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Posted in In the News on January 22, 2018   |  by Gary Burger

Some Good Among the Bad

Trump’s recent comments about not allowing immigrants from certain countries into the country have been disheartening, to say the least. Senator Dick Durbin confirmed Trump made ‘vile’ comments several times during an immigration meeting that the Senator attended. Many in St. Louis, and around the country, agreed when Senator Durbin called Trump’s comments “sickening and heartbreaking words”. If you missed it, you can find the full story here.

But while we’re all still reeling from the news, it’s important to remember that not everyone has those same thoughts. One St. Louis judge is doing what he can to make a difference on the opposite end of the spectrum.

The story is about Federal District Judge Richard E. Webber. In an article that was published about him, and that you can read in full here, Judge Webber talks about how he visits every single person he puts in prison. Simply to let them know, in his words, that he cares about them.

Here’s a small excerpt from the piece:

“At one point, the judge, who is white, knelt before one of the men in the all-black audience to say how sorry he was for sending so many young black men to prison — and to drive home his main point. “I’m here to tell you that I care about you.”

Sadly, Judge Webber recalls how many of those inmates tell him he is the first person to ever say that to them. It means so much to them that, after Judge Webber encourages them to spend their time in jail going to classes and getting their GEDs, they often do. And when they get their certificate, many sent a copy to Judge Webber, showing him the difference they made in their lives.

In a world that seems so discouraging today, and with more unjust news making the headlines on a daily basis, it’s important to remember that there’s a judge right here in St. Louis making a difference—and that we all can too, in our own way.

Judge Webber really says it best when he says that the only way change is ever going to happen is if “everybody rolls up their sleeves and puts aside a lot of their preconceived ideas and looks for new ways to really solve some of these problems that aren’t being solved.”