Saturday, August 28, 2010
The American Civil Rights Movement of the 60's had to happen because of the injustices being done to African-Americans and Latinos. These Tea Party and Republican extremist haven’t experienced a single one of this century’s long torture that was done to non-whites over the years and in some circumstances still happen today. Their ignorance should be punished, not ethnicity.
To Beck, Palin and the 300,000 sheep that made the rally…Get ready for some change and not necessarily the change you’re looking for, but I promise you, more change is coming.
At the Lincoln Memorial, a Call for Religious Rebirth
By KATE ZERNIKE and CARL HULSE
WASHINGTON — An enormous and impassioned crowd rallied at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Saturday, summoned by Glenn Beck, a conservative broadcaster who called for a religious rebirth in America at the site where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech 47 years ago to the day.
“Something that is beyond man is happening,” Mr. Beck said in opening the event as the crowd thronged near the memorial grounds. “America today begins to turn back to God.”
It was part religious revival, part history lecture, as Mr. Beck invoked the founding fathers and the “black-robed regiment” of pastors of the Revolutionary War and spoke of American exceptionalism.
The crowd was a mix of groups that have come together under the Tea Party umbrella. Some wore T-shirts from the Campaign for Liberty, the libertarian group that came out of the presidential campaign of Representative Ron Paul, while others wore the gear of their local Tea Party group, or of 9/12 groups, which were founded after a special broadcast Mr. Beck did in March 2009.
But the program was distinctly different from most Tea Party rallies. While Tea Party groups have said they want to focus on fiscal conservatism and not risk alienating people by talking about religion or social issues, the rally on Saturday was overtly religious, filled with gospel music and speeches that were more like sermons.
Mr. Beck imbued his remarks on Saturday and at events the night before with references to God and a need for a religious revival. “For too long, this country has wandered in darkness,” Mr. Beck said Saturday. “This country has spent far too long worrying about scars and thinking about scars and concentrating on scars. Today, we are going to concentrate on the good things in America, the things that we have accomplished, and the things that we can do tomorrow.”
Mr. Beck was followed on stage by Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice-presidential candidate and former Alaska governor, who said she was asked, in keeping with the theme of the day, not to focus on politics but to speak as the mother of a soldier.
“Say what you want to say about me, but I raised a combat vet, and you can’t take that away from me,” said Ms. Palin, whose son Track served in Iraq.
But Ms. Palin did not steer entirely clear of politics. In a veiled reference to President Obama and his pledges to fundamentally transform America, she said, “We must not fundamentally transform America as some would want; we must restore America and restore her honor.”
Many in the crowd said they had never been to a Tea Party rally, but they described themselves as avid Glenn Beck fans, and many said they had been motivated to come by faith.
Becky Benson, 56, traveled from Orlando, Fla., because, she said, “we believe in Jesus Christ, and he is our savior.” Jesus, she said, would not have agreed with what she called the redistribution of wealth in the form of the economic stimulus package, bank bailouts and welfare. “You cannot sit and expect someone to hand out to you,” she said. “You don’t spend your way out of debt.”
Mr. Beck’s themes were ones he returns to on his radio and television shows, and people in the crowd echoed his ideas, saying that “progressives” were moving the country toward socialism and that the country must get back to a strict interpretation of the Constitution, which would limit the role of the federal government and do away with entitlement programs.
“The federal government is only to offer us protection from our enemies and help us when we need it,” said Ron Sears, 65, who came on a caravan of three buses from Corbin, Ky. “The states are supposed to control education and everything having to do with their citizens, except when they need federal help.”
Mr. Beck billed the event as the Woodstock of this generation, telling listeners that for decades, people would be asking, “Were you there?”
He had instructed his fans to leave their protest signs at home and to bring their children.
While there were few signs, people carried American flags or yellow “Don’t Tread on Me” banners, which have become mainstays at Tea Party rallies.
