Saturday, July 31, 2010

100th Anniversary of the Angel Island Immigration Station


AssociatedPress January 27, 2009 : The Angel Island Immigration Station, once known as the "Ellis Island of the West," is reopening after a multimillion-dollar restoration of the historical landmark.

100th Anniversary of the Angel Island Immigration Station on July 31

Join Friends of Angel Island on Saturday, July 31 at Angel Island State Park for a spectacular array of speakers, cultural performers, and free self-guided tours of the Immigration Station. Several new exhibits were installed in May including the granite Interrogation Table, audio kiosks which allow the visitor to hear several of the poems in English and Cantonese, and new photographic displays. It’s truly a brand-new look at the Angel Island immigration experience.

KPIX Raw Video: SF Naturalization Honors Angel Island

Friday, July 30, 2010

West Wing Week: 7/30/10 or "The Men in Blue Jumpsuits"



WH.gov: West Wing Week: 7/30/10 or "The Men in Blue Jumpsuits"

Thanks for checking out the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, walk step by step with the President as he fights for campaign finance reform, boosts small business, meets with Space Shuttle Atlantis astronauts, commemorates the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, welcomes the 2009 Softball World Series champions, makes an appearance on The View and much more.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

US Leaders Mark 20th Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act



VOAVideo: US Leaders Mark 20th Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act

The Americans with Disabilities Act, also called ADA, is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of mental or physical disabilities. It regulates federal and local programs, transportation, public accommodations and commercial facilities, and has, by wide accounts, transformed the lives of the disabled. On Monday, as one disabled activist commemorated the passage of the act, she also dreamed of what more can be done. VOA's Laurel Bowman has the story.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

New Law Would Help Immigrants Facing Female Circumcision



VOAVideo: New Law Would Help Immigrants Facing Female Circumcision

Gender-based violence is a problem facing millions of women worldwide.

Forced marriage, honor killing and female genital mutilation are just a few of the human rights abuses directed against women solely because of their gender.

In the United States, a number of organizations are trying to help women who are trying to flee their country to escape this gender-based persecution, using the judicial system to help them get asylum.

Now, legislation recently introduced in the U.S. Congress aims to strengthen current asylum laws for immigrant women, which will be of tremendous assistance to these groups.

The Tahirih Justice Center is an innovative, efficient, and strategic nonprofit organization that works to protect immigrant women and girls from gender-based violence through legal services, advocacy, and public education programs.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Video of Independence Day Naturalization Ceremonies


USCIS: Video of Independence Day Naturalization Ceremonies

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) commemorated America's 234th birthday by naturalizing more than 3,800 new citizens at approximately 55 special ceremonies held across the United States and abroad. Nine of these ceremonies were specifically for members of the U.S. armed forces and military spouses.

We have created a video highlighting five of the 4th of July naturalization ceremonies celebrating "A Spirit of Independence." The ceremonies include:

  • Ellis Island, NY
  • Kennedy Space Center, FL
  • USS Midway, San Diego, CA
  • Independence Hall, PA
  • Mt. Vernon, VA

Friday, July 23, 2010

West Wing Week: 7/23/10 or "A Sensible Mid Westerner"



WH.gov: West Wing Week: 7/23/10 or "A Sensible Mid Westerner"

Thanks for checking out the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, walk step by step with the President as he speaks up for unemployed Americans, congratulates this year's WNBA champs, talks with astronaut John Glenn about space exploration, meets with British Prime Minister Cameron, signs the historic Wall Street Reform bill into law and much more!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What Wall Street Reform Means for You



WH.gov: What Wall Street Reform Means for You

A quick and simple animated explanation of how Wall Street Reform will work and what the strongest consumer protections in history will mean for you and your family.

VOANews: Obama Signs US Financial Reform into Law

President says regulations on major financial firms will protect consumers, prevent abuses that many say led to global recession

VOAVideo: Obama Signs Financial Reform Into Law

The most sweeping changes to the U.S. financial system since the 1930's officially became law on Wednesday. President Barack Obama declared the newly-passed financial reform bill a major victory for consumers, saying American taxpayers will never again have to foot the bill for risky bets made by large financial firms. But others argue the new law is too far-reaching and could hurt rather than help American consumers and businesses. Mil Arcega has more.

VOANews: Financial Reform Law Aims to Change Some Ways of Wall Street

A new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is at the heart of the bill signed by President Obama

Monday, July 19, 2010

Native American Lacrosse Team Refused Entry to Britain over Passport Issue

USCIS 100:87. Name one American Indian tribe in the United States.

USCIS 96:91. Name one benefit of being a citizen of the United States.




VOAVideo: Native American Lacrosse Team Refused Entry to Britain over Passport Issue

A sports team from the US and Canada is being excluded from an international lacrosse tournament in Britain because of a passport dispute. Players on the Iroquois Nationals team have passports issued by the Iroquois Confederacy rather than by the US or Canada. So Britain is refusing them entry, and they've been stuck in New York for days. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the U.S. Secretary of State got involved.

