Thursday, April 30, 2009

Republicans have Lost Their Minds: Boehner(R) Inserts Pic of Congressional Hispanics in Terrorist Montage.

Guest Voz: Mario Solis-Marich
Mario Solis-Marich is a talk show host that can be heard over the air AM 760 in Denver , KTLK AM 1150 in Los Angeles and worldwide at
Over the Line: Boehner Inserts Pic of Congressional Hispanics in Terrorist Montage.
Latino members of Congress are up in arms because the Leader of the beleaguered and aimless Republican House caucus, John Boehner, released a new web video ad today that associates them with terrorists and controversial foreign leaders. The topic of the web ad is terrorism and the question is do you feel safer after 100 days?The web ad inserts a pic of Barack Obama sitting with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus among pictures of terrorists, Obama bowing to the Saudi Prince, and the President shaking hands with, super villain to the right wing, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.After years of immigrant bashing, recent over heated rhetorical statements about Latin American leaders, and even a renewed claim by Republican pundit Pat Buchanan that Hispanics threaten the very survival of the country, the patience of CHC towards GOP leadership members may be used up.

As I write this members of the CHC are reading a response. We will continue to follow.
See YouTube for Boehner's deplorable video.

LIVE BLOG 4/30/09: "Kick In The Head" Murder Trial Underway - Piekarsky and Donchak - Ramirez Murder

The Ramirez (Kick in the Head) Murder Trial began Monday 4/27/09, and continues today. The Republican/Herald is running a LIVE Blog. They have a reporter in the courtroom who is sending summarized updates which I am posting to this blog.
At the end of Wednesday, 4/29, Day 3 of the trial, the Prosecution rested. Today, the Defense begins their case. The strongest testimonies for the Prosecution were from the jocks: Ben Lawson and Colin Walsh who were participants in the events. From their testimony we heard:
1. There were four active participants in the fight with Ramirez: Scully (charged as a juvenile), Piekarsky, Donchak and Walsh. All had been drinking heavily prior to the park incident.
2. All of these fight participants were large, muscular football players with Piekarsky being the biggest, able to bench press well over 200 pounds. Walsh said he was "not afraid" of Ramirez because he was smaller than them and the big jocks outnumbered him.
3. Scully initiated the argument with the young couple and was the first to use racial remarks.
4. No one claimed to know who threw the first punch.
5. Ramirez only spoke Spanish both in response to them and when using his cell phone. The football players did not say they understood Spanish.
6. All agree several people were fighting with Ramirez at once. Punches. Several kicks. Ramirez fell to the ground. The teens continued to scream racial slurs and Ramirez got up and they said he hit Scully. Then Donchak and Scully were both fighting Ramirez when Walsh punched (Walsh says he looked him in the eye and it was not a sucker punch) Ramirez and knocked him to the ground hitting his head on the macadam. All agreed Ramirez was on the ground passed out.
7. While on the ground passed out, several people were kicking or kicking at Ramirez. Then a final kick to the head was delivered and Ramirez lay foaming at the mouth. Walsh said that kick came from Piekarsky. He said he was standing right next to him when it happened. Scully said it was not him. He said he missed his kick.
8. Walsh's most compelling response was when cross examined by Piekarsky's attorney Fanelli: so you have to impress a federal prosecutor to get a sentence reduction? Walsh: "I don't have to impress anyone. I'm willing to take the nine years."
So there we have it. The Jocks were drunk. They instigated the fight with Ramirez. They outnumbered and outweighed him. Then they kicked him in the head when passed out.
The Defense strategy: Confuse the Jury. Minimize the testimony of Walsh. Provide DOUBT that the final kick came from Piekarsky. Paint Ramirez as an evil illegal immigrant with gang ties and sexual relationship with a minor. They also suggest that since he got up the 1st time, it was his fault for restarting the fight even though all agree the screams and racist taunts were still coming from the jocks.
The most disturbing part of the testimony so far was the fact that the police officer involved was Piekarsky's mother's boyfriend. He drove Piekarsky back to the park. It appears he told Piekarsky to get the boys together to, as Piekarsky's mother said, "Get their story straight." Piekarsky did get the boys together the next day to weave the lies for their story. (Lies: they were not drunk; they did not start it; they did not use racial slurs; there were no kicks; gangs and guns were involved and that is why they fought.)
(Defense: atty. Jeff Markosky & Atty. Fred Fanelli )
11:22 ET The Defense Just Rested its case!! Did not provide witnesses with any type of defensive reasons for the crime. Will post closing argument when they give them!
Thursday, 4/30: (all times Eastern)
8:38: Piekarsky and Donchak have arrived at the courthouse.
9:08: Defense begins their case today.
9:09: Fanelli calls Officer Robert Senape, of the Mahanoy, West Mahanoy, and North Union township departments. Senape: I interviewed Arielle Garcia on-scene, and she identified Scully as the kicker and the "he's not dead" comments to Walsh.
9:24: On cross-exam by Goodman, Senape says he saw the Garcias being interviewed at Shen. Police station, doesn't recall seeing the teens.
9:28: Fanelli calls officer Michele Ashman, of the Frackville police. Ashman: on-scene, I saw Officer Hayes interview Arielle Garcia, and she identified Scully as the kicker. Ashman: I found a gun in an alley near the scene. I was told it was a BB gun. Ashman: my written report did not mention Garcia naming Scully as kicker.
9:47: Fanelli calls Diego Tovar Alvarez, friend of Ramirez. Tovar: Ramirez called and told me about the fight. Tovar: "I went down in my basement, got a BB gun and went to where he was at." Tovar: Ramirez was down and the kids were running. I went to them and asked what happened. Tovar: the BB gun was concealed under my shirt. I never pointed it at them.
10:04: Fanelli's examination is very choppy because of frequent objections and conferences with Judge Baldwin.
10:08: Tovar: I threw the BB gun into the bushes. The gun has been entered as evidence. Both Ashman and Tovar identified it. Tovar: I didn't ask the boys to call anyone. One of them did call the police, who arrived shortly.
10:16: Baldwin has to take care of something upstairs, and has announced an unspecified morning recess.
10:23: Tovar's testimony was limited to his involvement with Ramirez and the teens--no word on his interaction with police later on. Tovar was hustled out of the courthouse by sheriff's deputies immediately after his testimony. From the newsroom: we're told Tovar had a warrant for his arrest apparently unrelated to this incident. We'll update with more details when available. No record of arrest connected to this incident.
10:59: Fanelli calls chief county detective Anthony Carroll. Carroll: I interviewed Scully on July 13, and interviewed Arielle Garcia later that day. Carroll: I don't recall Garcia naming Scully as kicker. She mentioned white sneakers, but "wasn't positive." Carroll: I hadn't asked Scully about footwear. No thought given to showing footwear to Garcia for identification. Carroll: in a July 25 interview, Scully said he kicked and missed at Ramirez.
11:15: Ramirez's phone entered into evidence. Carroll says he examined the calls. Carroll: from 11:30 to 11:35 pm Ramirez made 5 calls: to Tovar (twice), Victor Garcia, Dillman, and someone named Zimudio. Carroll: I never had the BB gun tested but "I think it was broken." Fanelli had asked why Scully was charged in juvenile court.

11:21: Under Goodman's cross-exam, Carroll says Donchak and Scully have similar charges--at the time, Donchak was 18 and Scully 17.
Defense rests their case.
11:25: The crowd is shocked at the abrupt rest of the defense's case. Fanelli called four witnesses today. Markosky called none. Neither defendant took the stand. In his opening statement, Fanelli had alluded to a medical expert for the defense, but none was ever called. It's very quiet--no one wandering the floor, the courtroom emptied out, and nothing of note going on outside. Live Blog commenter Brian provided link about Alvarez' court docket sheet. Has nothing to do with the case but is interesting reading. from the newsroom: Diego Tovar Alvarez, who testified today was brought to the courthouse from the Schuylkill County prison and returned there after testifying. He has been in prison in lieu of $100,000 bail for charges stemming from incidents last summer unrelated to the July 12 Ramirez beating case. On July 31, Alvarez was arrested and charged with burglary, criminal tresspass, theft by unlawful taking and resisting arrest. He was committed to prison in lieu of $50,000 bail. On Aug. 1, he was also charged with stalking, harrassment, defiant tresspass and loitering and prowling at night. For those charges bail was also set at $50,000. Earlier information from a distict magistrate's office was incomplete.
12:42: Reporter: Caught Baldwin in the stairwell--he said we'll reconvene at 12:45 to dismiss, then reconvene Friday at 9 a.m. The proceedings have concluded for the day. Closing arguments, jury instructions and deliberations begin at 9 a.m. Friday.

