Archive | US News RSS feed for this section

The American Jobs Act of 2011: It will affect us all

15 Sep

President Barack Obama

By: Leyla Tess Berlanga

On September 8, 2011 President Barack Obama addressed Congress, and the nation as a whole, and presented the American Jobs Act of 2011.  The Bill would help create, and establish jobs for the 14 million Americans who currently find themselves unemployed as well as the small businesses in this country.  According to, “the purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: put more people back to work and put more money in the pockets of working Americans– without adding a dime to the deficit.” A question I have it: where do both the Democratic and the Republican Parties stand regarding this Bill? Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi expressed her support for this Bill by saying “Congress must act with urgency”. The Democratic Party supports the pillars of this Bill which are:

  1.   Tax cut to help the American small business hire and grow
  2.   Putting workers back on the job while rebuilding and modernizing America
  3.   Pathways back to work for Americans looking for jobs
  4.   More money in the pockets of every American worker and family
  5.   Fully paid for as part of the President’s Long-term deficit reduction plan

where as the Republican Party supports and stands for:

  1. Keeping loopholes open in the tax code that effectively allows the rich and large corporations to pay an inordinately small amount of taxes
  2. Further lowering taxes for the rich and large corporations
  3. De-funding social security, Medicare, and Medicaid

Republicans view the passing of this bill as something that will increase taxes on job creators and view the American Jobs Act 2011 is the kind of proposal that both political parties have rejected in the past. Many Republican leaders asked President Obama immediately after his speech to send them a copy of the bill that he so ardently wants them to approve. He did so…day before yesterday, September 13th.

I feel as though this bill has the potential to both help and hinder Americans, both job creators and job seekers alike, and the outcome of that is up to the American people to determine.  On a bi-national level, I dare to think of the possibilities that the passing of this bill might present; the American Jobs Act states that an estimated 25 million Hispanic workers will benefit from the extension of the payroll tax cut and the tax cuts would benefit 250,000 Hispanic-owned small businesses as well. This could mean a stronger, louder voice in the political sector for Hispanics as a whole. The president is hitting the road this week in a political attempt to sell the American Jobs Act, although, he’s only stopping in major 2012 battleground states.



9/11…How Our Lives Have Changed

9 Sep

911 Volunteers

As a nation and global community takes time to pause this weekend to mark the anniversary of the attacks on September 11th, we take a moment to see how our lives have changed.

Everyone has their “moment”- some more direct than others- but everyone, everyone, especially in the U.S. were impacted on that morning.

It brings to mind waking up to calls telling me to ‘turn on the TV’, “what is going on?”, then the second plane hits and the truth settles in. A nation is under attack, sent reeling.

What rose from this day was a mixture of sense of service and sense of fear.

In 10 years we have seen changes in everyone’s daily lives. From the planes we travel, the water we drink, the borders we cross, and the people we interact with. It causes many people to stop and re-think, “that plane is flying too close to that building”, “was that an earthquake or a bomb?”

A sense of service that was birthed out of the event meant for harm, created a calling that we are all connected. That is what led this girl from Texas and a boy from Oklahoma to drop everything and go volunteer in New York City a month after the attacks. Volunteer with faith-based organizations and the American Red Cross to serve those who were in the trenches searching for survivors and clearing the rubble.

That is what leads all of us to continue to work together to try bridge gaps of understanding. That is what led to creating The September 11th National Day of Service and Remembrance. A day that is designed to provide a productive and respectful way to honor those who perished and rekindle the spirit of unity and compassion that swept our nation after 9/11 to help meet the challenges we face today.

This is what can bring all communities and neighbors together and prosper together.

As I reflect, I remember three things remain: Faith, Hope and Love. The greatest of these is Love. Love wins.

Alabama immigration law: prejudice over common sense

26 Aug
MLK Memorial

MLK Memorial

While we set to dedicate and unveil the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial in our nation’s capitol, a whole community in Alabama is about to be segregated and no one seems to be noticing.

