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(Editor’s Note: No. 5 in a 29-part series on “We The People,” a look back at the United States Constitution and how it came to be. It was written in 1987 by the late 6th State District Judge Henry Braswell during the nation’s bicentennial celebration. His wife, Rachel Braswell, gave permission to eParisExtra.com to reprint Braswell historical writings about the Constitution.)
By HENRY BRASWELL
(written in July 1987, during the nation’s bicentennial celebration)
Part 5: The Secret Super Bowl
It was the Super Bowl … the first and, so far, the last in American politics.
But, the game was blacked out, the stadium was empty and the gates were locked at the Constitutional Convention of 1787.
It would have been a sellout, because at least eight teams were playing: the Democrats vs. the Plutocrats; the Nationalists vs. the State’s Righters; the Big Staters vs. the Small Staters; and the Yankees vs. the Southerners, all at the same time.
In light of the contemporary view that meetings of public bodies should be open, it may come as a shock that the drafting of our Constitution was cloaked in secrecy. The delegates to the Constitution of 1787 met behind closed doors, and each delegate was pledged to secrecy.
Thomas Jefferson, upon being informed in Paris of the Convention’s closed-door policy, was aghast. Why did the convention pursue this course? Because the delegates believed that publicizing their debates while in progress would inhibit candid expression and the changing of positions, not to mention enabling the enemies of change to poison public opinions against anything the Convention might produce before the public had the whole picture.
This is the debit side of open meetings. Knowing this, we have, nevertheless, opted for open meetings as the surest protection against abuse of power by public officials and the best way to promote public awareness of and input into the decision-making process.
Of course, an essential difference between the Convention’s proceedings and the usuyal proceedings of legislative and administrative bodies is that nothing the Constituional Convention did could become law without being submitted to the electorade. Even so, a clandestine meeting of a constitutional in the United States would be unthinkable today.
The Convention opened May 25, 1787, in the same room as the Pennsylvania State House (now called Independence Hall), where the Declaration of Independence had been signed. On Sept. 17, 1787, nearly four months later, the finished Constitution was signed “by unanimous consent of the States present.” Only then did the public learn what the Convention had wrought.
The official minutes of the Convention were entrusted to George Washington. They reveal but the barest outline of the proceedings. Most of what we know about the Convention comes from James Madison’s copious notes made during the Convention. This priceless treasure remained hidden from public view for 50 years because Madison was the last survivor of the Convention and he allowed his journals to be published only posthumously.
Recent headlines confirm that when the public’s right to know is violated, it usually means that skullduggery is afoot. There are, it is said, exceptions to every rule. Secret debates at the Convention just may have paid off. Whether the great compromise that had to be made in order to create the Union could have been made in the glare of publicity we will never know. What we do know is that they were made.
Next: “Part 6: Washington, the Colossus”: George Washington was not anybody’s fool. But most of all, he had that indefinable quality that theatre people call “presence.”
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Mark your calenders for Saturday, October 15 for the 3rd Annual Regional Blues Challenge. The event is to be held at Buffalo Joes’ Pub and is sponsored by eParisTexas.com. The winning band will go to Memphis, Tennessee for the International Blues Challenge.
There are two ways to enter the Memphis or Bust 2011 Regional Blues Challenge. Bands can go to the blues society website www.parisbluessociety.com to fill out an application and mail it in. The information and application for the bands should be up on the website around July 5th.
The second way to enter is if the band has a Sonic Bids acount www.sonicbids.com. They can search for our event and enter there.
by Chris Prakash, MD
We all suffer from attention deficit at some time or other in our busy daily lives. We may forget to take out the trash, or forget where we put the keys. We may be unable (or unwilling) to listen to a lecture, read a book, or watch a show without changing the channel. We have short attention spans, and it seems that they are getting shorter.
Does this mean that we suffer from attention deficit disorder? Is it a real disease, or just an overused expression? I thought only kids have ADD! This topic brings out a host of unanswered questions, which I will try to sort through.