I will be posting Closing Arguments as they are reported on the LIVE Blog tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

LIVE BLOG 4/29/09: "Kick In The Head" Murder Trial Underway - Piekarsky and Donchak - Ramirez Murder

The Ramirez (Kick in the Head) Murder Trial began Monday 4/27/09, and continues today. The Scranton Times is running a LIVE Blog. They have a reporter in the courtroom who is sending updates. I will be reading the live blog and summarizing the results.
Wednesday, 4/29: (all times Eastern)
No signs of any protestors or demonstrations.It's a much cooler morning than the past two days--a welcome change of pace when Courtroom 1 lacks air conditioning.
8:59: Arielle and Victor Garcia were just checked at the security entrance, and she was then taken to a waiting room. Arielle Garcia called. Because she is pregnant and may deliver soon, defense has been allowed to call her before prosecution rests its case.
9:14: Garcia: I knew Walsh and Scully by name prior to the fight, and saw them there. Garcia: I knew Piekarsky by sight, not by name, and do not recall seeing him there. Garcia: Ramirez heard Scully call him a "stupid Mexican" and they fought again. My husband Victor tried to break it up. Garcia: I saw Victor punch Walsh. Garcia: After Ramirez fell, I yelled "stop, stop...leave him alone, he's not awake." Garcia on the shoes that kicked Ramirez's head: "I remember them being white, but I'm not really sure." Garcia on white shoe: "I"m not positive about that, that's just how I see it in my mind." Markosky provides Garcia's written statement from two days after the fight, in which she identifies white shoes. Garcia: after the kick, I yelled "you killed him!" Scully replied "no, he's still breathing." Garcia: Scully returned and said "tell them you don't know us." Garcia: Walsh stumbled backward after Victor's punch, and Ramirez fell "pretty quick" after that. Garcia: I saw multiple feet stomping the fallen Ramirez. This and previous comment coming under cross-examination by prosecution. Garcia: neither my on-scene or written statements, both to Officer Hayes, identify Scully as kicker.
9:50: Garcia says she saw what looked like a gun when all boys but Scully were gone--no further detail on who or in what context given. Tape of Garcia's call to 911 played. Garcia: I said I knew the names of the boys on the 911 tape.
9:55: Garcia: a "Spanish guy" I didn't know had the gun in Vine St. Park.
10:04: Back to prosecution witnesses. Ann Marie Kovalewski, a parademic who saw Ramirez that night, takes stand. Kovalewski: Ramirez was unresponsive, had a swollen and deformed head, and had respiratory difficulties. William Schaeffer, flight paramedic with Geisinger, also reports head bruising and swelling on left side. Paramedics say Ramirez was sedated.
Baldwin calls a 20-minute recess.
10:27: For the third day straight, Crystal Dillman is sitting with MALDEF representatives. Earlier in the week they declined to comment. All this week, defendants Donchak and Piekarsky have been writing in yellow notebooks during witness testimony.
10:36: Prosecution calls forensic pathologist Barbara Bollinger. Bollinger: I evaluate medical-legal cases and perform autopsies to determine the cause of death. Bollinger: I have performed more than 5,000 autopsies. On cross-examination of Bollinger's credentials, an objection stops a Fanelli question about why she wouldn't talk to the defense office. Bollinger: I did not observe a shoe print on Ramirez's chest, but days had passed and it might have faded. Bollinger: medical records showed no CPR or breathing assistance procedures performed to his chest. Bollinger: a scan revealed no facial fractures, but skull fractures to the left and back sides, and a displaced bone. Bollinger: Geisinger records said Ramirez's left skull was opened to relieve pressure from accumulating blood. Bollinger: Geisinger records said Ramirez's brain was contused, blood-stained.
11:30: Bollinger is using a black marker on an anatomical body, skull, and brain to demonstrate injuries recorded during her autopsy. Bollinger: head, torso and arms had contusions. There were two fractures in the sternum area. Bollinger: his left brain was not a "nice, normal tan color" but a "diffused red." Bollinger: the two skull fractures, on the back and left sides, intersected. The fracture to the back came first. Bollinger: my opinion is cause of death is blunt force injuries of head, manner of death is homicide.
11:35: Bollinger on cross-examination. Fanelli asks Bollinger why she didn't respond to "8 to 10 12" calls or various e-mails from his office. Bollinger: I am only aware of getting one call from your office, just several weeks ago. Bollinger: I spoke with the prosecution 7 to 9 times, including a couple face-to-face meetings with other doctors. Fanelli notes that the fractures to the sternum and ribs were not recorded in a CAT scan and several chest X-rays. Bollinger: I have seen multiple cases where radiological scans did not detect fractures. Fanelli asks Bollinger if she classifies the death a homicide because there are only 5 categories and the others don't apply. Bollinger: "Homicide is defined as death at the hands of others, and that's what this is." Bollinger had said it was her decision not to talk to the defense about the case.
12:07: Donchak and Piekarsky seem to be comparing notes as counsel approaches the bench.
Lunch recess called after Bollinger steps down. Trial resumes at 1:15.
1:17: Prosecution calls Dr. Daniel Brown, a neuropathologist from Allentown. Brown: I have examined almost 2,000 brains, and examined Ramirez's on Aug. 1, 2008. Brown: I observed a blood clot between his brain and a protective covering, and blood in an area usually containing spinal fluid. Brown: the left side of his brain had extensive contusions and swelling. Brown: because of motion of the brain, an injury to the back of the brain caused an injury to the front. Brown: no evidence of trauma to the right side of his brain. Brown: injuries consistent with a moving head hitting a stationary object.
1:39: Prosecution calls Dr. Isador Mihalakis, forensic pathologist and Warren County medical examiner.
1:47: Frantz doing most prosecution questioning today. Unlike Bollinger, the defense neither questioned nor objected to the admission of Brown and Mihalakis as expert witnesses.
1:49: Mihalakis: I reviewed the autopsy and neuropathologist reports for Ramirez. Mihalakis: Bollinger's markings on the anatomical skull "fairly and accurately" depict injuries. Mihalakis says there were direct injuries, as well as indirect injuries from the brain bouncing and hitting the skull opposite the impact. Mihalakis: "All the injuries cannot be from the fall... There were two separate injuries." Mihalakis: a medical-to-legal blood alcohol content conversion gave a level of .013--about one 12-ounce beer, " maybe a couple of more sips."
2:28: Prosecution calls Josh Redmond, a friend of the boys who has been mentioned as part of the group on July 12. Redmond: I was at the creek and block party with the group. We saw a boy and girl at the park, and Scully made the "out late" comment. Redmond attributes racial slurs to Scully, Donchak and Walsh. Redmond: Ramirez replied to Scully and made phone calls, both in Spanish. Redmond says he and Lawson hung back from the fighting. Redmond: Piekarsky led the pack. Ramirez threw the first punch, missed, and was tackled by Piekarsky. Redmond: I saw Ramirez hit the ground, but saw no kick. Redmond: we ran away. After the incident we encountered two males, one with a gun, who questioned us about the fight. Redmond: we told them it was our friend, not us. Donchak said he was going to call the friend, but really called the cops. Redmond: we went to Donchak's house, and Piekarsky went with officers Moyer and Hayes to the scene to identify the male with the gun. Redmond: Hayes is "Brandon's mom's boyfriend."Redmond: Walsh hit Ramirez with a "sucker punch." Redmond: we met that night and the next day to get our stories straight. I didn't tell the truth in my first two interviews.
2:57: Fanelli on cross-examination. Redmond: I wasn't drinking, and I wasn't charged with anything. We weren't setting out to pick on a Mexican. Redmond attributes no racial comments to Piekarsky. Redmond: Piekarsky left the first fight after he tripped over a short wall. Redmond: fighting resumed when Ramirez hit Scully in the back of the head with a running punch. Redmond: I didn't see Victor Garcia fighting.
3:14: With Redmond's testimony, all of the boys in the group who are not defendants have taken the stand. Redmond: Walsh didn't like the idea of the boys mentioning his punch and felt he was being blamed. Fanelli, as in other cross-examinations, points out that Piekarsky is not reported to have said "where or when" he kicked Ramirez.
3:25: The prosecution rests their case.
Proceedings are dismissed for the day. The trial resumes at 9 a.m. Thursday.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Right Wing Extremists are Baselessly Blaming Latinos for Spreading Swine Flu Across the Border

