Increasing Number of Latinos Identify as Native American

In some Latin American countries – being Native American is a definite negative. Discrimination, such as that experienced by Native American people in Southern Mexico is common. So historically, a lot of Hispanics have run away from their Native American background (Not unlike the disappeared black folks in Mexico). So this is interesting…

Ana María Tekina-eirú Maynard, right, dances at the 2010 Taíno Day ceremony in Puerto Rico.

Taino Festival in Puerto Rico

More Latinos identify as Native American, census shows

When Ana María Tekina-eirú Maynard filled out her census form last year, she checked the box for Latino, and for the first time, she also checked the box for Native American.

It had taken her more than 30 years — plus research and genetic testing — to discover her ties to the indigenous Taínos of Puerto Rico, to claim her identity and re-learn what she thought she knew of her history.

She’s not the only one. Since 2000, the number of Hispanics who identified themselves as Native American grew from 407,073 to 685,150, according to the 2010 census.

Some attribute the increase to immigration from parts of North and South America where there are large indigenous populations. In some cases, it’s because of recently discovered ties to native cultures.

Growing up in the Bronx, New York, and spending summers in Puerto Rico, Maynard said she had no words to identify who she was. She just felt “different.”

“It is one thing to know that you have indigenous blood,” Maynard said. “And I have always known it. I look at the faces of my mother and grandmother, and that reality is undeniable.”

But Maynard had long been taught that Taíno Indians, the indigenous people of Puerto Rico, were “gone, dead and buried” for centuries, decimated by Spaniards who arrived on the island in the 16th century.

“Why would you question what you have always been taught and what was considered as common knowledge?” she asked.

Still, 14 years ago, Maynard founded the Puerto Rican Folkloric Dance & Cultural Center in Austin, Texas, to preserve the culture of indiginous Puerto Ricans. Today, Maynard gives dance and singing classes as a volunteer at the center, in addition to her full-time job as an engineer with IBM.

Four years ago, Maynard heard about the work of Dr. Juan Carlos Martinez Cruzado, a geneticist from the University of Puerto Rico. In an island-wide genetic study, he found that at least 61.1% of those surveyed had mitochondrial DNA of indigenous origin.

Cruzado’s findings eventually cast doubt upon the notion that the Taínos of Puerto Rico had been completely extinguished but suggested that they assimilated.

“When I learned about (Cruzado’s) work, my life changed,” Maynard said. “It was an awakening that the Taíno heritage was not extinct.”

 

Tea Bagger Rushes to Defend Al Quaeda

All About the Tea Party

First – the Tea Baggers griped about Obama ordering US Special Forces to take out Bin Lauden…

Now – they are at it again.

Plastic patriots waving their little plastic flags. More of an enemy of America that the foreign Al Quaeda.

Ron Paul: Anwar Al-Awlaki, U.S.-Born Al-Qaeda Cleric, ‘Assassinated’

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul is condemning the Obama administration for killing an American born al-Qaida operative without a trial.

Paul, a Texas congressman known for libertarian views, says the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki on Yemeni soil amounts to an “assassination.” Paul warned the American people not to casually accept such violence against U.S. citizens, even those with strong ties to terrorism.

Anwar al-Awlaki was considered one of the most influential al-Qaida operatives wanted by the United States. U.S. and Yemen officials say he was killed in a U.S. air strike targeting his convoy Friday morning.

Paul made the comments to reporters after a campaign stop Friday at Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire. He said America’s leaders must think hard about “assassinating American citizens without charges.”

Guy Robs Same Bank 3 Times in 3 Days

Sometimes things get “good to you” – but this is ridiculous!

Ex-Mental Patient Robs Bank 3 Days in a Row: Cops

A former mental patient allegedly robbed the same bank three days in a row this week while living the high life on his stolen money, the New York Post reports. New York City police say Charles Burnett, 29, robbed the Sovereign bank of $2,200 on Monday and booked himself into the Grand Hyatt near Grand Central with his new cash. Tuesday, he repeated his performance at Sovereign for a whopping $14,000. That’s when he hired a personal driver for a third robbery.

Initially Burnett had the luxury SUV take him shopping at a sporting goods store, where he picked up—and paid for—a New York Giants hat and Yankees batting glove. “I thought he was a baseball player,” says driver Rafael Rubio. Burnett then had Rubio drop him off at Sovereign bank, which Burnett robbed of $10,000 before being tackled by cops. Sources say the 6-foot-1, 275-pound suspect, arraigned yesterday, was released not long ago from a mental hospital in the South.

