Thursday, June 28, 2007

Immigration Bill Denied Boarder Access

The Senate voted down the highly controversial immigration reform bill that would have legalized nearly 12 million illegal aliens.

Notice the “illegal aliens” part. That’s what they are because they broke the law when entering this country illegally. The term “guest worker” means they were invited but that is not true. They’re more like gatecrashers.

The whole illegal immigration issue is where I strongly disagree with President Bush. Granted, he gets points for wanting more funding to secure our boarders and have agents protecting it.

However, legalizing nearly 12 million illegal aliens is where I draw the line with the president. I don’t care what country a person is from, if he or she enters this one illegally, then that person should be shown the door. And let’s go into the problems that some of these people cause.

Many illegal aliens damage private residents’, business’, and government properly, are involved with smuggling operations and create even more crime, according to a report to the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations.

Another problem caused by illegal aliens is the free services that are being offered. Granted, it would be inhuman not to provide healthcare to those in need but where is that money coming from? Taxpayers, which is unfair. That means that some law bidding family who are barely scraping by as it is has their tax dollars go to free healthcare for someone who sneaked into this country.

Illegal aliens should be made to pay for healthcare, even if it means that the government will take out very little from their paychecks until the debt is paid.

Now I can’t imagine the hardship it is trying to leave your native country in the hopes of finding a better life in America. Although, I have seen it first hand.

My wife is from Japan and I have seen her work hard to gain access and stay in this country legally. I have helped her with paperwork and accompanying her to the immigration office, where on any given day hundreds from all nationalities wait in line to stay or work in this country.

The whole illegal alien problem could have been easily dealt with a couple months ago. Law enforcement officials had a grand opportunity to take care of it when illegal aliens were holding marches and rallies across the nation. The police should have had a mass crackdown and arrested and deported them. Why that didn’t happen, I don’t know but the usual suspect was probably politics.

Yes, I know many actually risk their lives coming to this country but there must be a better way of dealing with it. I also realize that the majority of illegal immigrants are from Mexico. I believe that an improved program with the country could better serve the two nations, since the current system is not working well if people are risking their lives to cross the boarder.

But giving a form of amnesty to all types of illegal aliens would not only be a slap in the face to hard-working, honest people like my wife but to our own forefathers as well.

Does Race Play In Wilson Case?

Some people have said that Genarlow Wilson’s nightmare is a racial case. Wilson is a black man, who in 2003, at age 17, had consensual oral sex by a black 15-year-old girl.

And then we have Douglas County District Attorney David McDade, a white man, who tried Wilson that resulted in a 10-year prison sentence.

Well, one can certainly see how race may have motivated the case and at first, I thought so too. But then there is Attorney General Thurbert Baker, a black man, who is appealing Judge Thomas H. Wilson’s ruling that would set Wilson free.

The law that was used against Wilson gave a 10-year mandatory sentence for statutory rape. After Wilson’s trial, the law was changed to become a misdemeanor aggravated child molestation, with a 12-month term. This would have freed Wilson, because Judge Wilson, no relation, gave the young man credit for time served.

However, Baker said that according to Georgia law, a judge cannot reduce or changed a sentence imposed by the trial court. He’s also concerned that Judge Wilson’s ruling would allow real sex offenders the chance to be released.

Hmm, let’s see: One guy at 17 had consensual oral sex with a willing 15-year-old girl and then there’s another guy whose 17 who brutally raped an unwilling 15-year-old girl. Gee, who do you think should be released?

But since common sense hasn’t played a big part in the Wilson’s case from the very beginning, I can see Baker’s side.

And it’s pretty embarrassing to appeal Judge Wilson’s ruling, considering that this is now a high-profile case. Does Baker even realize what happen when Mike Nifong, the disbarred prosecutor of the infamous Duke lacrosse “rape” case, did when he decided to practice injustice? Because this is what the Wilson case is and what Baker is doing: injustice.

The grounds are not strong enough to disbar Baker but come election time, the voters may disbar Baker themselves.

And let’s not forget that it was Baker that Wilson is in jail in the first place. He could have easily dropped the charges long before Wilson would stand on trial but he didn’t.

I don’t see how someone can now make this into a racial case when Baker, a black man, is appealing. And here’s an offer that Baker must have approved for Wilson: serve up to five years in prison and your name will be removed from the sex offender registry. That’s still an insult.

Hey Baker, here’s a better offer: Work your tail off to set Wilson free so he doesn’t have to spend another night in prison! Until that happens, Baker’s offers are a slap in the face.

No, I don’t see how this is a racial issue but it is an issue of the same dangerous kind: Stupidity.

