Monday, October 31, 2011

"News for All the People": Juan González & Joseph Torres on the Epic Story of Race & the U.S. Media

"News for All the People": Juan González & Joseph Torres on the Epic Story of Race & the U.S. Media

Arizona's experiment in Democracy Failing;

Arizona's Experiment in Democracy Failing... Badly
By Roberto Dr. Cintli Rodriguez

The experiment in Democracy seems to be failing badly in Arizona. Here, government, the state legislature, law enforcement, the educational system, the courts and the media are a testament to this colossal failure. Here, rampant hate and bigotry starts at the top and here, it is government by [ugly] mob rule.

A court proceeding earlier this month in Phoenix – with a decision expected any day now – attests to this experiment gone awry; the court hearing was as absurd as the daily Kangaroo trials in Tucson known as Operation Streamline (70 migrants are charged, tried, convicted and sentenced in one hour). This Phoenix proceeding was part of an appeals process, being held to determine whether Tucson’s Mexican American Studies (MAS) Department is out of compliance with HB 2281, the state’s anti Ethnic Studies or mind control measure. The program graduates nearly 100% of its students and sends over 70% percent of them to college. Yet, these phenomenal accomplishments are of little consequence for those trying to eliminate it.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Why California Students ( and most teachers) do not know Chicano History

Workshop: Teaching Chicano/ Latino History in Grades 8-12.  Curriculum ideas for teaching about César Chávez, Dolores Huerta, Civil Rights Movement, and economic justice.  With Duane Campbell, Director of the Education and Democracy Institute., Sacramento.  Dolores Delgado Campbell.  Professor. American River College. 
Presented  as a part of the  annual conference of The Bilingual Multicultural Education Department (BMED)  Sat . Nov. 5, 2011.  10:35  Am. In the University Union, at  Sacramento State.
 California has the largest population of any state, with more than 6,252,000 students  in school in 2008.   California students make up more than 11 percent of the United States total. California, along with some 16 other states, adopts textbooks for the entire state instead of district by district purchasing.  This makes the California adoption the largest single textbook sale in the nation.
California has failed to revise its k-12 history curriculum since 1987.  Since 2008, the failure was caused by the state’s budget crisis.
       When the 48.72 % of students who are Latino , and the 11.5 % who are Asian do not see themselves as part of history,  for many their sense of self is marginalized.   Marginalization negatively impacts their connections with school and their success at school.  It contributes to an over 50% drop out rate for Latinos and some Asian students.  An accurate history  would provide some students with a  a sense of self, of direction,  of purpose. History and social science  classes  should help young people acquire and learn to use the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that will prepare them to be competent and responsible citizens throughout their lives.   Instead, the current history textbooks tell a fairy tale of what happened here in the Southwest.

Ruben Navarrette is a fool - and misinformed

Ruben Navarrette is a fool.  And, he is published in the Sacramento Bee as an informed essayist on the Latino population.

Navarrette is a paranoid fool who spends too much time reading  Tea Party/ Republican talking points developed and funded by the Koch brothers. He is primarily  a source  on the fringe party element of the Tea Party.  Read his other writings on Cesar Chavez and the UFW, you will see his very conservative perspective.
  RE: bilingual education establishment. I guess he hasn't read the paper since 1996. Bilingual Education was eliminated in almost all California schools with Prop. 227. - an anti immigrant proposition much like those of Arizona and Alabama.  In Sacramento City Schools, for example, there are 77 schools.  Five of the schools have a bilingual program for less than 20% of the students in the schools. It usually lasts 2-3 years of schooling at best.  Only one school is fully bilingual, The Language Academy.  The Academy is a charter school.  Only parents who want to have their children there are enrolled.  The same campus has an English language school.  The hypocrisy of Navarette and his Tea Party allies is revealed. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Biliterate Against the Odds,

