Friday, February 29, 2008

New Obama Video Released Today

Featuring several Latino and Latina celebs; much to the disdain of Adelfa Callejo, I'm sure.

Corbett Trial: Day 2

This is ongoing information-sharing about the murder trial of Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Corbett. On the first day of testimony, the brother of Javier Dominguez-Rivera recounted the events of January 12, 2007. Day two gave defense attorneys the opportunity for cross examination.
One of the key contradictions Chapman raised was a statement that the brother gave to Cochise County investigators last year, in which he told investigators he saw Corbett strike his brother Francisco Javier Domínguez Rivera in the head with the butt of his gun.

But there were no bruises on Francisco Javier Domínguez Rivera's head, neck or shoulders, and the brother said he wasn't sure if he was struck specifically with the gun.

"I don't know if he hit him with the butt, this part of the gun, or the hand," the brother said through an interpreter.

Chapman also sought to show that the Mexican Consulate had attempted to influence testimony.

The defense is also trying to claim that the family is lying about their testimony in order to gain citizenship to the U.S.
Finally, Chapman raised a class-action lawsuit Jorge is part of that is pursuing visa and citizenship rights. But prosecutor Grant Woods, a former state attorney general who has been hired by the Cochise County attorney to handle the case, told the jury the class action lawsuit was filed by Catholic Charities and was specifically for illegal entrants who assisted law enforcement with criminal investigations.

Motives are being questioned by the defense while hard facts look to be on the side of the prosecution. The brothers' testimonies align with the video of the shooting that was aired in the courtroom as well as the medical examiner's report. Contradictions are already being exposed in Corbett's accounting of the shooting, with the location of the incident being one of them.
Ritchie also said that she was led to believe — again based on reports of Corbett's initial story to other agents — that the shooting happened behind his vehicle at a distance of about 5 feet.

Forensics evidence has shown the shooting happened at the back right corner of the vehicle at a distance between 3 inches and a foot.
Here are some notes from Derechos Humanos on the day's deliberations:
Interestingly, according to Rene after the shooting but before the arrival of the other agent, Corbett went to his car and began smoking, walking back to where they were with a cigarette in hand. Rene denied anyone, including Francisco Javier, threatening the agent in any form. He further denied talking about what their story would be, stating that the only thing they talked about was what they would tell their parents. He also denied that Francisco Javier ever had a rock in his hand. He stated emphatically that they were all surrendering to Corbett when it happened.

The defense attorney then began his cross-examination. He did not shake Rene, though he tried to highlight that they kept walking as Corbett was driving, that they did not just stop and surrender. He made Rene state several times that it was Francisco Javier who had made arrangements with the coyote, and that since he was the only one who had been to the US, they did not know much about how they would be picked up. (During the testimony of Det. Ritchie it was established that the airline tickets for all four of them were found in the backpacks.) The attorney made it a point to make him admit that they crossed illegally, and that they wanted to go back to México and come to cross illegally again. Cross-examination to continue tomorrow.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

This Blog Rated E for Excelente

I'd like to send a hearty ¡Ahooooahh! (the Mexican version, not the military one) over to my blog amigos at Drinking Liberally in New Milford and The Sirens Chronicles for tagging this humble blog as a recipient for the 'E for Excellent' Award.

This is not something I do full-time. It's just a hobby, albeit an important one to me. The energy levels ebb and flow with each day, but I've always considered it worth it to create a space that can channel my thoughts. Little by little the traffic has risen around here, and it's in part due to building relationships with other bloggers who share solidarity with the things that fill these posts each day.

I'm happy to have had the opportunity to network and dialog with people all across this country as a result of being infected by the blogging virus, and looking forward to doing more of that very soon. We have to restore balance to the narrative of how we treat one another, and it won't happen through silence - so here are some people that I am happy to pass on the ¡Premio Excelente! over to:
  • Craig at Random Musings - for keeping us up to speed on the antics of the dwellers in the Valle del Sol. He is a blogger who is both activist and journalist with a healthy sense of humor, my favorite type.
  • Jan at happening-here? - her blog embodies human rights, and she just had a blogiversary, so go say hi!
  • Tedski at Rum, Romanism and Rebellion - R Cubed is my favorite Grand Canyon State blog. Reading any post there will show you why. Plus, he has ¡Free Baja Arizona! stickers
  • Jen at You Would Think - a blogging friend who's on the short list of Must Meet Someday. She makes me laugh, think and grow every time she creates a new post.
  • field at the field negro - tells it like it is, we need more of that. plus, the sidebar pictures and commentary usually have me howling in laughter at my desk.
  • NL at Smartypants - she's turned her blog into a forum for asking the deep, and often difficult, questions of why we treat one another a certain way and how to move forward on a more humane path.
  • XicanoPwr at ¡Para Justicia y Libertad! - I can never say enough great things about him and the work he's done over the years to re-frame the immigration debate online in a perspective that speaks to those of us who find ourselves targeted by the rhetoric of hate.
  • boran2 at Survivor Left Blogistan - not only is he a painter, he has been covering the ongoing assault on our national parks and environment for the couple of years I've been reading him. He's also a loyal commenter all over the neighborhood and a great person to meet in person (can't wait to return to the red rocks!)
  • olivia at parvum opus - her breathtaking photos are a reminder that there is still beauty in this world, all it takes is a little patience to stop and find it. A macro lens helps, too. jejeje
  • nezua at The Unapologetic Mexican - hilarious, witty and versed on the art of slaying ignorance. His writing pushes me to do refine my voice in this medium and that of the outside world.
There are many others that are deserving of wider recognition. I hope you'll take the time to step away from the bigger sites and find out what intrepid work is being done out here in the boonies. A good start are the blogrolls to your right ------->

y namaste

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Murder Trial Begins for Border Patrol Agent

This incident has been covered extensively at this blog. Now, the trial is underway with opening remarks showing the stark difference of interpretation of what happened on January 12, 2007. It's the word of the family of Javier Dominguez-Rivera against the Department of Homeland Security.
Sean Chapman told jurors that his client [Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Corbett] was justified when he fired the fatal shot because Dominguez was threatening to "crush his head with a rock," and that Corbett had made a split-second decision to act in self-defense, as he had been trained to do.

Earlier, special prosecutor Grant Woods said in his opening remarks that 22-year-old Francisco Dominguez "was surrendering, going down on his knees, was hit from behind, yanked and shot through the heart."

Woods said that forensic and medical evidence, from ballistics information to the autopsy results, along with the witnesses' testimony and a Border Patrol video would prove that the killing was not justifiable.

