Wednesday, November 15, 2023

U.S. Army sets aside convictions of 110 Black Soldiers convicted in 1917 Houston Riots

Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth has approved the recommendation of the Army Board for Correction of Military Records to set aside the courts-martial convictions of the 110 Black Soldiers of the 3rd Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment (also known as the Buffalo Soldiers), who were convicted following the World War I-era Houston Riots. The records of these Soldiers will be corrected, to the extent possible, to characterize their military service as honorable.

"After a thorough review, the Board has found that these Soldiers were wrongly treated because of their race and were not given fair trials," said Wormuth. "By setting aside their convictions and granting honorable discharges, the Army is acknowledging past mistakes and setting the record straight."

The Houston Riots took place on Aug. 23, 1917 following months of racial provocations against members of the 24th — including the violent arrest and assault of two Black Soldiers. Following the assaults, and amid rumors of additional threats to Soldiers, a group of more than 100 Black Soldiers seized weapons and marched into the city where clashes erupted. The violence left 19 people dead.

In the months that followed, the Army convicted 110 Soldiers in a process that was, according to historians, characterized by numerous irregularities. Ultimately, nineteen men were executed in the largest mass execution of American Soldiers by the U.S. Army. The first set of executions occurred in secrecy and within a day of sentencing, leading the Army to implement an immediate regulatory change which prohibited future executions without review by the War Department and the President.

In October 2020 and December 2021, the South Texas College of Law petitioned the Army requesting a review of the courts-martial. Shortly after, the Army received petitions from retired general officers requesting clemency for all 110 Soldiers.

“As a Texas native, I was grateful to participate in this process early in my tenure at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio, and I am proud that the Army has now formally restored honor to Soldiers of the 3-24 and their families,” Under Secretary of the Army Gabe Camarillo said. “We cannot change the past; however, this decision provides the Army and the American people an opportunity to learn from this difficult moment in our history.”

The Secretary of the Army asked the Army Board for Correction of Military Records to review records pertaining to these court-martial cases and to provide recommendations about the appropriateness of each individual conviction. After careful review, board members adjudicated each case and found that significant deficiencies permeated the cases. These deficiencies led the Army Board for Correction of Military Records to acknowledge that the proceedings were fundamentally unfair. The board members unanimously recommended all convictions be set aside and that, to the extent possible, the Soldiers’ military service be characterized as "honorable."

“With the support of our experts, our dedicated Board members looked at each record carefully and came up with our best advice to Army leaders to correct a miscarriage of justice,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Review Boards Michael Mahoney, who oversaw the review. “We’re proud of the hard work we did to make things right in this case.”

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has been deeply involved as this case has unfolded and is prepared to assist any family members upon receipt of the corrected records.

Relatives of the Soldiers may be entitled to benefits. Instructions for applying to the Army Board for Correction of Military Records can be found at Family members may apply online at or submit a DD Form 149, Application for Correction of Military Record by mail to: Army Review Boards Agency (ARBA), 251 18th Street South, Suite 385, Arlington, VA 22202-3531. Applications should include documentation to prove a relationship to one of the 110 formerly convicted Soldiers.

Family members or other interested parties may request a copy of the corrected records from the National Archives and Records Administration, in accordance with NARA Archival Records Request procedures found at:

For more information about these corrections, please contact the Army Review Board Agency at:

Monday, November 13, 2023

Black Representatives Establish Congressional Predominantly Black Institutions Caucus

Representative Jonathan Jackson (D-IL), Representative Danny K. Davis (D-IL), Representative Yvette D. Clarke (D-NY), and Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL) announced the establishment of a new Congressional Caucus focused on educating policymakers and uplifting the needs of Predominantly Black Institutions. The Congressional Predominantly Black Institutions (PBI) Caucus will unite policymakers who share the goal of understanding and advancing policies to support PBIs.

