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    Message 1 of 3 , Feb 15, 2005
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      HispanicVista Columnists - February 14th, 2005

      Guest Columns - February 14th, 2005
      US: An English Only Nation?
      Who You Calling 'Wetback'? -- A Chicano Becomes the Immigrant
      By Domenico Maceri
      "We are an English-speaking nation" declared State Rep. Russell Pearce (R-Mesa) as he tried to explain his new bill which would make English the official language of Arizona.
      It's amazing how a politician can make a statement which has no basis in reality… Although it's true that English has been the dominant language in the US, many other languages have shaped America's linguistic landscape….
      By David Madrid
      Growing up as a Chicano, three generations deep in the United States, I have always felt the segregation between Chicanos and Mexican immigrants -- what we call "border brothers" and some call "wetbacks." It is a clash of identity and misunderstanding on both sides. Even something as lethal as the gang warfare between Nortenos and Surenos here in the Bay Area has this conflict at its base….  For years I heard the word "wetback" thrown around loosely by other Chicanos at school or from some family members. It wasn't always used with hatred, but often more as a description, a way to identify. I never used the word, but I never tripped off it, either.
      A Small Breeze Seems To Be BlowingREAL ID A Real Distraction: Now Let’s Move on to Effective Border Security, Immigration Enforcement, and Comprehensive Reform
      By Richard N. Baldwin T.
      In the beginning of February, we were treated by one of those periodical "spats" between the Mexican and US governments. In this case, it was due to the issuance of a warning to US tourists by the US ambassador to México, Tony Garza. This was a cautionary letter to potential travelers from the US to the northern border area of México. A number of people here went up the wall over the letter. But recent events along the border (a lot of it due to an escalating drug cartel turf war that I wrote about recently) was a timely reminder for US citizens to take care along the border. The US was only doing what it should in looking out for their citizens.
      By Immigration Forum
       We ought to thank Chairman Sensenbrenner for so brightly defining the difference between effective immigration enforcement and ineffective immigration enforcement.  His proposal falls squarely into the ineffective immigration enforcement camp and advances the fallacy that enforcement alone can lead to border security or immigration control.  …Those who feel this measure will enhance border security in a meaningful way are fooling themselves.  The desire for control over immigration is shared by all Americans, native-born and immigrant alike. 
      Democrats Commit Hispanic SuicideIntegrating Migrants into Our Communities

      By Raoul Lowery Contreras
      February 14, 2005

       "The confirmation of Alberto Gonzales as attorney general yesterday was depressing." New York Times Editorial, February 4 …  "But beyond his other failings, Mr. Gonzales has come to represent the administration's role in paving the way for the abuse and torture of prisoners by American soldiers and intelligence agents. Giving him the nation's top legal post is a terrible signal to send the rest of the world, and to American citizens concerned with human rights," wrote the Times….  "Other failings?" The Times didn’t elaborate but it is clear the Times simply did not approve of Hispanics reaching the highest levels of government.