Obama Fried Chicken? Goodbye Colonel

Seems that some folks in the US, as well as in China have hit upon the idea using “Obama” name recognition to peddle fried chicken…

Sign%20atop%20Obama%20Fried%20Chicken%20and%20Pizza%20at%20110th%20St.%20Nicholas%20Ave.%20%28Giancarli%20for%20News%29

Sign atop Obama Fried Chicken and Pizza at 110th St. Nicholas Ave. in New York City

NYC’s ‘Obama fried chicken’ restaurants ruffle feathers

Two city fast-food joints are calling themselves Obama Fried Chicken – and the new names are ruffling some feathers.

Eateries in Brooklyn and Manhattan plastered the new President’s last name on their awnings recently.

And some passersby are cringing, saying the name change plays into old racial stereotypes.

“Why name it that? Just because Obama is black, they’re going to put his name on a fried chicken place in a black neighborhood?” said Akilah Nassy, 16, outside the Brooklyn store.

And here, in China -

Obama Fried Chicken? In China, it’s on the menu

For all the grief the Obama administration is getting from China for filing a complaint with the World Trade Organization about Chinese tariffs on American chicken exports, perhaps the president should be suing China for royalties instead.

We’ve seen Obama peddle chicken for Kentucky Fried Chicken in Hong Kong, so it was just a matter of time before he broke loose and got his own franchise here in the mainland.

Obama Fried Chicken, or at least what we assume OFC stands for, was found earlier this week in Beijing and comes with the slogan written underneath in Chinese: “We’re so cool, aren’t we?”

Indeed…

It’s all about selling product.

Van Jones predicts October “Offensive” Against Tea Party by Progressives

If this happens – it’s about time somebody woke up in this country!

Maybe this time, progressives in Congress will discover the cajones to stand up.

Pat Buchanan Loves Having Herman Cain Out There on the Lawn

‘Nuf said after this one…

Calls To Investigate Clarence Thomas Intensify

Don’t expect any Republicans to stand up for whats right on this one – but 20 Democrat Congressmen have called for an investigation into the questionable finances of Clarence Thomas, and “pay to play” justice at the Supreme Court.

The 5-4 Supreme Court - All the Justice You Can Afford

Clarence Thomas Should Be Investigated For Nondisclosure, Democratic Lawmakers Say

Democratic lawmakers on Thursday called for a federal investigation into Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ failure to report hundreds of thousands of dollars on annual financial disclosure forms.

Led by House Rules Committee ranking member Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.), 20 House Democrats sent a letter to the Judicial Conference of the United States — the entity that frames guidelines for the administration of federal courts — requesting that the conference refer the matter of Thomas’ non-compliance with the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 to the Department of Justice.

The letter outlines how, throughout his 20-year tenure on the Supreme Court, Thomas routinely checked a box titled “none” on his annual financial disclosure forms, indicating that his wife had received no income. But in reality, the letter states, she earned nearly $700,000 from the Heritage Foundation from 2003 to 2007 alone.

Slaughter called it “absurd” to suggest that Thomas may not have known how to fill out the forms.

“It is reasonable, in every sense of the word, to believe that a member of the highest court in the land should know how to properly disclose almost $700,000 worth of income,” Slaughter said in a statement. “To not be able to do so is suspicious, and according to law, requires further investigation. To accept Justice Thomas’s explanation without doing the required due diligence would be irresponsible.”

The letter also cites a June report in The New York Times indicating Thomas may have regularly benefited from the use of a private yacht and airplane owned by real estate magnate Harlan Crowe and failed to disclose the travel as a gift or travel reimbursement.

Current law requires the Judicial Conference to refer to the Attorney General any judge the conference “has reasonable cause to believe has willfully failed to file a report or has willfully falsified or willfully failed to file information required to be reported.”

Slaughter’s press statement also notes that the Heritage Foundation was a prominent opponent of the Affordable Care Act, an issue the Supreme Court is expected to rule on by next summer.

“The Attorney General would be the appropriate person to investigate the issue of non-disclosure, and that is why my colleagues and I are making this request today,” Slaughter said. “I cannot determine guilt or innocence, but I can request that the government do our due diligence in investigating a situation that strikes me, and many other members of Congress, as suspicious.”

