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The state government of Nuevo León, took a big hit this weekend when organized crime brutally executed Homer Trevino Guillermo Salcedo, director of Comprehensive Coordination Center of Control, Command, Communication and computation.(C-5)
On Sunday, shortly before 22:00 hours central radio for Civil Defense, received a call that warned of a pickup truck was on fire in the middle area of the city center of Monterrey, precisely on the streets of Washington and Ignacio Vallarta, the appropriate authorities immediately rushed to the scene.
Responders suddenly realized that the state government of Nuevo León owned the burning car, a Cherokee armored truck.
Inside the truck completely on fire, was the body of Homer Trevino Guillermo Salcedo, whose body was also riddled with bullets.
The gunmen sprayed the truck fuel tank with bullets and then set the truck on fire.
First reports indicate that Salcido had been kidnapped during the morning of Sunday, along with a group of bodyguards. It was not until late in the day when relatives of the officer knew the grim end. The nephew of Luis Carlos Treviño Berchelmann, former Secretary of Security was also killed.
During the morning the authorities of the state of Nuevo Leon have confirmed the facts, ” The State Government will confirm that the body found inside a vehicle on Sunday February 13 at the intersection of Avenidas Vallarta Washington in downtown Monterrey is the director of the Center for Comprehensive Coordination of Control , Command, Communications and Computer, C-5, Homero Treviño Guillermo Salcedo , “said the text.
It was also disclosed that Salcedo had resigned last Friday and was to give up his post today but he did not survive.
As Microsoft celebrates its 25th year operating in Latin America its products have never been more popular and in demand.
Microsoft works in 46 countries throughout Latin American, has 21 offices that directly employees 2,000 people and one million indirectly.
Thanks to that strong market representation, the Latin American region is the fastest growing for Microsoft worldwide. Early on Microsoft established close partnerships with local companies, industry leaders and governments that have served it well.
Overall multinationals posted an average Latin American growth of 17.2 percent in the third quarter (those are the most recent figures available) compared to 6.8 percent globally.
Louis DeJesus and his wife Crystal’s Valentine weekend argument in West Hartford, Connecticut, went from bad to worse. Sometime on Saturday night after the couple was arguing, DeJesus grabbed the couple’s wedding cake knife and stabbed his wife in the eye. She already had a protective order against Louis.
Shortly thereafter he proceeded to stab himself eight times. Police were either called by neighbors who heard the fighting or by the couple themselves. Both were taken to the hospital, Crystal has since been released.
Louis DeJesus remains at the hospital under police protection and faces numerous charges from first-degree assault to unlawful restraint. It has not been determined why he sought the couple’s wedding cake knife when they had been married for some time and clearly were not happily married, according to sources.
Despite the dire situation of the economy and the lack of immigration solutions, President Barack Obama’s approval rating among Latino voters increased again to 70% after decreasing in mid-2010.
But that support does not translate into automatic votes for 2012. The second part of a poll conducted by impreMedia and Latino Decisions (LD) also reveals that, although Latino voters will not automatically vote for Obama—only 43% are sure they will vote for him next year—doubts about the president and the Democrats are not turning into support for the Republicans.
The president’s approval rating is strong, although there are degrees of support: 32% of those polled said they strongly support Obama, while 38% somewhat approves of the president’s performance. In 2010, Obama’s rating among Latino voters decreased to 57% according to a June Gallup poll, and it was at 60% in a September LD poll.
Part of the decrease in the president’s approval rating occurred within the context of the continuing economic anxiety of Latinos and a failure to meet promises on immigration, “but the image began to improve when there was a new attempt to approve the DREAM Act, which ended up failing,” said Matt Barreto, a political science professor at the University of Washington and pollster for Latino Decisions.
As far as the GOP is concerned, only 9% of Latino voters said that they will vote for a Republican candidate and another 8% said that they might. This is one of the lowest levels of support obtained by the Republicans in recent years, and far less than the 40% a GOP candidate would need to make a difference in key states to become president.
An adult store in Alabama launched a Valentine’s Day campaign offering patrons to bring in their old guns—in any state, and exchange it for a brand new bedroom toy.
“In today’s economy, this is a way of helping people who may feel they can’t afford something for Valentine’s Day,” said Sherri Williams, the owner of “Pleasures,” a drive-thru adult store in Alabama.
