President Obama met with Cuban President Raul Castro in Panama City — marking the first full meeting between the leaders of the two countries since we announced a new diplomatic path with Cuba.
The two presidents discussed our shared histories, significant policy changes, and the positive response in both countries to this thaw in relations. “This is obviously a historic meeting,” said President Obama — who was in Central America for the seventh Summit of the Americas, a tradition that brings together the leaders of North and South America to discuss issues that impact the region.
In this week’s address, the Vice President laid out his and the President’s plan to make two years of community college free for responsible students. A better-educated citizenry is necessary to ensure that the United States continues to out-compete the rest of the world. Making two years of community college free is good for workers, good for companies, and good for our economy.
More than 120,000 people signed a petition calling for a ban on the dangerous and unacceptable practice of conversion therapy — and on Wednesday, we responded. The overwhelming scientific evidence demonstrates that conversion therapy is neither medically or ethically appropriate and can cause substantial harm. That’s why the Obama administration supports efforts to ban the use of conversion therapy for minors.
Last week, the President made an important announcement about preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, traveled west to champion high-tech jobs in Louisville and clean energy jobs in Salt Lake City, had some fun at the 137th-annual White House Easter Egg Roll, and flew to Jamaica for a meeting with leaders of Caribbean nations.
| By CAP Action War Room a repost
Another Bush Is Running For President
Jeb Bush announced he is running for president today, surprising everyone who thought he already made that announcement six months ago. Nearly ten years after the end of his two terms as governor of Florida and after a major staff shakeup, Jeb has officially launched his campaign as an “inclusive” Republican. But despite his promises to “make opportunity common again,” Bush’s record as governor and his policy positions since suggest he is more likely to protect the opportunity of those who already have it. Bush’s tenure was marked by a decrease in access to higher education, access to the American dream, and access to justice —all critical to increased opportunity.
Ahead of Bush’s announcement, CAP action examined the impact of Bush’s policy positions and actions as governor and analyzed how they would impact the entire country. We found that the rhetoric we saw in his announcement speech today doesn’t match up with the reality of his leadership:
Rhetoric: “We stopped processing kids along as if we didn’t care – because we do care, and you don’t show that by counting out anyone’s child. You give them all a chance.”
Reality: As governor of Florida, Jeb Bush repealed affirmative action for public higher education institutions, and as a result African American enrollment at Florida universities decreased by 10.9 percent. Over the same time period, African American enrollment in public universities nationwide actually increased by 3.5 percent. If, instead of increasing, national black enrollment decreased at the same rate Florida’s did, it would mean 13.9 percent fewer black students in these universities in 2013 – a total of 85,726 fewer black students enrolled. That’s equivalent to all the African American students in all California public universities – five times over.
Rhetoric: “The next president of the United States will pass meaningful immigration reform.”
Reality: Bush has been so vocal an opponent of President Obama’s executive action on immigration that he compared the president to a “Latin American dictator.” A report from the Center for American Progress shows that President Obama’s actions to reform our immigration system would grow our economy by $230 billion over ten years. Bush’s home state of Florida would see nearly $10 billion in GDP growth and allow 230,000 immigrants to come out of the shadows, work and pay taxes.
Stand Your Ground:
Rhetoric: “…Every life matters and everyone has the right to rise.”
Reality: We can thank Jeb Bush for signing the first “Stand Your Ground” law in the nation. In 2012, a study by the Tampa Bay Times of Stand Your Ground cases in Florida found that people who invoke the law to justify a killing are more likely to be successful if the victim was black: 73% of perpetrators who killed a black victim faced no penalty versus 59% of perpetrators who killed a white victim. Since Bush passed the Stand Your Ground Law a defendant in Florida is 24 percent more likely to win a case if the victim were black than if the victim were white. Florida’s law paved the way for other states to adopt similar laws, which have contributed to an additional 600 homicides per year.
Rhetoric: Bush talks often about giving everyone the ability to rise up, lamenting that, “we’re moving to a world that is sticky in the ends, where it’s harder for people in poverty to move up and where the rich are doing really well and the middle is getting squeezed.”
Reality: Bush may say that everyone has the right to rise, but while governor he opposed a federal effort to expand paid sick leave, a policy that heavily impacts working women. Instead of opening the door to opportunity, Bush said these types of policies “are best left to businesses.” But passing paid leave would benefit the more than 40 million American workers that can’t take a single day off work to recover from an illness or take care of a family member without risking losing their jobs.