Other members of Congress on the letter include Reps. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.), Gwen Moore (D-Wis.), Mike Honda (D-Calif.), Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), Christopher Murphy (D-Conn.), John Garamendi (D-Calif.), Pete Stark (D-Calif.), Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), John Olver (D-Mass.), Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), Donna Edwards (D-Md.), Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.), Bob Filner (D-Calif.), Peter Welch (D-Vt.), John Conyers (D-Mich.), Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.).

Money, Honey… Indeed.

China Tiangong-1 Launch Animation Set to “America the Beautiful”

Somebody over there in China goofed on this one, setting the background music of the video animation of the Launch to America the Beautiful.

Rocket’s red glaring error: China sets space launch to America the Beautiful

The lift-off was flawless. The orbit immaculate. But while China‘s leaders were celebrating the triumphant launch of Tiangong-1 space lab on Thursday, viewers of state television footage were treated to a bizarre choice of soundtrack: America the Beautiful.

To mark the launch, the Chinese space agency and China Central Television (CCTV) released aproud animation, set to rousing orchestral strains, of the “Heavenly Palace” thrusting skyward, lofting above the Earth and docking with a Shenzou crew capsule.

The only problem being that the backing music in question is America the Beautiful – more or less an unofficial national anthem of the United States. The Guardian spotted the blunder after picking up the video from the Reuters news agency while covering the launch.

America the Beautiful, which was composed by a New York church organist in 1882, has long been a favourite of US patriots. It has been proposed as the national hymn and a replacement for The Star-Spangled Banner as anthem.

It could hardly be more different from the music associated with the launch of China’s first rocket in 1970. That satellite transmitted the Cultural Revolution anthem, The East is Red, extolling the virtues of the Communist party and Chairman Mao.

The choice of soundtrack for the Tiangong launch raised several questions. Is this the work of an idealist seeking to usher in a new era of transPacific cooperation, a nationalist who wants to colonise American culture as well as outer space, or simply a propaganda gaffe?

Michelle Obama Hits Local Target Store to Shop Incognito

Turns out the First Lady loves to slip out of the White House bubble and do things normal folks do…

Like Shop.

Michelle Obama shopping

Michelle Obama photographed shopping at D.C.-area Target

The first lady shops at Target – just like us!

An Associated Press photographer on Thursday snapped some choice photos of Michelle Obama in the checkout line of a Target store just outside Washington for what her office says was a “routine errand,” the likes of which she does often.

The first lady appears to have been trying to pick up some items incognito. She is seen sporting a Nike cap and large, dark sunglasses.

Photos: Michelle Obama shops at Target

“It is not uncommon for the first lady to slip out to run an errand, eat at a local restaurant or otherwise enjoy the city outside the White House gates,” said Kristina Schake, communications director for the first lady.

It’s unclear how the photo came about; her office said the photographer, Charles Dharapak, “caught her” at the store.

President Obama has often mused about how he wishes he could break outside the “bubble” he has to travel in. The first lady does not have the same full-time entourage of reporters as her husband.

But she, too, has spoken of some frustration about how living in the White House has changed her routine.

“Before we lived here, we were normal people. I had a job, I drove my own car, I took my kids to school every day.  I went to Target and shopped for my groceries,” she said at an April event for children of White House staff.

Notorious Yogi-X …Pizza Bandit! :)

Who...Me?

If you have followed my blog for a while, you know that I have been tracking the exploits of the “Notorious Yogi-X” – a black bear that has been on a crime spree starting in Maryland last year,  having to leave New Jersey after being falsely accused and being shot by an over aggressive officer, checked out the nightlife in New York City, stopping for a snack in New Hampshire – and finally winding up in Canada where he fell in with the wrong crowd a had a run in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Maybe it was a bad upbringing. Yogi’s cousin was even accused of a carjacking in Colorado, escaped to Montana whereupon he conducted a one bear crime spree, and after the law got close, he was arrested trying to catch a flight in Missoula!

Here – Yogi stops by for his favorite snack -Pizza, and gets an earful from the patrons!

Hispanic Children Now Largest Number of Poor in America

One is six American children are now living in poverty…

Isn’t it time to raise some hell in this country?

Hispanic Children Make Up Largest Share Of Poor Children In U.S.

The largest group of poor children isn’t white for the first time in U.S. history, according to a Pew report released Wednesday.

There were 6.1 million Latino children living in poverty in 2010, that’s 37.3 percent of all of the nation’s poor children, compared with 30.5 percent who were white and 26.2 percent who were black, according to the report. The Great Recession, which pushed increasing numbers of American children into poverty, hit Latino families especially hard, the report found.

