Monday, October 23, 2006


Bethel Blitz

With a staggering fourth quarter comeback, Bethel College won their homecoming game on Saturday, defeating Shorter College 35-21. And I'm sure it was an exciting game! And while I'm positive that Bethel did unleash a devastating blitz attack, I was really talking about my trip to the college today and tomorrow morning.

Today, I'm in the process of a five-class day (with a meeting with a local minister and a school administrator squeezed in) and tomorrow morning I will be preaching at the all school chapel service. What does this mean? By the end of a day and a half of work, I will have spoken to roughly 500 students on a campus of 1000 or so students. And I get to talk about the death penalty from an array of perspectives, religious, sociological, legal, all depending on the audience.

So how does this happen? How do we git 'er done on a college campus like this?

Well it all starts with a good student organizer, in this case, Allen McQueen (co-chair of the TCASK Student Caucus). Allen's a senior a Bethel and has built up a lot of relationships with professors here. Which means that when he asks them if I can speak, they say yes. Then he's also gotten to know the chaplain, who asked me, last year, if I would come back in the fall and preach. All that leaves us with dozens, maybe 100 Bethel students to contact, all after a one day swing. Last year, Bethel brought us six participants in Justice Day on the Hill, and hopefully this year, they can bring even more. Bethel is the core of our Carroll County organizing push, and all because one dedicated student organizer asked a few professors to take a day off and let me speak to their classes! If we can do it here, we can do it at your college too.

Also, a quick shout out to Kate Adcock, a student at Rhodes College. Kate, who interned in the TCASK office this summer, got me an invitation to speak to the Rhodes Catholic Student Association on Sunday night, and I had a great time. So thank you, to Allen and Kate. And start thinking about bringing a TCASK blitz to your campus as well!
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7th Annual March to Stop Executions
"Innocent People Have Been Executed"

Saturday, October 28th, 2006
Austin, Texas

More info at

10 AM - 3 PM Brunch by Inside Books Project (300 Allen Street) $5 All you can eat, kids free (more info on brunch below)

1:00 - 1:30 PM Prayer Service at University Catholic Center (2010 University Ave at 21st Street)

3 PM Meet at Texas Governor's Mansion (between 10th & 11th Streets on Lavaca)

3:30 March down Congress Ave to Austin City Hall Plaza for a Rally Against the Death Penalty

We encourage everyone to make signs and banners and bring them to the march.

We have a record number of more than 50 organizations sponsoring this year's march.

We are using this year's march to bring attention to the facts reported in the last two years that Texas has executed three innocent people. Family members of the three innocent people - Ruben Cantu, Carlos De Luna and Cameron Todd Willingham - will lead the march. They will deliver a letter to Governor Perry at the Governor's Mansion. The letter will contain suggestions for how to prevent other innocent people from being executed. Come stand with these courageous family members as they tell Perry outside the gates of the Governor's Mansion:

Speakers and special guests include: Rose Rhoton, sister of Carlos De Luna, an innocent person executed by Texas. "If God ever gave me a second chance," Rhoton has said, "I would fight harder for Carlos." Family members of Ruben Cantu and Cameron Todd Willingham, innocent people executed by Texas. Darby Tillis, who was exonerated from death row in Illinois. Sandra Reed, mother of an innocent man still on death row in Texas. Sandrine Ageorges from France. Jeanette Popp, mother of a murder victim. Howard Guidry (by a recorded message from Harris County Jail)

Each October since 2000, people from all walks of life and all parts of Texas, the U.S. and other countries have taken a day out of their year and gathered in Austin to raise our voices together and loudly express our opposition to the death penalty.

Get on the Bus From Houston: Bus tickets are $20.00. The bus leaves the SHAPE Harambee Building Sat morning at 10 AM and will pick up at Macy's at Memorial City Mall on the way out of town at 10:30 AM. The bus will return to Houston by 9 PM. Call or email TDPAM in Houston to reserve a seat or buy a ticket for a student, a senior or a person on fixed income who wants to go: or call 713-503-2633.

Join us in Austin on Oct. 28th to demand a Stop to All Executions!

The march is organized by people from many different groups working together as the March to Stop Executions Coalition. If your organization wants to be listed as a sponsor of the march, please let us know. The 7th Annual March to Stop Executions Coalition includes:

Campaign to End the Death Penalty, Texas Moratorium Network, Texas Death Penalty Abolition Movement, Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, Committee to Free Frances Newton, Inside Books Project, Texas Students Against the Death Penalty, Texas Death Penalty Education and Resource Center, National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, Journey of Hope, International Socialist Organization, Capital of Texas Democrats For Life (CTDFL), Democrats For Life of Texas (DFLT), Death Penalty Reform Caucus of the Texas Democratic Party, Victims of Texas, Amnesty International, Texans for Peace, Austin Mennonite Church, CodePink Austin, El Pasoans Against the Death Penalty, Students Against the Death Penalty (the national group), Libertarian Longhorns, Catholic Longhorns for Life, the Social Justice Committee of the University Catholic Center, Howard Guidry Justice Committee, The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Friends Meeting of Austin, The Texas Civil Rights Project, National Black Law Students Association, American Civil Liberties Union - Central Texas Chapter, American Civil Liberties Union of Texas, Gray Panthers, peaceCenter, San Antonio, Dominican Sisters of Houston, Friends of Justice, TX CURE, S.H.A.P.E. Center (Houston), National Black Police Association, Catholics Against Capital Punishment, Austin Center for Peace and Justice, Equal Justice USA, Houston Peace Forum, PFLAG Houston (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays), Community Involvement Committee of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston, University of Texas at Austin Chapter of Amnesty International, Civilians Down, Social Action Committee of Congregation Beth Israel, Houston Peace and Justice Center, The Austin Chronicle, Resistencia Bookstore

To become a sponsor or get involved, email: Or call: 512-302-6715.
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