BOTTOM LINE: On these issues and many more, Jeb Bush is a divider, not a uniter. His announcement speech today was full of rhetoric promising to expand opportunity for hard working Americans, but Bush’s record paints a much different picture.
Five years ago the BP oil disaster happened … 4/2010
Ten years ago today, thousands died and even more had to leave their homes
Americans must face the fact that the many natural and or man made disasters and anything in between have caused more issues than our next generation might be able to handle due to unqualified inept and do nothing lawmakers!
If you want your children their children and so on to live a better life … Vote for Change Challenge your member of Congress to do the right thing … The Local State & Federal level
While the sun comes up and the light of day starts to show just how bad this oil spill disaster is and finally uncover what exactly happened. Hopefully, reality will sink in on how just one error that could have been prevented by simply making BP or companies like them put expensive but high-tech emergency equipment in place to cap the well, avert or absorb spills before they start. The negative outcome and proof that the rules and deregulation of financial and oil companies by the house of Bush … is evident. Now, we see what happens when a big corporation tries to save money but does so much damage and in this case a big impact not only the environment but foul, fish industry and the entire economy on the gulf coast for decades. It is great to have a President that is willing to change direction on issues when the facts and or evidence show that delays and or cancellation of offshore drilling is clear. What happened should not be blamed on President Obama, this is clearly a human error and in this case BP; they know it and need to take responsibility for the entire clean-up.
We all have to remember that eleven people died that day
I have to say the first reports of the explosion and then word that everything was okay made me wonder …common sense tells you okay the well is underground; it could bleed out, up or both, which is what happened. The big question is why didn’t they act before the oil started to leak. This spill, is for me a warning to either change the way the clean-up process works or scrap any plans for further oil platforms or at least get an emergency plan in place because it seems this error by BP happened because they had no plan B, C maybe none at all… I’m no expert but equipment should have been available immediately that absorb oil… bumpers placed along the coast and shores before the leak actually spread … i saw nothing but boats watching , waiting for the leak to show … unacceptable
It’s only the middle of the week, clearly we all need a little calm … be still and breathe in and slowly release your breath.
The Budget, the Debt Ceiling, and Financial Reform conflicts between the two Political Parties are the next big fights facing members of Congress as well as the American pocketbook. I say it is time to let go of that stupid required agreement to not raise taxes that all Republicans sign off on that professes their love and swear by. I say do something for your fellow American for once. Yes, financial reform is important but the battle for families on all levels will be an even bigger fight because of the impact these issues will have on everyone and that would have to be Abortion and Immigration. In my opinion the two issues cannot stand alone and at some point they will be addressed as one as folks debate when a life begins others will bring up, question or offer seemingly great reasons to strip the 14th Amendment as often as they can. If there are any responsible or somewhat intelligent and or lucid Republicans left in the room, Republicans would find it in their best interest not to be the Political Party of no. I have to say in a moment when most Americans are going over what exactly what did they do to help Wall Street, the Banks and Corporate America get back on track then have them turn their backs on Main Street again. It is not lost on me that over 80% of Americans want the rich to pay their fair share and let the Bush tax breaks expire. In response, Republicans do not seem to care because to say they do not get it is to ask how intelligent are the Republican Tea Party to begin with and that opens up a whole new bag of we should all be ascared right about now.
It was and still is a strange feeling to know that most if not all Republicans were still are willing to slow scale down or block progress for All Americans without a trace of remorse. Now, It is also clear that the real plan or rather Pledge to America was and is an agenda to reinvent how our government now functions by putting the rich in control or the ruling entity no less. The idea that a ruling class has to be in charge because they make and or create the jobs is not only offensive it would be a complete destruction of what it means to be an American and that whole trickle down theory has been proven to be a joke unless you have been hiding under a rock. The BS we all watched, heard or saw on the floor of Congress in both Chambers should have … like i have said before made it clear that McConnell was being honest when he stated he wanted to ruin the President and like Senator DeMint said make HCR President Obama’sWaterloo. Fortunately, that whole Waterloo thingy was a mission that will fail if We the People get out there and help. If you take everything that has happened since the mid-term elections the evil plan involved much more than stalling, blocking and or attaching silly amendments to Jobs bills. We all know Republicans made it impossible to make change or create jobs let alone keep public service workers from layoffs en masse while the wheeling and dealing commenced, people thrown off unemployment, which we call the 99ers, they left to fend for themselves. It is now obvious that we Americans have several flanks to battle and it includes efforts to take States rights beyond what we as Americans believe is reasonable. I have always been afraid of those words because given an opportunity any state with a Republican in charge would create change that no one voted for let alone thought would catch on given we are in the 21st Century …right?