The unemployment rate among Latinos is currently 11.1 percent, significantly higher than the national rate of 9.1 percent. And the high jobless rate is affecting their kids; twenty-five percent of children in black and Hispanic families had one unemployed or underemployed parent last year, according to the Economic Policy Institute.

Hispanic households were also devastated by the foreclosure crisis; almost half of the victims of loan modification scams were Hispanic, African American or Asian, according to a report from the Homeownership Preservation Foundation.

The pain has yet to end. Seventeen percent of Latinos lost their home or were at risk of losing it in June 2010, according to a CNN Money analysis of Center for Responsible Lending Data. That’s compared to 11 percent of African American homeowners and 7 percent of white homeowners, according to CNN Money.

The foreclosure and jobs crisis exacerbated Hispanic child poverty rates, according to the Pew report. An additional 1.6 million Latino children were pushed into poverty between 2007 and 2010, a boost of 36.3 percent. By comparison, the ranks of white children living in poverty swelled by 17.6 percent, while the number of black children living in poverty grew by 11.7 percent.

In addition to economic woes, high birth rates among Hispanics living in the U.S. may also explain why Hispanic children make up the largest share of children living in poverty, the Pew report found. Hispanic children make up 23.1 percent of the nation’s children, due mostly to their high birther rates, according to the Pew report.

The rise in Hispanic children living in poverty is part of a larger trend of a rise in child poverty since the recession. One in four U.S. children under six are living in poverty, according to the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire. And that rise isn’t limited to pockets of the country.Child poverty rose in 38 states in the last decade, a report released last month by the Annie E. Casey Foundation found.

The boost in child poverty is indicative of the rise in poverty in the nation as a whole. The U.S. poverty rate increased last year to 15.1 percent, according to Census data released earlier this month. The ranks of the nation’s poor swelled to 46.2 million, the most since the agency began keeping track.

Greatest Auto Mechanics in the World? Havana, Cuba!

One of the strange leftovers from communism in Cuba was the prohibition on importing or owning any car which wasn’t in Cuba before 1959. There were literally thousands of 40′s and 50′s American cars in the country prior to that, which through Cuban determination and mechanical skill have been kept running, and fill the streets today. One of the tourist attractions, and local flavors is seeing (or getting the chance to ride in) some of these classics.

Of course the folks who “were more equal than others” had the (dubious) right to buy Soviet made cars that were newer.

Perhaps in 20 or 30 years, Cuba will become “Toyotized”… And with Cuban ingenuity – a few of these will still be running.

I believe this is a '58 Ford Fairlane, outfitted in Hot Pink as a Cab

All Cubans Can Now Buy Any Car

SALES HAD PREVIOUSLY BEEN LIMITED TO CARS BUILT BEFORE THE 1959 REVOLUTION

Cuba legalized the sale and purchase of automobiles for all citizens today, another major step in the island’s economic transformation and one that the public has been requesting for decades. Unrestricted sales had previously been limited to cars built before the 1959 revolution, one of the reasons Cuba’s streets are about the only place on the planet one routinely finds a multitude of finned American classics from the 1950s, such as Chevrolets Bel Airs and Chrysler Imperials.

The new law will allow the sale of cars from all models and years, and it legalizes ownership of more than one car, although tax rates go up slightly. Also, Cubans who leave the island for good can transfer ownership of their car to a relative or sell it outright; previously, the state could seize the automobiles of those who emigrated. The government announced the move in April, but sales have been on hold until the measure was published into law in the Official Gazette; it takes effect on Saturday.

Bill Russell – Mentor Golf Challenge

Guys are still kickin’ it – and seem to be doing well. Bill Russell, Jim Brown – two of their respective sorts most accomplished heroes. This event was for Bill Russell Mentoring, part of the Bill Russell Legacy Project which is supporting the National Mentoring Foundation focused on youth mentoring.

Bill Russell Legacy Project Includes Grants for Youth Mentoring

Tuesday, May 24, 2011 – The Mass Mentoring Partnership, a MENTOR affiliate, is partnering with the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation and the City of Boston on the Bill Russell Legacy Project, which includes an annual grants program for youth mentoring organizations in Boston so that more local children have access to quality, structured mentoring.

At an event last week, Russell and more than 400 supporters and community leaders were at Fenway Park, along with Boston Mayor Thomas Menino; Boston Celtics Co-owner and Managing PartnerPresident of the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation Stephen Pagliuca; Boston Celtics LegendTommy Heinsohn; and Founder of the Sager Family Foundation and Chairman of PolaroidBobby Sager to discuss the Legacy Project.