The only reason this is being tried is because there is a videotape of the shooting. Otherwise, we would be seeing a repeat of the injustice surrounding the killing of Guillermo Martinez Rodriguez two years ago in southern California.
SAN DIEGO -- The U.S. Department of Justice has cleared a Border Patrol agent of any wrongdoing in the fatal shooting of a suspected smuggler whose death two years ago focused attention on increasing violence at the California-Mexico border.

The 18-year-old who died, Guillermo Martinez Rodriguez, was allegedly throwing rocks at the agent, who shot him in the upper back on a dangerous stretch of the San Diego-Tijuana border in December 2005.

Prosecutors in the Justice Department's civil rights division, who investigated whether the shooting constituted an excessive use of force, said there was insufficient evidence to bring charges.


Federal prosecutors did not disclose details of their investigation. But agents said the fact that Martinez was shot in the back didn't necessarily mean he was running away. He could have just finished throwing the rock, or he could have been reaching for another, they said.

linkage (emphasis mine)
Will update information as it becomes available over the course of the proceedings.

[UPDATE] Here is a write-up by Isabel Garcia of Derechos Humanos. The very mention of her name makes nativist heads asplode, but she is a true champion of human rights. Hmm, perhaps that's why they can't stand her?

It's All Fun and Games Until... stab your cuñado.

Maybe the Democratic debates should come with an R rating.

Things turned violent in a Montgomery County home during a televised debate between candidates Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

It ended with Obama supporter Sean Shurelds being taken to Hahnemann Hospital with stab wounds that were allegedly inflicted by his brother-in-law, Clinton backer Jose Ortiz.


The chingasos happened last Thursday during the debate in Tejas. I seriously doubt that last night's snooze-fest in Ohio could inflame such idiocy. Unless, of course, you found your temper boiling at the lack of pillows on the stage.
SEN. CLINTON: Well, can I just point out that in the last several debates, I seem to get the first question all the time. And I don't mind. I -- you know, I'll be happy to field them, but I do find it curious, and if anybody saw "Saturday Night Live," you know, maybe we should ask Barack if he's comfortable and needs another pillow. (Laughter, boos.) I just find it kind of curious that I keep getting the first question on all of these issues. But I'm happy to answer it.

To be fair, I think both Democratic candidates need to put the brakes on petty side-skirmishes like this. It's coming from both directions, while things like this hit the headlines of communities:
The U.S. Supreme Court may shed light on a festering legal issue when it rules on a Tucson case involving a warrantless search of a suspect's car, but the decision likely won't affect a lot of people, lawyers say.

"It's an interesting legal problem," said University of Arizona law professor Gabriel J. "Jack" Chin. "But it's probably not going to be a landmark."

The justices announced Monday they will hear arguments in a case involving Rodney Joseph Gant to decide whether officers must demonstrate a threat to their safety or the need to preserve evidence to justify a warrantless search.

'Cuz warrantless searches are all the rage in this day and age.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Tejas Latinos United Against Border Wall

Poll results courtesy of a survey sponsored by Texas A&M/Latino Decisions (a nonpartisan group)

Texas' Latino voters do not support a border fence.

Despite the conventional wisdom among many commentators, the data couldn't be clearer. Our poll finds that 73 percent of Texas Latinos think a wall along the Texas-Mexico border is an ineffective policy idea that will not decrease illegal immigration into the United States.

On this issue, the survey finds agreement across party lines. Among Republicans, 70 percent are opposed to the border fence, as are 72 percent of independents and 74 percent of Democrats.

Step one is to put an immediate stop to the theft of land along the line. Step two is to get a government that actually listens to residents that live here. Step three is to communicate to the rest of the country that we are not at war with Latin America and that it's offensive to treat the situation down here as if it's the Korean DMZ.

Monday, February 25, 2008


Apparently the primary silly season is entering the crescendo phase. I'm just glad that I (mostly) adhere to my absolutely-no-blogging-on-the-weekends rule. It's important for me to not stay plugged in to the constant bickering and UserX-centric world that can be found no matter which site currently enjoys my browser's attention. I think it's hilarious that we think we can know with certainty that a person views a situation in the exact way we interpret their writing, when it's highly probably that there is much more going on with a person's head space than is presented.

Not really thinking of anything specific here, just some anecdotal words that I felt like writing after skimming my RSS feeds. Perhaps it's due to my head space on this final Monday of February in 2008. In the past 72 hours I've traveled over 300 miles, helped run a horseshoe tournament, and heard that an ex-girlfriend's younger brother was killed in a car accident.

It's bizarre how one can be transported back nearly fifteen years without skipping a beat, yet that's how long it had been since I'd seen him. No family should have to deal with the tragedy that they are experiencing. I don't even know that I'll get the chance to share condolences with her, but I have sent word via a mutual friend that I was praying for them all. We've managed to salvage some type of friendship over the years despite plenty of drama, most of which was created by outside players, but I maintain distance out of respect for her husband. Still, my heart is sick today.

Corazón de Justicia Awards Dinner

A true celebration of progressive activism.

Corazón de Justicia Awards Dinner
Sunday, March 2, 2008

Dunbar Cultural Center (click for map)
325 W. 2nd Street
Tucson, Arizona 85705

This year, the Corazón de Justicia Awards will have the privilege of Gerald Lenoir, Coordinator of the Black Alliance for Just Immigration as our keynote speaker. BAJI has done an incredible amount of work to engage African Americans and other communities in a dialogue that leads to actions that challenge U.S. immigration policy and the underlying issues of race, racism and economic inequity that frame it.

Please join us on Sunday, March 2, 2008 at 6:30pm at the Dunbar Cultural Center (325 W. 2nd Street) as we honor the strength and courage of these inspiring community members in the struggle for justice and human rights in our community.

RSVP Information and Award Recipients listed here

More Signs That Utah Gets It

A welcomed piece from the Salt Lake Tribune.
The 47th Congress was a busy bunch of bigots. In March of 1882, they passed the Edmunds Act, a notorious anti-Mormon law that barred polygamists from voting, serving on juries or holding office. This law (along with related statutes) sent hundreds of Mormon men into federal prison and shattered families across Mormon country.

Barely a month later, that same Congress passed another odious law. Called the Chinese Exclusion Act, it was the first major federal immigration law, and it was explicitly designed to keep out the despised Asian immigrants. It set the framework for the draconian approach to immigration that continues to this day.

Both the hateful immigration laws and hateful anti-Mormon laws were challenged in court. The racist Supreme Court of the era upheld both laws in close succession, with telling language that compared Mormons to Asians. Apparently, that was reason enough to allow persecution of both groups.

This tainted history is just one reason why some Latter-day Saints like me are troubled by current immigration laws and proposals. Today's harsh laws and harsher proposals are a direct legacy of the most hateful anti-Mormon legislators of the late 19th century.

