Friday, September 19, 2014

Dolores Huerta argues for politics and voting

Dolores Huerta, Latina Civil Rights leader, co-founder of the United Farmworkers Union, and feminist leader spoke to over 800 students at CSU-Sacramento on Sept 18, on the topic of civic engagement, particularly of young people.
Her talk was lengthy, but she carefully and explicitly connected  the assigned themes of the Constitution and civic engagement to a long list of  issues important to young people. She explained the role of a two party government,  the paralysis of the current Congress, the obstruction of the U.S. Supreme Court, efforts on voter suppression and more.
She began by explaining that the effort at comprehensive immigration reform was blocked by Republicans in the House and predicted that if the Republicans were able to gain control of the Senate in November, the extreme anti immigrant legislation of Republicans would be advanced to an audience that was over 80% young and Latino.
Dolores used current issues to explain constitutional debates including Citizens United, voter suppression, restrictions on women’s  choice on reproduction, equal pay, and the importance of labor unions. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Dolores Huerta Speaking at Sac State on Thursday

Dolores Huerta, DSA Honorary Chair and longtime friend of members of our work  will be speaking at Sac State on Sept.18.  Free. Dolores is a leader in Latino, Civil Rights, Feminist and Labor politics.

See more here.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Jilted Once More on the Promise of Immigration Reform

Jilted Once More on the Promise of Immigration Reform
Posted on September 15, 2014 by Jimmy Franco Sr.
President Obama has stated that any action on immigration reform either legislatively or through any type of executive action will once again be postponed until the end of the year. The official reason given for yet another postponement in regard to resolving this pressing issue are the upcoming mid-term elections and the need to get Democrats elected. The Congressional Hispanic Caucus was not even consulted nor informed of this decision by Obama before it went public. The real reason which Obama and other Democrats didn’t mention is the unprincipled need to distance themselves from the “taint” of immigration reform and  statements or actions that appear sympathetic to immigrants so as to not alienate xenophobic and anti-immigrant voters in the November elections. This political decision essentially confirmed that the priority for Obama’s Democrats is to cater to voters who are fervently opposed to immigrants and reform by not saying or doing anything that would harm their chauvinist “sensitivities” in order to win their votes. This so-called “pragmatic and Machiavellian” policy and action by the Democrats takes precedence in the real world over the political sensitivities of Latinos and the continuing harm being inflicted upon immigrants and their families due to a callous and broken immigration system. Immigration activists, their organizations and the eleven million undocumented persons within the country have been left standing alone at the altar holding a hollow Democratic proposal after having been jilted once again by the unfaithful suitor Obama with another one of his false promises. This political relationship between Obama’s Democrats and the Latino community resembles a deja vu scenario and is similar to an insincere groom once again making lame and repeated excuses to not show up at the church wedding in order to avoid making a final and decisive commitment which in this case is immigration reform.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Other 9/11. Chile in 1973

To mark the 41st anniversary of the military coup that overthrew Salvador Allende's democratically elected socialist government in Chile on 9/11 of 1973, we're pleased to post the first article in a two-part series by Jorge A. Lawton, who worked as a Latin American analyst on the Senate “Church Committee,” and as an advisor to former Chilean Foreign Minister, Orlando Letelier, until his assassination in September 1976. -- Ed.
By Jorge A. Lawton
Pre-dawn on Tuesday morning, Sept. 11, 1973, three years of relentless intervention by the hemisphere's greatest power, the United States, succeeded both in choking off Chile's historic experiment in its “transition to socialism through democracy,” and in giving birth to the brutal years of Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship. For many reasons, both U.S. perception and policy against the “Allende experiment in socialism,” as well as U.S. support for and use of the Pinochet alternative, are rich in present day and future lessons. Close examination also reveals how the same relatively limited repertoire of policy tools is likely to be available to implement U.S. interests today and in the future (for ex., destabilization efforts in Venezuela).

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Private Prisons Profit from Incarceration of Migrants

Nicole Flatow, Think Progress

Share prices for two of the largest private prison firms have spiked sharply since an influx of unaccompanied migrant children crossing the border was reported this summer. And some investors in GEO Group and Corrections Corporation of America are seizing on the opportunity for more profit from incarceration, according to recent comments to CNN Money.

“Investors see this as an opportunity. This is a potentially untapped market that will have very strong demand,” activist investor Alex Friedmann told CNN Money.

Both firms, which house prisoners through private sector contracts with the government, have arrangements with federal agencies to detain immigrants. Since July 30, CCA’s stock has increased 8.5 percent, and GEO’s has increased 7 percent. Analyst Brian Ruttenbur added that both companies are “extremely well positioned” to “help with the crisis.”

Saturday, September 06, 2014

What Should We Do About Migrant Children ?| Luis Urrea | TEDxSitka

Luis Alberto Urrea is the author of The Devil's Highway.  2004.
Thanks to Latino Rebels for finding this talk. 

Obama Delays Decision on Immigration

Policy on refugees has not changed. ( see post below)
WASHINGTON — President Obama will delay taking executive action on immigration until after the midterm elections, bowing to pressure from fellow Democrats who feared that acting now could doom his party’s chances this fall, White House officials said on Saturday. NY Times.
The decision is a reversal of Mr. Obama’s vow to issue broad directives to overhaul the immigration system soon after summer’s end, and sparked swift anger from immigration advocates. The president made the promise on June 30, standing in the Rose Garden, where he angrily denounced Republican obstruction and said he would use the power of his office to protect immigrant families from the threat of deportation.

“Because of the Republicans’ extreme politicization of this issue, the president believes it would be harmful to the policy itself and to the long-term prospects for comprehensive immigration reform to announce administrative action before the elections,” a White House official said. “Because he wants to do this in a way that’s sustainable, the president will take action on immigration before the end of the year.”

Jim Kuhnhenn, Associated Press.  9/6/2014.
WASHINGTON — Caught between competing political demands over immigration, President Barack Obama will now wait until after the November election to take executive action that could shield millions of immigrants from deportation and ignite a clash over the extent of his presidential authority.