      By Fr.  Paul Kasun OSB
      One of the most fascinating documents that the Catholic Church wrote on migration appeared last year.  It explains in detail the various steps that integrate immigrants into communities all over the world.  People in Latin America, Africa, Asia or here at home can apply its message. Moreover, even though it is written for Catholics, any religious group may benefit from its research and experience….What does it say?  First, people are moving from one place to another more than any time in the history of the world, either within their own country or to another country.  Second, people are driven to emigrate because of an imbalance of social, economic and demographic factors…
      Getting priorities right doesn't come easily to BushBush Administration Must Reassess Relations with Latin America
      By Erika Robles
      On February 7, 2005 President Bush proposed his 2006 budget. The budget includes a big increase to the Department of Defense, to the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. However, it seeks a cut down on vital social programs such as Medicaid –the federal-state health program for the poor and disabled-, food stamps, farm subsidies, disability services to veterans, a program that provides low-income people with home-heating aid, a loan program for college students, federal spending on vocational education in high school (which will be entirely eliminated) and other 48 education programs.
      By Laura Carlsen
      In her January 18 confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sec. of State-designate Condoleezza Rice asserted that the Western Hemisphere is “extremely critical” to the United States. “With our close neighbors in Latin America we are working to realize the vision of a fully democratic hemisphere bound by common values and free trade.” … While it’s heartening to see that Latin America has made it onto the map of the Bush administration’s foreign policy, there is little reason to expect policy toward the region to change or deepen in the next four years. More likely, with all eyes on the Middle East , the region will remain an arena for ad hoc crisis intervention, with Cuba and Colombia as opposite focal points.
      Dominican Music and Poetry: From J. Lockward to Abersio Nunez (Trovadores sound)*Martinez's stunt on Senate floor is unacceptable
      By Miriam Ventura
      Special to HispanicVista.com
       The concept of balladeer has evolved with the passage of time.  There are many ways of defining a balladeer.   For some, he is a poet accompanied by a guitar, a handful of words and much feeling in his singing.  For others, he is a slow singer, accompanied by his guitar, a half voice and emotion…  Latin America has a tradition of balladeers.  By now, we can also speak of composers who sing.  The Dominican Republic is well known for its balladeers as are Argentina, Cuba, Uruguay, Colombia and Spain…

      By Eduardo Montalvo
       Something unprecedented happened last week at the U.S. Senate. During his first speech of his Senate career, Sen. Mel Martinez addressed the Senate in Spanish. … This part of the speech stunned the Senate stenographer, who was only able to type "speaking in Spanish" into the record as Martinez delivered his speech. Everyone else was astonished with this unexpected speech….  For more than 200 years, senators addressed the Senate in English, out of respect for their fellow senators, their constituents and every American who did not speak their language.

      Is Politics Keeping Belling on The Air?Does Cultural Diversity Require Exceptions?

      By Robert Miranda
      Mark Belling has been back on the airwaves since his suspension [vacation] for a couple of months. In that time period Belling uttered the term "gook" over the airwaves and declared that neither he nor his program has changed.  Clearly, his "sincere" apology is worthless….  Clear Channel Radio CEO, John Hogan recently met with this writer and several members of the Coordinating Committee Against Hate Speech (CCAHS).  Whatever Hogan feels personally about this situation in Milwaukee, one thing is certain-Clear Channel Radio is going to keep Mark Belling on the air at WISN-Radio…

      By Alan Riding
      The idea of promoting cultural diversity around the world sounds reasonable enough. It recognizes that everyone profits from the free flow of ideas, words and images. It encourages preservation of, say, indigenous traditions and minority languages. It treats the cultures of rich and poor countries as equals. And, most topically, it offers a healthy antidote to cultural homogeneity. …Try turning this seemingly straightforward idea into an international treaty, however, and things soon become complicated.
      History: Michoacan: From Kingdom to ColonyAfter Fundraising Scandal, College Republicans Brace for Contested Election
      By John P. Schmal
      (sic)…  For more than a thousand years, Michoacán has been the home of the Purhépecha Indians (more popularly known as the Tarascans). The modern state of Michoacán preserves, to some extent, the territorial integrity of the pre-Columbian Kingdom of the Purhépecha. This kingdom was one of the most prosperous and extensive empires in the pre-Hispanic Mesoamerican world. The name Michoacán derives from the Náhuatl terms, michin (fish) and hua (those who have) and can (place) which roughly translates into "place of the fisherman."

      By John T. Plecnik
      As our nation gets used to the idea of Howard Dean serving as Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, another national, political organization is looking for leadership.  The College Republican National Committee (CRNC) is preparing to host elections during its 56th biennial convention in Arlington, V.A.  From June 24-26, the most influential members of the College Republicans will join their elder cousins in the GOP for a massive rally and election.  Every national office, from Chairman to Treasurer, is up for grabs.  …For anyone foolish enough to write off the CRNC as child’s play, consider the millions of dollars they’ve raised, their paid staff and army of volunteers.  Even the White House keeps an eye on their favorite students.  The elections for national office are no game, and some candidates are expected to raise thousands of dollars for their campaigns….