Little by little, a more expansive coalition of people are uniting to fight back against the modern day haters. The country is bound to repeat the shameful mistakes of the past as long as groups who were targets in the past, forget that they or their ancestors once wore the shoes of those slated for exploitation and ridicule. Very promising that more public factions of the LDS community are speaking out against the xenophobes.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Renzi Indicted

There's a special place in hell for lawmakers who gamble away the rights of their constituencies without ever bothering to visit that particular area in their jurisdiction. The land swap that has finally put Rick Renzi (AZ-01) under indictment involves an area near my ancestral hometown that has never seen their so-called Congressional Representative engage them directly on the theft of land he has proposed. No wonder - it's all been used as a rouse to fill his wallet with kickbacks.

Renzi is charged with using the power of his office, and in particular his spot on the House Natural Resources Committee, to push through a land sale that he personally benefited from in 2005. Renzi also is accused of funneling more than $100,000 from a longtime business associate into his 2002 campaign for Congress. Renzi was elected to the district that takes in most of northern Arizona, as well as parts of eastern Pinal County.

Other charges in the indictment allege Renzi conspired to embezzle money from a Virginia insurance company he owed by misappropriating more than $400,000 in premiums. He used most of that money to help finance his 2002 campaign, according to the charges.

More local coverage:

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Utah Legislature Rethinks Hardline Strategy

Last week, Wyoming was on track to approve a package of hardlined anti-migrant legislation, but the measure was ultimately defeated by political pressure to take a more humane approach to reform - one that incorporates human rights and economic concerns into the fold as deliberations are made. The same type of political push-back appears to have also worked in Utah, for the time being.
Senators are reworking parts of a comprehensive immigration package to make the measure more palatable to the business community and religious leaders, its sponsor said Tuesday.

Sen. Bill Hickman, R-St. George, said he pushed back the Senate debate on his SB81 -- scheduled Tuesday -- until Thursday because some of the refinements to his anti-illegal immigration bill are still being made.

"We're trying to get this bill to be a reasonable piece of legislation that is [as] business friendly as possible and yet maintains the standards we have set forth in the bill and I think we are at that point now," Hickman said.

The revised measure would be a far cry from the original version modeled after an Oklahoma immigration law described as one of the toughest in the nation.

The changes would include revisions requested by leaders from several churches, including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, that protect the church from liability if they provide food, clothing and other charitable or humanitarian services to undocumented immigrants.

What we are starting to see on the state level is coalition building among pro-migrant forces that can be more effective when it comes to driving the agenda of local legislators. Groups of human rights advocates, churches, business leaders, ethnic equality committees, etc. are learning to use their voices in concert that prevent disastrous effects like we're seeing here in the Grand Canyon State.

PHOENIX — The signs of flight among Latino immigrants here are multiple: Families moving out of apartment complexes, schools reporting enrollment drops, business owners complaining about fewer clients.

While it is too early to know for certain, a consensus is developing among economists, business people and immigration groups that the weakening economy coupled with recent curbs on illegal immigration are steering Hispanic immigrants out of the state.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Why I Voted For Barack Obama

I try to stay away from the back and forth bickering between the Clinton and Obama camps, because the Flying Spaghetti Monster knows that there is tons of poison to sample everyday; but this is over the top.

Tom Buffenbarger president of the machinists' union (International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers) was the the latest in a string of Clinton junkyard dogs unleashed upon Obama. Prior to Hillary Clinton’s speech last night in Youngstown, Ohio, Buffenbarger delivered nothing short of an Obama diatribe.


Buffenbarger called Obama a “thespian,” and he sarcastically referred to the junior senator from Illinois as a “wunderkind.” He compared Obama to “Janus, the two-faced Roman god of ancient times.” And he pleaded with the crowd to boo Obama’s labor record.

There is a lot more the man who introduced Hillary Clinton last night in Ohio had to say about Obama and his supporters. I encourage you to check out the link for more if you're interested in consuming a plate of rotten garbage at such at an early time of the day (at least in my time zone, it's early).

What is going on with the scorched earth politics? I understand that Clinton has had a very, very bad month since Super Duper Tuesday, but really, attacks like this only reinforce the message that Barack Obama's campaign exudes.

We cannot wait. And one year ago, one year ago when I made the decision to run, it was based on the belief that the size of our challenges had outstripped the capacity of a broken and divided politics to solve.

And I was certain that the American people were hungry for something new, that they were tired of a politics that tears each other down. They wanted a politics that would lift the country up, that they had grown weary of a politics that was based on spin and P.R. They wanted a politics that was based on honesty and truthfulness and straight talk to the American people.

I was convinced, most of all, that change in America does not happen from the top down. It happens from the bottom up.

As a product of nearly 15 years of community mobilization and youth empowerment efforts in Arizona, I look on Obama's candidacy as an opportunity to convert stagnant energy into something kinetic. It's ironic that, while he certainly inspires me, I don't really view his possible Presidency as being about him - it's about us.

Almost every day I have a friend or co-worker pick my brain about politics, and that is something that is way out of the norm. There is a civic engagement that is gripping neighborhoods across the country that seems out-of-place in this era of bigotry, economic collapse and war. My fear is, though, that people like Mr. Buffenbarger will continue to deceive whomever is within earshot that the nugget of optimism being experienced by many people is nothing but empty rhetoric.

There's something going on that I haven't quite been able to articulate, but as a rare player of chess, can see that it is something that Obama supporters - and perhaps even the official campaign itself - will need to address. I call it the Missed Train phenomenon.

As excitement and momentum continues to build for Barack's candidacy, it is very easy for those already hooked into the messaging to engage in nonstop hi-fives and, dare I suggest, arrogance? The problem with it is that we all have different life experiences/pasts and influences around us. We all receive information differently and it would be folly to assume that if someone doesn't "get it" that it's somehow their fault. Humans, as we all know, are complex beings and we are going to interpret campaigns and rhetoric in a diverse way. That's life.

This has all been speaking to the emotional aspect of politics. The issues side of it is a whole other beast that can easily be tackled by a review of the candidates' platform pages at their websites. This other stuff is not so easy.

Leading up to the day Arizona voted on February 5th, I remained decidedly undecided on who would get the oval filled out next to their name - both John Edwards and Barack Obama were offering me something that I could support. Dennis Kucinich, too, can't forget Dennis; but I know how to vote strategically just like the next person.