No Justice In Consensual
Statutory Rape Case

There’s no get-out-of-jail-free card for Genarlow Wilson, a 21-year-old man serving a 10-year prison sentence for statutory rape of a 15-year-old girl, even though it was consensual oral sex, back in 2003, when Wilson was 17. Sadly for Wilson, the D.A. in the case forgot what the term “consensual” meant.

A few days ago, Georgia Superior Court Judge David Emerson denied Wilson bail, even though earlier this month a court voided the original sentence and reduced it to one year, with time served. Wilson has already served two years.

Here’s the deal: At a New Year’s Eve party in 2003, Wilson, then 17, he received, shall we say, “oral relaxation” from a more then willing 15-year-old girl. Of course she was willing, because according to a videotape of the party that was used in the trial, she gave “oral entertainment” to another party guest before going to Wilson.

Because of a law at that time, Wilson was convicted of felony aggravated child molestation. It doesn’t make sense, since the “child” in this case was only two years younger than Wilson.

So, not only is Wilson known for such a grievous form of injustice, he also has to deal with snide jokes about his lawyer's name: B.J. (Brenda Joy) Bernstein. Out of good taste and respect for Wilson, there won’t be any jokes about oral sex or prison.

But the biggest joke of all is David McDade, the D.A. who prosecuted the first case that ended with Wilson behind bars. He said he realizes that the 10-year mandatory sentence was too harsh but he couldn’t turn a blind eye to the “crime” since it was videotaped. In fact, McDade even went so far and blamed everything on Wilson.

“We don’t believe that a 10-year sentence is an appropriate punishment (in this case), but he made that decision to put himself in that predicament,” explained McDade to Atlanta Magazine, of Genarlow’s refusal to cop a plea. McDade said Wilson decided to be a martyr because people told him he could be famous.

Actually, Wilson decided to fight because he didn’t want to spend 10 years in prison doing what that 15-year-old girl did to him at that party, except it won’t be consensual for him. (Please note that this isn’t a joke.) Plus, after he gets out, he will be registered as a sex offender. And if McDade was in Wilson’s situation, he would fight the charges too.

McDade could have dropped the charges against Wilson; he had that type of power. But no, instead he decided to haul Wilson to court. Maybe McDade is the one who wanted to be famous.

And poor Wilson, a bright guy who had a bright football career ahead of him, with colleges after him to play football. But that’s all gone now and whatever college dreams Wilson could have salvaged now are gone because Attorney General Thurbert Baker is appealing the one-year ruling that could have set him free.

In a world where Jose Antonio Lopez only gets three years in jail for a real rape of a 15-year-old girl and Wilson is serving a decade for receiving consensual oral sex, maybe there isn’t justice in the world anymore.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Did Supreme Court Squash Student Free Speech?

The Supreme Court voted 6-3 that Joseph Frederick’s suspension over flying his banner, “Bong Hits 4 Jesus,” did not violate his freedom of speech.

It’s certainly a tough call. On one hand, it can be said that Frederick was punished by given a suspension for flying the banner on a public sidewalk across the school in January of 2002, as the Olympic torch relay was moving through the Alaska capital for the Winter Games.

On the other hand, are schools allowed to limit messages that advocate illegal drug use?

There comes a time where one has to decide that the health and welfare of teenagers are important and upsetting their “freedom of speech” is a price to be paid. With so many teenagers falling victim to drugs in today’s society, it would have been irresponsible for Frederick’s teacher not to punish him for displaying the sign where his fellow students would read.

And just how important was it that Frederick felt there was an urgency to inform his fellow students and the public that Jesus wanted them to do bong hits for His Holiness?

Just like you cannot yell “fire” in a crowded movie theater, it would be also irresponsible to tell someone to do bong hits for a cause, no matter how idiotic it is.

Maybe Frederick would have more sympathy if he was a student at Eastern Michigan University and held a banner that read, “School officials lied about Laura Dickinson’s death.”

Frederick has to learn that freedom of speech comes with it a great responsibility and if misused, there is a price to be paid. It can be said that his free speech right was violated but in turn, he also violated the health rights of students by telling them to do something harmful.

UFO Spotted By British Jetliner

Aurigny Airlines Captain Ray Bowyer said he and his passengers spotted a mile-wide “cigar-shaped brilliant white light” UFO a few weeks ago.

“It was 2,000ft up and stationary. I thought it was about 10 miles away, although I later realized it was approximately 40 miles from us. At first, I thought it was the size of a [Boeing] 737,” Bowyer told The Evening Standard. “But it must have been much bigger because of how far away it was. It could have been as much as a mile wide.”