      Patrick Osio, Jr. has written a short but intensive manual on the Mexican perspective on numerous issues between our two countries. The manual is an in depth primer on the culture and protocol for better understanding Mexicans that in turn allows establishing personal and business relationships, and how to avoid the most common faux pas that can ruin relationships and business deals.

      About the author

      Table of Contents

      Excerpts from the manual

      The manual is available through Electronic delivery for $9.95 making it possible to download the manual to save on your hard drive, printing its entirety or particular sections while reaping considerable savings over printed copies.

      Bush’s Social Security Plan Mirrors Model Used in Chile, Mexico
      By Sam Cesfar
      In the first State of the Nation of his second term, President George W. Bush last Wednesday laid out his plans to make radical changes to the country’s Social Security system, which he argues will be bankrupt by the year 2042. But according to Congressman Sam Farr (D-California), the president’s intentions are not to prevent the system’s presumed collapse, but to eliminate the essential purpose it was created for. Latinos would be among those most affected by the President’s plan, which follows the same models used in Chile and Mexico.
       
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      Patrick Osio, Jr.
      Editor
    • EditorialOpinion@aol.com
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      Message 2 of 3 , Feb 21, 2005
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        HispanicVista Columnists - February 21st, 2005

        Guest Columns - February 21st, 2005
        Oh yes, Congressman Duncan Hunter is that disingenuous
        Common Groound and the English Only Movement
        By Patrick Osio, Jr.
        It would take the most incredibly naïve and gullible persons to believe Congressman Duncan Hunter’s assertion that building 3.5-miles of fence along the US-Mexico border will stop terrorist infiltrations and illegal immigrants from entering the country. His argument is so grossly devoid of any logic or intelligent reasoning as to make one wonder whether the Congressman has a hidden agenda when he inserted it into the REAL ID Act (H.R. 418) approved by the House and now pending in the Senate.
        By Felipe de Ortego y Gasca
         Almost 18 years ago, en route to the Arizona Capitol during the October 22, 1988 march against the English Only Proposition, I was struck by the fallacies and inconsistencies persistent in the arguments of those pressing for its adoption. The English Only law was passed but later declared unconstitutional. And here we are in the year 2005 still beset by those same arguments for English Only laws.
         As a professor of English (now retired), I am not surprised by how little Americans really know about their language and its linguistic roots. For in the strictest sense of the word it’s not English that we speak in the United States but "American," as H. L. Mencken correctly described it more than 60 years ago.
        "BELLO"A "Whiny American" Speaks Out Against Illegal Aliens
        From the Publisher's Corner
        By Sal Osio, JD
        At year end a new national magazine - BELLO - premiered. It launched with a cover featuring Alejandro Fernandez, the son of legendary Ranchera music Vicente Fernandez, and an accomplished singer superstar in his own right, as "ZAPATA," Mexico's revolutionary hero. The publication in high gloss quality tabloid print, all 118 pages, providing professional quality content: "Power, Culture & Success." …The publication is aimed at the English language dominant American Hispanic, in his cultural heritage and diversity, whether Indigena, Mestizo or Africano.
        COUNTERPOINT
        By Daneen G. Peterson, Ph.D.
         “Just imagine if millions of Americans were to enter Mexico illegally, demand that the local government provide free medical care, demand bilingual doctors and nurses, demand bilingual government forms, fly the US flag from their homes and cars, demand courses on American culture in their schools, demand local driver's licenses, and insist that local law enforcement officers speak only English.  
         America is the greatest and most successful experiment regarding the integration and assimilation of people of differing cultures, languages, and religions.”(1)- Alan Caruba --The above quotes dramatize why most Americans object the massive illegal immigration that is taking place in our country today.  
        Reading here or thereFree Speech on Campus