The event had the feeling of a large church picnic, with people sitting on lawn chairs and blankets with coolers and strollers.
Officials do not make crowd estimates because they are unreliable and can be controversial, but event organizers put the number of attendees at 500,000; NBC News said it was closer to 300,000, but by any measure it was a large turnout. The crowd stretched from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument.
The rally organized by Mr. Beck, a Fox News broadcaster who has been critical of Mr. Obama and Congressional Democrats, has come under attack as dishonoring the memory of Dr. King by staging the event on the anniversary of his speech. Critics have suggested that Mr. Beck was trying to energize conservatives for the midterm elections.
Across town, several hundred people packed a football field at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School to stage a rally commemorating Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.
“We come here because the dream has not been achieved,” said the Rev. Al Sharpton, an organizer of the rally. “We’ve had a lot of progress. But we have a long way to go.”
“They want to disgrace this day,” Mr. Sharpton told the crowd, referring to Mr. Beck’s event.
While the crowd at Dunbar was mostly African-American, the audience at Mr. Beck’s rally was overwhelmingly white, though a number of speakers and performers were black.
Among them was Alveda King, a niece of the civil rights leader, who in a speech said that if Dr. King were alive he would commend the organizers of the event and “would encourage us to lay aside the vicious lies that cause us to think we are members of separate races.”
Mr. Beck made a surprise visit on Friday to a convention held by FreedomWorks, a Tea Party umbrella group, for Tea Party supporters. He received a thunderous welcome from a crowd of about 1,600 in Constitution Hall.
He told the crowd that he had begun planning his march on Washington a year ago, thinking “it was supposed to be political.”
“And then I kind of feel like God dropped a giant sandbag on my head,” he said.
“My role, as I see it, is to wake America up to the backsliding of principles and values and most of all of God,” he said. “We are a country of God. As I look at the problems in our country, quite honestly, I think the hot breath of destruction is breathing on our necks and to fix it politically is a figure that I don’t see anywhere.”
Friday, August 27, 2010
Beck positions himself as an entertainer when it's convenient, but continues to be responsible for disseminating half-truths and falsehoods with an apparent goal of engendering and building jingoistic fear. I take that into account when I read that all he wants to do is "restore honor." Who messed up the honor in the first place? Is Glenn Beck really the most qualified person to do the restoration work? If I don't support his event, am I really dishonoring all my ancestors who died for this country, even before there was a United States?
Roy Sekoff On Beck Rally: When Exactly Did America LOSE Its Honor?
HuffPost editor Roy Sekoff appeared on "The Ed Show" Thursday night to dissect Fox host Glenn Beck's stunning D.C.-rally promotional video, in which Beck compares the event to the moon landing, the civil rights movement and the rise of Abraham Lincoln.
While guest host Cenk Uygur hammered Beck's shilling for the gold-selling company Goldline, Sekoff picked up on Beck's pitch to "restore America's honor."
"Because if it was those things," Sekoff added, "he's a little late to the game."
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Had Congress paid better attention to its job of legislating and had not been blindsided by the Bush Administration (yes again) that left this country in the mess it was in when the Obama Administration took over, perhaps we could put Immigration Reform on the top of the table of things to take care of. The economy was shot to hell and now struggling to make a full turnaround, unemployment is at it's highest and the middle class is slowly dying off. So no, immigration wasn't on the top of the priority list till Arizona proposed and passed their SB1070 immigrant law. Good move by the GOP to take the heat off the real problems in this country that occured under their watch. And they just got lucky with the BP oil spill, then again it was the GOP that allowed BP to drill, drill and drill with no safety measures and policies.
Ramos and his followers have a short memory, much like the Republican Party, but go ahead Ramos, sway them over to the GOP and lets see how well Immigration Reform will do then. The Republican Party ahs already dropped support for Comprehensive Immigration Reform and are now in favor of just locking down the borders. Let's see how long will it be before they begin to enforce deportation over actually naturalizing the undocumented that are already here.
