Thursday, March 22

Dramatized NIV Bible in MP3

Rudy over at Urban Onramps blogged about getting a dramatized bible in audio and it got me thinking. With the amount of media I consume, having the Bible in MP3 format would be perfect.

So, I got a set from Zondervan for my birthday and started listening to it in the last couple weeks. Its awesome. Its easier to concentrate, and easier to do while I brush my teeth, for example. The dramatized voices ads to the emotional connection, and I find myself smiling at certain passages. I certainly find this medium of scripture "reading" very much engaging.

Wednesday, March 21

New Layout, Larger Font Size

Since I have decided to get back to blogging here at Latino Issues, I thought a wider layout and slightly bigger font might make it easier for you all to read. I need to clean up and update my blogroll, and hope to ad some new features sometime soon as well.

For those of you who have been reading my stuff for years now, thank you for your loyal readership. For those of you who might be new to Latino Issues, please leave your comments and introduce yourself. I always enjoy hearing from readers.

Tuesday, March 20

MEDVED: DIVIDE AND CONQUER ON ILLEGAL IMMICRATION

One of the issues that motivated me to start blogging, and one of the most common topics here on Latino Issues is immigration. It is a complex subject, and one I know from having lived among the victims of illegal immigration and the corruption of Latin American business environment. There is no easy answer.

The one thing I didn't see here was more about fencing and border security. I think the following quote is a great perspective on the reality of illegal immigration. You can read the whole article for yourself here.
Anti-immigrant activists distort reality when they suggest that the undocumented are predominantly gang members, welfare chiselers and uneducated burdens on the taxpayer. Most illegals actually work hard and pay billions in taxes, while many own their own homes, go to church, raise decent children and give to charity. At the same time, it's ridiculous to suggest that all illegals count as good neighbors, loving parents and inspiring examples of the work ethic. About 400,000 have run afoul of the law, with warrants out for their
arrest as they defy governmental efforts at deportation.

In short, like every other group , illegals include examples of both the worst and the best of humanity: some of them damage our society through criminality, abuse of the social safety net and insistence on ethnic separatism, while many others toil tirelessly at their jobs while raising decent children and longing to take their place in the mainstream.
A commenter over at USA Today had this to say:
Do you actually think Hispanics will vote Republican in ten years while the Democratic party shifts as the party that speaks for the American Minority?
I don't know what Medved would say, but I don't think this has anything to do with votes. And if you think the Democrat party is speaking for the American minority, you are truly deceived. The only growing minority the Democrat party is interested in speaking for is the Union bosses, and the radical groups like ANSWER.

The root of this debate has to do with millions of human beings. I think both parties have done plenty to alienate the voters -- perhaps they should start thinking about doing what is right.

Here is where I suggest they can start:
  1. Apply full diplomatic pressure to Latin American countries to encourage true free market reforms and entrepreneurship. Make a list of "worst reformers" and give incentives to countries that makes it easy for their citizens to start and run a business. Encourage American multi-national corporations to contribute to the fight against corruption.

  2. Build the fence. I'm not opposed to technology like cameras, sensors, drones, and all of that. But, listen to the experts. If they say a physical fence is needed, then so be it. I imagine in populated areas, a fence is the only effective way.

  3. Fix the mess and bureaucracy in the legal immigration process. Make it safe. Make it secure. Make it effective. Make the legal process work with promptness and provide a quality service.

  4. Start taking steps to find solutions to the challenge of dealing with the present population of illegal immigrants. The important thing when brainstorming for possible solutions is to listen!
Please, stop the fear mongering. Its not constructive. If we don't find a solution, the results could have long term negative consequences.

Ultimately, even the most stringent effort to expel illegals will leave millions remaining in the USA, and the most important goal for this mass of humanity is assimilation —following the path of previous immigrants into the national mainstream.

At the moment, the biggest obstacle to such assimilation involves the impossibility of ever achieving legal residency. When the law makes it impossible for an immigrant to correct his illegal status, he faces greatly reduced motivation to embrace a new American identity.

Make sure you read the full article, then feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below. But, be warned -- I won't allow insults, or personal attacks. Let's talk about it -- I welcome all points of views.

ESPN Deportes La Revista Unveils List of 'Next Hispanic Athletes'

In the email inbox today. If you are wondering, I barely follow any sports at all, but its good to see the media highlighting these Hispanic's contributions.

Its already a thread in our American culture.
New York, NY--(HISPANIC PR WIRE - BUSINESS WIRE)--March 20, 2007--ESPN Deportes for the second consecutive year, ESPN Deportes La Revista, the only general sports Spanish-language magazine in the U.S., will unveil its list of the "Next Hispanic Athletes." The list, to be unveiled in the April issue, features the 14 most outstanding Hispanic young athletes of today who promise to become the sports stars of tomorrow. Florida Martins HANLEY RAMIREZ graces the cover.