“This way, they can take something that’s just lying around and swap it for something they can take home and make love, not war with,” said the owner of the store in Huntsville, who until tomorrow exchanges “guns off the street for fun between the sheets.”
So bring your pocket revolver to Pleasures, and go home with a pocket rocket for pleasures.
Weapons suspected to have been stolen or used in a crime will be handed over to the authorities, while every other firearm will be auctioned off and the proceedings will be donated to victims of gun violence.
Williams admitted that the guns could be resold at auction, and could end up back on the streets, but said the effort still is worthwhile.
“We might just change one person’s mind,” she said.
“You never know, maybe there will be someone who says, ‘I’ve got this gun that I could go rob a liquor store with, or maybe I can get me a blow-up doll for Valentine’s Day, instead.”
Williams said Alabama is the last state in the U.S. to have a sex toy ban. Williams said customers cannot purchase a sex toy unless they fill out a medical questionnaire describing the health-related reasons for their purchase. The store gives away condoms as a public service and features an “intimacy clinic” offering weekly seminars and workshops, marriage counseling, an upscale clothing boutique and a sexual health library, packed with books penned by well-known authors in the field.
Supporters of the Dream Act through the organization DreamActivist.org want to keep the issue of the DREAM Act front and center anywhere it can. So it thought of a unique concept to reach out to the Republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner – send him a Valentine Day card.
The DREAM Acter have not forgotten the lame duck session Senate vote failure and are hoping to reignite interest in the legislation. The Valentine read as follows:
To: Speaker of the House Boehner:
We know that you didn’t support the DREAM Act in 2010, but on this Valentine’s Day, we want to let you know that we love you, we love this country, and we want to get with you some time and make this country great. Together.
We, the immigrant youth movement, are everything you expect America’s next generation to be: hard working, independent, motivated, and committed to making this country great.
Despite the fact that you opposed the DREAM Act in the previous Congress, we won’t stop believin’. In fact, we’re ready to believe that you want a clear, workable solution for this country and this country’s immigrants. So let’s get together… and do some legislative healing.
The man convicted of killing Washington intern Chandra Levy almost 10 years ago was sentenced to 60 years in prison on Friday.
Salvadoran immigrant Ingmar Guandique, now 29, was sentenced to 60 years in prison for the murder of 24-year-old Chandra Levy. On November 22nd, 2010, it took less than three hours of deliberations for a jury to find Guandique guilty of Levy’s May 2001 murder.
In an 18-page memo, assistant U.S. attorneys Amanda Haines and Fernando Campoamor-Sanchez wrote, “Guandique has demonstrated predatory behavior that seems incapable of rehabilitation,” and listed prison disciplinary records and Guandique’s additional crimes as points to consider for sentence.
Guandique’s attorneys countered with their memo and spoke of his violent poverty-stricken upbringing, adding that he has learning and psychological problems.
Though 40 witnesses were presented by the prosecution, only one, Guandique’s former cell-mate connected him to Levy, claiming Guandique has confessed to him that he killed her.
Chandra Levy’s murder case received so much media coverage in large part, due to her secret relationship with then-congressman Gary Condit. Evidence and testimony presented at the trial confirmed their affair. The much-older lawman testified that he had absolutely nothing to do with Levy’s death, and in court, was allowed Condit to avoid questions regarding the exact details of his relationship with her.
At the sentencing, Susan Levy, Chandra’s mother gave a 16-minute statement, during which she directed many remarks directly to Guandique and said he was “lower than a cockroach.” At the end, after reading victim impact statements from her son and husband, Susan turned and pointed to Guandique and said, “Finally, f**k you. That is it.”
Appearing to wipe tears from his eyes, Guandique, through an interpreter said, “I am sorry, I am sorry for what happened to (Chandra), but I had nothing to do with it. I am innocent.”
Adding up another Christina Aguilera goof up to anonymous Internet bullying to the non-airing of the Grammy Award winners for Latin music, we are unsure whether we should laugh out loud or boo and be blue.
So let’s start from the top. Christina Aguilera. Poor girl is going through a rough, rough patch here, and doesn’t seem to be able to catch a break from making headlines that must have her PR people working 24/7. She just finalized a messy divorce, a week after re-arranging the national anthem at the Super Bowl. Last night, just as she had finished a spectacular performance, Aguilera tripped and was able to catch herself before taking a plunge onto the stage. Today, there are more videos available on YouTube of her little tumble, than there are of her redeeming performance, and the comments on some of those videos are just plain evil and ruthless.