 Becoming BILITERATE AGAINST THE ODDS : A Cause for Celebration:
                  La comunidad entera de Sacramento está invitada a la 18a Conferencia Anual sobre Educación Multicultural en Sacramento State University, el sábado, 5 de noviembre de 8:30 am – 1:00 de la tarde en la University Union, Sacramento State .  La entrada y el estacionamiento de carros (en Parking Structure II) son totalmente gratis.  
                  La invitada de honor es la Doctora María de la Luz Reyes, autora de of Words Were All We Had: Becoming Biliterate Against the Odds.  En su presentación de las 9:00 am la Dra. Reyes nos explicará por qué  el crecer bilingue en los Estados Unidos debería  de ser una causa de celebración.  El éxito de los profesionistas latinos de educación rechaza el mito de “en riesgo” sobre los que crecen con idiomas nativas, indicando que el saber el Espanol apoya el aprendizaje del  Inglés y refuerza la lucha contra la hegemonía de “English Only.”
                  El Departamento de Educación Bilingue  Multilingue (BMED) de Sacramento State patronina esta conferencia anual para unir la facultad y estudiantes con miembros de la comuniadad de Sacramento para apoyar a la educación bilingue y multilingue en nuestra escuelas publicas K-16.  Invitamos cordialmente a todos los estudiantes, alumna de CSUS, maestros, padres de familia , profesionistas y toda persona interesada a que acuda a esta manana con la Dra. Reyes.  Después de la presentación, habrá grupos mas chicos para discutur temas relacionadas, dirigidos por facultad, maestros y estudiantes.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Equality and Jobs for the 99 %

  Equality and Jobs for the 99%:  Economic Justice for All
A public event sponsored by Democratic Socialists of America

Date and Time: November 11, 2011; 7:00 p.m.
Location: St. Stephen and Incarnation Church, 1525 Newton NW, Washington, D.C.


John Conyers – U.S. Representative for Michigan’s 14th district
Eliseo Medina – International Secretary-Treasurer, SEIU
Sarita Gupta – Executive Director, Jobs with Justice
John Nichols – Washington Correspondent, The Nation
Joslyn Williams – President, Metropolitan D.C. Central Labor Council
Maria Svart – National Director, Democratic Socialists of America 

DSA, the principal U.S. affiliate of the Socialist International, is the largest socialist political organization in the country, with more than  6,000 members and active locals in more 40 U.S. cities and college campuses. DSA Locals in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Wichita, among others, have taken an active role in the Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Freedom Plaza, and other Occupy protests in support of jobs and economic justice.
This meeting is organized in conjunction with the 15th National Convention of Democratic Socialists of America, which is being held at the Sheraton Premiere at Tysons Corner November 11-13, 2011. Visit for more information. A full press kit with bio’s and photographs will be available at the event. Advance requests for press kits should be sent to the email address listed above.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

David Bacon: Letter from Oaxaca

David Bacon
The Investigative Fund, a project of The Nation Institute, 10/24/11

       If there's one experience that Mexicans have in common more than any other, more even than hatred and repudiation of the mutual violence of the narcos and the government, it's migration.  In Oaxaca, 18% of its 3.7 million people have left for other parts of Mexico, and especially for the U.S.  Almost half its towns have shrunk, and migration has become part of the daily experience for almost every family.
        I just spent three days listening to indigenous people here talk about it, in a unique organization that brings together people from both sides of the border, the Binational Front of Indigenous Organizations (FIOB).
        Two things make this organization different from the average hometown association organized in the U.S. by people from the same Mexican village or state.  It's not just an organization of the people who've left, but of those who still live in those hometowns as well.  And while FIOB members spend a lot of time talking about their indigenous culture (languages like Mixteco, Zapoteco and Triqui, and the dances, music, food and history shared by people for hundreds of years before Columbus arrived in this hemisphere), their organization has very political goals.
   The debates at the FIOB meeting, which lasted for two days in Oaxaca, revolved around two general rights.  One is the right to migrate, and in particular the rights of Oaxacan indigenous migrants in the U.S.  The other is the right to not migrate - to stay home. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Ohio: Repeal S.B.5.