“I'm certainly not saying that it was something of another world. All I'm saying is that I have never seen anything like it before in all my years of flying,” Bowyer said.

Besides Bowyer and passengers, another pilot from Blue Islands airlines spotted the object as well. In addition, Bowyer claimed that he spotted a second similar object as well.

It seems unlikely that two experienced pilots from different positions from one another could mistake such a sighting. Again, we have credible witnesses who saw a huge object in the sky and it seems nearly-impossible it could have been manmade. So why isn’t this getting the major media attention it deserves?

With two trained, experienced pilots who saw a mile-wide object in the sky, one would imagine that the media would stand up and take notice of it. Paris Hilton’s time in jail couldn’t be that interesting if something like this is being seemingly ignored!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Davis’ Body Found

Sadly, it’s not surprising that police believe they found the body of Jessie Marie Davis, a pregnant Ohio woman. Her boyfriend Bobby Cutts, who is a police officer and believed to be the father of the unborn child, is charged with her murder.

After all, he seemed to be the likely suspect. He is separated from his wife and he already fathered a child with Davis, 2-year-old Blake.

In fact, it was little Blake who probably made this tale so gripping. Yes, when a pregnant mother who is only weeks away from her due date goes missing, it will fetch major headlines. But when Patricia Porter, Davis’ mother, discovered broken furniture and bleach on the floor of her daughter’s home, it was probably wasn’t as chilling to her as what her grandson said, “Mommy was crying. Mommy broke the table. Mommy’s in the rug.”

It does make one’s blood run cold hearing that last part. He was certainly a witness to his mother’s murder and by the grace of God, it won’t scar him for life but it probably will.

If Cutts is guilty of the crime, then hopefully he’ll be facing the death penalty. However, Cutts probably won’t if he made a deal with Stark County Prosecutor John Ferrero, telling him where Davis’ body was at in order to spare him the death penalty.

It’s only a matter of time before we hear the sick “reasons” why Davis and her unborn daughter were murdered. Sadly, between that and how they were actually murdered and were hidden will be far chillier than hearing a 2-year-old little boy saying “Mommy’s in the rug.”

Friday, June 22, 2007

The Problem With The Media

First, we have NBC allegedly paying Paris Hilton $1.3 million for an interview about her life behind bars. Then we have the BBC releasing a report on its self, quoting a former BBC political editor as saying that the British news organization does have a “liberal bias.”

And that’s just recently. For a long time now, most people are aware of media bias, with many taking shots at newspapers like The New York Times as having a left-wing agenda, while others blast FOX News for being a right-wing mouth piece for the Republican Party.

But if people, especially journalists, have forgotten one of the responsibilities of the news, let me remind you all: The news shouldn’t be bias at all. Yes, there is intentional bias in the media. Newspapers and news programs will intentionally slant a story. Not all the time or every topic but it does happen.

Reporters seem to forget that editorializing and omitting certain facts to fit their views are what columnists are allowed to do. Reporters should only be allowed to present both sides of the issue and let the reader/viewer decide.

And we’ll get to see this bias even more as the election gains more steam.

But sometimes news organizations are unfairly criticized by readers and viewers, which I personally experienced, while I was an editor for a newspaper. A week or two before voters decided who would be president in the 2004 elections; I started creating my editorial that basically stated that as Americans, we all needed to come together because the election created a huge divide in the nation.

Well, I couldn’t run the editorial until I knew who won the election. Once I knew who won, I placed in George Bush’s and John Kerry’s correct titles and published it. I had two readers who called me up: one accusing me of being in favor of Bush and the other accusing me of siding with Kerry. I couldn’t help but laugh.

By that time, I was used to readers calling me up or sending me hate mail, accusing me of either having a conservative or liberal agenda because I decided to print a supporter’s letter. The truth was I printed all types of letters that either praised or slammed the candidates. Needless to say, I never had a shortage of material to fill the op-ed pages during the last few months of the elections.

But getting back to intentional media bias, this has to end. NBC is accused of paying Hilton for that interview. Personally, I don’t care about media stories about celebrities. As far as I’m concern, Pop Media reporting a break up of a Hollywood couple or jail time for a spoiled hotel heiress isn’t real journalism. I wouldn’t line a bird cage with trash like that.

However, if the allegations are true, who is to say that NBC isn’t going to pay Hillary Clinton in some way for an exclusive interview? And if the BBC’s own staff is admitting bias, than there is a possibility that other networks are doing the same thing.