Alabama HB 56, which was signed into law by Gover nor Bentley in J une 2011 and set to go into effect on September 1st includes the following:

  • All business must check the legal immigration status of all workers using the E-Verify system
  • Schools will be required to find out if all students are in the country legally (data is to be used for the purpose of “ statistical analysis” rather than preventing students from enrolling)
  • Permits police to arrest persons suspected of being an illegal alien if stopped for a different reason
  • Makes it a crime for persons to knowingly give rides to illegal immigrants
  • Makes it a crime for a landlord to knowingly rent property to an illegal immigrant
  • Makes all contracts entered into by an illegal immigrant unenforceable

Various reasons were given on why the law is said to “be good for Alabama”. What MATT see’s in contrast is an immigration law based on misinformation, prejudice and fear.

This law has the capacity to harm communities of every minority. It harms businesses of every kind by making it more difficult and expensive to hire new employees. It harms the whole education system- fear and intimidation do not provide a conducive learning environment and puts an extra burden upon school districts and administrators who are trying to teach.

In other words this law harms the everyday life of all Alabamans.

We can do something about it.

This law is more oppressive than Arizona’s, but not many people seem to be taking notice. We cannot grow accustomed to laws that segregate a large and growing part of our society.

“Injustice anywher e is a thr eat to justice ever ywher e.” – Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963

  • Tell Governor Bentley this is not good for Alabama. Governor’s Switchboard (334) 242-7100
  • Call or visit your member of Congress! Capitol Switchboar d (202) 224-3121. Tell them that the federal government, not individual states, should control immigration enforcement. We need to come together and enact Comprehensive immigration reform.

Senator Durbin’s Office: First-Ever Hearing on DREAM Act Tomorrow

27 Jun

DREAMers are back and they’re stronger than ever! Senator Durbin (D-IL) has announced the “first-ever hearing on the DREAM Act” happening tomorrow at 10am ET.  Watch it live here!

On his website:

Senator Durbin (D-IL)


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that he will chair the first-ever Senate hearing on the DREAM Act next Tuesday, June 28th, at 10:00 am ET. The hearing will be in room 216 of the Hart Senate Office Building.

“I’ve been working on the DREAM Act for over ten years,” Durbin said. “In that time, it’s been reported out of committee by a large bipartisan margin, passed the House of Representatives, and received a bipartisan majority vote in the Senate, only to fall because of a filibuster. I’ll convene the first-ever Senate hearing on this bill next week to discuss how the DREAM Act will make our country stronger by giving undocumented students a chance to earn legal status if they came here as children, are long-term U.S. residents, have good moral character, and complete two years of college or military service in good standing.”

Durbin will chair the hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security. The hearing will be webcast live on the Judiciary committee’s website.

The following witnesses will testify: Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano; Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan; Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, Dr. Clifford Stanley; DREAM Student, Ola Kaso; Lt. Colonel (retired) Margaret Stock; and Director of Research for the Center for Immigration Studies, Steven Camarota. “

Will this lead to fresh discussion or continued frustration? What has to happen for “progress” in favor of DREAMers? How can we define progress?

“El Ángel de la Justicia”

26 May

By Doris Marquez

Jessica Domínguez , una abogada en asuntos de inmigración es considerada como “ El Ángel de la Justicia” en EE.UU.

Esta mujer de origen peruano, tiene un enorme y apasionado compromiso con su comunidad, además el incansable sentido de la defensa de los derechos de los inmigrantes son su  pan de cada día.

Ella misma fue víctima de las leyes. Ni su hermano ni ella tuvieron un abogado que les preguntara su opinión sobre la separación de sus padres.

 Domínguez comentó, “Un juez tomó una decisión que afectó mi vida hasta ahora”, recuerda. “Fue una injusticia, yo apenas tenía cinco años; nadie conversó conmigo para preguntar qué es lo que yo quería”.
Esa experiencia y los consejos de sus abuelos Raquel y Jorge la motivaron a que decidiera a  estudiar leyes. Porque ella misma sabe lo que significa no tener a alguien que defienda sus derechos

“Fue algo doloroso”, rememora, durante la entrevista en sus oficinas de Century City, California.  Su abuelito siempre le decía tienes que ser doctora o abogada.  Así, la lucha legal gratuita encabezada por “El Ángel de la Justicia” y su grupo de expertos en asuntos de inmigración tuvo un final feliz, con el respaldo del gobierno estadounidense, las autoridades de El Salvador y de México.