Jorge Ramos does not speak for all Latinos. The truth is most hispanic americans are more concerned in keeping their jobs, homes and not having their civili rights violated, which is possilbe under AZ SB1070, and are therefore against this bill but not pro illegal entry into this country. True Obama supporters who voted in the 2008 election will do so again because he supports America as a whole, not just one specific race and not one specific legislative policy. So if Ramos and friends have lost patience so be it, but Obama made it perfectly clear, Change doesn't happen overnight. Priorities Mr. Ramos....it's all about priorities.
Hispanic media take on Obama
By: Carrie Budoff Brown
August 11, 2010 04:47 AM EDT
President Barack Obama has lost the most trusted man in the Hispanic media.
Univision’s Jorge Ramos, an anchor on the nation’s largest Spanish-language television network, says Obama broke his promise to produce an immigration reform bill within a year of taking office. And Latinos are tired of the speeches, disillusioned by the lack of White House leadership and distrustful of the president, Ramos told POLITICO.
“He has a credibility problem right now with Latinos,” Ramos said. “We’ll see what the political circumstances are in a couple of years, but there is a serious credibility problem.”
Ramos has been called the Walter Cronkite of Spanish-language media, an unparalleled nationwide voice for Hispanics. And just like the famed CBS newsman’s commentary helped turn the country against the Vietnam War, Ramos may be on the leading edge of a movement within the Hispanic media to challenge the president on immigration — a shift that some observers believe is contributing to Obama’s eroding poll numbers among Latino voters.
“When you have a Univision and a Telemundo taking an aggressive and active role pointing to the White House inaction, it calls attention,” said Jose Cancela, president of the media consulting firm Hispanics USA. “It is not helping the administration at this point in time.”
The editorials and commentary from the Spanish-language media have been brutal since April, when Arizona passed its controversial immigration enforcement law — a moment that crystallized a sense of urgency among Latinos but also underscored how little progress the White House had made on reform.
“Words matter,” Telemundo anchor Jose Diaz-Balart said in April on NBC’s “Meet the Press” — adding that Obama’s campaign promise, known as “La Promesa de Obama,” has gone unfulfilled. “We haven’t seen it.”
After Obama announced his decision to send 1,200 guards to the U.S.-Mexico border in May, an editorial in El Diario La Prensa of New York asked: “Who’s in charge in Washington?”
The president’s major immigration speech last month only created more discontent.
La Opinion, the country’s largest Spanish-language daily newspaper, titled its editorial, “Words are not enough.”
“Obama came up short,” wrote Andres Oppenheimer, a columnist for El Nuevo Herald and The Miami Herald.
“Cheap and easy rhetoric,” La Opinion contributor Jorge Delgado concluded.
“It is unprecedented what Spanish-language media has been doing over the past several months,” Cancela said in an interview. “Many in the administration thought there was a cozy relationship and the Spanish-language media would play the role of quiet cooperator. It has been a wake-up call.”
The shift in tone among Hispanic opinion makers is helping solidify a narrative about Obama among Latino voters. They held great hopes for the president — given his promise in a May 2008 interview with Ramos to draft an immigration reform bill during his first year in office — but he has deeply disappointed them so far.
“Latinos voted overwhelmingly for President Obama, and they expected him to keep his promise and he broke his promise,” said Ramos, author of the recently released book “A Country for All: An Immigrant Manifesto.”
“If he was able to get 60 votes for financial reform, if he can get 60 votes to extend unemployment benefits, how come he can’t get 60 votes for immigration reform?” Ramos asked. “So many Latinos feel there is a lack of leadership, and he is not fighting for immigration reform with the same intensity that he fought for health care reform.”
An administration official pointed to the president’s accomplishments on immigration reform — his work with senators on a legislative framework, pressing Republicans to step up and delivering the speech last month to restart the discussion. But until a few Republicans break ranks, the official said, Obama is stymied.