Right Wingers are baselessly blaming Latinos for spreading swine flu across the border, despite the fact that several reports have indicated that U.S. swine flu patients have recently traveled to Mexico. Pundits like Glenn Beck, Michael Savage, Dobbs, Boortz and other right wing nut jobs are going on the air accusing and blaming American Latinos or any they term as "illeeegals" in the U.S. for the Swine Flu crisis.
ARE THEY NUTZ? ARE THEY NOT READING THE CDC Reports?? The origin of this disease comes from a pig farm -- a farm about 20 miles south of Mexico City. I am told this is an American owned pig farm that is blatant for NOT following hygenic policies they are required to follow. Regardless, this disease DID NOT ORIGINATE in the Latino neighborhoods of the U.S. No Latino from the U.S. should be chastized or demonized.
On the HATE site, one commenter responded she had a Garage Sale and a Latino American came by to shop. The Latino-American sneezed. The Alipacer had a canipshon fit! She said, "See! The Latinos are ALL carrying the Swine Flu virus!" Now, on their site, they are looking forward to the May Immigration Reform Marches. They believe that any time a Latino American sneezes, people will believe they are infecting the population and this will cause Americans to join their hateful cause. These zealots are SO FULL OF HATE that they are imaging a new "The Stand." They feel the marches and any Latino that goes out in public will ultimately support their cause because their hateful side will blame them for the flu virus and rally their troops to line up enforce against ALL Latinos.
These zealots are insane! I feel like facing them off and saying, "Are you mad? Are YOU American?! Get a Grip, you Racist!!" These zealots blame a virus on one nationality! One Group!
In reality, this is a disease that could have started anywhere! Consider any Flu Season. Last year, we in the USA had 35,000 deaths attributed to good old American Flu! So far, NO American deaths can be attributed to the 2009 Swine Flu originating from Mexico. There have been a number of deaths in Mexico, but none in our USA! I say to Dobbs, whose tongue is drooling over reporting the status of this disease, STOP getting a tingling up your leg when you report about the Swine Flu! Get Real!
Across the world, we ALL need to partner together to combat disease!!
The bottom line is, Janet Napolitano/DHS and the Obama Administration are doing a GOOD JOB at combatting the disease and informing the American Public as to the status of the disease. What we DON'T NEED is for the right wing zealots to demonize one entire ethnic group and blame them for this disease. All Americans and all people should know, a disease can start anywhere and we ALL should partner together to combat it!
God Bless America
God Bless our President Obama!

Republicans Are In Turmoil: Arlen Specter Switches Parties to become a Democrat Creating a 60 Seat Filibuster Proof Majority!

As I have frequently reported, Republicans are in a turmoil! Many are predicting a demise to the current Republican Party due to the extremist Right Wing of their party attempting a take-over of their agenda. These right wing extremists do not consider Michael Steele, the head of the RNC, as their leader. Instead, many of the extremists consider Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck their leaders with Sean Hannity and Michelle Malkin their primping queens.
Now, to add to their misery, Senator Arlen Specter, the staunch and powerful Republican from Pennsylvania, has switched parties. He will run in 2010 as a Democrat. Specter said the Republican Party has slanted too far to the Right and it is impossible for a moderate Republican to survive in their ranks. He said, "Since my election in 1980, as part of the Reagan Big Tent, the Republican Party has moved far to the right. Last year, more than 200,000 Republicans in Pennsylvania changed their registration to become Democrats. I now find my political philosophy more in line with Democrats than Republicans."
Specter's decision will give Democrats a 60 seat filibuster proof majority in the Senate once Democrat Al Franken is sworn in as the next senator from Minnesota.
President Obama was informed of Specter's decision at around 10:25 a.m. today, according to White House officials, and reached out to the senator minutes later to tell him "you have my full support," and we are "thrilled to have you."
The move is a huge blow to the Republican party. Many are in an uproar over Specter's decision. Republican leader in the Senate, Mitch McConnell said one party rule posed a danger to the country and accused Senator Specter of acting in political self interest. South Carolina senator, Lindsay Graham said: "We got a problem.''
The extremists celebrated the purging of another moderate from the Republican ranks. Rush Limbaugh said, "Arlen Specter should take John and his daughter Meaghan McCain with him.'' Michelle Malkin, another right wing extremist said, "Don’t let the door hit you on the way out."
From my perspective, I often wonder about the Republicans. Why are so many of their stances on the wrong side of Humanity? From Economic recovery to Healthcare to Education to Immigration Reform to Civil Liberties. This makes me think of JFK. Did they hate the fact that he was introducing Civil Rights and the end to the Jim Crow laws so much that they despised him to the level they did? Do the extremists hate progress, equality for all and humanity so much? I question the agenda of the extremists on their side. Every time I read a comment section, their websites and their un-editted responses, I question their morality and their Americanism. Perhaps, like the pyramids of old, that type of thinking has run its course.

Another Violent Right Wing Extremist Murders Two Police Officers

Another Right Wing Extremist in the Florida area close to Dannie Baker's hometown shot and killed two police officers. He was another Beck/Hannity fan who hated President Obama and was afraid someone was going to take away his assault weapons.
NWFDaily Reports:
Shooting deaths: 'None of it makes sense' April 26, 2009 - 4:24 PM OKAlOOSA CO., FLA
Joshua Cartwright, a 28-year-old U.S. Army Reserve soldier with a history of violence, killed Okaloosa County sheriff's deputies Burt Lopez and Warren "Skip" York at a gun range in Crestview. A few minutes after he killed the deputies, Cartwright was himself killed in a shootout with lawmen in DeFuniak Springs.
"None of it's logical, none of it makes sense," said interim Sheriff Ed Spooner on Sunday. "He'd obviously just got something else in his mind."
offense report filed against Cartwright the day he died outlines an angry husband who threatened his wife, kept guns and knives on hand, was "severely disturbed" that Barack Obama had been elected president, and believed the U.S. government was conspiring against him. According to the report, events spun out of control Saturday morning. Cartwright's 21-year-old wife, Elizabeth, told deputies her husband was not attending anger management counseling - something the court ordered after Cartwright was charged with domestic battery against Elizabeth in late 2008.
On Friday, Elizabeth told lawmen, Cartwright was laid off from his job at a telephone store. He also had worked as a bouncer at a bar at one point, and weighed about 220 pounds. About 9:30 a.m. Saturday, a frustrated Cartwright woke up Elizabeth in the couple's Consul Apartments home on Monahan Drive because he couldn't find the Clearasil in the bathroom. He insisted it was in Elizabeth's purse and eventually threw off her covers, picked her up from the bed and threw her back down, pulling her hair with enough force to move her head back and forth, according to the report. She confronted him and "told him this behavior was not acceptable," according to the report. But Elizabeth said she still feared for her life. Cartwright took away two phones she tried to use to call for help, she said. When she picked up one of his pistols near the bed, Cartwright took it away from her. He had "numerous guns and knives throughout the house," Elizabeth told deputies later.
As the argument escalated, Cartwright threw Elizabeth back on the bed and hit her in the face, according to the report. He stopped when he noticed someone looking in their window, which fronts a nearby elevator. But he wouldn't let Elizabeth leave the bedroom. "(Elizabeth) told me her husband gets very controlling and authoritarian when he is angry," a deputy wrote.
She eventually got out of the room and took a Taurus 9mm handgun from her purse for self-defense. Cartwright took that gun, too, then punched her and threw her to the floor, according to the report.
Elizabeth drove herself to the emergency room at Fort Walton Beach Medical Center and called 911. Then deputies began looking for Cartwright to make an arrest.
They learned he'd planned to go with friends to the Shoal River Gun Club in Crestview, a shooting range.
Deputies Lopez and York found Cartwright in the parking lot there, according to the Sheriff's Office. They intended to arrest him on a misdemeanor charge of domestic battery. "They approached him, he was uncooperative, they utilized the Taser, and he went down to the ground," Spooner said Sunday. "He came up firing with a gun nobody saw. He probably had it concealed somewhere." Spooner described the attack as aggressive and well-planned. "To show you how aggressive he was, he was shooting at York. After he shot him, he didn't even turn around," Spooner said. "He just started firing over his head."
Both deputies suffered multiple wounds in areas not covered by their bulletproof vests, Spooner said.
"We don't see anything that indicates they did anything but what they should have. They died brave men doing the job they were trained to do," Spooner said. Cartwright's death minutes later came as he began firing at lawmen in Walton County, where patrol cars rammed his truck, flipping it on its roof near the intersection of U.S. Highway 331 and U.S. 90 in DeFuniak Springs.

