The 21 page letter points to Washington State and Washington D.C. as examples of areas that effectively opt-ed out of the program which mandates the sending of fingerprints of those in police custody to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. From the letter:
Washington State and the District of Columbia Have Effectively Opted Out of S-Comm and ICE has Provided No Reason Why Massachusetts Cannot Do the Same
In May 2010, after a series of communications with ICE, Washington State informed ICE that it would not sign an S-Comm Memorandum of Agreement. Rather, Washington informed ICE that it would leave the decision whether or not to participate in S-Comm to local jurisdictions. To our knowledge, Washington’s refusal to sign an MOA has meant that no localities in Washington have been “activated” in S-Comm without their consent. ICE’s own documents show that, to date, no jurisdictions in Washington are participating in S-Comm.
Similarly, in July 2010, following a unanimous vote by the DC Council opposing S-Comm, the District of Columbia informed ICE that it would not participate in the program.3 As with Washington State, the District’s opt-out has, according to our knowledge and ICE’s own representations, The District has not been activated in S-Comm, and it maintains a firm separation between local police and federal immigration functions.
If Massachusetts declines to sign an S-Comm MOA, there is no reason to believe that its decisionwould be any less effective than those of Washington State or the District of Columbia in preventing additional localities within Massachusetts from being activated in S-Comm absent an independent agreement between the locality and ICE. If ICE claims otherwise, the burden is on it to explain the justification for applying one standard to Washington State and the District of Columbia, and another standard to Massachusetts.
It was my great pleasure to particpate in yesterday’s Museo del Barrio’s Super Sabado day on Art & Activism. I read two bilingual stories with children and their parents/caregivers that demonstrated how children, working together with the adults in their communities and identify needs and participate in solutions.
Yesterday the President’s Task Force on Puerto Rico’s Status report was released. It is a 122-page report that starts with a 7-point series of recommendations on how to move forward from Puerto Rico’s colonial status. It also includes a look at the island’s economic and social issues.
In this first of a multi-part look, I am going to focus on the 7 points regarding Puerto Rico’s status.
Briefly, the 7 recommendations are as follows :
1: The Task Force recommends that all relevant parties—the President, Congress, and the leadership and people of Puerto Rico—work to ensure that Puerto Ricans are able to express their will about status options and have that will acted upon by the end of 2012 or soon thereafter .
2: The Task Force recommends that the permissible status options include Statehood, Independence, Free Association, and Commonwealth.
3: Although the Task Force supports any fair method for determining the will of the people of Puerto Rico, it has a marginal preference for a system involving two plebiscites.
4: If a plebiscite is chosen, only residents of Puerto Rico should be eligible to vote.
5: The President and Congress should commit to preserving U S citizenship for Puerto Rican residents who are U S citizens at the time of any transition to Independence, if the people of Puerto Rico choose a status option that results in Puerto Rico’s Independence.
6: The President and Congress should ensure that Puerto Rico controls its own cultural and linguistic identity.
7: If efforts on the Island do not provide a clear result in the short term, the President should support, and Congress should enact, self-executing legislation that specifies in advance for the people of Puerto Rico a set of acceptable status options that the United States is politically committed to fulfilling.
If I want to have a good cry over heartache, my go-to music is Marc Anthony, Alejando Fernandez, y Maná. This week, Maná, who teeter on that line between pop/rock in Spanish, released their new single Lluvia Al Corazón.
What do you think. Do the musicos Mexicanos still bring it or does it sound like more of the same?
Yesterday, Kansas State Rep. Virgil Peck made comments that he labeled as a joke, comments that stated that the way to deal with undocumented immigrants was to shoot them from the air, the way one shoots wild animals.
“It might be a good idea to control illegal immigration the way the feral hog population has been controlled—with hunters shooting from helicopters.”
ICE took Toro to court after he was arrested on an Amtrak train near Buffalo in 2007 for not having immigration papers.
Toro, a longtime advocate for immigrant rights who waded across the Rio Grande in 1984 to enter the U.S., claims he was afraid to turn himself in and request asylum, citing U.S. support for Pinochet’s brutal regime.
A democracy replaced the regime in 1990, but some of the leaders who had Toro tortured remain powerful, his lawyer says. They expelled Toro from Chile in 1977, declaring him dead.
Judge Sarah Burr said in a written ruling that Chile is a changed country and a safe place for Toro.
The Pinochet regime imprisoned Toro because he co-founded the Revolutionary Left Movement, known as the MIR, an anti-Pinochet group briefly labeled a terrorist organization by the U.S.
He was blindfolded for months at a time and had electric shocks applied to his genitals. He twice faced firing squads that shot blanks to scare him.
With President Obama set to visit the capital of Santiago later this month, Toro and Moreno are begging the White House to intervene. They argue the U.S. owes Toro because it tacitly backed Pinochet for years.
If you are not familiar with the book In The Time of the Butterflies, it is a historical novel of the Maribal Sisters, known as Las Mariposas, during the Trujillo regime. It has been turned into a film starring Salma Hayek, Edward James Olmos, and Marc Anthony. I’ve used this text in teaching from Latina testimonios, women, art, and culture, to women and organizing. The text is also extremely accessible for younger readers.
As we usually do with our giveaway’s at VL, the first three folks that leave a comment and have a valid email address for us to reach them, receive the texts! Algonquin Books will ship internationally, so those of you who have not been able to participate in some giveaways because of your location, this giveaway is for you!
You may watch the live webcast Monday March 21 at 7PM at the Algonquin Book Club site. We are told that you may also sign in to chat with other viewers and there is also a reading guide if you choose to use this text for a book club.
a minimal humanitarian status which The Department of Homeland Security can grant in cases of extremely compelling humanitarian facts (such as a life-threatening illness). The status permits an individual to remain in the United States for a limited period of time (generally two years) after which point he or she must re-apply.
So essentially Napolitano is bragging about immigration policy becoming less humane under the Obama administration than under the last Bush administration.
It was with great sadness that I received the news that “El Poe”, as he was affectionately called (and with a certain amount of reverence, I may add), passed on today at 11:55 am in Manhattan.
I was blessed enough to have shared poetic space with Ricardo. I have been to his home numerous times to party, converse, drink, and share dance (and other cositas ricas). It was in his apartment in the Lower East side where I met my most recent baby daddy, and she has been blessed by the muses ever since.
I urge all who can to come out to Terraza tonite to celebrate Ricardo’s life and the words that he gave the earth to remember him by. Also help support his familia as they make sad decisions that come with the inevitable reality of humanity.
Terraza 7 Train Cafe
40-19 Gleane Street NY 11373
7 train to 82nd Street
Yesterday the ACLU sent a letter asking for intervention in serious human rights and civil liberties abuses reported to be occurring against the people of Puerto Rico at the hands of the territory’s government. The ACLU asked that DOJ conclude its ongoing investigation of allegations of serious incidents of police violence and the suppression of free expression – including numerous reports of violent attacks against peaceful protesters and racially motivated police abuse – and take action to end these egregious practices.