Saturday, October 31, 2009

New Jersey State Police Seem to be Contradicting CNN Host Lou Dobbs' Account of a Gunfire Incident, ¡Qué lástima!





















New Jersey state police seem to be contradicting CNN Host Lou Dobbs' account of a gunfire incident near his Sussex County, New Jersey, house.

On Monday on his radio show, Dobbs stated that "my wife has now been and I have been shot at." The alleged incident, which Dobbs had reported to the New Jersey State Police, took place three weeks prior to the October 26 broadcast of the Lou Dobbs Show, and Dobbs told his listeners that it had "followed weeks and weeks of threatening phone calls." Dobbs' discussion of the incident during his radio show also included mention of both longtime critic and FOX host Geraldo Rivera and the immigrant advocacy organizations calling for his removal from CNN including the National Council of La Raza, America's Voice and other "ethnocentric interest groups."

Without specifying who he suspects of making the alleged threats, he also said on his radio show that "They've threatened my wife, they've now fired a shot at my house while my wife was standing next to the car." Concluding with a call for "truth, justice and the American way," Dobbs cautioned "if anybody thinks that we're not engaged in the battle for the soul of this country right now, you're sorely mistaken." And during an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer on Thursday, Dobbs spoke again about the gunfire incident, linking it to "threatening phone calls tied to the positions I've taken on illegal immigration."

Interviews with the New Jersey State Police yielded a rather different assessment of the events described by Dobbs. In a phone interview conducted yesterday, Sgt. Stephen Jones, a NJ State Police spokesperson, chuckled out loud after he heard about Dobbs' account of the gunfire incident. Jones commented that he "wouldn't classify it [the gunfire incident] as very unusual." He also confirmed that there are hunters in the area, and stated that, "at this time of year hunter [shooting] complaints go up."

He observed that in the ongoing police investigation sparked by Dobbs' complaint, "nothing has been determined [regarding] what the intended target for this bullet was." Nor did Jones confirm whether the shots near Dobbs' house appeared to be an accident or intentional.

Another New Jersey State Police spokesperson, Sgt. Julian Castellanos, noted that "it's a wide open area and there are hunters in the area." Castellanos explained that the bullet had hit the house in vicinity of the attic; it "hit the vinyl siding and fell to the ground" without penetrating the vinyl, he said.

While Lou Dobbs' wife, Debi Lee Segura, was standing outside the house at the time of the gunfire, the bullet did not come close to her; it "struck at the apex of the house, near the roof," and thus considerably higher than a standing person, Jones observed.

Jones says he had not seen any mention of death threats in the reports about this incident. As Dobbs stated on his October 26 radio show, the CNN host had "decided not to report" "threatening phone calls" he says he has received.

The New Jersey police made no mention of the immigration reform groups Dobbs discussed in connection with the incident.

When asked to comment for this story, Dobbs disputed the New Jersey State Police's account, saying in an email that "there was no hunting season underway three weeks ago." However, an official at the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife Bureau of Law Enforcement confirmed in a phone interview that state hunting seasons were underway at the time of the gunfire incident three weeks ago.

Asked what he thought of Dobbs' version of the gunfire incident, Sgt. Jones stated, "I'm really going to leave Lou Dobbs' assessment to himself."

Friday, October 30, 2009

Bullet hits Lou Dobbs' NJ Home with Wife Nearby


Police in New Jersey are trying to determine who fired a bullet that struck CNN commentator Lou Dobbs' home as his wife stood nearby. State police Sgt. Stephen Jones says Dobbs' wife and driver were outside the home Oct. 5 when they heard the gunshot. Jones says the bullet didn't penetrate the siding and fell to the ground outside.

Dobbs mentioned the bullet earlier this week on CNN and his radio show.

Dobbs says he had been receiving threatening phone calls for weeks. On his radio show, he connected the gunshot to his advocacy for a crackdown on illegal immigration and to his opponents' rhetoric.

The home is on a farm in Wantage, about 50 miles northwest of New York City.

It is small-game hunting season, but no hunters were seen in the area.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Judging Judge Keith Bardwell

The face of Justice?