When John Edwards left the race, my vote went solidly to Barack Obama. He was always there, his background nagging at the back of my heart. The possibility of a President who has grappled so hard with issues of identity and race, and what it means in America to be slathered with stereotypes by people who have no idea who you are or what you're capable of - that's why I think he's an amazing leader. He turns the entire system of how we treat one another on its head. Both he and Michelle will be paragons of advocacy for a more just society. Indeed, they've both spent their lives doing that hard work that many Clinton surrogates claim does not exist.

It also helps that I, mostly, agree with him on the issues. He earned my respect a long time ago with his denouncement of in 2006 with this speech in Chicago at the Human Rights March that saw hundreds of thousands of people take the streets in protest against the abhorrent HR4437 immigration tantrum.

Duke has more at Migra Matters on Obama's willingness to stand up and speak out during those days. It reveals to me a candidate who understands the complexity of what we're dealing with when it comes to an overhaul of the immigration system. A "Yes or No" answer will not suffice.

This is just a nugget of where my thinking is today. I don't think any of the candidates are perfect, but there's only one who is directly challenging the public to mobilize. Even if all the accusations of shadow-boxing turns out to be true, or Obama is some trojan horse centrist (I don't think he is, but can understand how his message can be interpreted that way), the passion he and his campaign are igniting in the streets of this country will not be snuffed out easily.

There will be a mandate laid upon the doorstep of the White House, and whoever lives there will have an obligation to fulfill it.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

New Domain Name

I finally got off my duff and snagged a new domain for this here humble blog. The old link will still work:, but feel free to update your blogrolls

Para Ganar Obama

Move over Los Lobos, Mo Rocca is bringing his A-game.

sombrero tip to Colin at AOL's Political Machine

Fidel Castro Resigns

The end of an ego era.
Cuba's ailing leader, Fidel Castro has announced he will not return to the presidency in a letter published by official Communist Party paper, Granma.

"I neither will aspire to nor will I accept, the position of president of the Council of state and commander in chief," he wrote in the letter.

Let's see how long the Wet Foot/Dry Foot Policy continues.

[UPDATE] Here is the full message (in spanish) If I get ambitious, I'll translate in the morning, or at least hunt for a link to someone else's efforts :)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Border Angels Complete 4,500 Mile Journey

Solidarity with those who remind greater society that we are all human beings.

The Border Angels, a human rights group founded in 1986 by Enrique Morones to stop the unnecessary deaths of people traveling across the U.S./Mexico border areas of San Diego County and the Imperial Valley, will have completed by Sunday, February 17 a 4500 mile journey from San Diego to Canada and back.

The group chose to make the 4500 mile caravan, "Marcha Migrante III," to remember the 4500 immigrants that have died in the border region between U.S. and Mexico. The march has gone through 40 cities with the message of “Su Voto Es Su Voz,” (Your Vote is Your Voice).

“The people of this country will elect a new president this November,” said Morones at a press conference with supporters of the Border Angels at the state capitol in Sacramento on February 6. “We are not supporting any particular presidential candidate - we want to get the candidates to support immigration reform as a pathway for legalization. There are 12 million undocumented workers in this country.”

linkage with pictures
You can donate to the Border Angels via this link, or check out their website for more information on the humanitarian work they do to save lives in the desert.

Friday, February 15, 2008

More U.S. Citizens Being Targeted by ICE

Just another reminder that we did not make this a racial issue - they did, and have for centuries.
Washington — Marie Justeen Mancha was home alone in Southeast Georgia when four federal agents stormed into her house, shouting "police! Illegals!"

"My heart just dropped," she said. "When the tall man reached for his gun, I just stood there feeling so scared."

Mancha, a Mexican-American U.S. citizen from Reidsville, told her story Wednesday to members of a House subcomittee as it looked into reports that U.S. citizens had been questioned, detained and in one case even deported in federal Immigrations and Custom Enforcement raids.

Mancha was a 15 -year-old high school honors student at the time of the September 2006 raid on her home, which occurred in conjunction with an ICE raid at a poultry plant in nearby Stillmore. She and her mother, also a U.S citizen, are among plaintiffs in a lawsuit alleging that ICE targeted people based on their appearance.


Fantasies? Hardly

Ouch. Looks like the Democratic Congress jabbed at the cage alittle too hard, because there was lots of squawking and poo-flinging coming from the direction of the White House podium.

After the Senate banned waterboarding yesterday, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino claimed the “left wing” was trying to overtake the intelligence community:

They’ll have to ask themselves, ‘Do you trust the intelligence community more than you trust Democrats who are beholden to their left-wing?‘ And that’s the debate that this country is going to have.

Perino also attacked Congress for holding a contempt of Congress vote on White House Chief of Staff Josh Bolten and former White House counsel Harriet Miers instead of expanding Bush’s surveillance powers:

The American people will find it baffling that on a day that House leaders are trying to put off passing critical legislation to keep us safer from the threat of foreign terrorists overseas, they are spending scarce time to become the first congress in history to bring contempt charges against a president’s chief of staff and lawyer. … The ‘people’s House’ should reflect the priorities of the American people, not the fantasies of left-wing bloggers.

Dana Perino must be a conservative, because her imagination could use a healthy dose of performance-enhancing steroids. If she thinks that stopping illegal (and impeachable) spying by the Bushistas is a "fantasy of left-wing bloggers" - hooooo lawdy, as my friends in the South like to say. I could think of much more exciting things I'd like to see them spend their precious time on in Washington. The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, for example.

Where's Dana's outrage on that one, HUH? Doesn't she know that terrorist marmots lurk in the shadows, awaiting the coordinated moment when they storm the world en masse?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Wyoming Defeats Anti-Migrant Legislation

Looks like the Equality State has lived up to its name. Good news, via symsess at American Humanity:

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — A bill that sought to make it a felony to harbor or transport illegal immigrants in Wyoming died Tuesday when it failed to receive the required two-thirds vote for introduction in the House of Representatives.

Rep. Pete Illoway, R-Cheyenne, had sponsored the measure. Although Hispanic groups have criticized similar legislation in other states, he said the bill wasn't aimed at any particular ethnic group here.

"There's been a lot of comment on this particular proposal, and I felt that if the federal government won't do it, then the states at least need to take a look at what's termed illegal immigration," Illoway said.

Illoway's legislation was modeled after an Oklahoma law that took effect late last year.

Last week, the measure received a practical airing from the editorial board of the Casper Star-Tribune:
The most obvious objection to the bill is that it isn't necessary. Wyoming doesn't have a lot of illegal immigrants. The few places that do, most notably Teton County, depend on them to do jobs left unfilled by Wyoming residents. Even if illegal immigrants start arriving from Oklahoma and other states, Wyoming's labor shortage ensures they won't supplant local workers.

One of the risks inherent in HB 62 is creation of a climate of fear and harassment of legal immigrants, merely because of their ethnic origin. That's not what America is about.