The official also rejected the notion that Obama has lost the Spanish-language media: “I don’t know that we ever owned them. They are a fiercely independent bunch. They try to be loyal mostly to their readers and their viewers, and they do cover things closely. But I don’t think Republicans have gotten away without criticism, and they are held pretty strongly to account for what has gone on.”
The swing in opinion couldn’t come at a worse time for Democrats, who need a strong Latino turnout in November if they hope to maintain control of Congress. That voting bloc could be decisive in dozens of competitive House, Senate and gubernatorial races across the West, according to a report by America’s Voice, an immigration reform advocacy group.
But polls show signs of trouble. Obama’s approval rating among Hispanics dropped from 69 percent in January to 57 percent in May, even as his support among black and white voters remained stable, according to the Gallup Poll.
In a Univision/Associated Press poll released last month, only 43 percent of 1,521 Hispanics surveyed from March 11 to June 3 said Obama is adequately addressing their needs.
Ramos places blame on Republicans as well — as do the editorial pages of the country’s largest Hispanic daily newspapers — for doing nothing to resolve the immigration issue. But these papers say they never expected much from the GOP. Democrats, in their view, are a different story.
The president heavily courted Hispanic voters with La Promesa, and Democrats control both chambers of Congress. Latinos may acknowledge that it takes 60 votes to do anything in the Senate, but they’re not accepting it as an excuse.
“It was lukewarm,” said Ruben Funes, editorial page editor for La Prensa newspaper in Orlando, Fla. “It is not really strong support from him.”
Editorial page editors and Spanish-language journalists told POLITICO that their coverage reflects rising frustration in their community. For years, they said, Democratic leaders told Hispanics to be patient; now, their patience has run out.
At the same time, the Obama administration is set to deport more illegal immigrants this year than during the last year of the Bush administration, expelling otherwise law-abiding workers and tearing families apart.
“There is a disappointment of a promise that has not been fulfilled,” said Henrik Rehbinder, La Opinion’s editorial page editor. “More than disappointment is some anger, some resentment, over the fact that this administration was going to be sensitive to family separations, and they really are not.” The critique from Ramos could prove particularly damaging to the White House.
A Mexican immigrant and Univision anchor for more than 20 years, Ramos carries such weight with Hispanic-Americans that his commentary is viewed as the definitive take on an issue — “kind of the final word on it,” said America’s Voice Executive Director Frank Sharry.
Ramos turned critical after the first anniversary of Obama’s Inauguration, when it became clear the promise would not be met, and he hasn’t let up on the administration since.
“They know they are in trouble with the Hispanic community, and the problem in November is the Hispanic vote may be up for grabs again,” Ramos said. “My fear is they might not vote. They don’t feel protected or supported by either party.”
© 2010 Capitol News Company, LLC
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Whether or not xenophobia manages to do significant damage to the Constitution (which repealing the 14th amendment would do) we have and will always have a large Latino population in the United States.
U.S. Immigration Fight Widens to Native Born
By MIRIAM JORDAN and JEAN GUERRERO in Phoenix and LAURA MECKLER in Washington
The immigration debate is reviving the explosive idea of denying citizenship to children born on U.S. soil if their parents are in the country illegally.
A U.S. senator and a state lawmaker in Arizona, both central players in the battle over immigration law, separately proposed this week that "birthright" citizenship be denied to the children of illegal immigrants. They said the change would help stem the flood of illegal border crossings.
"People come here to have babies. They come here to drop a child," Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) said Wednesday night on Fox News. "That shouldn't be the case. That attracts people here for all the wrong reasons." Mr. Graham is a onetime partner with Democrats in crafting a proposed overhaul of immigration laws.
Immigration-rights activists say citizenship isn't a significant driver of illegal immigration, because a child has to reach age 21 to petition for permanent legal residency for his or her parents.