Laugh at her, or Leave her alone? Vote in the comment section.
Then we have the Wikipedia page of the Best New Artist Award winner, Esperanza Spalding, getting hacked by Beiber fans no less.
It has been fixed since, and anonymous editors are no longer able to make changes to the page detailing her Cuban, Brazilian, Native American and African American roots, her discovery of the stand up bass, her impressive schooling and even more impressive accomplishments, reason why she deservedly took home the petite golden gramophone.
But barely minutes after the young Spalding became the first Jazz artist to ever win the Best New Artist award, fans of Justin Bieber, surprisingly nominated for the same category hacked her Wikipedia page, writing “BIBER 4 LYFE” at the top; Non-bieber fans re-edited the page within minutes, poking fun at Bieber, and the virtual war went on for quite a while, until Wikipedia brought out the proverbial water hose, and put an end to it.
Bieber fans are known for their digital bullying of non-Bieber fans in social networks and YouTube videos, and for flaunting deplorable grammar, a trait common among the age group, sadly.
Again, a matter dangling on the fine line between laughable and upsetting. Kids say the darndest things, after all, and Justin Bieber fans/foes are no exception, but it is terribly upsetting that Justin Bieber is still nominated as a “new artist,” when much to our dismay he’s been around since he was a squirt, back a couple of years ago. Opinions welcome in the comment section, if you have a valid driver’s license.
And in case you missed it, here is a list of the Latino award winners for this year’s Grammys - these awards somehow never seem to make it to prime time airing:
Best Latin Pop Album
Alejandro Sanz – Paraíso Express
Best Latin Rock, Alternative, or Urban Album
Grupo Fantasma – El Existential
Best Tropical Latin Album
Spanish Harlem Orchestra – Viva La Tradición
Best Tejano Album
Little Joe & La Familia – Recuerdos
Best Norteño Album
Intocable – Classic
Best Banda Album
El Güero y Su Banda Centenario – Enamórate De Mí
Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today unveiled the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) $57.0 billion fiscal year 2012 budget request – prioritizing efforts to protect the Nation from terrorism and other threats while making an unprecedented commitment to fiscal discipline, including the identification of over $800 million in efficiency and administrative savings.
Napolitano identified the six budget priorities: preventing terrorism, securing and managing our borders, enforcing our immigration laws, security cyberspace and ensuring resilience to natural disasters.
This budget request continues the Administration’s historic border security efforts by supporting 21,370 Border Patrol agents and 21,186 U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Officers at our ports of entry – both all time highs. This budget also funds the continued deployment of proven, effective surveillance technology along the highest trafficked areas of the Southwest Border.
DHS is focused on smart and effective enforcement of U.S. immigration laws while streamlining and facilitating the legal immigration process. In FY 2012, the Department will continue prioritizing the identification and removal of criminal aliens who pose a threat to public safety and targeting employers who knowingly and repeatedly break the law.
This budget request enables U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to fund 33,400 detention beds, remove more than 200,000 criminal aliens, and deploy Secure Communities to 96% of all jurisdictions nationally in FY 2012, while promoting adherence to worksite-related laws through criminal prosecutions of egregious employers, Form I-9 inspections, and continued expansion of E-Verify, focusing on monitoring and compliance.
The 33 Chilean miners are back in the media with full force: previously unreleased testimonies about their odyssey were documented on CBS’ 60 minutes interview, there is a new book, and the first 33 movie will premiere this week at the Berlin Film Festival.
Jonathan Franklin, a writer for The New York Times and The Guardian, was granted access to intimate details from the miners time underground, and rescue and wrote “33 Men,” a book to be published Tuesday in Canada.
Several of the miners who spent more than two months half a mile down the guts of the earth sat down for an interview with Bob Simon of “60 Minutes,” sharing with him previously unheard details of their ordeal.
“Before I went in, I was a happy guy,” said miner Victor Zamora. “Being trapped, watching my friends around me die, rocks falling…the other me is still in there.”
Doctors say all but one of the 33 miners have experienced severe psychological issues since the ordeal. They lived in constant fear of death during their entrapment nearly a half-mile underground, contemplating suicide and even cannibalism.