Republicans try to stop the Dream Act

Opponents of a new law that allows illegal immigrants to receive college financial aid were given the green light to begin collecting signatures for a referendum to overturn the measure, Secretary of State Debra Bowen's office announced today.
Led by Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, R-Twin Peaks, referendum backers hope to halt implementation of the California Dream Act. Gov. Jerry Brown signed the measure Oct. 8.
Donnelly's group has until Jan. 6 to collect valid signatures from 504,760 registered voters. Donnelly has said he hopes to wage a largely volunteer effort fueled by social media and talk radio.
Assembly Bill 131, written by Assemblyman Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles, will allow undocumented immigrant college students who already qualify for in-state tuition rates to receive state-funded financial aid, including Cal Grants. Qualified students must have attended California high schools for at least three years and graduated.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Alabama Workers Leave crops in the fields

Alabama Workers Meet Harsh Immigration Law with Wildcats
    |  OCTOBER 21, 2011

Tens of thousands of protesters marched through downtown Atlanta July 2 to protest an anti-immigrant law. Georgia's was one of four bills passed this year that are creating fear in immigrant communities, driving people out of state, and leaving crops rotting in the fields. Photo: Caitie Leary.
An all-out attack on immigrant workers, their families, and communities continues in the South and West. In Alabama, immigrant workers met it with a day of wildcat strikes.
The now-infamous Arizona anti-immigrant law SB1070 kicked off the current wave of anti-immigrant legislation last year. This year Georgia, Utah, South Carolina, and Alabama jumped on the “show me your papers” bandwagon with copycat legislation.
Immigrant rights advocates say Alabama’s law is the harshest. It gives police the right to stop and investigate anyone they “reasonably suspect” of being undocumented—in other words, an open invitation to racially profile.
The legislation also denies immigrants state medical aid and unemployment benefits. It forbids individuals and employers to hire, harbor, rent property to, or even give a ride to undocumented immigrants. Public schools must check the immigration status of children when they enroll.
One town, Allgood, announced that all water customers must have a state picture ID on file or “you may lose water service.”


Most of Alabama’s law, and the other states’ laws, are on hold pending Department of Justice challenges. The government has argued that these state laws are unconstitutional because immigration is a federal matter.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

California Republicans propose anti immigrant initiative

Conservative activists have submitted an initiative proposal targeting illegal immigration by imposing limits on financial aid and Medi-Cal benefits while requiring California law enforcement to work with federal immigration officials.
State Attorney General Kamala Harris, who is responsible for preparing ballot language, received the proposal Monday from former state GOP chairman Tirso Del Junco, San Diego Republican Ted Hilton and Concord Republican Bill Siler. Proponents are calling it the "California Taxpayer Protection Act of 2012."
Hilton and Siler pursued a similar measure in 2009 but failed to gather enough signatures.
The proposal would prohibit undocumented immigrants from receiving public financial aid in California, a hot-button topic after Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation this month allowing them to qualify for tuition help in certain circumstances. The initiative also would block driver's licenses -- which California does not issue currently to undocumented immigrants -- and require fingerprinting for Medi-Cal pregnancy services, with fingerprint reports relayed to the federal Department of Homeland Security.
It would also require that law enforcement officials transfer people they arrest to federal custody if those individuals have an "immigration detainer."
The measure can be seen here.
Source. the Sacramento Bee.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Dr. Cornel West Occupies @ Supreme Court Oct 16 2011

Occupy Sacramento: Indigenous Day of Resistance

Native American groups, Occupy Sacramento proclaim Indigenous Day of Resistance 
by Dan Bacher 

On Friday, activists from Native American, student, labor and civil rights groups and Occupy Sacramento joined together in a march from Cesar Chavez Park to the Capitol for an Indigenous Day of Resistance protest to denounce the United States’ “glorification of the atrocities committed against native ancestors of the Americas during the Indigenous Holocaust let by Christopher Columbus.” 

“With many severe cuts to education and social services nationwide, we call to question, why we continue to increase our $14.6 billion US National Debt to fund wars over seas,” according to a statement from the groups. “Instead we have a war at home, were millions are losing their homes and jobs while the banks are plundering our wealth. CA is #1 in Prison Spending and #43 in Education Nationwide. Why is that?” 