Such calls to change what has been a bedrock feature of the immigration system are sure to set off contentious debate. "It's an extreme position, and Sen. Graham knows this," said Angela Kelley of the left-leaning Center for American Progress. "He's not one to tamper with the Constitution, so I'm surprised he would even suggest this."
In Arizona, Republican state Sen. Russell Pearce, the architect of the immigration law that drew a legal challenge from the Obama administration, said he wanted to deny U.S. citizenship to children born in his state to illegal immigrants.
At issue is the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, enacted in 1868 to ensure that states not deny former slaves the full rights of citizenship. It states, "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside."
Mr. Graham, speaking on Fox, suggested that changing birthright-citizenship rules would require a constitutional amendment. "We should change our Constitution and say if you come here illegally and have a child, that child's not automatically a citizen," he said.
He said he was considering introducing such an amendment. A spokesman said Thursday that Mr. Graham was just discussing the idea and hadn't made any decisions about whether to move ahead.
Mr. Pearce, like some other proponents of the change, argued that the amendment as written doesn't apply to illegal immigrants. Because illegal immigrants aren't "subject to the jurisdiction" of the U.S., as the amendment requires, they fall outside its protection, these people argue. A group of House lawmakers made a similar argument when they tried to pass legislation changing the birthright principle in 2005.
"When it was ratified in 1868, the amendment had to do with African-Americans; it had nothing to do with aliens," Mr. Pearce said. "It's got to be fixed."
Given the controversial nature of this proposal, successfully amending the Constitution would be considered a long shot. It requires a vote of two-thirds of the House and of the Senate, and must be ratified by three-fourths of state legislators.
A change in state law redefining who is a citizen would likely draw a legal challenge, as did Arizona's effort to change state immigration law.
Under Mr. Pearce's proposal, Arizona would refuse to issue a birth certificate to any child unless at least one parent could prove legal presence in the U.S. "The 14th Amendment has been hijacked and abused," Mr. Pearce said. "We incentivize people to break our laws."
The U.S. is home to about 11 million illegal immigrants. There are nearly four million whose children are U.S. citizens, according to a 2009 report by the Pew Hispanic Center, a nonpartisan research group in Washington.
Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which calls for cracking down on all immigration to the U.S., said that citizenship as a birthright isn't automatic in many countries in the West.
"We should not allow language from 1868 to enslave our thinking...in the 21st century," Mr. Stein said.
Mr. Pearce was sponsor of SB1070, the law that required police to check the immigration station of anyone they stop if they suspect unlawful presence. On Wednesday, a federal judge blocked that provision and others, pending further legal review. Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, who signed the bill into law, has promised to appeal.
On Thursday, close to a thousand protestors chanted, drummed and participated in street blockades throughout downtown Phoenix to show their intent to resist SB1070. Many were arrested.
"We don't want no police state! Stop the injustice, stop the hate!" hundreds chanted in front of the office of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who supported the law and whose deputies have made it a priority to detain illegal immigrants.
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Undocumented immigrants think things bad now, imagine having to deal with the "Party of No" and their Tea Party cohorts. If the Latino community who are able to vote actually believe they will be helping these people by threatening to boycott the census, vote GOP/Tea Party in mid term elections and/or won't vote for Obama in 2012, th ink again. Such childish and irrational acts, should they carry out these threats will lead to having Republicans/Tea Party politicians such as Sarah Palin, Rudy Giuliani and Liz Cheney running this country. We saw how the Bush Administration handled immigration reform in his 8 years, so you can imagine what the new stooge party would have to offer the Latino community.
I understand that some are disenchanted with the Democrat majority, but by no means can the Latino community afford either emotionally, economically or in any way, the Tea Party of the failed GOP. They have already shown us what they can do or to be more specific what they can't do. Do this country and yourself a huge favor. Be active and be patient....Si Se Pueden.