That doesn't mean Wyoming should condone illegal immigration. Americans are rightfully upset that illegal immigrants can obtain government services and benefits to which they are not entitled.

Somehow, America needs to stanch the flow of illegal immigrants into the country, and move toward a time when all immigrants are legal residents.

The task, however, is both large and perplexing. Imagine the government apparatus necessary to ship out 12 million illegals -- 20 times the population of Wyoming. It's simply not going to happen.

Instead of focusing solely on punishment, a more practical option is to encourage people here illegally to identify themselves and earn the right to stay. Save deportation for those who fail to report their status or who commit other crimes.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

BREAKING: John McCain Actually Voted Today

And guess what? He voted to give a green light to waterboarding, even though he was a victim of torture years ago in Vietnam.
Today, the Senate brought the Intelligence Authorization Bill to the floor, containing a provision from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) that establishes one interrogation standard, requiring the intelligence community to abide by the same standards as articulated in the Army Field Manual and banning waterboarding.

Just hours ago, the Senate voted in favor of the bill, 51-45.

McCain voted no.

Of course, this is not really breaking news since he scored a deal with the Torturer in Chief over a year ago to provide a loophole for "enhanced interrogation techniques".
Then came that dramatic December 15th handshake between Bush and McCain, a veritable media mirage that concealed furious back-room maneuvering by the White House to undercut the amendment. A coalition of rights groups, including Amnesty International, had resisted the executive's effort to punch loopholes in the torture ban but, in the end, the White House prevailed. With the help of key senate conservatives, the Bush administration succeeded in twisting what began as an unequivocal ban on torture into a legitimization of three controversial legal doctrines that the administration had originally used to justify torture right after 9/11.

In an apparent compromise gesture, McCain himself inserted the first major loophole: a legal defense for accused CIA interrogators that echoes the administration's notorious August 2002 torture memo allowing any agents criminally charged to claim that they "did not know that the practices were unlawful."

Amnesty International
As an Arizonan, I can't decide which is worse: John McCain conveniently, and repeatedly, stepping out of votes for fear of accountability, or actually having him show up and endorse the most egregious actions by government interrogators. Either way, he is unfit for President.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

What's on your reading list?

This via my blogamigo James at The Mahatma X Files
  1. Grab the nearest book (that is at least 123 pages long).
  2. Open to p. 123.
  3. Go down to the 5th sentence.
  4. Type in the following 3 sentences.
  5. Tag five people.
Here's what I came up with:
He says, you have no right to say that, you don't know what it's like to flee. Later in the day, he apologizes for the episode, but it is too late. Like a man who dared to look straight at the sun, he will never completely obliterate that dark light; it has scorched his vision.
From Mother Tongue, by Demetria Martínez - a book I dusted off the shelf recently and have been re-reading with new, hungry eyes.

What's on your reading list? I'm going to open it up to anyone instead of tagging five sites, the NyQuil coma is about to envelop me for the night.

If This Is True, Watch Out

This could just be rumor-mill garbage, but if not, very telling in how the Clintons are calling in their chits among super-delegates.
Some are folks who owe the Clintons a favor but still feel betrayed or taken for granted. Could that be why Bill Richardson, a former U.N. secretary and energy secretary in the Clinton administration, refused to endorse her even after an angry call from the former president? "What," Bill Clinton reportedly asked Richardson, "isn't two Cabinet posts enough?"


News Bits

I'm fighting off a cold - blech - but here are some things going on around the country that I thought was worth sharing:
What else is happening?

Friday, February 08, 2008

Friday Bud Blogging

Have a great weekend!

Man Eegee's Guide to Meaningful Latino Outreach

Consider this free advice to any lurking campaign operatives. And yes, this even includes the legions of Dogcatcher Chief of Staff's CIA operatives that sit and refresh their browser every few minutes to see what nugget of wisdom I've shared with the world.

Man Eegee's Guide to Meaningful Latino Outreach

Numero Uno, if you will (that first part was spanish; never ever under any circumstance should you refer to it as speaking mexican or beaner). Numero Uno: if you have no clue what a vihuela is - then you are not allowed to hire a mariachi group for one of your rallies. Sorry, it's just the way it is. I'm a purist.

Numero Two: this one is offered in the spirit of bipartisanship, I mean, bilateralship, umm....bilingual. ship. It's also your math lesson of the day: Reaching out to Latino/Latina voters sinking a ton of money into spanish-speaking media. That certainly helps, especially when it's during the latest episode of Guerra de los Sexos, but though we might look foreign, most of us consume our news and info in English. Especially the younger crowd. It's called code switching for the educated folks, we call it pocho, my mom calls it being a coconut.

Numero Tres: my nana may have popped an artery that time I took my negra girlfriend home to meet the familia*, but things have changed. Again, especially with the younger crowd. I credit Hip Hop music for bringing together the Black and Brown. The world underestimates at its peril the power that P Diddy holds over us all. Timbaland, too. A Kennedy endorsement's got nuthin' over these musical producer masterminds.

Numero Quatro: sure the stormtroopers raided Barrio Viejo and took half our families away, but immigration is not a Latino/Latina issue. At least, we didn't make it that way. No, we see all these new reglas coming about and think, "Oye, I thought you always had to show forms of ID at a border entrance. How come they always busted out with that magnifying glass to inspect my license, social security card and Blockbuster membership?" The rest of you are barely catching up to the scrutiny we've always enjoyed (minus the palito with the mirror at the end of it that shows the greasy undercarriage of our ride. That one's still reserved for us.)

Numero Cinco: You'd be smart not to ask a puertorriqueña or cubano or guatemalteco yada yada yada what part of Mexico they're from. In fact, don't even ask that of Mexicans, because that look of shock on your face isn't very flattering when we tell you, "ummm, San Bernadino?"

Numero Seis: Photo ops with guacamole blotted all over the side of your birria-filled mouth at the taqueria stand isn't going to help win our support. The same goes with that patch of white sugar on the tip of your nose after biting into a pupusa. We might be impressed by your judgment to stay far away from a Chipotle for your latest press conference, but that doesn't mean we'll vote for you. Unless you're offering free food, then all bets are off the table.

Numero Siete: our schools are usually Centros de Asbestos y Mold - get to work on the why of that, and we'll march in the streets for you, too. We need something to do now that Tomás Tancredo and Diego Hunter are out of the race.

Numero Ocho: until we see sharks with frickin' laser beams attached to their heads deployed in the Great Lakes to ward off the invading hordes of drug traffickers, that wall better not get built in our yards.