LIVE BLOG 4/28/09: "Kick In The Head" Murder Trial Underway - Piekarsky and Donchak - Ramirez Murder

The Ramirez (Kick in the Head) Murder Trial began yesterday 4/27/09, and continues today. The Scranton Times is running a LIVE Blog. They have a reporter in the courtroom who is sending updates. I will be reading the live blog and summarizing the results.
Tuesday 4/28: (all times Eastern)
8:25: Few have arrived so far to watch the proceedings, which resume at 9 a.m. It may be shaping up to be another sparse crowd. There were a lot of teenagers at the preliminary hearing last August--maybe Shen. Valley's attendance policy has reduced turnout.
8:32: Donchak and Piekarsky are hanging out and speaking with people who have arrived early.
8:42: Media, audience, and lawyers beginning to show up. Piekarsky and Donchak have quietly been chatting out alongside the seating area.
8:47: Colin Walsh, who has pleaded guilty to federal chage(s) in a sealed case related to the incident is seen at the courthouse. Perhaps learning a lesson from yesterday's hot weather, the defendants and several lawyers have started the day without their jackets.
8:53: Colin Walsh has been spotted in the D.A.'s office.
8:59: The Garcias are seen in the courthouse
9:11: Prosecution calls Brian Scully. Scully: I have pending aggravated assault and ethnic intimidation charges in juvenile court, and made no promises regarding my testimony. Scully: I was drinking at the creek with a group including Piekarsky, Walsh, Donchak and Lawson. Donchak delivered the alcohol. Scully: I made the "isn't it a little late for you to be out" and "go back to Mexico" comments. Scully: Piekarsky was the strongest person there. Scully: Piekarsky took Ramirez down with a football tackle, and Donchak punched a fallen Ramirez multilple times. Scully: the fighting stopped, and Donchak and I cursed at Ramirez. We were walking away when Ramirez hit me in the back of the head. Scully: Walsh knocked Ramirez down with a punch. Scully: Ramirez was on his back with eyes closed and hands at his sides. I missed a kick, Piekarsky kicked him in the left side of the head.
9:53: Scully: several males showed up after the fight, and one of them pointed a gun at me. Scully: we met after the fight to get our story straight. Scully: Piekarsky said he kicked Ramirez, and Donchak "said he was glad he didn't break his knuckles."
9:56: Scully: the next day Shen. Police Officer Moyer called me in, and I gave a false statement which omitted some facts, including the kick. Scully: Donchak had a "border patrol" t-shirt and wore it multiple times prior to the fight.
10:11: Cross-examination, Fanelli to Scully: your omissions were designed "to protect you and you alone." Scully: I wanted to protect everybody. Under Fanelli's cross-examination, Scully says he was intoxicated and his recollection abilities may have been impaired. Scully: I don't remember Piekarsky making any comments to Ramirez. Scully: I play four or five sports and am one of the best players. Fanelli: but you missed a kick on a motionless target?
10:41: Markosky alludes to Schlack's Monday testimony that multiple people kicked Ramirez. An objection ends the line of questioning. Scully: one fight stopped after Donchak pushed Ramirez away.
10:45: On redirect, Scully says Moyer's partner on July 12 was Piekarsky's mother's boyfriend. (Moyer is police officer) Moyer's partner was Jason Hayes. Scully's testimony has concluded.
Proceedings will resume after a 20-minute recess.
11:14: DA Jim Goodman is questioning Walsh. Walsh: I have been charged under a federal civil rights statute under the Fair Housing Act. (when force or threat of force is used to interfere w/ rights guaranteed by the fair housing act the department of justice may bring criminal prosecutions that can result in prison sentences and/or fines for those convicted of such crimes. these crimes include cross burning,arson,fire bombings,vandalism to property, written and oral threats,and assault on persons attempting to exercise their fair housing rights )
11:33: Walsh: my understanding is I would be sentenced to four years on my federal charge if I co-operated and testified. Walsh: Scully made the "late to be out" and racial comments. I also cursed at Ramirez. Walsh: I wasn't scared of Ramirez because "he was smaller than us and there were six of us." Walsh: after the first fight, Roxanne Rector and Victor Garcia were trying to calm Ramirez down. Walsh: Scully continued making comments, and Ramirez attacked him. Walsh: me, Piekarsky, Donchak and Scully kicked the fallen Ramirez. Walsh: I took Ramirez down with a solid "uppercut hook" and saw him hit his head. Walsh: Piekarsky kicked Ramirez in the head while he was down. Walsh: "It wasn't right what (Piekarsky) did, kicking a man when he was down."
11:46: Walsh: after we fled the scene, a man showed up, pointed a gun at us and said "what you did wasn"t cool." Walsh: Hayes (police officer/his mom's boyfriend) gave Piekarsky a ride back to the scene that night. Piekarsky told police Ramirez started the fight and omit the kick. Walsh: Piekarsky's mother, Tammy, told us that Hayes told her Ramirez was Life Flighted and we better get our story straight. Walsh says Donchak later showed him a small piece of metal and said he was lucky he had it. Walsh: Tammy told us our stories were inconsistent with Rector's version of events. Walsh: Officer Moyer asked me if I talked to the other guys "meaning did I get my story straight." Walsh: I gave a false statement saying Ramirez threw the first punch and minimizing the racial aspects. Walsh on Piekarsky's kick to Ramirez's head: "I was right next to him." 12:09: On cross-examination, Fanelli is grilling Walsh on how he violated Ramirez's federal housing rights. Fanelli: "Tell me how a 17-year-old violated a man's housing rights." Walsh: our actions intimidated other Latinos from wanting to move into the area. Walsh has repeatedly said the federal record makes it clear he plead guilty to aiding and abetting crimes by the group as a whole. Walsh: my understanding of federal sentencing guideline Rule 5K.1 is if I testify truthfully my sentence can be reduced. Fanelli: so you have to impress a federal prosecutor to get a sentence reduction? Walsh: "I don't have to impress anyone. I'm willing to take the nine years."
12:30: Fanelli has asked both of today's witness about the color of Scully's and Piekarskys's shoes. Walsh: I saw no kick-and-miss by Sculy.
12:32: There about 60 to 70 people in the general seating area, which includes press. Crystal Dillman is again present.
12:32: Walsh says his punch on Ramirez wasn't a sucker punch: "I looked him right in the eye."
12:43: Walsh has concluded his testimony.
The trial is on a lunch recess, and the proceedings resume at 1:45 p.m
1:03: Scully's shoes: Scully and Walsh both said white. Piekarsky's shoes: Scully said blue and grey, Walsh said grey. No reports of any protests or demonstrations today.
1:54: Prosecution calls Victor Garcia. Garcia: me, my wife Arielle, Ramirez and Rector were hanging out at my place on July 12. Ramirez and I were drinking. Garcia: Arielle and I dropped Ramirez and Rector off at the Vine St. Park. Garcia: when I arrived at the park, I saw 5 to 6 boys and heard one of them yell a slur at Ramirez. Garcia: after I unsuccessfully tried to pull Ramirez and a boy apart, I was punched in the back of the head and started to fight back. Garcia: "No one was trying to help me, (and I said) I'm not going to get beat up too" Garcia: I didn't see Ramirez hit the ground--"all I heard was a 'boom' on the ground." Garcia: Ramirez didn't respond to his nickname "caballo" or slaps to the face to wake him. Garcia: Ramirez was kicked in the head "out of nowhere." I chased and kicked at the boy, but didn't see who it was. Garcia: Ramirez was foaming at the mouth.
2:22: Fanelli asks Garcia if, in a previous statement, he saw shorts, black socks and white shoes on the kicker. Garcia says he "probably" gave that testimony, but isn't "certain." Garcia can't identify the boy he fought with, but says he was taller and had dark hair. Garcia: Ramirez was not wearing a shirt.
2:25: Prosecution calls Barry Nelson Boyer, of Shenandoah. Boyer: I saw Piekarsky get into a cop's car at 11:30 on July 12. I followed them to the park. Boyer: Hayes and Piekarsky's mom were "going together." Boyer: Moyer asked if I had been involved, and I said no. Boyer: I met with those involved the next day at Piekarsky's house to get our story straight.
2:40: Stephanie Wierzalis gives brief testimony that a photo from her MySpace depicts Donchak in a Border Patrol shirt at a Halloween party. Wierzalis said she knew Donchak through mutual friends.
2:46: Correction: Boyer saw Piekarsky get into a cop car and followed alone. Donchak was not involved in the transport. Boyer is a friend of the boys. Boyer: at the scene, Piekarsky pointed to a male and "that's the guy with the gun" and that person was taken into custody.

