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March 28, 2012

Tennessee Republicans trying to block sharter schools from hiring immigrants

It's a round-about attack on Muslims creating their own charter schools that teach their own culture and history. But I'm positive that these same Republicans would have no problem with a Christian charter school using the Bible, teaching biblical ideas of history, and Creationism. The first amendment gives us all the freedom to practice whatever religion we want. No matter what these legislators think. Conservative Group Authors Xenophobic Bill in Tennessee To Limit Foreign Teachers | ThinkProgress
A conservative group in Tennessee is pushing the state legislature to pass a xenophobic bill that would place limits on the number of foreigners that the state’s charter schools can hire, in a thinly veiled attack on the Muslim community. The Putting Tennessee First Act says that the state’s chartering authority may not approve schools where more than 3.5 percent of their staff is made up of immigrants, even if they are legal residents of the United States. The Tennessean has more: The Tennessee Eagle Forum, which drafted the bill, is affiliated with the Eagle Forum, a national organization that wants to reduce the number of visas available to foreign-born workers and opposes the use of textbooks that it sees as favorable to Islam. The Eagle Forum is a national group run by anti-Equal Rights Amendment activist Phyllis Schlafly, who has called feminism the most “destructive force in our society today.”

March 23, 2012

Fox's Geraldo Rivera says if Trayvon Martin hadn't been wearing a hoodie he wouldn't have been murdered

Fox s Geraldo Rivera Blames Hoodie For Trayvon Martin s Death Above: a photo of Geraldo in 2011 wearing a black hoodie.
This morning on Fox and Frends, Fox contributor Geraldo Rivera remarked, “I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin’s death as George Zimmerman (his killer).” While he agreed that Zimmerman “should be prosecuted,” Rivera also blamed Trayvon’s parents for letting him go outside wearing a hooded sweatshirt. Media Matters flagged the exchange: BRIAN KILMEADE KILMEADE (co-host): Let’s talk about the Trayvon Martin case and what’s going on in Florida right now. GERALDO RIVERA: I believe that George Zimmerman, the overzealous neighborhood watch captain should be investigated to the fullest extent of the law and if he is criminally liable, he should be prosecuted. But I am urging the parents of black and Latino youngsters particularly to not let their children go out wearing hoodies. I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin’s death as George Zimmerman was. JULIET HUDDY (guest-host): What do you mean? RIVERA: When you, when you see a kid walking — Juliet — when you see a kid walking down the street, particularly a dark skinned kid like my son Cruz, who I constantly yelled at when he was going out wearing a damn hoodie or those pants around his ankles. Take that hood off, people look at you and they — what do they think? What’s the instant identification, what’s the instant association? STEVE DOOCY (co-host): Uh-oh. RIVERA: It’s those crime scene surveillance tapes. Every time you see someone sticking up a 7-11, the kid is wearing a hoodie. [...] When you see a black or Latino youngster, particularly on the street, you walk to the other side of the street. You try to avoid that confrontation.

March 21, 2012

The propoed Republican budget would eliminate the social safety net, cut taxes even lower for the 1%

The Careless House Budget - NYTimes.com
As he rolled out his 2013 budget on Tuesday, Paul Ryan, the House Budget Committee chairman, correctly said that he and his fellow Republicans were offering the country a choice of two very clear futures. The one he outlined in his plan could hardly be more bleak. It is one where the rich pay less in taxes than the unfairly low rates they pay now, while programs for the poor — including Medicaid and food stamps — are slashed and thrown to the whims of individual states. Where older Americans no longer have a guarantee that Medicare will pay for their health needs. Where lack of health insurance is rampant, preschool is unaffordable, and environmental and financial regulation are severely weakened. Mr. Ryan became well known last year as the face of the most extreme budget plan passed by a house of Congress in modern times. His new budget is, if anything, worse, full of bigger, emptier promises. It is largely in agreement with the plans of the Republican presidential candidates. It vows to balance tax cuts for corporations and the rich by closing loopholes, but never lists the loopholes. It is, however, quite specific about cutting Medicaid by about 45 percent, leaving 19 million people without care, and eliminating plans to provide health insurance for 33 million who lack coverage now. . . .