“As for our Native Community surrounding the US/Mexican border, we are now being labeled as ‘Immigrants’ that was once home. We are tired of seeing migrants scapegoated for the failures of capitalism. It angers us to be called 'illegal aliens' when it was our ancestors who inhabited this lands before Columbus came to conquer and plunder this land. Now in contrast our people are forced to risk their lives crossing a further militarized border. Over the last decade, it is estimated 10,000 died crossing the border.” 

“Occupy Wall Street:” Black Voices for Economic Justice

“Occupy Wall Street:” Black Voices for Economic Ju...: October 12, 2011 By Ron Daniels Struggling to come up for air from a brutal schedule, for several weeks I had been planning to write an a...
an essay on the Occupy Wall Street Movement.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Cornel West Arrested

By James Oliphant Los Angeles times.
October 16, 2011, 7:07 p.m.

Liberal professor Cornel West was one of 19 people arrested on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington on Sunday, according to the Associated Press, as part of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

West, a former Harvard University professor now teaching at Princeton University, took part Sunday in the dedication of the monument to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., an event that was delayed from August because of Hurricane Irene. He then, according to media reports, moved on to a protest at the home of the high court.

A well-known commentator on civil rights issues, West recently got into a TV spat with presidential candidate Herman Cain, telling Cain to "get off the symbolic crack pipe."

In Washington, the anti-corporate protest movement is known as Occupy D.C.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Poverty Tour – Part 1

The Poverty Tour – Part 1
Tavis Smiley, and Cornel West

Signing of the Dream Act in California

Comments by Assemblyman Gil Cedillo upon the signing of Assembly Bill 131, the second half of theCalifornia Dream Act

I first want to express my gratitude to Governor Brown who has today given hope and opportunity to thousands of current and future students and their families by signing Assembly Bill 131. The signing of now both parts of the California Dream Act will send a message across the country that California is prepared to lead the country with a positive and productive vision for how we approach challenging issues related to immigration. Today, Ana and Maria Gomez, Jaime Kim, David Cho, Pedro Ramirez - and thousands of other students who are some of the best and brightest in California, have been told by our Governor and legislative leaders that you are welcome here, that you have something to contribute, that you can be proud of what you have accomplished and that your talents and ambition will not go to waste.
The passage of the California Dream Act did not come without struggle. It emerged out of the desire for opportunity and inclusion, but it was initially stymied and vetoed out of an impulse of political fear. The lesson that we learn today - the insight that Steve Jobs expressed in that Stanford commencement address that has been featured so prominently this week - is that fear

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Free Trade Agreements - Killing Jobs and Labor Rights

By David Bacon

        Last week President Obama broke his campaign commitment and put three free trade agreements up for a vote in Congress.  Business interests, ecstatic at the prospect, promise they'll bring us jobs.  Experience tells us, however, their promises are worthless.
       Nineteen years ago, when the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was in Congress, supporters said it too would create jobs and protect labor rights.  Before agreeing to new free trade treaties with Colombia, South Korea and Panama, Congress should look at the dismal record.
      Promise #1. A typical pro-business study predicted in 1992 that NAFTA would create 130,000 U.S. jobs in two years, double U.S. exports to Mexico, and create 609,000 jobs there.  Today Tom Donahue, CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, repeats the promise, saying the three new treaties also "are about creating jobs."
    According to the Economic Policy Institute, however, between 1993 and 2004 the U.S. trade deficit with Mexico ballooned by $107 billion, which cost 1,015,290 U.S. jobs, 123,000 in California.  But although those jobs went south, Mexico lost far more jobs because of the treaty than those relocated from the U.S. 
        Mexico lost a million jobs just in the first year the treaty took effect.  Because the treaty allowed U.S. grain companies to dump corn in Mexico, 1.3 million farmers lost their livelihood as well.  Pork dumping cost another 120,000 jobs.  Eliminating its domestic content laws cost the jobs of thousands of auto parts workers.
Six million people from Mexico came to live and work in the U.S. as a result of this displacement.  The Colombian FTA has a provision identical to that in NAFTA, which led to the corn dumping, so those farmers will be uprooted too.