Recess called until 3 p.m.
3:02: Prosecution calls Mahanoy City police officer John Kaczmarczyk, who says he responded to the scene of the fight. Kazmarchik on a weapon recovered at the scene: "it appeared to be a BB gun." Kaczmarczyk: Ramirez had a red, swollen face and what appeared to be a shoe print on his chest. Fanelli starts to ask if an untrained eye would be mistaken for a real gun, but is stopped by an objection. Kaczmarczyk says the weapon resembled a .45 automatic.
3:16: Prosecution calls Richard Exemitis, a Lost Creek Ambulance chief who says he was called to the scene. Exemitis: Ramirez was unconscious and unresponsive. The right side of his head was swollen, and he had abrasions on the left side of chest.

3:27: Citing the humidity and expectations of more seasonal temperatures Wednesday, Baldwin is calling for an end to the day's proceedings.
Note on the "bb gun": it was not admitted into evidence, and no word on whether or not it was the gun allegedly pointed at the boys.
The trial resumes at 9 a.m. Wednesday.
The trial resumes Wednesday. A new daily blog will be posted for each day of the Courtroom Testimony.

Monday, April 27, 2009

This New Swine Flu Reminds Me of Reye's Syndrome of the Past! Please Take Early Prevention Measures!

When my oldest son was a baby, there was a terrible flu-virus like disease going around. It attacked little children and old people. They called it Reye's syndrome. This was primarily a good old American disease although it occurred in other places too. During the late 1970s and early 1980s, studies in Ohio, Michigan and Arizona pointed to the use of aspirin during an upper respiratory tract or chickenpox infection as a possible trigger of the syndrome. The CDC cautioned doctors and parents about the association between Reye’s syndrome and the use of aspirin in children and teenagers with chickenpox or viruslike illnesses. Like other parents, I was very cautious about this disease and stopped using baby aspirin completely. As careful as I was, my son still developed the flu in 1980 and it lingered. He became sicker. This was over a weekend so I took him to the emergency room twice. Both times they sent me away saying I was over protective. I was so insistent however that on my final trip they finally gave him an antibiotic shot and provided me suppositorities to keep his temperature down overnight and they also said I should take him to his pediatrician in the morning. We sat up all night giving him cold baths and the suppository to keep his temperature down. When we walked into the Pediatrician's office, he knew right away. My son had Meningitis, NOT Reye's Syndrome. My son stayed in the hospital for two weeks to recieve his full treatment. The doctors said it was lucky he received the shot and suppository the 1st night and the cold baths. This precaution prevented him from developing brain damage and death. Though it took two weeks for his complete recovery, my baby was saved!
I share this with you because there is a new flu-virus that may become a pandemic and we should all be on the alert for our family's sake. Please take every precaution. This flu is called the swine flu. It has hit Mexico and they currently have a death toll of 149. CDC / News reports indicate this is a particularly severe version of the flu. This version not only impacts children and the elderly, but many of the early victims were young adults and some adults from 25 - 37. Adults who were in good health and strong. This flu is following the same pattern that emerged during the 1918-1919 Spanish influenza epidemic, which killed at least 50 million people, and it remains unexplained in that case as well. One theory is that the virus triggers an excessively aggressive immune response that destroys the throat and lung tissue.
Researchers are saying that one reason people have died in Mexico as opposed to the U.S. (which has had several cases but no fatalities) is that similar to Reye's syndrome, it is NOT the flu that kills you, it is the After-Flu "super-infection" that kills you. This is a new virus that no one has seen before. It must be taken seriously and treated immediately. In Mexico, apparently the early victims did not address their illnesses quickly enough.
However, this has changed. The entire nation has made solving this crisis their main priority. President Calderón has given Mexico a national lesson on public health, instructing people to wash their hands regularly, wear surgical masks, cover their mouths when they cough and avoid sharing food. Officials in Mexico City have handed out 6 million masks.
In the U.S., Janet Napolitano, the head of the Dept of Homeland Security, and the CDC are holding press conferences every day at 3pm ET to provide U.S. updates on what is happening with this Flu virus. Today she advised that the CDC/DHS are in close communications with Mexico, their officials/health officials. Mexico and the U.S. are partnering in sharing information and developing solutions. Napolitano has asked that for the time being, travel to Mexico should be limited. Border/Airport/Port security is on the alert to watch for anyone who may be entering the country with the flu. They will be advised to seek medical treatment and asked to postpone their trips to the U.S. The key to this illness is receiving medical treatment very quickly. It is not the flu, it is the after-flu superinfection that is causing the deaths. The CDC is also monitoring all flu activity across the nation.

Napolitano also advised that we all be pro-active in mitigating the impact of the flu. Primarily, if you feel the flu coming on, seek treatment. Do not go to populated places. Cover your mouth when you sneeze. She advised we access the CDC website and take the listed precautions.
There are everyday actions people can take to stay healthy.
. Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
. Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze.

. Alcohol-based hands cleaners are also effective.
. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
. Influenza is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through coughing or sneezing of infected people.
. If you get sick, CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.

FBI Arrests Tea Party Participant who made Death Threats on Twitter! (Glenn Beck fan!)