Numero Nueve: Ranchera Culture is alive and well in parts of the U.S. Try visiting us out in the middle of nowhere, sometime. You can skip the 'clearing brush' bit to maintain a safe distance from anything George W. Bush related. And don't worry, all the whispers you hear about those little towns being dangerous are all a front to keep out any newcomers who try to change the routine we've held for centuries. Oliver Stone can kiss our nalgas, however.

Numero Dies: The most important one, and probably the only relevant thing you'll read in this post. Learn the word Plática and practice it. Use your boca, if you must; but even better to do it with your ears.

*Never happened. My nana was/is a saint...though she did throw a phone at my tata once. Whatever he did, he never did it again. Believe me.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

No Apologies to "Foreign Citizens"

Gotta love when a conquistadora jumps head first into the cesspool of American Exceptionalism. Take U.S. Representative Ginny Brown-Waite, Republican of Florida, who last week decided that she would stick a finger in the eye of the Puerto Rican and Guam communities.
Brown-Waite, R-Brooksville, was complaining about parts of an economic-stimulus package when she referred to residents of Puerto Rico and Guam as "foreign citizens."

". . . The bill sends hundreds of millions of dollars to people who do not pay federal income taxes, including residents of Puerto Rico and territories like Guam. I do not believe American taxpayer funds should be sent to foreign citizens who do not pay taxes. Americans want an economic stimulus for Dunnellon, Brooksville and Clermont, not for San Juan or Hagatna. As the legislation moves forward, it must be changed to ensure that only federal taxpaying American citizens receive rebate checks."

This prompted universal condemnation from all over the place, including action by the Puerto Rican House.

In a resolution that passed unanimously, the Puerto Rico House said Brown-Waite's comments are denigrating and ignorant.

"Congresswoman Brown-Waite's statement is infuriating and contradictory as it pertains to four million of her fellow American citizens that live in our island," House Speaker Jose Aponte Hernández said in a press release.

"The distorted perception she has of Puerto Ricans is incredible given that she is part of a state with a large population of Hispanics of which close to a million are Puerto Ricans."

Demands for an apology, however, have been met with...shall we say, some resistance?

Charlie Keller, Brown-Waite's spokesman, acknowledged that a press release sent last week used the wrong word when it called Puerto Ricans "foreign citizens" but said Monday that Brown-Waite does not intend to apologize.

"The clarification I issued about the word choice was appropriate and plenty enough," Keller said.

Keller said "territorial citizens" would have been a better phrase to describe Puerto Ricans' status in the press release issued last week explaining why Brown-Waite, R-Brooksville, reluctantly voted for President Bush's economic stimulus package that provides tax rebate checks to residents of Puerto Rico and Guam.

The article goes on:

The comment, Keller said, "has not been an issue for the Congresswoman's constituents."

Brown-Waite's office has received about a dozen calls on the issue, and most were in favor of the Congresswoman's stance on nixing rebate checks for territorial citizens, Keller said.

Let's change that:
Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite
Brooksville Office: 352-799-8354
Dade City Office: 352-567-6707
Washington, DC Office: 202-225-1002
Toll-Free from within Florida's 5th District: 1-866-GWAITES
Crossposted at culturekitchen

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Impeach The Torturers

Have we experienced so much horror in the past seven years, that we all engage in a collective yawn when the Executive Branch admits openly to sanctioning torture?
WASHINGTON - The White House on Wednesday defended the use of the interrogation technique known as waterboarding, saying it is legal — not torture as critics argue — and has saved American lives.

President Bush could authorize waterboarding for future terrorism suspects if certain criteria are met, a spokesman said.

A day earlier, the Bush administration acknowledged publicly for the first time that the tactic was used by U.S. government questioners on three terror suspects. Testifying before Congress, CIA Director Michael Hayden said Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Abu Zubayda and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri were waterboarded in 2002 and 2003.

Waterboarding involves strapping a suspect down and pouring water over his cloth-covered face to create the sensation of drowning. It has been traced back hundreds of years, to the Spanish Inquisition, and is condemned by nations around the world.

Via Andrew Sullivan, of all people, we're reminded that the Bush Administration is using the exact same argument for "enhanced interrogation techniques" as Nazi commanders who were eventually convicted as war criminals.

The victims, by the way, were not in uniform. And the Nazis tried to argue, just as John Yoo did, that this made torturing them legit. The victims were paramilitary Norwegians, operating as an insurgency, against an occupying force. And the torturers had also interrogated some prisoners humanely. But the argument, deployed by Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and the Nazis before them, didn't wash with the court. Money quote:

As extenuating circumstances, Bruns had pleaded various incidents in which he had helped Norwegians, Schubert had pleaded difficulties at home, and Clemens had pointed to several hundred interrogations during which he had treated prisoners humanely.

The Court did not regard any of the above-mentioned circumstances as a sufficient reason for mitigating the punishment and found it necessary to act with the utmost severity. Each of the defendants was responsible for a series of incidents of torture, every one of which could, according to Art. 3 (a), (c) and (d) of the Provisional Decree of 4th May, 1945, be punished by the death sentence.

It's revolting to ponder how many hands are dirty in this dark episode of U.S. history. So many branches and offices of government, that I fear accountability will be escaped because of the mass participation. Yet another symptom of 9/11 Fever that exposed a country's moral compass wrought with vengeance and fear.

Perhaps the international community will again exert their can only hope. Torture is never acceptable.

Latino Voters on Super Tuesday

Robert Lovato offers great analysis of Latino/Latina voters during yesterday's pseudo national primary election.

In what appears to be the development of a Latino voter regionalism, the vote varied depending on what part of the country (and in some cases what part of a state) the vote was cast. For example, while Clinton secured 74% of the Latino vote in her home state of New York, available data also indicates that Obama won 59% of the 30-44 year olds, the largest age bloc, in his home state of Illinois’ Latino electorate.

Obama won important Latino votes - and delegates- in Colorado, Arizona and other states where Clinton was expected to overwhelm him. With the support of New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez and other members of the Latino political machine nurtured by her husband, the former President, Clinton won more than 60% of the Latino electorate in states like New Jersey and New York. And regardless of the final tallies in California, the Latino electorate has already proven to be a powerful, new and greatly misunderstood segment of the no longer solely black and white electorate of the United States.