Trapped, incomunicated and famishing, the group of Chilean miners “had a pot and a saw ready” to cook and eat the first man who died. They joked about it, but such a joke is funny for so long, and some of the men were afraid of falling asleep. Miner Richard Villareal told the Guardian last fall that the men joked about cannibalism but only after the first 17 days; to Mario Sepulveda, another miner cannibalism was quite the eerily real plan.
“It was only a matter of time,” he said. “Five or 10 days. I was going to get out of there no matter what. I had to start thinking about which miner was going to collapse first. Then I started thinking of how I was going to eat him. I wasn’t embarrassed. I wasn’t scared.”
“I said to a friend, ‘Well, if we are going to continue suffering, it would be better for us to all go to the refuge, start an engine and with the carbon monoxide, just let ourselves go,’” said Zamora to Simon. When Simon asked him if he was the only one considering the ultimate alternative, or if there were others, Zamora said everyone was thinking about it, but it wasn’t about committing suicide, but more about stop suffering.
The first 16 days, before the probe reached them, the miners had to subsist on the tiny rations they found in a storage space in the mine.
“They always divided their food evenly, even when they were down to one teaspoon of tuna every 48 hours,” Franklin said
The miners took a pact of silence, particularly about the days before the probe reached them, but Franklin was able to pull some interesting facts, and details previously unknown, for instance, some miners’ families did slip them marijuana and other drugs with the love letters.
Franklin also wrote an alleged statement from a medical adviser on the surface as turning down an offer of 10 inflatable dolls for the men.
“I said 33 or none,” Dr. Jean Romagnoli allegedly said, “Otherwise they would be fighting for inflatable dolls: whose turn is it? You are flirting with my inflatable doll.”
When the camera first captured images of the gaunt miners after those harrowing early days incommunicado, one had lost 50 pounds.
The toll that this disaster took on these men, is not very noticeable in the pictures that they took at Disney, but the consequences of spending two months buried, the thoughts, the grim jokes, the horror certainly divided the lives of all 33 of them in two: Mario Sepulveda is on heavy medication; miner Edison Pena (who sang Elvis on the Late Show with David Letterman) has been hospitalized for anxiety and depression; Mario Gomes finds it impossible to sleep, Alex Vega survives by taking five or six pills a day but still can’t work because he loses concentration and forgets things and noise puts him on edge. He’s building a wall around his house for no particular reason, and was unable to provide a clear answer when asked about it.
Nineteen of the miners have lost their disability payments, despite the fact that every man except for one has suffered severe psychological problems since rescued.
Franklin’s book also revealed that not all of the rescue footage was live, and that it didn’t go as smoothly as it was presented by president Piñera, and broadcasted to the entire world.
A pre-recorded sequence was spliced in to cover over a moment when a cable was accidentally cut and the live feed went flat, and another one was broadcast instead of the live feed, when an intense argument broke out among the rescuers.
Nationwide Physician Survey Reveals Media is Best Vehicle to Educate Hispanic Patients.
A new study revealed that poor communication with Hispanic patients is adversely affecting the quality of care to this country’s largest minority group. The Jeffrey Group, the largest independent communications agency targeting Latin audiences, and KCI Partners, a strategic market research and consulting firm, announced today the results of this study measuring the knowledge and perceptions of minority patients relating to healthcare issues. The main focus of the study, which surveyed 422 physicians across the country, was to uncover barriers in receiving adequate treatment and measure the effectiveness of communication vehicles in educating Hispanic patients about their health.
“Given the prevalence of topics such as healthcare reform and the much-awaited U.S. Census results, we felt it was perfect timing to conduct a study measuring the views and knowledge-base of average Hispanic patients,” said Mike Valdes-Fauli, President of The Jeffrey Group. “With a booming U.S. Hispanic population, it is important to identify best practices in communicating with Latinos to ensure optimal care, and hopefully provide insights to pharmaceutical companies seeking to inform and educate that audience.”
One of the most important findings of the study was related to obstacles physicians encountered in effectively treating Hispanic patients. Twenty-four percent of physicians cited poor patient understanding of disease severity was “almost always a barrier” to treatment and 21% cited it as “frequently a barrier.” Other factors cited by physicians as almost always being a barrier to treatment were preconceived notions/myths (23% of physicians) and conflicting advice about treatment from family members (21% of physicians).