As I previously reported, it appears extremists, hate groups and Obama haters are loading the ranks of the Teabaggers. The April 15th event scared off many Independents and Progressives. I wonder how quickly the Republicans will also flee from this group, particularly with the FBI's most recent arrest of a Twitter-using accused Domestic Terrorist.
An Oklahoma City man who announced on Twitter that he would turn an April 15 tax protest into a bloodbath was hit with a federal charge of making interstate threats last week, in what appears to be first criminal prosecution to stem from posts on the microblogging site.
Daniel Knight Hayden, 52, was arrested by FBI agents who identified him as the Twitter user
CitizenQuasar. In a series of tweets beginning April 11, CitizenQuasar vowed to start a “war” against the government on the steps of the Oklahoma City Capitol building, the site of that city’s version of the national “Tea Party” protests promoted by the conservative-leaning Fox News.
“START THE KILLING NOW! I am willing to be the FIRST DEATH!,” read a tweet at 8:01 PM that day. “After I am killed on the Capitol Steps, like a REAL man, the rest of you will REMEMBER ME!!!,” he added five minutes later. Then: “Send the cops around. I will cut their heads off the heads and throw the[m] on the State Capitol steps.”
MySpace page is a breathtaking gallery of right wing memes about the “New World Order,” gun control as Nazi fascism, and Barack Obama’s covert use of television hypnosis, among many others.
In addition to the threats, many of Hayden’s tweets fixated on another Oklahoma City man whom he erroneously believed was in charge of the city’s tea party demonstration.
“He seemed to know stuff about me, but I don’t know how or why,” says Earl Shaffer. “He called me a few days before that tea party and let me know somehow he got my name as one of the organizers. I don’t have the energy.”
Shaffer told Hayden that he wasn’t a tea party organizer, but Hayden continued to tweet baffling messages about the 58-year-old retiree, posting his phone number in one. Hayden’s penultimate tweet at 12:49 AM on April 15 returned to the subject of his martyrdom. “Locked AND loaded for the Oklahoma State Capitol. Let’s see what happens.”
arrested (.pdf) him at his home later that day, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Oklahoma City, which otherwise declined to comment on the case. Despite the odd phone call from Hayden, Shaffer planned on joining the tea party himself. He was headed there when he spotted what turned out to be FBI agents watching him from their car around the corner. Like a real Oklahoman, he confronted the feds, who advised him that he could be arrested if he went to the demonstration.
“They asked if I knew [Hayden], and I told them no,” he says. ” They asked me questions about how I heard about the tea party, and I told them I heard about it through that talk show host Glenn Beck.”
Hayden was arraigned on the 16th, and ordered released to a halfway house pending trial — a move that suggests the magistrate judge does not consider him a genuine threat. Hayden’s attorney declined to comment. California-based Twitter did not respond to an inquiry by Threat Level.
Hayden's Extremist Group - Oathkeepers page

LIVE BLOG 4/27/09: "Kick In The Head" Murder Trial Underway - Piekarsky and Donchak - Ramirez Murder

The Ramirez (Kick in the Head) Murder Trial began this morning 4/27/09, and is underway. The Scranton Times is running a LIVE Blog. They have a reporter in the courtroom who is sending updates. I will be reading the live blog and summarizing the results.
Monday Morning 4/27: (all times Eastern)
8:36: Donchak, Piekarsky and lawyers arrive in courtroom.
8:48: Judge enters and begins trial.
8:56: Jury enters. 9:21 Judge instructs Jury.
9:41: Prosecution Opening Statement: Piekarsky kicks Ramirez head like a football. This is a group assault, not street fight gone bad.
9:42-1059: Defense argument: Ramirez in relationship with girl he is walking with. Ramirez is the agressor and calls for back up six times. Walsh punched Ramirez and he was dead when his head hit the ground (before the kick to the head.) Ramirez mentioned gun when he called his friends for back-up. Scully called Ramirez racial slurs, not Piekarsky and he "went to kick" Ramirez, not Piekarsky. Doctor will testify there was no kick to the head or that the kick was insignificant. Evidence will show Ramirez started it or was hell bent on finishing it. Fighting dispersed when friends in van returned and Ramirez got up and sucker punched Scully.
20 minute recess
11:26: Prosecution calls Trooper John P Minalda (State Police). Trooper, who was not on location on July 12, testifies he took photographs and made maps of the area, which are admitted into evidence. Defense cross.

11:54: Prosecution calls Trooper Robert Wessner of the state police at Reading, a member of the forensic services unit. Wessner provides similar testimony and evidence.
Break for lunch. Proceedings will resume at 1 p.m.
1:04: Prosecution calls Elizabeth Schlack, a Shenandoah resident, who lives near the incident.
1:17: Schlack: I called 911 after I heard continuous thumping and saw three males kicking a prone man. On cross-examination, defense enters Schlack's 911 tape as evidence. Fanelli points out that Schlack referred to "teenagers fighting and beating each other" and counted 6 to 8 people during the 911 call.
1:37: Prosecution calls Roxanne Rector, 15, of Shenandoah. Rector had a sexual relationship with Ramirez, and he had asked her to marry him. Rector: one boy asked if it was past her bedtime. She and Ramirez walked away, and comments continued from the group. Rector: I don't know who threw the first punch. Rector: The fighting left Ramirez unconscious, and friend Arielle Garcia said he was not breathing. Rector: a boy falsely said Ramirez was breathing, after which the group fled.

2:21: Rector on Cross Examination: Rector: It was Walsh who made the "bedtime" comment. Rector: I asked the boys to stop. Scully said "tell your boyfriend to stop," but I didn't; "I wasn't thinking." Rector: I saw no kick to the head.
2:34: Rector on Redirect: Rector said Ramirez was already on the ground when Scully said "tell your boyfriend to stop."
2:43: 20 minute recess
3:04: Prosecution calls the last witness of the day: Ben Lawson, one of the teens in the group on July 12. Lawson: Piekarsky was "strong" and could bench press 215 lbs. Lawson: I was drinking with a group including Piekarsky, Donchak, Walsh and Scully at the creek earlier in the evening. Lawson: Scully sarcastically asked Rector "isn't it a little late for you to be out?" Lawson: Scully said "This is Shenandoah. This is America. Go back to Mexico to Ramirez." Lawson: Ramirez had his phone out, and Scully said "call your friends." Lawson: Victor Garcia tried to break up the fighting, and I didn't see him throw any punches. Lawson: Walsh knocked Ramirez down with a punch, and "the fighting was over" when Piekarsky kicked the left side of his head. Lawson: we met at Piekarsky's house the next day to get our story straight. Lawson: "Nobody kicked him, there were no racial slurs, we weren't drinking and Brian got hit first" was their false story. Lawson: Piekarsky said he kicked Ramirez during the meeting at his house. Lawson: After the fight, Donchak had said "I'm glad I had this" and shown a small rectangular piece of metal he'd used to punch.

4:07: Under cross-examination, Markosky points to discrepancies in Lawson's preliminary hearing and trial testimonies. Markosky said Lawson went from 4 to 5 "moderate" punches to "hard" punches in his different testimonies. (Earlier, Rector had testified Ramirez gave her his shirt, wallet, and medallion to hold before the fight. ) Under cross-examination by Fanelli, Lawson said he never saw Ramirez remove his shirt. Lawson: I didn't see how the fights started and ended. Lawson: Rector asked Ramirez to stop, but he would not. Lawson: I can't attribute any racial slurs to Piekarsky. Lawson: I saw Walsh punch Ramirez. Lawson: I was frustrated after the fight and punched the Garcias' vehicle. Lawson: My first statment to the police "wasn't good" because I was still trying to protect my friends.
4:52: Proceedings have concluded for the day. The trial, along with the Republican-Herald's live coverage, resume at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

See tomorrow's Blog for future courtroom action.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Unbelievable Breaking News: Kick in the Head Trial Jury Pool is ALL White And an Alternate was the Driver's Ed Teacher of One of the Defendants!

