To kill or not to kill that is the question

19 09 2008

I was talking to a acquaintance of mine, who seems to be a Palin fan, and I asked her about the issue of abortion and capital punishment. She said that of curse she was against abortion and pro death penalty. I asked why? her explanation was not satisfactory to me. She said that abortion was a sin, but isn’t killing anyone a sin? therefore death penalty must be a sin as well.

She explained that this is part of the Christian doctrin. Abortion is wrong, but killing abortion doctors is okay. I am puzzled, really.

I would like somebody to explain the difference to me. This is how I see it, you don’t want to kill them before they are born, but you would kill them after they are born. A human being is that, at all stages of aging. To me…


Being from neither here nor there

13 09 2008

I was reading an essay about growing up Native American, and it blew my mind. The struggles that Native Americans go through living in and out of two very contrasting cultures, almost opposites. I cannot begin to comprehend the depth of the search  for an real identity, for who they really are.

Let me start with a little bit of history. You live in a farm, this farm has been in your family for generations, all of the sudden some people show up and they announce that they are moving into you house; These people are armed and take over you house and most of you land, they let you live with you family in a acre of land. Then other people show up, and they keep distributing your land, the land of your ancestors, among themselves, and you find yourself limited to less of a yard to live in. These people have the idea that you do not know how to properly manage your assets, so they also take your livestock, your bank account, etc. Some of your family members refuse and they are tortured, imprisoned or killed. The author had a similar metaphor, which I thought was very poignant, to describe this period in history that has been called “Colonization” I don’t believe that it is the right word.

I have heard that the winner gets to write the history of what happened; but I am still appalled when I see those movies called westerns where the Indians are the savages, and the settlers that come and take their land and kill them, are the good guys and the victims of the so called savages.

Since that time of “colonization” there has been a relentless battle to strip the Native American from their culture (I guess the only thing that could not be taken). The famous boarding schools to civilize them, and the imposition of the European culture, to name just two.

So now a days, when a child is born Native American, at home they might still have their traditions, their vision of life, their views on family, community, etc. When these children go into the outside world, they encounter a culture that is so different and is almost opposite to theirs; they have to live in this dichotomy of two conflicting worlds, within themselves. To top this off, the messages in the outside world portrait your culture as something to be rejected, with so many negative stereotypes that can lead to selfhatetred. What a position to be in, I cannot even start to imagine or put myself in their shoes.

I do understand that African Americans, Asian, Latinos and other cultures might go through a similar experience, probably all to different degrees. I don’t want to minimize any of them, because every experience is different and to each of us our own is the most important, or bigger or greater.

I wanted to bring this up to make you think. When you see somebody that does not fit the mold, that doesn’t look like you, that doesn’t talk like you, or has a different view of life, stop and take a second to get to know them, you might learn a whole lot and enrich yourself in the process. They might be going throught what the Native Americans go through. They might be struggling to understand this world. Things aren’t always what they seem.

Dealing with more loss

9 09 2008

Recently we said goodbye to my father in law. He was such a great guy, I miss him dearly. He died of lung cancer, a word for people out there, if you smoke STOP!! if you don’t, don’t start. He used to smoke in his youth.

I was blessed to have him in my life. I fell in love with him from the beginning. I always felt comfortable around him. He was the kind of person that could lift you up regardless of the mood you were in. He was funny, affectionate, caring and always had a smile, even near the end.

He was a great father, husband, friend, and will be greatly missed.

With love wherever you are 😉

In a Generation, Minorities May Be the U.S. Majority

8 09 2008

This is an article from the New York Times.

Ethnic and racial minorities will comprise a majority of the nation’s population in a little more than a generation, according to new Census Bureau projections, a transformation that is occurring faster than anticipated just a few years ago.

The census calculates that by 2042, Americans who identify themselves as Hispanic, black, Asian, American Indian, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander will together outnumber non-Hispanic whites. Four years ago, officials had projected the shift would come in 2050.

The main reason for the accelerating change is significantly higher birthrates among immigrants. Another factor is the influx of foreigners, rising from about 1.3 million annually today to more than 2 million a year by midcentury, according to projections based on current immigration policies.

So what does this mean for all of us? It means that we are all going to be the same, different!!

So-called minorities, the Census Bureau projects, will constitute a majority of the nation’s children under 18 by 2023 and of working-age Americans by 2039.

For the first time, both the number and the proportion of non-Hispanic whites, who now account for 66 percent of the population, will decline, starting around 2030. By 2050, their share will dip to 46 percent.

Higher mortality rates among older native-born white Americans and higher birthrates rates among immigrants and their children are already driving ethnic and racial disparities.

Should we be afraid of those immigrants and close our borders?  It is too late. Read the rest of this entry »

He went from undocumented farm worker to neurosugeon

7 09 2008

Alfredo Quinones-Hinojosa crossed the border, worked as a farm worker and went to become a Brain Surgeon. Is that the American Dream of what?

You can read and her his story on NPR . You can hear it from him in this video.

In my previous post I talked about the Dream Act, a piece f legislation that would give talented people the opportunity to do what Dr. Quinones Hinojosa did, and become all that they can be, and improve our country, save lives, advance science, and more. They could even go back to their ancestral home and improve life for others, so they don’t need to come in pursue of that dream. You can read more about it here. 

Asian Americans Rally in Support of Undocumented Students

6 09 2008

When I found this article I wanted to write about it to make the point that there is a large number of Asian undocumented people in the US. But I found another story, the story of young people from any race or ethnicity, that were brought here as children, they were raised here and when became of age to go to college they find that the are not able to do so. Regardless of their good grades and how smart they are, they can’t go to college because they are here illegally.

According to what I read, in California they can. According to the article 40% of the undocumented students in UCLA are Asian.  These young women were brave enough to risk their safety to expose this issue. They were interviewed by US Today, and their families were later detained by ICE.

There is a bill in congress called The Dream Act that would provide a way of legalization to those millions of children that were brought to the US and raised here, that don’t know any other country and a lot of which did not know they were not US citizens until they finished high school and could not apply for a driver’s license or go to college.

You can read all about it in the Pacific Citizen Website .