“I’m not a racist….They come to my house….they use my bathroom…”

By AFRO Staff

(October 18, 2009) - A Louisiana couple is outraged at a local official’s decision to deny them a marriage license because their relationship is interracial.

Hammond, La. residents Beth Humphrey, a White woman, and her fiancé Terence McKay, a Black man, were denied a marriage license by local justice of the peace Keith Bardwell in early October. Bardwell said his decision was based on concern for the welfare of children the couple may have.

After learning of Bardwell’s decision, Humphrey contacted local and national media.

“We are used to the closet racism, but we're not going to tolerate that overt racism from an elected official,” she told CNN.

Bardwell is a justice of peace for Tangipahoa Parish’s 8th Ward and has served in the position for 34 years. His is scheduled to hold the office until 2014.

“There is a problem with both groups accepting a child from such a marriage,” Bardwell said. “I think those children suffer, and I won’t help put them through it.”

“I’m not a racist. I just don’t believe in mixing the races that way,” Bardwell told AP. “I have piles and piles of black friends. They come to my home, I marry them, they use my bathroom. I treat them just like everyone else.”

U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La.) said Bardwell’s practices and comments were deeply disturbing.

“Not only does his decision directly contradict Supreme Court rulings, it is an example of the ugly bigotry that divided our country for too long,” Landrieu said.

According to The New York Times, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has joined civil rights groups and others in calling for Bardwell’s resignation.

Tangipahoa Parish President Gordon Burgess said in a statement that Bardwell’s views were not consistent with his or those of the local government. But as an elected official, Bardwell was not under the supervision of the parish government, The Associated Press reported.

“However, I am certainly very disappointed that anyone representing the people of Tangipahoa Parish, particularly an elected official, would take such a divisive stand,” Burgess said in an e-mail. “I would hope that Mr. Bardwell would consider offering his resignation if he is unable to serve all of the people of his district and our parish.”

Although the couple is distraught by Bardwell’s decision, they said they realize that his views are not shared by most of the community.

“He’s not representing all the people that he is supposed to be representing,” Humphrey told CNN. “He’s only representing the people with his same opinions.”

Humphrey and McKay were later married by another justice of the peace in the same parish. Humphrey said she believes the incident occurred for a reason.

“I just think that God puts you in the right positions at the right time in order to stand up to people who choose to live their lives with hate,” she said.

According to CNN, Bardwell told a local Louisiana newspaper that in his experience, most interracial marriages don’t last. He said he always asks if a couple is interracial and, if they are, refers them to another justice of the peace. Bardwell said no one had complained in the past.

The number of interracial marriages has skyrocketed nationwide, nearly quadrupling between 1970 and 2005, the most recent year for which there is U.S. Census data. As of 2005, nearly 8.5 million Americans are living in “mixed marriages,” according to CNN.

According to the AP, a spokeswoman for the Louisiana Judiciary Commission said investigations of the incident are confidential for now. However, if the commission recommends action to the Louisiana Supreme Court, that information would become public.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Friday, October 9, 2009

Latino Demographics


Pew Reports
Latinos Account for Half of U.S. Population Growth Since 2000

Since 2000 Hispanics have accounted for more than half (50.5%) of the overall population growth in the United States -- a significant new demographic milestone for the nation's largest minority group. During the 1990s, the Hispanic population also expanded rapidly, but in that decade its growth accounted for less than 40% of the nation's total population increase. In a reversal of past trends, Latino population growth in the new century has been more a product of the natural increase (births minus deaths) of the existing population than it has been of new international migration. As of mid-2007, Hispanics accounted for 15.1% of the total U.S. population.

Since 2000 many Latinos have settled in counties that once had few Latinos, continuing a pattern that began in the previous decade. But there are subtle differences in Hispanic settlement patterns in the current decade compared with those of the 1990s. The dispersion of Latinos in the new century has tilted more to counties in the West and the Northeast. Despite the new tilt, however, the South accounted for a greater share of overall Latino population growth than any other region in the new century. There is also an ever-growing concentration of Hispanic population growth in metropolitan areas. These findings emerge from the Pew Hispanic Center's analysis of the Census Bureau's 2007 county population estimates, supplemented by 1990 and 2000 county population counts from the Decennial Censuses.