Shocking, Shocking, Shocking News!!!
The trial of two of the three men charged with fatally beating Luis Ramirez in Schuylkill County while shouting racial slurs in July, 2008 will be heard by an all-white jury. Additionally, four alternate jurors, including a man who was one defendant's driver's education teacher, were chosen Thursday.
Unbelievably, the alternate panelists -- two men and two women -- were chosen during 90 minutes of questioning by county President Judge William E. Baldwin, prosecutors and defense attorneys. They complete the all-white panel that will hear the trial, which is scheduled to start Monday for Brandon J. Piekarsky, 18, and Derrick M. Donchak, 19, both of Shenandoah. The excuse for seating the Driver's Ed teacher: By the time the final alternate juror was questioned, all the attorneys had used the "pre-emptory" challenges --- which let them dismiss jurors without a reason.
As I have previously reported, the LEADING Witnesses for the Prosecution are two of the Football Players themselves, Lawson and Walsh. These FACTS are from Lawson's Grand Jury testimony:
1. The six football jocks went illegally drinking in the park sold to Piekarsky. The person who sold the liquor to the underage jocks has already pleaded on this.
2. The drunken jocks went to the Fire Co. block party and almost got into a fight with the firemen.
3. Then the SIX drunken jocks went towards home, cutting through the park and encountered the victim walking with his friend.
4. The SIX started badgering the victim, hurling racial slurs. Then Donchak starting fighting with him.
5. As the two were fighting, Walsh sucker punched him in the face and knocked him to the ground.(Remember, Walsh has already pleaded and will be providing state's testimony).
6. The victim got up again and was knocked on the ground again by the jocks.
. It is Piekarsky that faces the most serious charges of 3rd Degree Murder.
. Then afterwards, he was the leader of the cover-up, intimidating witnesses.
Lawson and Walsh or BOTH testifying. The witnesses to the Racial Slurs come from the neighbors, one of whom is a police officer. The FACTS are CLEAR and the perpetrators should face Justice! The jury will have all the testimony and even the Driver's Ed teacher will admit they should be penalized to the FULLEST extent of the Law!
However, there does appear to be malfeasance in the selection of this jury pool.
I am requesting the DOJ/FBI be aware of this situation and be prepared to step in to make any corrections so a proper trial can be heard, even if this includes a change of venue.
Update: Racist HATE GROUP Voice of the People is planning on demonstrating during the Trial. Dan Smeriglio, their leader, says his demonstration is meant to counter other protests that he says are meant to encourage illegal immigration and demonize those who oppose it. The “other” demonstrators Smeriglio is worrying about will be protesting violence against immigrants, whether documented or undocumented. The Republican Herald website said: "Voice of the People may have a legitimate point of view on immigration policy. Members certainly have every right to rally for their views. However, next week is the wrong time and Pottsville is the wrong place for such a rally, silent or otherwise.By demonstrating against people who are protesting violence and murder, VOP members will accomplish exactly what they claim they are trying to prevent. They will demonize themselves as extremists who condone violence against immigrants.They will reinforce the stereotypical views of outsiders who see coal region residents as intolerant, backwater boobs."
Special Note:
I have been following the comment sections to these articles and about 50% of them are extremely disturbing. They are abusing 'Freedom of Speech' and I think the DOJ/FBI should be alerted to the heinous nature of these comments. They remind me of words used by Dannie Baker and Richard Poplawski prior to their murder sprees. Here are some examples:
My tax money comment:
I think it is terrible that he died, BUT, There should be NO CHARGES since the man was an illegal immigrant, unless the family members want to pay in full for the cost of all legal prosecution, including possible jail time served by the defendants. The illegal immigrant stole my tax money and another american citizens job. Dont get me wrong, I would never want to hurt an illegal immigrant, but it upsets me that my money is wasted for this trial.
Bocelli comments:
. LOL, you call it murder and we call it justice. Here's a tip, head south for the border and keep going =) We don't need humanitarians like you defending scum, illegal activities and the rights of the leeches on our society.
. The jury of the peers are for the ones on trial, not for the scum that came here illegally and sucked off our society for six years. I would bet a bunch that his nasty girlfriend is collecting public assistance for that **** child they have; and why, because he is illegal and not paying a cent but instead we are paying him. F-that, give them all a oneway train ticket to Cuba.
. Many of the "illegal" immigrants of our past were LEGAL and they worked and payed their dues. this scumbag didn't do any of that. he sucked off OUR system, and when I say OUR system I probably don't mean you since you are probably on some type of public assistance yourself while collecting a check elsewhere. You my friend are the one who needs to be educated.
. because they are slimy little cockroaches who creep around at night and have ignorant, uneducated females hide them out. I think the INS should be at the trial and check all the protesters for their credentials and documentation.
WTF comments:
. AMEN!! And when they catch them- immediate deportation. They are illegal immigrants and DO NOT have the same rights as an American citizen. It's a nice dream, but it will never happen.
Kill Crime comments:
. Since the Federal government is not capable of enforcing it's current laws, form posses and pile up the illegal's bodies. Do it often and be vicious. Eventually they will learn to immigrate here using the systems in place.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

SPLC Special Report: Latinos Under Siege

The renowned and prestigious Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has just published an in-depth report on the racism and victimization of Latinos, particularly in the South. What this clearly shows is our country is facing a Civil Rights crisis and we are in dire need of Comprehensive Immigration Reform this year!!
The SPLC reports:
Under Siege: Life for Low-Income Latinos in the South
In Tennessee, a young mother is arrested and jailed when she asks to be paid for her work in a cheese factory.
In Alabama, a migrant bean picker sees his life savings confiscated by police during a traffic stop.
In Georgia, a rapist goes unpunished because his 13-year-old victim is undocumented.
These are just a few examples of the injustices that confront Latino immigrants as they struggle to gain a foothold in the South.
The region is now home to the fastest growing population of Latinos in the country, many of them lured by the manufacturing and construction jobs created during the economic boom of the 1990s. But many in Dixie aren't treating their new neighbors with any semblance of Southern hospitality.
In fact, Latinos in the South — many of whom came here to escape crushing poverty in their home countries — are encountering widespread hostility, discrimination and exploitation.

They are routinely cheated out of their earnings and denied basic health and safety protections. They are regularly subjected to racial profiling and harassment by law enforcement. They are victimized by criminals who know they are reluctant to report attacks. And they are frequently forced to prove themselves innocent of immigration violations, regardless of their legal status. This treatment — which many Latinos liken to the oppressive climate of racial subordination that blacks endured during the Jim Crow era — is encouraged by politicians and media figures who scapegoat immigrants and spread false propaganda. And as a result of relentless vilification in the media, Latinos are targeted for harassment by racist extremist groups, some of which are directly descended from the old guardians of white supremacy.
Instead of acting to prohibit and eliminate systematic exploitation and discrimination against Latinos, state and local governments in much of the South have exacerbated the situation. A number of Southern communities, for example, have enacted ordinances designed to limit services to undocumented immigrants and make their lives as difficult as possible, with the ultimate goal of driving them away. In addition, many law enforcement agencies in the South, armed with so-called 287(g) agreements with the federal government, are enforcing immigration law in a way that has led to accusations of systematic racial profiling and has made Latino crime victims and witnesses more reluctant to cooperate with police. Such policies have the effect of creating a subclass of people who exist in a shadow economy, beyond the protection of the law.

The South's immigration explosion began in the 1990s. By 2006, six Southern states (Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee) had added 1.6 million Latinos. Latino workers provided cheap labor to fuel the South's economy — building skyscrapers in Charlotte, harvesting onions in Georgia, slaughtering poultry in Alabama and rebuilding New Orleans after Katrina. Many of these new arrivals left their homes in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and other Latin American countries to escape poverty, which some experts believe has been worsened by U.S. trade policies. Many crossed the border illegally, risking their lives and freedom for opportunity in the United States, while others were originally "imported" by employers under the guestworker system. Many others are legal residents or U.S. citizens, caught in the crossfire of America's war on "illegals."
For this report, Southern Poverty Law Center researchers surveyed 500 low-income Latinos — including legal residents, undocumented immigrants and U.S. citizens — at five locations in the South to take the pulse of a community that is being increasingly driven into the shadows by a sweeping anti-immigration movement.
We found a population under siege and living in fear — fear of the police, fear of the government and fear of criminals who prey on immigrants because of their vulnerability. Many of the difficulties faced by undocumented immigrants are, no doubt, the result of their lack of legal status, which makes them easy prey for unscrupulous employers and puts them at constant risk from law enforcement. But even legal residents and U.S. citizens of Latino descent say that racial profiling, bigotry and myriad other forms of discrimination and injustice are staples of their daily lives.
"The assumption is that every Latino possibly is undocumented," says one immigrant advocate in North Carolina. "So [discrimination] has spread over into the legal population." Systemic discrimination against Latinos in the region — by both private and public entities — constitutes a civil rights crisis that must be addressed. We offer recommendations for reform at the conclusion of this report.

