Organizations of attorneys throughout the state of Texas have planned special events to honor Constitution Day – the nationally recognized holiday marking the signing of the U.S. Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787.
As part of the celebration, more than 100 attorneys from the Houston Bar Association will read to 209 classes in elementary schools across the city on Thursday. The attorneys and judges will read and discuss with the children, “So You Want to Be President?” by Judith St. George and David Small. The book discusses what it takes to be president and examines some facts about this country’s leaders throughout history.
Also in Houston, members of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association will read the Bill of Rights and other Constitutional Amendments at 11:30 a.m. Thursday on the steps of the Harris County Criminal Justice Center, 1201 Franklin St. The event draws its inspiration from the association’s annual public reading of the Declaration of Independence. The association reports that, with more than 750 members, it is the country’s oldest and largest local organization of criminal defense lawyers. Members of the public who attend the event will receive pocket-sized copies of the U.S. Constitution.
In Jefferson County, members of the Jefferson County Bar Association will volunteer at area schools providing presentations on the Constitution. The bar association reports that five area judges and 20 local lawyers will make the presentations at 13 school districts. This year, the fifth the bar has held such presentations, will be its largest with the highest number of participating schools, officials reported.
In Austin, the Texas Chapters of the American Board of Trial Advocates will host a group of select high school students on a tour of the Capitol’s House and Senate chambers as part of the fourth annual James Otis Lecture. The lecture will feature a talk by historian and professor H.W. Brands and discuss his new book “Reagan: The life.” Brands, a history professor at the University of Texas at Austin, has authored 25 books, two of which were selected as finalists for the Pulitzer Prize.
Constitution Day falls within Celebrate Freedom Week – Sept. 13 through 19. During this week, Texas public schools are encouraged to focus student attention on the importance of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, including the Bill of Rights.
Know of any area observances of Constitution Day hosted by your local bar? Report them to Amy.Starnes@texasbar.com.