        By Erika Robles
        Average reading levels in
        Mexico are much lower than those in countries such as Argentina, Spain and Italy. In average, Mexicans read one or two books per year, compared to 10 to 12 books read in Spain, Italy and Argentina….  Many bookstores in Mexico are on the verge of closing down, and many others have already done so. Meanwhile, from 2001 to 2004, around 10 percent of all publishers have shut down. According to the Mexican Booksellers Association, "despite having three times the population of Argentina, Mexico produces 2,000 fewer titles each year. There are roughly 500 bookstores in Mexico, serving a population of 100 million, which equates into one for every 200,000 Mexicans, compared to a ratio of one to 35,000 in the US and one to 12,000 in Spain.

        By Onkar Ghate
         Only private universities can ensure that every citizen’s freedom of speech is respected.
         Because the comments he made shortly after September 11 have come to light, obscene comments in which he vilifies the World Trade Center victims as “little Eichmanns” and lauds their killers as “humanitarians,” Professor Ward Churchill has resigned as chairman of the University of Colorado’s ethnics studies department. But, with the support of other faculty, he retains his professorship. Four members of his department have expressed “unconditional support” for his “freedom of expression and First Amendment rights.” The Faculty Assembly of the university, though it regards his words as “controversial, offensive, and odious,” defends his freedom to utter them. 
        Saving Social Security or Killing It?Regaining My Humanity
        By Domenico Maceri
         The hunt for weapons of mass destruction Saddam Hussein was supposed to posses was called off recently. The absence of weapons proved the Iraq war unnecessary to protect the United States. Either the Bush administration is incompetent or some people lied about the situation.
         Now Bush wants people to believe him about the need to privatize social security. He says if nothing is done, the system will go bankrupt.
        Really? Even assuming that social security is in danger, something most analysts do not believe, Bush's solution of privatizing it will mean the program's demise.
        By Camilo Mejia
        I was deployed to Iraq in April 2003 and returned home for a two-week leave in October. Going home gave me the opportunity to put my thoughts in order and to listen to what my conscience had to say. People would ask me about my war experiences and answering them took me back to all the horrors—the firefights, the ambushes, the time I saw a young Iraqi dragged by his shoulders through a pool of his own blood or an innocent man was decapitated by our machine gun fire. The time I saw a soldier broken down inside because he killed a child, or an old man on his knees, crying with his arms raised to the sky, perhaps asking God why we had taken the lifeless body of his son.
        A “Culture of Translation” In Public CommunicationsWhy Gannongate matters to Hispanic Americans.
        By Frank Gómez
         Twenty years ago, troubled by poor translations in advertisements aimed at Hispanics, I often called ad agencies to point out errors.  Translations have improved markedly since then, notwithstanding occasional lapses and the resulting embarrassments for clients.  The agencies, both Latino and mainstream, have improved because they have developed an internal “culture of translation.”
         Government agencies, however, and some Spanish language media have a way to go…

        By Elsa Salazar Cade
        Yes, it is a sordid affair. Prostitutes have been hiding in the White House Press Corps. But, it isn't about prostitutes because many of us know that prostitution is a way for the poorest of people to feed  and care for their families. So, I refuse to slam them. As for gay men, I have know some and found them to be noble and caring in spite of the  hatred that is constantly heaped on them. So I don't have any problem with them. I don't have problems with reporters as I regarded them as our eyes and ears on the ground to help us understand the things we  didn't have time or money to investigate ourselves. So, a male reporter that prostitutes on the side, no biggie. Yawn…   But wait…