Back room deals and slanting the news, either with a liberal or conservative view, ultimately hurts a news organization's credibility. And that may explain the popular increase of media blogs. It’s high time that the media starts practicing the ideals of journalism and stop forcing its views on the people.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Michigan University Suspected Of Murder Cover-Up

This is just disgusting. Allegedly, Eastern Michigan University allowed Laura Dickinson’s parents and school mates to believe she died in a freak accident, while the truth is, she was murdered.

Her family only discovered the grisly truth 10 weeks after they buried their 22-year old daughter, according to the Los Angeles Times. Laura was murdered in Dec. 15, 2006.

And besides the fact that the next day the school said Laura's death was not foul play, it violated the Clery Act, which requires all colleges and universities to disclose information about crime on and near their campuses. Oh, and let's keep in mind that the school placed everyone on that campus in danger when it didn't tell mention there was a killer running around.

While many believe this is a cover-up to protect the school’s image, the school's board of regents hired a Detroit law firm to investigate the matter and it revealed that evidence to the murder was covered up.

Apparently, the law firm discovered that some school officials didn’t know a criminal investigation was going on under their noses and were unintentionally passing along misinformation. Other school officials knew about what happened but said nothing, according to the report.

James Vick, vice president of student affairs who oversees the school's housing and campus-police departments, told the Dickinson family that murder wasn’t suspected in Laura’s death. And here’s the most insulting thing that he said in the interview with the LA Times:

"We probably should have said there are some suspicious circumstances here, and that probably would have ended the problem," Vick, who has been placed on paid leave, said. "Certainly one could armchair-quarterback it, but to say there was a cover-up or some sort of insidious plan there is crazy."

Really? Because Laura was found naked from the waist down in her dorm room, with a pillow covering her head, with traces of semen were found on her leg. But apparently Vick doesn’t believe that wasn’t suspicious enough to tell the family in the first place. No one with half a brain will hire him after this, one can only hope.

The law firm’s report states that Vick ordered the document describing the nightmarish murder scene to be shredded. Of course, Vick claims he’s innocent and his lawyer sent a letter to the board of regents that his client took a polygraph test, which shows he is telling the truth. The article does not mention where or who performed the test, so Vick’s credibility is still shot.

And then we have John Fallon, the university president. He claims that no one told him about Laura’s death. The faculty council wants him fired. And like a bunch of cowards, Fallon and the rest of the university did not even have the decency to hold a personal meeting with the Dickinson family to apologize. They had to hear Fallon’s apology from the media.

Of course the spineless Fallon wouldn’t want to meet with the Dickinson family. What would he say, “Gee, I’m sorry we told you that cock and bull story about your daughter’s death”?

And how would he answer the family’s $64,000 question of why they were lied to in the first place? Fallon’s bright enough not to hold a meeting with them, not that he needed a lawyer to tell him that.

It’s nothing new that colleges and universities cover up crimes to protect their image. And that’s what happened here. Even though police arrested a fellow student and charged him with Laura’s rape and murder, the lies told by the university cannot erase the damage that it caused to the Dickinson family and students of Eastern Michigan University.

Besides the school insulting the memory of Laura Dickinson and calling her death a “freak accident,” the police acted irresponsible as well. According to the L.A. Times and the Washington Post, the police did not once contact Laura’s family. Not about their suspicions of the crime scene, or that their investigation uncovered that she was raped, or that they were questioning students and staff and taking DNA samples.

In fact, I have yet to find in any news article where the police had any contact with the Dickinson family from the moment they arrived in her dorm room on that December night to the arrest of a suspect.

Not only is it unheard of that the police wouldn’t contact the Dickinson family but one cannot help but wonder what type of pull Eastern Michigan University has over the police department.

Because the police always inform the next of kin when there is a murder and they usually like to interview the family about such things as, did Laura have any enemies or boyfriends, how did she get along with family and friends. But I guess the police have the same deluded way of thinking that Vick has.

The fact that the family was not contacted by the police is highly suspicious. Because the police are supposed to be outside the jurisdiction of Eastern Michigan University’s control, right?

Other alternatives to embryonic stem cell research

Well, President Bush shot down a bill that would have provided federal tax dollars to embryonic steam cell research. Opponents, of course, are outraged.

The one thing that always rings in my head is this: Some Americans point their fingers to some of the deplorable conditions of nursing homes and say, “People see how great a country is when they see how the old are treated.” But isn’t it more crucial of how we judge a country by how they treat the developments of human life?

Many feel that everyone could benefit from the destruction of embryonic stem cells in the hopes of finding cures for Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases, diabetes and cancer. The president had this to say about the controversial research.

“Destroying human life in the hopes of saving human life is not ethical, and it is not the only option before us,” said the president, as reported by USA Today. Certainly, truer words have never been spoken.