Other aspects of his post that make it more credible than the idiotic spin offered by some of the corporate-owned networks is the fact that he recognizes very clearly that Latino/Latina voters are not ideologically lock-stepped with one another. He also offers this insightful quote by the head of Voto Latino, which I heard her say on MSNBC last night.
“Candidates are spending tens of millions of dollars trying to capture the attention of Latino voters, mostly in the Spanish language media” said Maria Teresa Petersen, the Executive Director of Voto Latino, a nonpartisan voter registration organization that also uses technology and pop culture to promote the political participation of new Latino voters. “But what the campaigns haven’t figured out is that 79% of the 18 million eligible Latino voters consume media in English” said Petersen adding, “So, it’s terrific that they’re targeting 21% of the voters with Latino messages, but when will they learn to target us with Latino ads in English?”
Unfortunately, a major injection of maturity will need to unfold in this country before something like that occurs. I heard Howard Fineman, for example, make the ridiculous claim that while Obama was doing well among English-speaking Latinos, he trailed among "recent immigrants" - you know, those that speak spanish and watch spanish-language television. As I wrote at another site when I heard that: "Memo to Fineman - not everyone who speaks spanish is a new immigrant."

Every state, every region, likes to pretend that it is a Paragon of American™ Identity; but the truth is that this vast expanse of tierra has a history that doesn't square with the spin offered by history books and - often - the political class. The West gets treated like it's still Wild, Native Americans (which include a large chunk of Mexicanos) are either ignored or pandered to with music and food, and it's clear that the white punditocracy would rather instigate a fight among minority communities than actually reach out to journalists/analysts that have the pulse of our neighborhoods to find out what motivates our family and friends to engage civically - or disengage, as the case may be when we're pigeonholed.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Arizona Primary Results Thread

I'll be updating this post periodically through the evening as results come in. To follow the official numbers yourself, here's the link to the AZ Secretary of State site. CNN Exit Polls here

(CNN and MSNBC have called it for Hillary Clinton, but I'm going to keep updating results as they arrive)

Weird, the percentage reported are going down now at the SOS website... I'm going to bed. Thanks for stopping by! Comment Moderation has been turned off, so don't feed the trolls :)

94.0% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 191,067 or 50.7%
Barack Obama - 157,483 or 41.8%
John Edwards - 20,278 or 5.4%

77.3% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 160,101 or 50.3%
Barack Obama - 131,501 or 41.4%
John Edwards - 19,321 or 6.1%

82.1% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 167,715 or 50.3%
Barack Obama - 138,172 or 41.5%
John Edwards - 19,747 or 5.9%

76.6% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 166,813 or 50.3%
Barack Obama - 137,307 or 41.4%
John Edwards - 19,714 or 6.0%

72.3% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 156,988 or 50.1%
Barack Obama - 130,392 or 41.6%
John Edwards - 18,874 or 6.0%

69.4% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 153,174 or 50.2%
Barack Obama - 126,276 or 41.4%
John Edwards - 18,766 or 6.1%

69.1% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 152,804 or 50.2%
Barack Obama - 125,763 or 41.3%
John Edwards - 18,740 or 6.2%

68.1% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 152,188 or 50.2%
Barack Obama - 125,357 or 41.4%
John Edwards - 18,685 or 6.2%

67.3% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 147,512 or 50.1%
Barack Obama - 121,801% or 41.4%
John Edwards - 18,429 or 6.3%

64.5% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 143,292 or 50.2%
Barack Obama - 117,325 or 41.1%
John Edwards - 18,313 or 6.4%

61.5% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 138,826% or 50.3%
Barack Obama - 112,567 or 40.8%
John Edwards - 18,181 or 6.6%

60.1% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 136,280 or 50.3%
Barack Obama - 110,395 or 40.7%
John Edwards - 18,082 or 6.7%

59.8% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 135,806 or 50.3%
Barack Obama - 109.672 or 40.7%
John Edwards - 18,067 or 6.7%

57.6% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 132,834 or 50.4%
Barack Obama - 106,538 or 40.4%
John Edwards - 17,979 or 6.8%

56.9% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 132,342 or 50.4%
Barack Obama - 106,256 or 40.5%
John Edwards - 17,944 or 6.8%

51.7% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 125,439 or 50.4%
Barack Obama - 99,495 or 40.0%
John Edwards - 17,786 or 7.2%

50.5% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 124,299 or 50.4%
Barack Obama - 98,837 or 40.1%
John Edwards - 17,734 or 7.2%

49.9% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 124,032 or 50.4%
Barack Obama - 98,693 or 40.1%
John Edwards - 17,714 or 7.2%

48.8% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 122,474 or 50.4%
Barack Obama - 97,600 or 40.1%
John Edwards - 17,486 or 7.2%

41.5% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 111,909 or 50.6%
Barack Obama - 87,061 or 39.3%
John Edwards - 17,127 or 7.7%

37.0% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 107,220 or 50.2%
Barack Obama - 84,784 or 39.7%
John Edwards - 16,687 or 7.8%

31.3% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 98,741 or 50.2%
Barack Obama - 77,613 or 39.5%
John Edwards - 15,918 or 8.1%

26.4% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 92,988 or 50.5%
Barack Obama - 71,431 or 38.8%
John Edwards - 15,734 or 8.5%

25.6% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 92,357 or 50.5%
Barack Obama - 70,714 or 38.7%
John Edwards - 15,697 or 8.6%

25.1% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 92,035 or 50.5%
Barack Obama - 70,507 or 38.7%
John Edwards - 15,674 or 8.6% (I'm adding his numbers, since they're significant)

21.1% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 87,423 or 50.6%
Barack Obama - 65,904 or 38.1%

4.2% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 6,961 or 41.8%
Barack Obama - 8,527 or 51.2%

2.7% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 3,275 or 39.1%
Barack Obama - 4,480 or 53.6%

0% Reporting
Hillary Clinton - 631 or 38.1%
Barack Obama - 825 or 49.8%

Urgent Action Alert For AZ State Legislature

Border Action Network alerts Arizona residents to the following proposals set for a vote this coming Thursday. We are urging everyone to call the following state legislators and request that they vote "NO" to preserve the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and avoid the creation of clearly divided lines of citizenship types. (unless, of course, they're willing to make it retroactive back to the signing of the Constitution...then I have no problem with it).

Urgent State Legislative Action! You've heard about the bill to mark birth certificates of immigrant children and deny citizenship to children born to non-citizens? Well, they are up for a committee vote this week!

FIVE absurd bills will be considered this Thursday, February 7th at 9:00am by the Arizona Senate's Public Safety and Human Services Committee. Please contact the committee members TODAY to let them know that you DO NOT SUPPORT these bills and urge them to VOTE AGAINST THEM.

Your email or call makes a difference! The anti-immigrant, Minutemen types bombard elected officials with phone calls, emails, and faxes. Don�t let their fear-mongering and immigrant scapegoating by the only voice they hear.
How to Take Action:

Below are brief descriptions of each bill, talking points and contact information for the Committee members. For more information visit If you are in the Phoenix area, join us at the Committee hearing on Thursday at 9:00 am

Contact the Border Action office for more information at or 520-623-4944).