        A Father Lives Through His Dead Son2005 Nursing Crisis - California Style
        By Raoul Lowery Contreras
         "After quitting one job and losing another, Fernando Suarez del Solar is supported financially by anti-war groups. They fly him all over the country to speak about the need to end the war in Iraq to stop the death of soldiers like Jesus."
         So wrote Erin Massey, North County Times
         Basic facts of Fernando Suarez del Solar: He immigrated his family to the United States 9 years ago when son Jesus was 14 years old from Tijuana (not as rumored for the sole purpose of Jesus joining the U.S. Marines). At 18, Jesus voluntarily joined the Marines. The Marines say he was a good Marine. He died in the Iraq invasion a Mexican citizen because father Fernando never secured citizenship for himself or his family.
        By Mike Kirchubel
        On November 4th, 2004, two days after the GOP-dominated national elections, an emboldened Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued an “emergency” regulation to stop the 5:1 patient to nurse ratio law for three years.  Interestingly, his “Finding of Emergency,” his official excuse for stopping the law, read as if it were copied from the hospital lobby’s web site. Was this a real emergency?  Was the Governor protecting Californians from a real danger, or was he merely parroting the hospital industry’s propaganda and doing their bidding?    
        Pots And Pans Time In México?Wal-Mart Refuses to Bow to Its Attackers
        By Richard N. Baldwin T.
        Recent world history should be teaching a lesson to México that so far is being ignored. We have seen a number of countries, due to popular uprisings, that have driven out elected governments. The most recent was in the Ukraine where demonstrations lasting several weeks forced the resignation of a blatantly fraudulently elected government. Popular uprisings threw out governments in Bolivia, forced recalls in Peru and Chile. And the "pots and pans" demonstrations in Argentina drove out 6 successive presidents.
        …These overthrows were about a "peaceful" as you could expect.
        Another View
        By Dr. Andrew Bernstein
         The on-going persecution of Wal-Mart, including the latest uproar over the closing of one of its Canadian stores, is a clear indicator of the malevolence of the anti-capitalist left, charged Dr. Andrew Bernstein, a senior writer for the Ayn Rand Institute.
         Wal-Mart, which said that labor organizers would require it to hire 30 unneeded workers and submit to inefficient work rules, chose instead to close its unprofitable store in Jonquiere, Quebec, after its employees voted to form a union. CEO H. Lee Scott declared that Wal-Mart would not accept “altruism” as a way of doing business.
        Howard Dean's Acceptance Speech as Chairman of the DNC.Venezuela-Colombia Crisis: Where was Washington?
        As received by HispanicVista
         If you told me one year ago that I'd be standing here today, as your choice for Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, I wouldn't have believed you. And neither would have a lot of other people.
        But let me say that standing here with the opportunity to lead this party, is a great honor.
         I am thankful.
         I am humbled.
         And I'm ready to get to work.
        By Gabriel Espinosa-Gonzalez
        Bush Administration Should be Embarrassed as Brazil, Peru and Cuba Help Broker Compromise while U.S. Policymakers, led by (Roger) Noriega, try to whip Colombia into a Frenzy
        • Washington’s Latin America policy continues to be afflicted by a severe case of short-sighted tunnel vision that makes it unlikely that the many ruptures with hemispheric nations that developed in Bush’s first term will be mended during his second term.

        Patrick Osio, Jr. has written a short but intensive manual on the Mexican perspective on numerous issues between our two countries. The manual is an in depth primer on the culture and protocol for better understanding Mexicans that in turn allows establishing personal and business relationships, and how to avoid the most common faux pas that can ruin relationships and business deals.

        About the author

        Table of Contents

        Excerpts from the manual

        The manual is available through Electronic delivery for $9.95 making it possible to download the manual to save on your hard drive, printing its entirety or particular sections while reaping considerable savings over printed copies.

        Venezuela: Oil-Flush Chávez Begins to Strut His Stuff
        By Jessica Leight
        • Recent arms sales could have an explosive impact on U.S.-Venezuela relations.• Recalling Czech small arms sales to the leftist Guatemalan government in 1954, which led to a CIA-supported coup, the same could happen in Venezuela. • Colombia and Venezuela resolve recent conflict despite no positive U.S. assistance. • Washington’s irrelevance represents a massive diplomatic defeat, marking yet another setback to Roger Noriega’s pathetic mishandling of U.S.
         