Hispanic loyalty to Democrats wanes
Inaction on immigration reform has key voting bloc less enthused about election
No, it's not the bad economy that has voters in a sour, anti-incumbent mood. Or the poor approval numbers of the Reid family, the father-son duo of Harry and Rory who are atop the Democratic ticket as candidates for Senate and governor, respectively. And no, it's not that Republicans have found their legs with the help of the enthusiastic Tea Party movement.
Those are all bad enough, but they've got another problem: Hispanic voters are tired of Democrats not delivering on their promises.
Matt Barreto, a University of Washington political scientist and consultant with the firm Latino Decisions, points to recent polling that should scare the daylights out of Democrats.
"The number of Latinos who say they are enthusiastic about midterm elections is the lowest we've ever seen," said Barreto, whose firm polls extensively among Hispanics. In 2006, 77 percent of Hispanics were excited about voting. In a recent poll, however, just 49 percent were excited.
As Barreto noted, midterm elections usually feature lower turnout, which means victory hinges on energizing the party's core supporters rather than persuading swing voters.
For Democrats, Hispanics are an important part of that base, especially in Nevada.
President Barack Obama won Nevada Hispanic voters by a 3-1 margin in 2008 while also pushing up their turnout considerably - Hispanic voters comprised 15 percent of the Nevada electorate, compared with 10 percent in 2004, according to exit polling and data compiled by the Pew Hispanic Center.
If they stay home in large numbers, Democrats, including both Reids and Rep. Dina Titus, likely lose.
For Democrats on the dais at Saturday's big downtown immigration rally, which drew several thousand people, the event was a great way to reach out to that base.
But it was also an awkward affair.
On that key issue for Hispanic voters - comprehensive immigration reform - Democrats haven't done anything. Obama mentioned it in one sentence in his State of the Union address.
There's been some theater about taking on immigration this year, with Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., establishing a "framework" for legislation. At the rally, Reid reiterated his desire to bring legislation to the floor this year. But the conventional wisdom in Washington - granted, that gives it an even chance of being wrong - is that Congress will do financial regulatory reform and another jobs bill this year, and then head home to campaign.
It's easy to see why they haven't gotten around to immigration this year: Congress has had a full plate, and immigration is a divisive issue that will fire up the Republican base.
Still, invited guests at Saturday's rally were there to pump up Hispanic turnout - but can't offer up much in return.
"You have a lot of elected officials who have made promises to get it done," said Michael Flores, a local organizer for Reform Immigration for America. "People in the streets are discouraged.
"We are trying to spur them into action," he said of the elected officials.
Barreto thinks it would be smart politics for Democrats to take up immigration. It could help Democratic turnout. True, it would animate Republicans, but they're going to turn out in big numbers anyway, so he thinks it would be a net positive.
On health care, another key issue for Hispanic voters, Democrats again fell short with that bloc. Hispanic activists were disappointed with some provisions of the law, saying it is not progressive enough and doesn't cover enough of the uninsured.
"It was underwhelming in the Latino community," Barreto said.
It's hard not to get a sense that Democrats think they can take this constituency for granted.
They do so at their own peril.
Not all Latinos are Catholic. Not all Hispanics speaks Spanish. Not all Latinos like spicy food. Oh, and not all Latinos are for amnesty or immigration reform.Political parties have to stop with the stereotypes. Perhaps then people won't be shocked and disappointed that Latinos have individual voting habits, and are not some collective hive with one train of thought.
Till politicians realize this, they can keep waiting. I know people in all walks of life and to try and just place them in a particular voting block because of one factor, being Hispanic, showing a condescending attitude towards the group. People vote based on many factors. As any other culture, you will never see Latinos vote the same way.
If you want Latinos to vote Republican, Democrat etc...lose the fear, lose the hate, keep your mouth shut when in doubt, and keep the sheets in the closet. Remember one thing for sure...Latinos never forget.