your act together, what are we supposed to do? You are a grown man, it is time that you start acting like a man.”

Yes, there will be drama when the verdict comes out, but the drama of Judge Walton’s little sermons will stand out.

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