California Legislation on Immigrants

The immigrants' rights bills Governor Brown has signed into law include:
  • AB 130 (Cedillo, AD-45) signed on July 25, 2011 and AB 131 (Cedillo) signed on October 8, 2011 -- Together, the bills are known as the California DREAM Act, providing eligibility for private and state-funded financial aid to undocumented students;
  • AB 207 (Ammiano, AD-13) signed on October 3, 2011 -- Establishing statewide rules on documents that may be required in public school enrollment, facilitating compliance with Plyler v. Doe and the enrollment of all children, regardless of status;
  • AB 353 (Cedillo) signed on October 9, 2011 -- Restricting the ability of law enforcement to impound vehicles driven by unlicensed drivers and facilitating the release of vehicles that are impounded;
  • AB 844 (Lara, AD-50) signed on October 8, 2011 -- Allowing undocumented student government leaders in California colleges to receive grants or scholarships to facilitate their service the same as other student leaders; and
  • AB 1236 (Fong, AD-22) signed on October 9, 2011 -- Barring cities and counties from mandating use of the flawed and voluntary federal e-verify program (preventing several California cities from continuing to implement their E-verify mandate ordinances).
  • Provided by MALDEF

Oppose the " Free Trade" Agreements

Most of you know that the Americas Program has been analyzing and monitoring the impact of Free Trade Agreements since the inception of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in the early nineties. The conclusion of this work is that FTAs hurt workers, the poor, indigenous peoples, farmers, women and others in every country involved, and they deliver huge advantages to corporations. The result is increased inequality and environmental destruction.

We celebrated the demise of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) when Latin American countries rejected its coercive terms. We have called for renegotiation of NAFTA and written against the Panama and Colombia Free Trade Agreements. We hoped for a new fair trade policy under the Obama administration and we saw those hopes crumble.
Tomorrow the next batch of anti-worker Free Trade Agreements comes before Congress, in the midst of an on-going unemployment crisis. The Panama, Colombia and South Korean FTAs are more of the same unfair terms to favor transnational business as workers and the environment continue to suffer.
Today is the day to act on all we've learned about the negative effects of FTAs. Contact your legislatorsTODAY to let them know we will not accept increasing corporate privileges at the expense of jobs and our environment. Our partners at Witness for Peace have set up an easy way to phone in or to send an email
But we have to do it now! This is our last chance to stand up for decent jobs, labor rights and environmental protections, threatened by the FTAs.

Phone in or send an email to Congress today. Together we can make a difference. Please act now!

Monday, October 10, 2011

California Dream Act, Farmworkers bill signed

Assemblymember Gil Cedillo, activists student organizers, and the California Legislature, and Governor Brown passed the Dream Act.
  The legislation allows  undocumented immigrant college students to receive public financial aid, marking California's relatively liberal ground in a bitter row over immigration nationwide.
The California Dream Act allows access to public financial aid, including Cal Grants, for undocumented students who came to the country before turning 16 and attended California high schools. Those students already are eligible for in-state tuition, and Brown in July signed a companion measure affording them access to private financial aid.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Latinos flee Alabama

After Ruling, Hispanics Flee an Alabama Town

ALBERTVILLE, Ala. — The vanishing began Wednesday night, the most frightened families packing up their cars as soon as they heard the news.
They left behind mobile homes, sold fully furnished for a thousand dollars or even less. Or they just closed up and, in a gesture of optimism, left the keys with a neighbor. Dogs were fed one last time; if no home could be found, they were simply unleashed.
Two, 5, 10 years of living here, and then gone in a matter of days, to Tennessee, Illinois, Oregon, Florida, Arkansas, Mexico — who knows? Anywhere but Alabama.
The exodus of Hispanic immigrants began just hours after a federal judge in Birmingham upheld most provisions of the state’s far-reachingimmigration enforcement law.