I am letting Republicans know now that I plan to reject the idea of conforming to a Family Values Platform they might be planning to force upon us. I believe in equality for all which includes having a President who represents ALL of the People here in the US of A. I ask you what can be wrong with caring for ALL of your fellow American, not just 2%… especially since that 2% has wheeled and dealed for breaks starting from the house of bush passed on its horrible bets, pain and responsibility which in turn trickled down to main street.
Deepwater Horizon victims’ families mark first anniversary of oil spill 4/2010 has to be included with Katrina ..below is a briefing from the White house from there … don’t know how long it will be available
An explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig killed 11 and started the worst oil spill in US history
Virgin Islands People
People from the Virgin Islands are called Virgin Islanders and based on the island of residence are called St. Thomian, St. Johnian, Crucian and Water Islanders respectively.
The first people known to have inhabited what is today the Virgin Islands were the Carib, Arawak and Ciboney Indians. These indigenous people are believed to have left and/or been forcibly removed by the late 1500’s.
Between the early 1600s and mid-1800’s the residents of the islands were of European and African extraction. Settlers, mainly from Holland, England, Denmark, Ireland and France, came to the islands to operate plantations, to run shops and warehouses, as indentured servants and to live in the fledging new colonies. Outnumbering the European whites were African slaves that were forcibly brought to the islands as labor for the plantations. Whites and Blacks born in the islands were called Creoles. At the end of the plantation era many of the white planters and their families returned to Europe.
In 1917 the United States bought the Virgin Islands from Denmark. The population in the late 1800s and throughout the 1900s changed greatly. There was an influx of immigrants from neighboring Puerto Rico to St. Croix to work in agriculture. French immigrants from St. Barths and British immigrants from the British Virgin Islands came to St. Thomas and today are well established. As a new US territory American officials and military personal were sent to the islands. These five groups made up the majority of the population in the early 1900s. After Naval rule ended most of the military personal and officials returned to the mainland and a new group of US mainlanders began coming to the islands; tourist! With tourism came a boom in the economy and another influx of immigrants. This was the mid-1900s. More French from St. Barths and more British from the British Virgin Islands came to work in hotels and restaurants on St. Thomas. Americans from the mainland came to the islands to invest in hotels and property and to enjoy island living. As tourism grew and the prospect of better jobs and a better livelihood so did the population. Large numbers of immigrants from throughout the Caribbean came to the islands and while this migration is much smaller today it still continues. Presently almost every island in the Caribbean is represented in the Virgin Islands from St. Kitts to Trinidad and Dominca to Anguilla.
A small close knit Middle Eastern community established themselves in the Virgin Islands shortly after the 1967 war in which Israel occupied areas on the west bank of the Jordan river.
There is also a small but well established Indian community in the Virgin Islands, mostly on St. Thomas. The Indian community is made up primarily of Sindhis.
Today the population of the Virgin Islands is 78% black, 10% white and 12% other. While 81% of the population is of West Indian background only 49% were born in the Virgin Islands. The remaining 32% were born elsewhere in the Caribbean. Residents originally from the US Mainland make up 13% of the population and Puerto Ricans make up 4%. The remaining 2% is a mixture of immigrants from across the world including the middle east, India and Asia. (Source: US Census Bureau – 2000)
While the population of the Virgin Islands may seem largely the same and residents may outwardly express nationalistic pride as Americans and Virgin Islanders, residents do not forget where they and their neighbors are from.
A Virgin Islander will quickly differentiate themselves from other residents who are from neighboring Caribbean islands. Differentiations are also made between white Virgin Islanders from old families, from French families and white continentals. Differences between residents from St. Kitts, Dominica, Trinidad, Puerto Rico, Haiti, Santo Domingo, Tortola… are not forgotten and most residents can identify the various groups by differences in accent, slight differences in skin color and facial features and last names.
While the population is largely Black West Indian, it is still an ensemble of different groups.