PBIs were established in 2007 via P.L. 110-84, the College Cost Reduction and Access Act, to expand access to important federal grants to assist institutions with limited institutional wealth to include colleges and universities serving large percentages of low-income African American students. Prior to 2007, these support grants assisted only a subset of institutions that educate low-income students who are underrepresented in higher education, including: Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions; Hispanic Serving Institutions; Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs); and Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities. The 2007 law created grants for PBIs, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions, and Native American-Serving, Non-tribal Institutions to better support low-income and minority students. Rep. Davis, Senator Barack Obama (D-IL), and Rep. Major Owens (D-NY) championed the legislation to establish PBIs because these under-funded institutions that serve hundreds of thousands of students could not receive institutional aid as similar colleges. Although there were grants to support the important work of HBCUs, PBIs cannot be HBCUs because HBCUs must have experienced affirmative discrimination by the federal government prior to the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Thus, Congress changed the Higher Education Act to better assist under-funded colleges in graduating low-income minority students.

PBIs represent an increasing cadre of four-year and two-year institutions that serve as the access point for a growing number of urban and rural Black students whose personal and financial situations limit their ability to pursue higher education in many states. There are approximately 110 such institutions that serve over 480,000 students. These institutions have minimal institutional wealth and serve a population of students who are low-income, minority, and first-generation, and whose personal finances present special challenges to educational success. PBIs are required to meet stringent eligibility requirements related to student enrollment, family income, institutional wealth, and percentage of minority students. The PBI Caucus will work to help policymakers understand the needs of PBIs so that policies better assist these important institutions.

“Black Americans deserve institutions of higher learning that are focused on helping them grow and thrive,” said Rep. Jackson. “That’s why I’m so excited to join my esteemed colleagues to form the first congressional caucus whose sole goal is to advance policies to support Predominantly Black Institutions. Chicagoland is home to a number of these scholarly institutions, and I look forward to working to aid and uplift them and other PBIs across the country.”

“Predominantly Black Institutions play an essential role in educating Black students in Chicago and across the country,” said Rep. Davis. “I am proud that my work to create PBIs helped bring over $45 million to the PBIs in Chicago, including: Chicago State University; Kennedy-King College; Malcolm X College; Olive-Harvey College; Prairie State College; and South Suburban College. I am pleased to join with Reps. Clarke, Jackson, and Kelly to establish the PBI Caucus to help legislators understand the importance of these colleges and universities and to advance policies to help these institutions and their students thrive.”

"For decades, Predominantly Black Institutions have served to empower students of color with an equitable and quality education,” said Rep. Clarke. “I’ve long fought to ensure PBIs have the funding they need to support our nation’s future leaders and take great pride in my work to secure more than $31 million in funding for New York PBIs, including the City University of New York, Medgar Evers College, Borough of Manhattan Community College, Metropolitan College of New York, and others. As members of Congress, we have a moral responsibility to support these colleges for the students who rely on them, and I am honored to stand alongside my colleagues in the creation of this critical PBI Caucus."

“I’m proud to support Predominantly Black Institutions across the nation and at home in the Chicagoland area. PBIs foster Black student success, offer direct support to first-generation and low-income students, and address some of the most pressing challenges facing Black students,” said Rep. Kelly. “I am happy to join with Reps. Davis, Clarke, and Jackson to establish the PBI Caucus to advance policies that support these institutions and ensure that their students can achieve their dreams.”

Tim Scott ends presidential campaign

The only sitting U.S. Senator to throw his hat into the presidential race has suspended his campaign for the White House.

U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, the two-term junior senator from South Carolina, announced late Sunday that he would no longer actively seek the Republican party nomination.

“Tonight, I suspended my campaign for president. Traveling this country and meeting all of you has been one of the most fantastic experiences of my entire life. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. God Bless the United States of America,” he said via the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

Scott told Fox News he remains committed to a brighter vision of America.

“I am indeed suspending the campaign, but I am going to remain as committed to making sure that this country chooses the right person,” Scott said. “We should all be proud of this country.”


Sunday, November 12, 2023

Marilyn Mosby found guilty in federal perjury trial

Former Baltimore County state attorney Marilyn Mosby was found guilty of perjury, leaving her to face a possible ten-year jail sentence.

Wednesday, November 08, 2023

Yusef Salaam wins New York City Council seat

Yusef Salaam, the author and activist, who was one wrongly imprisoned as a teenager as part of the infamous 1989 "Central Park Five" case, has won a seat on the New York City Council.