In addition to establishing the Bill Russell Mentoring Grant Program, which Mass Mentoring will administer, the project will erect a statue of Russell in Boston to celebrate his achievements as the greatest champion in the history of professional sports, as a national leader in human rights and as a dedicated advocate for youth mentoring.

“We are so proud to play a role in this effort that Mayor Menino and the Celtics have made so reflective of Bill’s lifetime of activism, as well as his many iconic accomplishments in Boston,” Mass Mentoring Partnership’s Chief Executive Officer David Shapiro said. “They have created a living legacy of Bill’s catalytic social justice leadership that will inspire future generations of our city’s youth through the proven impact of mentoring.”

As part of last week’s event, the Mass Mentoring Partnership presented Russell with a Lifetime Achievement Champion of Mentoring Award and the Boston Celtics with its 2011 Champion of Mentoring Award, which honor individuals and organizations that have demonstrated a commitment to youth mentoring and have championed the strategic growth of high-quality mentoring throughout Massachusetts.

“We are delighted that Bill Russell’s many accomplishments are being recognized in this way,” said MENTOR President and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Larry Wright. “Bill has been an active member of MENTOR’s board of directors since 1996, so the collaboration to make youth mentoring grants in his name is particularly meaningful.”

Cain – Black Folks are Brainwashed!

The Herminator Lawn Jockey is at it again.

He is making the very bad assumption that because he donned that Jockey Suit and trotted out there on the Tea Party’s Lawn…

That a large percentage of black folks are brain damaged enough to want to be out there with him…

T’aint so.

Black folks do support social conservatism, and oppose Gay Marriage by a higher percentage than the majority population. A number of social conservative positions. The problem is social conservatives marriage with the bigots and whack jobs of the Tea Bagger led Republican Party. Seems you can’t get common sense on one, without the racism of the other.

Cain: Black community ‘brainwashed’ into voting for Dems

The one African-American running for the GOP presidential nomination said Wednesday the black community was ‘brainwashed’ for traditionally siding with liberal politicians.

“African-Americans have been brainwashed into not being open minded, not even considering a conservative point of view,” Cain said on CNN’s “The Situation Room” in an interview airing Wednesday between 5-7 p.m. ET. “I have received some of that same vitriol simply because I am running for the Republican nomination as a conservative. So it’s just brainwashing and people not being open minded, pure and simple.”

Cain went on to explain that his interactions with African Americans led him to be optimistic about his own chances with the demographic.

“This whole notion that all African-Americans are not going to vote for Obama is not necessarily true,” Cain said.

He continued, “I believe a third [of African-Americans] would vote for me, based on my own anecdotal feedback. Not vote for me because I’m black but because of my policies.”

Cain also weighed in on the recent chatter surrounding Chris Christie, saying the recent reports the New Jersey governor is reconsidering a run for president were hurting the electorate.

“It’s not insulting as much as it is a disservice to the American people,” Cain said. “Chris Christie has been saying for a long time he’s not interested in running. The media is trying to create a story by sucking Chris Christie into race, just like they made a story by sucking Rick Perry into the race.”

Cain said the media should focus on the candidates who have already declared their candidacy to give voters a better idea of the field.

Black Liberation Army Hijacker Caught After 40 Years

Considering the number of active criminals in the US – Sans the murder conviction, I’m not sure why spending time and resource chasing this guy down in Portugal after 40 years makes much sense (Where in the world is D.B. Cooper?)…

George Wright

Fugitive in hijacking case caught after 40-year hunt

Reporting from New York— The FBI agents wore swimsuits — the better to ensure they were unarmed as they delivered $1 million in cash to the hijackers. The criminals wore beatific looks, traveled with young children and were “polite as possible,” a passenger on the ill-fated Delta flight recalled at the time.

For one man, it was the perfect crime — for nearly 40 years.

But on Tuesday, the FBI said it had caught up with the last hijacker, a convicted killer named George Wright who had escaped from prison in 1970 and resurfaced two years later when he joined members of a radical black nationalist group in forcing the jet to fly to Algeria.

Wright, now 68, was picked up outside his home in Portugal as he headed to a neighborhood cafe, said Michael Schroeder, a spokesman for the U.S. Marshals Service in New Jersey.

“Can you imagine?” Schroeder said, envisioning Wright’s surprise when Portuguese police, who had Wright under surveillance and were working in collaboration with U.S. officials, captured the fugitive. Continue reading

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