First of all, Adult ADD is a real disease. It is estimated that almost 8 million adults worldwide may have ADD. Up to 60% of children diagnosed with ADHD in early childhood continue to demonstrate notable ADD symptoms as adults. Symptoms in adults are often different from those in kids. Many people attribute their struggles to stress or fast paced lives, not realizing that they may be symptoms of undiagnosed ADD.
Symptoms of ADD can vary widely between individuals and throughout the lifetime of an individual. As the neurobiology of ADD is becoming increasingly understood, it is becoming evident that difficulties exhibited by individuals are due to problems with the brain known as executive functioning (accomplishing tasks, organizing, assessing the consequences of actions, prioritizing thoughts, keeping track of time, and adapting to changing situations, and judging what is “right” or “correct” as opposed to what is “wrong” or “incorrect”).
Some of the common symptoms (not an all-inclusive list) are:
These symptoms can lead others to label the individuals with ADD as “lazy” or “stupid” or “inconsiderate”.
Untreated ADD can have devastating effects including:
The Diagnosis of Adult ADD should only be made by a trained professional. There is no “test” that diagnoses ADD. It is primarily a clinical diagnosis, and it is important to rule out an underlying medical condition such as hypo or hyperthyroidism, and other psychiatric problems such as OCD or Perimenopausal syndrome. To have the diagnosis, the symptoms should persistently interfere with functioning in multiple spheres of an individual’s life: work, school, and interpersonal relationships.
Treatment for adult ADD may combine medication and behavioral, cognitive, or vocational therapy. The treating psychiatrist will take an individualized approach, depending upon which symptoms are present, and the underlying comorbid conditions. Stimulant medications are often the first line of treatment and are effective in approximately 80% of individuals. Behavioral coaching plays an important role in teaching adaptation skills which many patients have failed to acquire.
So Yes, every normal individual exhibits ADD-like symptoms occasionally (especially when tired or stressed), but No, we all do not suffer from the disease. Although most patients do not get rid of their ADD, they do learn to adapt. The important thing to realize is that with the proper management of their symptoms, they can lead normal, productive lives.
Dr Chris Prakash is a contributing columnist for eParisExtra!’s The Doctor Is In column and a medical oncologist at Texas Oncology Paris. He is board certified in Internal Medicine, Oncology and Hematology. He lives in Paris, TX with his wife and two children. He can be reached at 9037850031 or Sucharu.email@example.com
Seven members of the 2010-11 Lady Dragonsof Paris Junior College have made commitments to continue playing their sport at the next level.
Since the end of the spring semester, some have chosen to attend different schools other than those they initially were considering.
According to PJC athletic director and head women’s basketball coach Sean LeBeauf, here is the latest information on those former student-athletes:
Destiny Smith Henderson St. (Arkadelphia, AR) DIV II
Catavia Jones North Dakota St. (Fargo) DIV I
Britney Gaines North Dakota St. (Fargo) DIV I
La’Paris Newsom Northwestern OK St. (Alva) NAIA
Parris Price Mid-American (OKC) NAIA
Malik Stevenson Louisiana-Lafayette DIV I
Ashley Watson Jarvis Christian (Hawkins, TX) NAIA
Paris Junior College has signed two local players to the 2011-2012 Dragons’ baseball roster. They are Ty Huie from Cooper High School and Laytner Kennedy from North Lamar High School.
Tyler Huie from Cooper High School is shown signing to play with Paris Junior College’s baseball team in the 2011-2012 season. Seated are (l-r): Terra, Ty and Richie Huie; standing are (l-r) Cooper High School Head Baseball Coach Drew Conley, PJC Baseball Coach Deron Clark and Summer Travel Baseball Coach Heath Kennedy
Laytner Kennedy from North Lamar High School is shown signing to play with Paris Junior College’s baseball team in the 2011-2012 season. Shown seated (l-r) are Missy, Laytner and Layker Kennedy. Standing (l-r) are PJC Baseball Coach Deron Clark and Heath Kennedy.