         
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        Patrick Osio, Jr.
        Editor
      • EditorialOpinion@aol.com
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        Message 3 of 3 , Mar 1, 2005
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          HispanicVista Columnists - February 28th, 2005

          Guest Columns - February 28th, 2005
          Sensenbrenner Real ID Act provides the long sought National Identification Americans have for so long yearned.
          Counterpoint - On Fernando Suárez del Solar
          By Patrick Osio, Jr.
          “Stop illegal immigration and we make America safe from terrorism” – and “Add 3.5 miles to a 14-mile long fence on the US-Mexico border and it will stop terrorists and illegal immigrants from entering the US” – Are Americans expected to believe this bunk? It seems that Congressmen James Sensenbrenner and Duncan Hunter believe we should, and surprising how many Americans do believe it, though by just giving those ideas a tiny little bit of thought the absurdity of each statement would be clear.
          The third absurdity in the so called laws to “make America safe”  also found in the Sensenbrenner Real ID Act (H.R. 418), and stop illegal immigration is the “don’t give driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants.”

          By Jorge Mariscal
          (sic)… A generation later, a Mexican immigrant named Fernando Suárez del Solar has gained international prominence as a peace activist and opponent of the Bush administration's foreign policy.  Suarez speaks eloquently about the very real threats that face us. But he sincerely believes that the invasion and occupation of
          Iraq were both morally indefensible and a strategic error that will only increase dangers here and around the world. 
          From this principled position, Suarez opposes the war in Iraq as an act of conscience.  In fact, Suarez opposes the war in Iraq and supports the troops because he believes the sacrifice and courage of the troops ought not to be exploited and misused.  

          Ís he a Gandhi or sell-out?
          Counterpoint - Raoul how dare you question Fernando Suarez – you are a vendido.
          By Raoul Lowery Contreras
          Escondido’s (CA) Fernando Suarez de Solar supporters claim that he is an icon like hero/martyrs Martin Luther King, Jr., India’s Gandhi, and Farmworker Union’s Cesar Chavez.
          Suarez de Solar immigrated his family from Mexico a decade ago. A 14 year old son grew up and joined the United States Marines. Fernando made no effort to become an American citizen and made little effort to learn English as most immigrants do. Before his son was killed in the first few hours of the Iraq war, no one had ever heard of Fernando.
          By Dorinda Moreno
          Raoul, estufas, ese! This essay is so laden with denigrating, disrespectful-- talking down not only to Fernando Suarez del solar, but to all thinking parents y pueblo not following the red white and blue lies that got us into the Iraq war. And, yes, like Fernando and the 'white people of the American left which you demean, also I am an admitted antiwar, Chicana activist, proud to stand opposite from any podium on which you may serve: two polarized views in this sea of contradictions that is the corporate war and takeover of the United States and thus of the planet.
          Also, I hold in my keep, my grandfather's green card and having fought in the 1910 revolution alongside of Pancho Villa, I honor his example and follow in his footsteps,
          como Fernando Suarez del solar, guerrera Azteca. Gente like ourselves will always be your 'bee sting'.
          Watching Damage Control In MexicoWard Churchill Incites Critical Thinking
          By Richard N. Baldwin T.
          We went through the flap over the travel warning from the US State department concerning public security advice for US tourists in the northern border area. And the Mexican foreign ministry screeched loudly.
          Then came the revelation that the drug cartels had penetrated the travel office of the Mexican presidency. While the administration tried to downplay this, President Fox himself admitted that there was an official who had been removed and arrested for being on the take from the drug people. Now why would the drug people be interested in the travel plans of Fox?