USCIS 100:87. Name one American Indian tribe in the United States.
[USCIS Officers will be supplied with a list of federally recognized American Indian tribes.]

  • Cherokee
  • Navajo
  • Sioux
  • Chippewa
  • Choctaw
  • Pueblo
  • Apache
  • Iroquois
  • Creek
  • Blackfeet
  • Seminole
  • Cheyenne
  • Arawak
  • Shawnee
  • Mohegan
  • Huron
  • Oneida
  • Lakota
  • Crow Teton
  • Hopi
  • Inuit

USCIS 96:91. Name one benefit of being a citizen of the United States.

  • to obtain Federal government jobs
  • to travel with a U.S. passport
  • or to petition for close relatives to come to the United States to live

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Colonial Williamsburg Breathes Life into US History



VOANews: Colonial Williamsburg Breathes Life into US History

Colonial Williamsburg, in the eastern U.S. state of Virginia, is an open-air living museum, populated by historical re-enactors, also called interpreters.

Friday, July 16, 2010

West Wing Week: 7/16/10 or "6 Principals"



WH.gov: West Wing Week: 7/16/10 or "6 Principals"

Thanks for checking out the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, walk step by step with the President as he speaks about the economy in Las Vegas, celebrates 100 years of the Boy Scouts of America, meets with President Fernandez of the Dominican Republic, visits with the 2010 Principal of the Year award winners, announces the new Director of the Office of Management and Budget and much more.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Ethical Imperative for Reform of our Immigration System

Zoe Lofgren addressing new citizens at a Oath Ceremony in San Jose.
On that day, more than 3000 people became US citizens!

Today, the House of Representative's Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law is holding a public hearing on the Ethical Imperative for Reform of our Immigration System.

The subcommitee chairman is Zoe Lofgren (D) (CA 16) who represents south San Jose, home to vibrant Vietnamese- and Hispanic-American immigrant comunities. Good luck with the hearings!

You can checkout a YahooNews photo gallery of the hearing. I will post more info as it becomes available.


Witness List (click name to read their testimony)

Monday, July 12, 2010

US Civil Rights Group Launches New Century with Focus on Recruiting Young People, Minorities



VOAVideo: US Civil Rights Group Launches New Century with Focus on Recruiting Young People, Minorities

Thousands of African Americans are in (the midwestern US city of) Kansas City, Missouri this week (July 10-15) as the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization holds its annual convention. The organization known as the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) is beginning the first year in its second century of being a leading voice for African Americans. Today, the group is trying to attract young people while pushing for better paying jobs and educational opportunities for minorities. VOA's Chris Simkins with more on the history of the organization and its young leaders.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Citizenship: “I’m Truly Home Now”

SouthWest Airlines Spirit: Citizenship: “I’m Truly Home Now”

Spirit welcomes an incoming class of fellow Americans and offers a refresher on citizenship, while Jay Heinrichs grapples with life, liberty, and changing his wife's vote. (pdf)

ON THE COVER Kassegn Befekadu celebrates passing the citizenship test. Photography by Andy Anderson

Friday, July 9, 2010

West Wing Week: 7/09/10 or "Independence"



WH.gov: West Wing Week: 7/09/10 or "Independence"

Thanks for checking out the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, walk step by step with the President as he speaks about 6 straight months of job growth, celebrates America's Independence Day with Military Families, watches a firework extravaganza with the First Lady, meets with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, tours Smith Solar Vehicles in Kansas City and much more.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

US Justice Department Files Lawsuit Against Arizona Over Immigration Law



VOANews: US Justice Department Files Lawsuit Against Arizona Over Immigration Law

Law would require police to ask for proof of legal status in United States

US Government to Challenge Arizona Immigration Law

"In sum, the system is broken.
And everybody knows it."
--Barack Obama

VOA Learning English: Obama Urges Congress: Reform Immigration Rules

One reason for the speech was the state of Arizona's recent passage of its own law against illegal immigration. That law has led to protests around the country. However, in public opinion surveys a majority of Americans support it. Mr. Obama criticized the law, but said such laws are the understandable result of inaction at the federal level.
download MP3 (Right-click or option-click and save link)

VOANews:
US Government to Challenge Arizona Immigration Law

Sources with justice department say suit will argue that enforcing immigration is federal responsibility

VOAVideo:
Obama Calls for Immigration Reform

U.S. President Barack Obama is calling on Congress to rise above partisan divisions and fix the country's immigration system. In a speech Thursday, Mr. Obama said the failure of lawmakers in Washington to act makes the problem of illegal immigration worse. VOA's Kent Klein has more.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Debate Continues over US Gun Laws