Despite these barriers, nearly 50% of respondents cited that community organizations, physicians, physician assistants and nurses are among those doing the most effective job at communicating about healthcare issues with Hispanic patients. On the other hand, most physicians think that pharmaceutical companies do a poor job of communicating, lacking a thorough understanding of multicultural patient needs. In fact, only 12% reported that pharmaceutical companies understand the healthcare needs of Hispanic patients very well. Even fewer physicians (7%) indicated that pharmaceutical companies are doing an adequate job in communicating with Hispanics about solutions to their healthcare needs.
The second part of the study addressed the most effective educational vehicles for informing Hispanic or minority patients. Most physicians agree that one-on-one time with staff and printed educational materials in Spanish are the most important and effective ways to communicate with these patients. Furthermore, physicians agree that media plays a key role in informing patients. Seventy-one percent of physicians cited that, outside of their offices, television stories are a very or extremely effective communication vehicle to help educate these patients.
The data from this study can be used to improve healthcare delivery and enhance the comfort level of minority patients across the country,” said Richard Klass, President of KCI.
Friday, a Baja California natural gas plant was nearly forcibly shut down by the town’s mayor before federal officials intervened.
In Ensenada, the 3rd largest city in Baja California, Mexico, was the site of a showdown between local and federal law enforcement.
Ensenada Mayor Enrique Pelayo Torres ordered that a natural gas import terminal, Sempra LNG or LNG Energia Costa Azul, be shut down due to “irregularities and flagrant violations of the law.” Upon his orders, over 50 municipal police, dressed in SWAT-like uniforms, forced their way through the plant’s gates at around 4 p.m. on Friday, but did not move into the facility any further due to a “hardened steel turnstyle.” They did however, put seals on the plant’s gates.
Sempra LNG’s CEO Darcel Hulse said that had the officers gone any further into the plant, and demanded operations be halted and/or operators removed, ”it would have been a real dangerous safety risk.” Hulse stated that the plant has all the proper permits to operate, and that if Pelayo had questions about it, he needed only ask for a tour. “There was absolutely no understanding and a callous disregard for the safety of our operation.”
Pelayo claims that a former mayor, and political rival, improperly approved land-use permits to the U.S. owned company. He added that local police were lacking details about how the plant was built and how it runs, and said this information would be necessary in the even of an emergency.
After a letter from the president of the Mexican Energy Regulatory Commission Javier Salazar Diez de Sollano, was sent to Pelayo stating that the plant was operating within the law, police left the facility. The MERC letter also clarified that it is the responsibility of federal officials to determine whether the plant stays open, not local law enforcement.
“The activity of natural gas storage is the exclusive federal jurisdiction. Consequently, only the federal government can issue and implement the technical (rules) and regulations governing such activity.”
Hulse said the mayors attempt to shut down the plant was only a political ploy to draw attention, as the presidential elections are next year, and made even more suspicious by the fact that reporters showed up right behind the local police.
“This was well-planned, well thought out. It was a show of force and a media ploy.”
Sempre LNS is owned by Sempra Energy, and has remained controversial for a number of years, as lawsuits in both Mexico and the U.S. are filled with accusations of corruption, taking land illegally, and firing “whistleblowers,” though Hulse denies the allegations and claims that those behind them are only looking to extort the company.
The Baseball Latin Hall of Fame honored several well-known Latin Americans who have made history in Major League Baseball during an event held at the Altos de Chavon amphitheater in the Dominican Republic on Saturday. Tribute was paid to Alex Rodriguez of the Yankees who attended together with actress Cameron Diaz.
Others inducted into the Latin Baseball Hall of Fame included Dominican Ricardo Carty, Venezuelan Andres Galarraga, Puerto Rican Edgar Martinez, Cuban Luis Tiant, Nicaraguan Dennis Martinez, Panamanian Manny Sanguillen and Mexican Fernando Valenzuela.
Tributes were also paid to veteran players Ruben Gomez, Vidal and Hector Lopez, Oscar (Negro) Prieto, Horacio Martinez, Adolfo Luque and Jose Luis (Chile) Gomez.
The event was dedicated to the late George Steinbrenner. His daughter Jennifer Steinbrenner and her husband Steven Swindal were present to receive the honor. Minister of Sports Felipe Payano, and Robert Weil, founding president of the Baseball Latin Hall of Fame were the keynote speakers at the awards ceremony.
The Hispanic Access Foundation has announced it has partnered with H&R Block, the world’s largest tax services provider, to educate Spanish-speaking taxpayers about tax issues affecting where they live, work and play.