          By Robert Miranda
          The neo-conservatives and fear mongering right-wingers are on the war path. They’re on the offense against a professor who is coming to speak in March at the
          University of Wisconsin-Whitewater about the 9/11 attacks. Some argue that this professor espouses hate speech and that the “hate speech police” are nowhere to be found condemning Ward Churchill.
          First, as a supporter of the “free speech police” let me state for the record that I disagree with Ward Churchill. I do not agree with the notion that al-Qaeda acted in self-defense when they murdered innocent people on 9/11. As a former Marine with eight years regular active service I can say with authority that flying commercial planes loaded with civilians into the World Trade Center filled with more civilians was an act of murder, end of point.

          Girlie Man BudgetForget Free Speech, Liberals Don't Tolerate Campus Conservatives
          By Domenico Maceri
          One of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s first proposals since becoming governor in 2004 was to cut funds for Medi-Cal patients, California’s version of Medicaid, and reduce services to developmentally disabled people. After a lot of negative publicity, Schwarzenegger decided not to implement the cuts.
          Schwarzenegger’s proposed budget for next year continues to be an attack on the weak segment of Californians. It's the budget of a Girlie Man governor.

          By John T. Plecnik
           Regardless of age, we have all heard the phrase, "First Amendment Rights," bandied about.  Free speech has been the rallying cry of the liberal elite since the 60s, and every time violent protesters are beaten back by police or cordoned off from a rally, the ACLU comes a calling.  However, the same team of trial lawyers, rebel billionaires and Deaniacs turn a blind eye toward the abuses of their academic brethren.  America's colleges and universities are anything but free speech zones.  Contrary to their mantra of universal tolerance, Stalinist professors and administrators see intellectual diversity as a disease.  Unpopular viewpoints, like a belief in absolute truth or the Republican Party, are actively discouraged.

          Español, English, or bothOne step closer, a marathon to go
          By Erika Robles
          Hispanic children of third and later generations tend to speak only English, making it highly unlikely that they will be bilingual as adults. According to the Census Bureau of Statistics, in 1990, 64 percent of third-generation Mexican-American children spoke only English at home; in 2000, the equivalent figure had risen to 71 percent.
          These facts could be construed to mean that these Mexican-Americans have completely assimilated to the U.S. A large part of initial acceptance of anyone into any human group is the "sounds like us". By not knowing or speaking the Spanish language –along with following the American laws, values and institutions- they could be seen as having become Americanized, regardless of their roots.

          By Jorge Mújica
          Mexicans abroad advanced one step further in their long struggle to be able to cast their votes from outside their country. After months of delay, the Mexican Chamber of Deputies, equivalent of the US House of Representatives, voted in favor of regulating such vote.
          The right to vote from abroad was approved in 1988, but the mechanism to cast such votes was never implemented, nullifying in reality the rights written in the books.
          But the vote in favor by 391 Deputies (only 5 voted against and 22 abstained,) does not represent a victory. The bill still has to be approved in the Senate, and such approval does not seem easy. The first reaction of several Senators affiliated with Vicente Fox’s…

          Before EnlightenmentLatin America's Two Lefts
          By Steven J. Ybarra, JD
          This month has been a good time for the Democrats. Bush admitted he was a dope smoker, Howard Dean was elected to chair the Democratic National Committee (DNC), and the DNC employees who worked for Terry McAuliffe were asked to resign. All in all, the month is looking pretty darn good.
          This is the time when Democrats need to figure out how to seek enlightenment. I know that the Buddhist thing is not a generally shared philosophy, but hey - it is all about Zen and motorcycle repair.