BREAKING NEWS: Court Date Postponed for Dannie Baker, Chilean Student Murderer

Despite the fact that it was scheduled to begin today, the Florida state courts have decided to postpone the trial against 60 year-old Dannie Roy Baker until June 25. Baker is charged with murdering Chilean nationals Nicolás Corp, 23, and Racine Balbotín, 22, on February 26 of this year.
The postponement of the trial may have been a result of the fact that the prosecution has decided to seek the death penalty for Baker, who –according to reports- will plead "not guilty" to the three charges against him: two charges of homicide, three charges of attempted homicide, as well as opening fire at an occupied lot.
In addition to murdering Racine Balbotín and Nicolás Corp, Baker also seriously injured three other students after entering the residence where group was gathered with a 30-calibre rifle.
Update: Accused murderer Dannie Baker did not appear in court Tuesday as originally scheduled.
Instead, his attorney Lenny Platterborze entered a written plea of not guilty on March 27. On March 31, the State Attorney's Office officially notified the court they intended to seek the death penalty for the crimes Baker is charged with, according to the Walton County Clerk of Courts Web site.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Beck, Limbaugh, Malkin Think DHS Report Is About Them!

Beck, Limbaugh and Malkin think a DHS Report written about rightwing extremism Is About Them! These whack jobs are whining, crying and bloviating on their blogs, radio and cable shows trying to scare their audience to death saying this report is about them. Well..........maybe they have a point. Richard Poplawski, the maniacal, paranoid cop-killer's favorite cable news network was Fox. Beck was his favorite show. This makes you go "hmmmm. Now we know where Poplawski learned his insane views!"
Reaction to HDS report says a lot
The reaction last week from conservatives to a report from the Department of Homeland Security probably says more about those doing the squealing than it does about their perceived grievance. The report came from The Extremism and Radicalization Branch, Homeland Environment Threat Analysis Division of the DHS and was called “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.” Conservatives, led by the usual suspects, which is to say Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and even Newt Gingrich, were quick to denounce everything about the report except what it really said, which is that rough times and the election of President Barack Obama, our first black president could cause an uptick in violence from neo-Nazi, skinhead, secessionist and racist groups.
Many conservative claimed that the report was aimed at them, even though the word “conservatives” was never mentioned. So does the outcry from Limbaugh, et. al. mean they identify with such violent and repugnant groups as mentioned in the report? Do they identify with Richard Andrew Poplawski, the Pittsburgh man who recently murdered three policemen in cold blood after they answered a domestic dispute call?
After all, Poplawski was described by his best friends as being anti-Semitic, anti-government, anti-police. They said he was convinced that there was an Obama plot afoot to take away all the guns he had stockpiled.
No, no, no, insist many of those who took offense at the report, which was aimed in part to keep policemen like the ones killed by Poplawski alive by spelling out the threats they need to look out for — the report was just another example of how the new regime is taking a turn to the left.
The report also came out the same week as the anti-government Tea Bag Parties across the nation, an obvious attempt to take the steam out of that movement, the conservative conspiracy theorists said. But as it turns out, the report had originally been commissioned under the previous administration of George W. Bush and had to come out some time.
Ok, came some retorts, what about “Leftwing Extremism” — you never hear about that, now do you? Well, as it just so happens there was a “Leftwing Extremists Likely to Increase Use of Cyber Attacks” report issued on Jan. 26. The report alerted law enforcement officials to “anarchist extremists” and said “Many leftwing extremists use the tactic of direct action to inflict economic damage on businesses and other targets to force the targeted organization to abandon what the extremists deem objectionable.” In other words, incite riots.
But you don’t hear any liberals or Democrats crying that they have been attacked, now do you? As the Bard said, we believe the conservatives do protest too much.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Governor Perry: YOU DON'T SPEAK FOR ME!!! It Is Time to IMPEACH Gov. Perry!

Texas Governor Perry is a TRAITOR and I for one say, YOU DON'T SPEAK FOR ME!!
I support our President! Governor Perry threatened to secede from the Union. How dare he make such baseless threats. Constitutionally, Texas cannot secede from the Union. How dare he threaten our President and our Government. Gov. Perry, YOU DO NOT SPEAK FOR ME!! I thought I would be the first to say: IMPEACH GOVERNOR PERRY! However, now I find there is an Impeach Perry website.
Their motto:

Some say just tar and feather Perry, like they did this poor soul at Boston
Tea Party. We believe even Rick Perry deserves a trial by his peers, the Texas
Senate...on his impeachment.

Independent Texans, founded in 2001, has initiated this Impeach Perry campaign. We are turning Perry’s attacks on the people of Texas in to a mobilization of the 42% (and growing) plurality of voters who do not identify with a political party and who self-identify as independent with a small “i”. We know that many Republican and Democratic voters will join our ranks to make the call to Impeach Rick Perry louder and louder as we move beyond the 2008 Presidential election and in to the 2009 legislative session where an impeachment resolution can be filed.

We need to move this effort forward and start Impeachment proceedings immediately. He and many of his cohorts are making our state a laughing stock!!

Independents and Progressives Turned Off As Extremist ANTI-Obama Republicans Monopolize Tea Parties

It's been two days now since angry conservatives hosted a series of tea parties across the country, and the fallout has some Republicans nervous. While the anti-tax sentiment of some of the protests may have been sincere, the images pulled from the events have often been offensive, embarrassing, or politically problematic.
It is a development that has tripped up the GOP before. The rallies outside McCain-Palin events included some of the same bile that was seen at the tea parties: charges of fascism, terrorism and other malicious criticisms leveled at Barack Obama. And it did the Republican ticket little good in its efforts to bring moderate voters to the cause.
Not everyone sees the connection. But some Republicans and Independents do view the fallout between the tea parties and the McCain-Palin rallies in a similar way: bad for the GOP.
"It is not clear-cut that the tea-party phenomena helps the GOP, unless they have a specific measure or policy (like Prop. 13 in 1978, and income tax cuts after that) to coalesce around," said Steven Hayward, a scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute. "Right now it reminds me a bit of the free-floating 'angry moderates' of 1992 who fueled the Ross Perot candidacy, and that is the hazard for Republicans I think. I think the crazies at the rallies are a problem, but probably out of proportion (they always get the media attention) to the real breadth of sentiment underneath, which I think is largely authentic."
Self-professed middle-of-the-road political types were even more biting in their critiques.
"My own sense that is I don't see anything going on that is good for Republicans," said Doug Bailey, a longtime Republican consultant who helped co-found the centrist reform movement Unity08. "I just don't get it. It may be, and I don't doubt this, that there is a large segment of the American public that can and is riled up about taxes and can be riled up about one thing or another. But a large segment, in terms of numbers, doesn't amount to a couple hundred people demonstrating in Washington or wherever. That's a non-event ... Nobody likes taxes. So, of course, I'm sympathetic myself. I might throw a tea bag myself. But the fact is, that it is particularly ineffective for the Republican Party when it is Rush Limbaugh and the likes stirring it up. That just doesn't speak to the middle."
Of course, because the series of nationwide tea parties were geared towards a specific day (Tax Day), the political ramifications of the events seem naturally limited. "Those tea parties will be long forgotten by, oh, say tomorrow," said Stu Rothenberg, of the Rothenberg Political Report. "Do you really think that next November, when people go to the polls, the April 15 tea parties will be on their minds?"
That said, plans are in place for a
next wave of protests in July. More significantly, as the GOP continues to stake their future on a wave of populist anger at the government and economy (witness: Texas Gov. Rick Perry talking about secession), the likelihood only increases that the most vocal and offensive elements of that anger will come to personify the party.
"Cons[ervatives are] finding out why I generally don't like protests on my side,"
Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsos said in a post-tea party tweet. "[T]hey bring out the wackos."

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