HAF and H&R Block will work with leaders in select communities to discuss tax topics, promote regular informational seminars called Tax Talks and participate in community events.
“We are excited to work with H&R Block,” said Maite Arce, executive director of HAF. “Hispanics, particularly those with limited English proficiency, need access to quality information in their language and to bilingual tax experts so we can help build their understanding about taxes.”
The project’s goal is to increase Hispanics’ knowledge of the key elements that are critical to understand and consider when filing a tax return. These elements include the benefits of establishing an accurate tax history in the U.S. and how a tax return is an important tool when building a financial history.
“Hispanics have a unique set of issues they deal with when it comes to taxes that are confusing and easy to overlook,” Arce said. “Through tax education we can help position them for greater long-term financial success.”
On February 5th as the casket made its way from the church to the cemetery, just behind the hearse, on a flatbed truck was one of the icons of the lowriding world: “Gypsy Rose,” a fuchsia-colored 1964 Chevy Impala whose body is adorned with hand-painted, multihued roses and whose hot-pink interior includes swivel seats in the front and a cocktail bar and two small light fixtures in the back.
The cars owner, Jesse Valadez was one of the founding members of the Imperials Car Club in 1965. A long line of classic lowriders joined the funeral procession as well.
“We figured Jesse was president for the longest time,” he told The Times this week, “so we were going to give him the honor, and there were a lot of car clubs there to pay their respects because Jesse was a legend of the lowriders.”
“Jesse was the godfather of lowriding,” said Mike Rivera, a former Imperials Car Club member and former club president. “That’s how respected he was. Even without the Rose, they knew who he was.”
The lowrider, Gypsy Rose, became even more famous when Valadez was asked to drive his car in the opening credits of “Chico and the Man,” the popular Freddie Prinze sitcom set in East L.A.in the 70’s.
Born in Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, Mexico, on May 1, 1946, Valadez and his family moved to San Antonio in 1959 and then to East L.A. about two years later.
Valadez, whose casket was painted fuchsia with multicolored roses to resemble the Gypsy Rose, bequeathed his dream car to his son.
Solar Energy Development companies say that the strength of the sunshine in the Atacama Desert, could translate in electricity for all the mines in the region at far lower prices than those of plants that burn fossil fuels.
The desert gets twice the amount of sun power that Las Vegas receives, so it’s no surprise that the 15 or so large mines as well as the hundreds of smaller ones in the area are starting to look into solar energy to power their operations.
Atacama “has good sun resources and big, unfulfilled demand for power from mining companies,” said Tim Keating, the marketing chief at Skyline Solar.
Skyline Solar is not the only company talking to mines about providing photovoltaic equipment and switching to solar: Xstrata, a giant Swiss based mining company, says it is studying solar installations for its mines in the Atacama. Whereas Atacama Solar has applied for a permit to build a $773 million, 250-megawatt solar farm in the region by 2018, and Element Power of Portland, Oregon., is planning five 30-megawatt projects. Finally there’s Solarpack Corp. Tecnologica, an energy development company from Spain will open this year a 1-megawatt plant at a mine owned by the state-owned copper mining company called Codelco.
Codelco says that if the Solarpack project goes well, it expects to expand its use of solar power at mines in the region.
“We have an energy resource here that’s absolutely unique,” said Silvia Tapia, who oversees renewable energy projects for Codelco. “It’s where our operations are, so it’s obvious we should use it.”
The majority of Americans, 68 percent, to be exact would more than anything else, want to share dinner with someone special on Valentine’s Day.
A small percentage of Americans, 10 percent, actually want to receive chocolates (sorry Godiva) and an even smaller percentage (5 percent) would prefer flowers. Dining with that someone special takes preference to these two Valentine Day gift giving traditions.
The bad news is what most Americans want on this day, few get. The Rasmussen poll shows that only 30 percent of adults are expecting to go out for a special dinner, especially since Valentines falls at the beginning of the work week. While sadly a majority, 57 percent, will not go out with a special someone for Valentine Day.
Nonetheless, Americans do enjoy Valentine’s Day and honor it with a majority of adults sending someone special a card, and that is a real Valentine’s Day card not an email card. And maybe as a sign of the times only 12 percent of Americans will go out of town to celebrate this day of love.
Mar Munoz-Visoso, who currently works at the United Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) was just bestowed the Benemerenti Medal by Pope Benedict, one of the highest honors awarded to lay people.