The complete list includes CARLOS VELA, considered by many to be the heir to Hugo Sanchez; FRANCISCO GARCIA of the Sacramento Kings; DIEGO SANCHEZ, future UFC champion; Paraguayan golfer JULIETA GRANADA; VERONICA CHARLYN CORRAL, of Mexico's Under-20 Women's National Team; AARON HERNANDEZ, first Hispanic to be selected to U.S. Army American Bowl; Chivas USA soccer players DAVID ARVIZU and FRANCISCO MENDOZA; BRYAN ARGUEZ of the U-20 U.S. Men's National Team; boxer JULIO CESAR CHAVEZ, JR.; professional skateboarder PAUL RODRIGUEZ JR; ROBIN PRENDES, who represented the U.S. in the 2006 FISA Junior World Rowing Championship and Mexican race car driver SALVADOR DURAN.

To celebrate its annual NEXT Hispanic Athletes issue, ESPN Deportes La Revista is hosting the NEXT Hispanic Party at Finnegan's River in Downtown Miami, Tuesday, March 27.

Also in this Issue:

-- Barcelona's dynamic duo: Lionel Messi and Javier Saviola came to the Spanish club as child prodigies. Although the quality of both players is undeniable, the first has been covered in glory while the second has been relegated to the background and is only now beginning to have a real opportunity on the team. In this article, the Argentinean soccer players reflect on the situation.

-- De la Hoya vs. Mayweather Jr. There's been a lot of talk about what seems to be the final bout between two of the best boxers in recent times. Oscar de la Hoya will be seeking to retire with a grandiose flourish: as the only boxer with ten titles in six divisions, coupled with the defeat of the welterweight champ and pound-for-pound best boxer in the world; meanwhile Floyd Mayweather, Jr. will attempt to spoil the fun for the "Golden Boy." The two points of view about the most eagerly awaited fight of the year will be featured in our April issue.

-- The 10 Reasons to see Major League Baseball. One of the most respected writers on the subject of baseball, Enrique Rojas, conducts an in-depth analysis of what promises to be a history-making season for the Big Leagues. Will Barry Bonds break the home-run record? What can we expect from Daisuke Matsuzaka? Who will Roger Clemens be playing with? The answers to these and many other questions are in the April issue of ESPN Deportes La Revista.

Other interesting subjects:

-- The best season ever for Major League Soccer. The difficult years for the U.S. soccer league are over. The hiring of stars such as David Beckham, the building of new stadiums, the expansion towards Canada, and the new talent springing up are some of the indications demonstrating that Major League Soccer is ready to take root and flourish with an audience that had seemed interested only in football and baseball.

-- Everything for soccer: After an accident that left his legs paralyzed, Colombian soccer player Diego Fernando Cortes is now fighting - not just to walk again, but to actually return to the soccer field. In our April issue, Cortes himself tells us about his rehab and what he's planning so he can touch the ball again.

-- No criticism: This issue marks the debut of a new section of short interviews with Mexican soccer star Mario Mendez, who tells us how things have gone with his adaptation to Argentinean soccer on the Velez team.

Who wants Alberto Gonzales' job?

Its to bad. It will show weakness by the White House if they end up letting him go. Conservatives have to stop letting the left conjure controversies out of thin air.

A Republican source said Tuesday that Bush is "unmoved" and that Gonzales will not be pushed or fired, but instead will depart if he concludes he has lost his effectiveness because of the furor over the firing of eight U.S. attorneys.

At the same time, the president will be prepared if Gonzales steps aside. Republicans close to the White House continued to discuss potential replacements, including John Danforth, an Episcopal minister and former Republican senator from Missouri. "I think it is going to come down to who is willing to take the job," said an official close to the process.

Among the names floated Monday by administration officials were Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and White House anti-terrorism coordinator Frances Townsend. Former Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson is a White House prospect. So is former solicitor general Theodore B. Olson, but sources were unsure whether he would want the job.

Notice the quote: "I think it is going to come down to who is willing to take the job."

It's becoming clear, I'm sure, that taking a job for a Republican administration is asking for unfair attacks. Who would want that? Liberals have turned public service into a three-ring circus -- they are the clowns with the big plastic squeaky hammer running around annoying everyone.

HT: Instapundit

Cuban Ladies Protest For Political Freedom, Jailed Husbands

Impressive pictures speak a thousand words! Click here and look at this amazing collection of images of the Cuban "Ladies in White" via Stefania's Free Thoughts.

Independent journalist Carlos Serpa Maceira sent me the following beautiful photos showing some Ladies in White marching in Havana last Sunday, marking the 4th anniversary of the crackdown on 75 peaceful dissidents.

The Ladies give gladioluses to people in the streets of Havana. The Cuban people learned to know and love them, that they even ask them how their loved ones are doing.

Here is one that caught my eyes -- no fear!




Talking Politics and American Idol on NPR

I had the opportunity to talk politics on "Rough Cuts" with Michelle Martin.
Political Blogosphere -- Bloggers Kim Pearson and Josue Sierra discuss this week's news: Bush's visit to Latin America, the recent controversial firing of U.S. Attorneys and the biggest election of all right now... American Idol.
Check it out and listen to the RealMedia stream (Click on "Political Blogosphere"). You can leave your comments below, or on NPR's website here.

For those that are wondering, I made up my mind -- I am back! Things are still going to be a bit light here as I still have to blog on my two other blogs, but expect a tidbit here and there. I always welcome good guest blog posts, so if you want to share your thoughts with the Latino Issues readership, send me an email.