“El Ángel de la Justicia” sin embargo  se fundamenta en su fe y su creencia en Dios. Una filosofía compartida por ella y su  equipo de trabajo y a si mismo cada día con dedicación, responsabilidad y compromiso luchan por los derechos de los inmigrantes más desposeídos.

“Considero mi licencia de abogada como un regalo de Dios”, dijo. “Es un gran privilegio poder ser el vehículo de bendición que El utiliza para ser de bendición para muchas familias, ya que El me utiliza como la voz de aquellas personas que no pueden tener voz”.

Foto: Cortesía de aol.noticias

Obama utilizá escándalo de su nacimiento para anunciar su campaña de reelección.

23 May

By Dori Marquez

“Made in the USA” es el texto estampado que pusieron los encargados de la campaña en camisetas y  en tazas aparte agregaron el certificado de nacimiento del presidente a cambio de una donación de 30 dólares.

Todo esto surgió cuando algunos republicanos mencionaron la posibilidad que Obama hubiera nacido en Kenia, lugar de nacimiento de su padre, en vez de Hawaii.

 Despúes de varios rumores el presidente Obama ignoró las acusaciones hasta que el magnate inmobiliario Donald Trump convirtió el asunto en eje de su campaña para decidir si desafiaba al presidente en 2012. La constitución de ese país requiere que el presidente de EE.UU haya nacido en el país.

Gran cantidad de estadounidenses expresó dudas sobre el lugar de nacimiento de Obama , el presidente dio a conocer el mes pasado una versión de su certificado de nacimiento , en el cual donde confirma que nación en el Hospital de Honolulu en 1961.

El asunto terminó  y ya todo quedo aclarado tiempo después, Trump anunció esta semana que no competiría por la nominación republicana para 2012.

Julianna Smoot subdirectora de la campaña de Obama: “Si los hechos no pueden acabar con esta ridícula difamación, podemos al menos divertirnos un poco con ellos”, confirmó  en un correo electrónico a sus partidarios.

Foto: Cortesía de

Lady Gaga: Canta canción en contra de la SB1070

9 May

By Doris Marquez  @
Lady Gaga: “No apoyo las injustas leyes de inmigración en mi país”, exclamó la cantante en un concierto que ofreció en la ciudad de Guadalajara, “Quiero justicia, todos queremos justicia e igualdad, y escribí esta canción que pide justicia para los inmigrantes en mi país”.

Gaga comentó que la canción “ Americano” de su más reciente album “Born This Way” según las declaraciones publicadas por la Prensa  Asociada , Gaga mencionó que esta canción es una respuesta a la controversial ley antiinmigrante SB1070.

La cantante ha dado declaraciones que “Americano” habla o es acerca de las comunidades que hasta hoy son discriminadas en EE.UU , como aquellos que fueron o son afectados por la ley de inmigración y así mismo los que estan a favor de el matrimonio entre personas del mismo sexo.

Gaga , mencionó en una conferencia que se llevó en la ciudad de México que ella tiene  un gran apresio por la cultura mexicana y que esta totalmente en desacuerdo con las leyes antiimigrantes.

Además la cantante ofreció un concierto en la ciudad de Phoenix, AZ, y en el cual la cantante portaba en unos de sus brazos un mensaje que decia , “STOP SB1070”.

La letra de la canción “Americano” en cuestión incluye la frases en español e inglés:

“Mis canciones son de la revolución; Mi corazón me duele por mi generación; If you love me, we can marry on the west coast; On a wednesday, en el verano en agosto”.

Luego, la canción termina repitiendo “Don’t you try to catch me; Don’t you try to catch me; No, no, no, no; Don’t you try to catch me; I’m living on the edge of the law, law, law, law

Foto: Cortesía de