           

          By Jorge Castañeda 
          A perception has been growing over the last few years – and picking up strength in recent months – that Latin America is swinging back to the left. The unimpressive – and sometimes dismal – results of economic reform seem to have generated a backlash that has elected leftist presidents across the continent, starting with Hugo Chávez’s victory in Venezuela at the end of the 1990’s, and continuing with those of Ricardo Lagos in Chile and Nestor Kirchner in Argentina, and more recently that of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in Brazil and Tabaré Vázquez in Uruguay. More left-wing victories seem to be in store in Mexico, Peru, and Bolivia.
          But while the premises underlying this broad trend are clear, Latin America’s voters are electing not one left, but two.
          What is Bob Johnson up to? GALEO Urges U.S. Congress to Act on Comprehensive Immigration Reform 
          A Black Commentator Investigative Report
          In a transparent bid to boost Republican fortunes among Blacks, billionaire Bob Johnson attempted earlier this year to convene a secret meeting of prominent African Americans at BET headquarters in Washington, DC. obtained a copy of the invitation to the “retreat,” scheduled for January 13 and 14 and ostensibly designed “for the purpose of brainstorming ideas as to how we as African Americans can best confront the political and demographic realities of the 21st century.” None of the invitees were told the identity of the others and the press was scrupulously kept in the dark, but we have learned enough to report that the mix was high-powered and politically diverse.
          HR-256 Fails to Provide Solution for National Issue 
          On Thursday, February 17, 2005, Georgia HR- 256 was introduced by Representatives Roger Williams (HD-4), Bobby Franklin (HD-43), Ronald Forster (HD- 3), Scott Martin (HD-3), Jeannette Jamieson (HD- 28). HR-256 calls for a state constitutional amendment to ban all public services to undocumented immigrants including all publicly funded healthcare and all education, including K-12 education. HR-256 also calls for greater cooperation between local law enforcement agencies with federal immigration authorities.
          Washington’s Expansive Concept of Sovereignty and Security - Pushing Our Borders OutChina’s Burgeoning Role in Latin America—a Threat to the U.S.?
          By Tom Barry 
          Lining up with the Bush administration’s “global war on terrorism,” U.S. immigration control programs have a global reach. Searching for migrants headed to the United States on the high seas and within “sending” and transit countries is part of the mission of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which in 2003 assumed control over all aspects of U.S. immigration policy.
          The DHS doesn’t limit its mission of “border protection” to U.S. territorial boundaries, but has loosely defined homeland security to include programs that “have been put in place at--and beyond--our borders.”1 According to the DHS, its new immigration-control strategy includes a “pushing our borders out” approach to stopping the flow of immigrants and terrorists into the United States.
          By Xuan-Trang Ho, a COHA Research Associate.
          • Until recently, Washington has all but ignored that China is making important inroads in the region—China and a number of western hemispheric countries have deepened their cooperation, especially in the areas of trade and development.
          • As the world’s second largest and fastest growing major economy, China possesses an insatiable appetite for Latin American natural resources and agricultural products, and is now beginning to realize its full potential as a world power, challenging and, perhaps overshadowing, the United States in a number of economic sectors—China’s quest could rival the U.S.’ need for the same products.

          Patrick Osio, Jr. has written a short but intensive manual on the Mexican perspective on numerous issues between our two countries. The manual is an in depth primer on the culture and protocol for better understanding Mexicans that in turn allows establishing personal and business relationships, and how to avoid the most common faux pas that can ruin relationships and business deals.

          About the author

          Table of Contents

          Excerpts from the manual

          The manual is available through Electronic delivery for $9.95 making it possible to download the manual to save on your hard drive, printing its entirety or particular sections while reaping considerable savings over printed copies.

          Chavez’s Agrarian Land Reform: More like Lincoln than Lenin

          By Seth R. DeLong, Ph.D,  COHA Senior Research Fellow
          President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela is pushing full speed ahead with land reform, an issue that has been one of the most divisive and perennially debated topics in Latin America. Land reform poses perhaps the greatest challenge yet to Chavez’s stormy presidency, as it historically has been the Achilles’ heel of left-of-center regimes. Chavez’s daunting task is twofold: first, he will have to overcome problems that doomed past attempts at land reform throughout the region by other reformist governments, notably Jacobo Arbenz’s 1954 attempts in Guatemala and Salvador Allende’s 1970 – 1973 attempts in Chile.

           
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