This recognition, which comes directly from the Holy See, is one of the highest honors the pope can bestow on an individual. It’s given in gratitude for sustained and exemplary service to the Catholic faith.
In the case of Mar, the service was rooted in her time working for the Archdiocese of Denver. Mar, who worked in Hispanic ministry, was responsible for founding the archdiocese’s Spanish newspaper, El Pueblo Catolico, and the Centro San Juan Diego. For this and the rest of her ministry to the Hispanic community in Denver, Archbishop Chaput conferred this papal honor on Mar.
At the USCCB, Mar’s serves as a gatekeeper between the bishops and the media, specializing in divine worship, migration, cultural diversity and other areas. She also writes a column, Entre Amigos, on Latino affairs in the Church.
The Benemerenti Medal was created by Pope Gregory XVI in 1832.
Nine-year-old Brisenia Flores was murdered in her home in Arivaca, Arizona in May 2009. She pleaded, “Please don’t shoot me,” right before she was shot — point blank, in the face — by a member of the Minutemen American Defense Corps (MAD)
The alleged mastermind behind Brisenia’s murder, Shawna Forde, has publicly represented anti-Latino hate groups including the Minutemen and the Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform (FAIR). Forde is currently on trial in Arizona for the murder of Brisenia and her father, Raul. As we speak, the jury is deliberating and will return a verdict within days, or hours.
Our community is waiting on justice for Brisenia.
Her murder represents the violence that follows when hateful and dehumanizing rhetoric and the groups that promote it goes unchecked.
Brisenia’s story has been largely ignored in the mainstream media, but her life has galvanized people around the country to speak out against hate violence towards Latinos. We at Presente designed a poster to honor Brisenia’s memory, and to send a statement that we want justice.
Together, let’s take a stand against anti-Latino violence and the hatred that ruins lives. Please download this memorial poster, display it proudly, and share it with your friends and family:
Brisenia’s murder follows the mainstreaming of the most dangerous strands of hatred in the United States. The extremist groups like those that Shawna Forde represented publicly are the same groups responsible for hateful laws like Arizona’s SB1070, attempts to repeal birth-right citizenship for babies born in the U.S. and the dehumanization of immigrants and Latinos.
It’s up to each of us to stand up against anti-Latino violence everywhere. By displaying this poster and helping people learn about the story of this amazing girl and her tragic murder, you can help build resolve to end the discrimination and violence that took Brisenia’s life.
To Download Poster, Click Here
Presente.org exists to advance the interests and promote the political empowerment of Latino communities with the support of our allies. Latinos are an undeniable force in the economy and culture of the United States, and our growing numbers make us an increasingly powerful voting bloc.
Don’t be unprepared this Valentine’s Day. Here we give Internet singles the low down on the ins and outs of social dating. The 5 golden rules that everyone needs to know when surfing dating sites in the run up to Valentine’s Day.
1. Do use your friend’s help!
It’s not a crime in the USA and Europe, and is in fact actively encouraged. That’s what friends are for! Invite them and use their contacts to get yourself a date. Citizens from countries with one or less political parties should consult their attorney before uploading their address book.
2. Avoid talking about sex for at least 10 minutes.
OK, this is tough and it’s not a hard and fast rule, but the ladies expect at least 10 minutes of conversation before you get down to the business at hand, so I’ve been told…about a thousand times… 3. Fill out your Profile.
Your car is great. Your dog is cute, but we want to see you! We think you are beautiful. Also, fill in a few details about your life. Why? Why not? Most people these days can read, and for them, finding people who can write is almost a match made in heaven.
4. Don’t talk about your last disastrous relationship.
It’s tempting to discuss how your ex torched your flat and threw you on the street, but seriously, keep this to yourself. If only for the pleasure you will have when you get to scream “That’s exactly what my last girlfriend did!” in 6 months time when the process repeats itself.
5. Have fun.
Social dating isn’t like visiting the Dentist (no magazines or anesthetic for a start).It is designed it to be fun, quick, easy and effective. Jump in, the water is warm and someone somewhere has a “you” shaped hole, waiting for you to fill it.
These tips were brought to you by MeetYourFriends.com. Join over 80,000 new users and see what the fuss is about. Make friends, flirt and who knows, maybe even fall in love. Nothing is impossible when your friends are there to help you.