VOAVideo: Debate Continues over US Gun Laws

New local gun laws follow a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that Americans' Constitutional right to gun ownership applies nationwide. Legal challenges and debate continue a week after the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling that Americans have a right to own a gun for self defense anywhere they live. The Court said the Constitutional right to gun ownership applies nationwide, in response to a challenge of a gun ban in the Midwestern U.S. state of Illinois. But the court also said the ruling limits - but does not eliminate - the ability of states to devise solutions to social problems that, in the decision's words, "suit local needs and values." So gun rights supporters and those who favor more restrictions on firearms are vowing to fight on. VOA's Chris Simkins has more on the story.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

USF-I Naturalization Ceremony: 4th of July, 2010



USF-I Naturalization Ceremony: 4th of July, 2010

virgilatmit July 04, 2010
The Oath of Citizenship was taken by 156 U.S. Service Members--stationed everywhere throughout Iraq--here at Al Faw Palace on the 4th of July. The ceremony was hosted by General Odierno, Commanding General of United States Forces-Iraq, and featured Vice President Biden and his wife.

"I hereby declare, on oath,

that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen;

that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic;

that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same;

that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law;

that I will perform noncombatant service in the armed forces of the United States when required by the law;

that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law;

and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion;

so help me God."


See also:

USCIS:
July 4 Weekend: Members of the US Armed Forces Naturalize at Ellis Island

USCIS: Samantha Eddleman: "You Enlist a Marine - You Reenlist a Family"

4th of July at the White House 2010



WH.gov: 4th of July at the White House 2010

The White House and the USO celebrate the 4th of July with service members and their families at the White House Independence Day celebration on the South Lawn. Performers at this years celebration included Brandi Carlile, Cedric the Entertainer and the rock band The Killers.

Fireworks on the National Mall from the White House



WH.gov: Fireworks on the National Mall from the White House

The President delivers Remarks at Independence Day Celebration



WH.gov: The President delivers Remarks at Independence Day Celebration

President Obama speaks to military families celebrating Independence Day on the South Lawn of the White House.

Milpitas Fourth of July Firework Finale



Milpitas Fourth of July Firework Finale

HUGE crowd--everyone was peaceful and proud. I love Milpitas!

Celebrating Independence Day With Parades, Fireworks and Water Balloon Fights

USCIS 100:09. What are two rights in the Declaration of Independence? mp3 doc (by uscitizenpod)

Rugged Old Flag was written and sung by Johnny Cash

VOANews: Celebrating Independence Day With Parades, Fireworks and Water Balloon Fights

Another good special from AMERICAN MOSAIC, VOA’s radio magazine in Special English. I especially enjoyed Johnny Cash' song, Rugged Old Flag. Also, a question from China about General Douglas MacArthur. download MP3

VOANews: Americans Mark July 4 Independence Day Holiday

Independence Day holiday marks the occasion in 1776 when US colonies declared independence from Britain

VOANews: Clinton Calls for Reflection on US Ideals During July 4 Independence Day Holiday

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is urging people to reflect on the ideals of the founding fathers of the United States this Independence Day as nearly 4,000 people prepare to become U.S. citizens.

VOANews: Smithsonian Folklife Festival Celebrates Cultural Traditions

More than a million people are coming to Washington for Independence Day festivities and for annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Open for Questions: Comprehensive Immigration Reform



WH.gov: Open for Questions: Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Director of White House Intergovernmental affairs Cecilia Muñoz takes questions from a roundtable of journalists and from online participants on the President's Call for Immigration Reform. July 1, 2010.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Obama Calls for Immigration Reform



VOAVideo: Obama Calls for Immigration Reform

U.S. President Barack Obama is calling on Congress to rise above partisan divisions and fix the country's immigration system. In a speech Thursday, Mr. Obama said the failure of lawmakers in Washington to act makes the problem of illegal immigration worse. VOA's Kent Klein has more.

West Wing Week: 07/02/10 or "Home of the Kringle"



West Wing Week: 07/02/10 or "Home of the Kringle"

Thanks for checking out the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, walk step by step with President Obama as he gets a lesson in mathematics in the Oval Office, attends the G8 and G20 summits in Canada, meets with the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, hosts King Abdullah in the White House and much more.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Obama Immigration Reform-Full HQ video



WH.gov: President Obama on Comprehensive Immigration Reform

President Obama calls for both parties to come together to fix a broken immigration system and implement comprehensive reform that demands accountability from government, from businesses, and from individuals. July 1, 2010.


Obama Immigration Reform-Full HQ video
UpTakeVideo July 01, 2010 At American University today, President Obama outlines a road map for immigration reform that includes holding businesses, illegal immigrants responsible and fixing the broken legal immigration system

also see: WH.gov: The President's Speech, and a Chat, on Comprehensive Immigration Reform