*Make sure to include your address in your email. Keep it short and sweet and be sure to clarify that you want them to VOTE AGAINST THESE BILLS.

S1072 Illegals; AHCCS; Proof of Citizenship
Senator Harper; Representative Pearce: Senators Burns, Huppenthal
"AHCCCS eligibility workers must reject applicants who present identification from jurisdictions which issue IDs but do not verify the immigration status of the applicant. Further, AHCCCS must report to federal immigration authorities any undocumented immigrant who applies for benefits. An AHCCCS employee who fails to do so is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor as is the employee's supervisor if the supervisor knew of the failure and did not order the employee to make the report. Any resident of the state has standing to bring suit against AHCCCS for violation of this act. Courts must give preference to actions brought under this act over other civil actions pending in the court. A class 2 misdemeanor carries a jail sentence of up to 4 months and a fine of up to $750."

S1009 Immigration Status; Benefits; DHS
Sponsor: Senator Harper
"The Dept of Health Services must verify the immigration status of applicants for any benefits or services provided by the department. The department must refuse to accept an applicant's identification if it was issued by an agency that does not verify immigration statutes before issuance. DHS employees must report violations of federal immigration law to federal authorities, and failure to do so is a class 2 (mid-level) misdemeanor. If a DHS employee fails to report the violation and the employee's supervisor knew of the instance and did not direct the employee to make the report, the supervisor is also guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor."

SCM1003 Illegal aliens; children; noncitizenship status
Sponsor: Senator Johnson; Burges, Kavanagh, Pearce, L. Gray, Harper
"The Legislature urges Congress to pass legislation clarifying the 14th Amendment as denying citizenship to children of illegal aliens simply by virtue of being born in the U.S."

SCR1012 Secure and verifiable identification
Sponsor: Senator Harper; Burges
"The 2008 general election ballot is to carry the question of whether to amend statutes to require political subdivisions of this state to accept only verifiable (defined) identification documents and prohibit disbursement of public services unless the recipient produces identification that is issued by a political subdivision of this state, a federally recognized Indian tribe or a state or federal authority and that is verifiable (defined) by a law enforcement or Homeland Security agency. A legislative history section states that the purpose of the referendum is to give the qualified electors the opportunity to override the governor's 2005 veto of SB1511."

SCR1016 Birth certificates; illegal aliens; children
Senator Johnson; Representatives Groe, Pearce: Senators Gould, Harper, Verschoor; Representatives Anderson, Kavanagh
"The 2008 general election ballot is to carry the question of whether to amend statutes to recite that unless at least one parent of a child born in this state is able to prove US citizenship, the child will be issued a certificate that states it was born to parents who were not in this country legally and that the child is not eligible for benefits that require US citizenship."

Senator Members of the Public Safety and Human Services Committee:
Linda Gray (R-LD10), Chairman (602) 926-3376
Jack Harper (R-LD4), Vice Chairman (602) 926-4178
Chuck Grey (R-LD19) (602) 926-5288
John Huppenthal (R-LD20) (602) 926-5261
Leah Landrum Taylor (D-LD16) (602) 926-3830
Rebecca Rios (D-LD23) (602) 926-3830
Victor Soltero (D-LD29) (602) 926-5342

Link to talking points can be found here. Please don't let this slip under the wire.

Monday, February 04, 2008

The Llantas on the Bus Go Round and Round

Le quería escribir este blog en español porque los jefes de las escuelas en Esmeralda County, Nevada son ignorante - especialmente sobre la historia de la gente indígena de su territoria.
Whether we like it or not, we must appreciate that English is a power language. Being proficient in reading, writing and speaking English will be your child's key to economic success. Having them get a good paying job will hinge upon their English skills. That is one of the key reasons I support having every child practice their English speaking skills as much as possible. Thus, when your youngster is in school and on the bus we ask them to practice speaking English. Sure it is more comfortable for many to speak their native language. But what is always more comfortable is not always is in their best interest.

--Mr. Robert Aumaugher, Superintendent (.pdf)
Hace 160 años, la cultura mexicana ha aplastado en regiones norte de la linea. ¡Basta ya! Somos indígenas y tenemos fuerza para terminar los abusos. Necesitamos prestar declaración en memoria de nuestras raíces, y tenemos amigos en la lucha:
According to Maggie McLetchie, counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada, Aumaugher will receive a letter from the ACLU asking him to rescind the policy.

"We think it violates (students) free speech and their First Amendment rights," McLetchie said. "And it implicates not only the students that are Spanish-speaking, but students who speak Spanish as well."

Contactos aquí

Blogroll Amnesty Day


Since there are habanero flakes in my bloodstream, I'm not one to go down the path of assimilation without resistance; hence the reason that I'm a day late for Blogroll Amnesty Day. Actually, the delay had more to do with a self-inflicted injury involving the consumption of mass (liberal!) quantities of fermented hops but who ever let details get in the way of propaganda? Surely, not I.

If you pay any attention at all to the two blogrolls over there on the right ------>
you'll note that the lists expand pretty regularly. That's because this blog is proud to have a liberal(!) blogrolling policy, where you're guaranteed a link from here if you reciprocate over at your site. I'm always on the hunt for good reads, too, so some of the offerings are based on stuff that I unearthed in my latest bout of procrastination. It's amazing how quickly you can be captivated by a new-to-you author, or realize that one of your favorite dead-tree writers is sharing their musings on the web.

Borders are something that I reject, if any of the writing over the past 31 months here will tell you anything - which is why I also have some of the offending so-called A-List sites listed in my blogroll that are responsible for blogroll bloodbath anniversary remembrance day; because due to an ironic twist of fate, the lines of blogtopia (yes! skippy coined that phrase) jumped around me with the crash of a gate and I, like others, found myself wandering listlessly through forsaken territory - only to learn that it's much more livelier (and liberal!) out here without the need to calculate the next post based on the prevailing meme of a corporate-ruled political system or the falling rates of an advertising network.

As web activists, we should be willing to share the work of each other con gusto. The 'we' depends on who you read, obviamente, but as you'll see if you check in with my periodic Pro-Migrant Blog Roundups, the center of the blogptopic universe does not revolve around the sites that have knighted themselves as The Netroots™. We are much more diverse (and liberal!) out here, and who knows, maybe you'll find us wandering the pages of the Wall Street Journal or the Washington Post speaking a different truth.

So without further ado, I am recommending in honor of Blogroll Amnesty Day, the following sites to keep you away from that latest task that you've been putting off for the last week:
And one for fun:
  1. Hasta Los Gatos Quieren Zapatos