And what type of people will we be if we did intentionally destroy human life in the hopes of saving it? We would be no better than Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party, with their hopes of cleansing the human race by killing millions of “non-perfect” people in death camps.

Anyway, it is important to note that the president isn’t against all stem cell research. In the USA Today article, he said that he signed an executive order that would “promote” research into creating non-human embryonic stem cells.

The alternatives, suggested the president, are “remarkable advances in science and therapeutic uses of stem cells drawn from adults and children and the blood from umbilical cords with no harm to the donor”, reported in an AFP news article.

The order, according to USA Today, does not include any new federal funding.

In the USA Today article, Sean Tipton, president of the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research, a group that supports embryonic stem cell research, said the National Institutes of Health “has already been conducting (embryonic stem cell) research for the past 20 years.”

So, for two decades this type of atrocious research has been going on and all that can be shown from it is destroyed humans? We haven’t even cured a case of the sniffles much less cancer, so why are we beating a dead horse with this type of research? Since there are alternatives out there that will not harm a human embryo, then there should not be a problem to discontinue the use this unethical research.

We condemn Hitler’s actions for creating his perfect race. How will history judge us for experimenting on unborn humans?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

CNN Poll: Majority Of People
Ready For Independent President

This is interesting. On CNN’s Web site, there is a quick poll with the question: “Would you vote for an independent candidate for president?”

So far, at the time of this posting, 5,134 people have voted “yes” while 1,213 voted “no.” Yes, I’m sure this quick poll isn’t as scientific as what the Gallup poll people do but personally, seeing actual numbers than percentages always impressed me more.

I’m sure the peons of each presidential candidate are looking at this poll as well but won’t take the fruitless task of informing their boss. After all, no one from either party is going to rock the political boat and change their ways.

This poll shows that people are really tired of the two-party system. Each year, especially during election time, the number of wary voters grows even more. I’m sure candidates must realize this but they haven’t done anything to create a change.

Each party has its own agenda and political alliances. Maybe that’s why Ross Perot’s poll numbers beat that of George Bush and Bill Clinton in the June of 1992. Perot, unlike most politicians, actually stated his policies and his stances on the issues, instead of side-stepping or mudslinging like the politicians we are doomed to endure.

But who knows? The presidential elections are still a long ways off and there are new rumors of possible candidates emerging. (Again, watching the presidential candidates’ debates is premature, especially with rumors that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg may run as an independent since breaking up with the Republican Party.)

What this country actually needs is some fresh ideas but the question is not who will go against the established political protocol of empty promises and skirting the issues, but will we, the American people, be willing to elect such a person?

‘Honor Killings’ Becoming
Common In UK

With deadlines and being away on vacation, I certainly neglected The Times Observer. With things calming down, and me almost winning my battle with jetlag, there will be more columns.

But while on vacation in Japan, I saw this interesting story in The Daily Yomiuri. A Muslim father in Britain decided to punish his 20-year old daughter for being with a man who didn’t come from their native Iraqi village. The punishment? Death.

Yes, Mahmod Mahmod, 52, was found guilty of murdering his daughter, Banaz Mahmod, in an “honor killing.” Her “crime” included using hair spray, adapting to Western ways, ending an abusive arranged marriage and falling in love with someone who didn’t come from the same village.

And according to the article, there are a number of “honor killings” by Muslims who practice Sharia, a strict Islamic law. The article could not be found on The Daily Yomiuri’s Web site, but was located on NBC 5 Dallas, Tex., news station’s Web site.

Sadly, this reminds me of another honor killing that I read a few years ago, which I just recently found here. A Palestinian mother murdered her daughter because the young girl was raped and impregnated by her two brothers. The mother wanted to restore her family’s honor.

I’ve been very fortunate that my Muslim friends have a 21st century way of thinking when it comes to women. I simply can’t understand how those practicing Sharia can find a raped woman, held against her will, to be guilty of anything. And yet, what really baffles the mind, they find the rapists innocent. (At least, from what I can gather.)

But it’s just not rape or dating someone from the wrong neighborhood that a young girl can “use” to shame her family. A Muslim Kurdish refugee living in Britain a few years ago was given a life sentence for honor killing his 16-year old daughter because she brought shame upon the family by dating a Lebanese Christian boy.

And this is an increasing problem! We have an international space station above us. NASA is planning to place a human on Mars. We have cell phones that not only take pictures but videos. Most of the world believes in the pursuit of happiness, especially America, where the idea is only 230 years old. So how can we have people running around, thinking it’s the 13th century and it’s perfectly acceptable to murder their own children?

The one thing that keeps nagging at me is this: How can we win the war on terror against radical people who don’t even care about the safety and lives of their own children?