Archive for June, 2010
Sean Harrington was a freshman at Arlington High School in Massachussetts, when he noticed there were no flags displayed, and no one recited the Pledge of Allegiance. So he enlisted the aid of his fellow students, who after three years, finally got the flags displayed, but they still can’t recited the pledge of allegiance, even voluntarily. The school committee has rejected the request. The reason – it’s believed that some educators are concerned that it would be hard to find teachers willing to recite it. And even though Harrington showed up with a petition signed by 700 people, including Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., and Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn.
The committee voted 3-3 to vote it down, which made Harrington heartbroken to think an American tradition was being denied.
Everyone was so quick to jump on the bandwagon, and boycott the state of Arizona, after the passage of the new immigration bill, but it’s not so easy, as many cities are now finding out. A number of cities have either scaled back or created exemptions to their own boycotts. And these resolutions have also created a backlog of work for officials at the city level, as they now must review hundreds of internal contracts for any trace of Arizona to see whether it’s prudent to cut ties. When the cities start their reviews, they may have to downscale the boycott, to just certain bans.
Last Wednesday, the city of Los Angeles was the latest to amend its boycott. This decision was about an Arizona-based company that operates enforcement cameras at Los Angeles intersections, so an amendment was needed so the company can continue the operations. City officials cited economic as well as public safety concerns in arguing to extend the contract with American Traffic Solutions, based in Scottsdale. The contract also includes the employment of California workers. Several other cities, mostly in California, also have been modifying their stance on Arizona in recent weeks.
We now have word that President Obama has now asked activists and labor leaders, for help in a huge push for comprehensive legislation, that will showcase Republican opposition and include a major speech by the president. On Monday, a meeting was held, in which prominent labor leaders and activists discussed this new strategy. The group says Obama reiterated his support for immigration legislation but noted the political realities that have stalled it in Congress.
So now we have Latino leaders saying they plan to pressure the Republicans into caving in, or make them pay in November at the ballot box. And as usual, it’s all the Republicans’ fault, when in fact, there are also Democrats who are leary of tackling the problem, because of the election year, and they know they may lose dearly come November. Meanwhile, the hispanics are putting more pressure on Obama to get the reform passed.
An Arizona congresswoman still refuses to back down from her allegations that two federal agencies moved their conferences from the state to boycott its new law cracking down on illegal immigrants despite the agencies’ denial. Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords says she has information that the Department of Education and the U.S. Border Patrol canceled scheduled meetings in Arizona over the state’s tough new law that has prompted at least two dozen cities or government agencies across the nation, including Los Angeles, Boston and Seattle, to pass resolutions to boycott the state or curtail economic activity.
“We have the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Education that had planned for meetings, had then canceled those meetings with the reason given that it was because of the immigration law,” she said on Saturday, repeating a charge she first leveled earlier in the week. And of course, these agencies deny the allegations.
Vice President Joe Biden has done it again, offending someone. A Milwaukee Custard Shop manager was scolded by Biden, and was shocked when the Vice President called him a “smartass.” A local television station caught the exchange, when Scott Borkin, the manager Kopp’s Frozen Custard, was showing the vice president around Friday. Biden snapped at the manager when he mentioned taxes.
Borkin was shocked to hear those words coming from Biden’s mouth, and he was just joking when the comment was made about taxes. Biden made the comment after Borkin told him that his dessert would be on the house if he lowered taxes.
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