The Big CFB Weekend Has Finally Arrived ! GO FSU SEMINOLES !

First, in keeping with its importance, I offer the best darned spreadsheet EVER listing every college team with their logos and their entire season schedule!  Curious about any team and when they next play and whom?  Yep, here’s yore sign…  I don’t know who anchors the strangestbrew.com site, but they are darned handy and downright nice!

Now, without further ado…

In my household, “we” have been anxiously awaiting this coming weekend since the end of the last college football bowl game.  The long Labor Day holiday will be spent completely at home, with the smoker going all day tomorrow and a television on the back patio to prevent missing a single moment.

My alumni team got off to a roaring start Thursday evening, as my LSU Tigers tore the dangling collars right off of the Mississippi State Bulldogs by a score of 45-0.  Kudos to our school for finally getting our new tiger for Tigertown this past week.  Timely.

We’ll spend Saturday scoping out our collective competition, all in preparation for THE BIG GAME Monday when the Florida State Seminoles trounce Clemson State.  The Battle of the Bowdens!  That game is so important around here (ahem) that we will be preparing ALL DAY Saturday…

A selection of at least four different fine single malt whiskies await.  (Check)

Should we tire of that, the entire wet bar is well stocked, especially Tequila.  (Check)

Should we bore of that, an exceptional selection of chardonnays, sauvignon blancs, cabs, merlots, pinot noirs, voigners, sangioveses, and our favorite cuvee is ever ready in the cave. (Check)

An extraordinary selection of fine cigars (and my cheapos) have been waiting some time in perfect humidity in the humidor. (Check)

Charcoal and a very ample supply of quite large, hand-selected chunks of mesquite and pecan wood are at the ready.  (Check)

The pork butt has been seasoned and sitting wrapped in the fridge.  (Check)

The Coho Salmon is next to it soaking in brine.  (Check)

Homemade hot Italian sausage is well blended and chilling to allow subtle flavors to marry overnight for stuffing into casings first thing in the morning.  (Check)

A variety of other sausages stand ready to hit the smoker (Check)

Plenty of kraut and dark beer.  (Check)

Previously brined and smoked chicken deboned, shredded and frozen last weekend is thawing in the fridge.  (Check)

The pantry and refrigerator are literally overflowing.  (Check)

Ground sirloin, smoked chicken, sausage to be cooked and crumbled, sliced jalapenos, four cheeses, grape tomatos, onions, garlic, olives, beans soaking to cook manana, secret spices and gargantuan pan await the creation of monumental Nachos, pictures of which will be seen by fellow fans on the Eastern Seaboard just before Monday night’s game.  Fellow fans on the Eastern Seaboard will be sending us pics of theirs.  (It can go on and on and on…)  (Check)

Lump crabmeat, more cheese, seeded jalapenos, and secret ingredients await the creation of my bacon-wrapped crab-stuffed jalapeno poppers to smoke and grill to perfection.  (Check)

Items for the cheese and pickle tray confirmed.  (Check)

Ample supply of eggs on hand to devil. (Check)

All super special good luck t-shirts from each of FSU’s monumental National Championship wins are pressed and hanging for proper selection given the mood. (Check)

Commemorative baseball cap heavy-laden with commemorative FSU National Championship buttons and pins ready to don from its silk-lined box storage. (Check)

Should the mood require, all t FSU National Championship bead necklaces (and believe me, there are a ton!) have been hand-polished and stand ready.  (Check)

FSU beer glasses and mugs immaculately clean and polished. (Check)

FSU beer koozies collected and ready.  (Check)

FSU shot glass polished and ready for lucky kickoff toast of fine Tequila.

Shadowbox framed 1993 FSU National Champion t-shirt signed by each and every member of the FSU team has been lovingly cleaned and polished.  (Check)

The entire house vacuumed and dusted.  (Check)

Garnet and Gold scarf ironed and ready to place around neck of 5-pound pooch.  (Check)

Hyper-enlarged stash of yarns and several projects to begin.  (Check!)

All the makings for a spectacular weekend are ready to roll.  It is going to be a fantastic time and both of us are looking forward to not leaving the house once everyone is home tonight. 

Hmmm…  There’s something drumming just behind my right eye telling me I’ve forgotten something…something very important.  Hmmm….  Hmmm….

OH, EGADS!  I forgot the nacho CHIPS!!!!!!!!!!! GOTTA RUN QUICK!!!!!

(Have a safe, wonderful weekend.  I won’t be back until Tuesday…)

Weekly Digest of Illegal Immigration in America – Part 4

PREFACE: This is a recurring weekly compendium of acts and issues inherent to the matters surrounding illegal immigration in the United States.  Quite simply, the following are items of interest to me and which I feel merit further perusal by American citizens.  For the record, clearly know and understand that I am NOT anti-Hispanic or anti-immigration, but am sick, tired and damned well highly frustrated at our elected officials in Washington who are selling our nation’s future for personal gain and a hopeful new future voter base.  Despite laws enacted and funding remitted, practically NOTHING has been done to seal our wide open borders to the South AND to the North, nor has anything yet been done to end the menace and financial drain of continuing illegal immigration into our sovereign nation.

This Summer, unprecedented numbers of American citizens made their voices clearly heard in opposition of the proposed 2007 Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act and, as the result, the bill died a horrible death.  Americans do not want amnesty handed to some near 20 million illegal alien criminals, who broke the law being here in the first place.  We demanded the government fulfill its promises and laws and BUILD THAT FENCE, which they have not.  We demanded the government fulfill its promises and laws and end illegal immigration and punish those who would hinder those measures, which it has only just now decided selectively to do.  Will employers be forced to end illegal hiring practices of undocumented workers?  Will the overwhelming disaster to our nation’s crops, restaurants, hotels and lawn services come to pass?  Will Americans face huge escalation in prices as a result of pulling a false economy into the light of legality?  Will Americans tire of the struggle and forget why we were enraged by amnesty and free rides to illegal aliens in the first place?

This weekly entry is my attempt to see that the latter won’t happen.

During the week of August 25-31, 2007: 

Malos Muchachos

Leon Lugo Andrade, 37 and illegal alien from Mexico, will spend the rest of his life in prison for his unbelievably gruesome murder of 61-year-old William Huang, a restaurateur and ordained minister in Houston.  It took the jury a mere ten minutes to bring their verdict against Andrade, who hacked Huang mercilessly to death with a machete in front of Andrade’s estranged wife and daughter outside Huang’s restaurant, on the very night Huang was celebrating his youngest son’s 10th birthday.  The estranged wife, a waitress at Huang’s Lucky Seafood restaurant, had reported to Huang and authorities that Andrade was stalking her since their separation and held a restraining order against Andrade for over a year for repeatedly beating her and their children. During the time Andrade lived illegally in Houston, he was convicted of murder/manslaughter, numerous DWIs, firing weapons and carrying a shotgun in public.  Huang, at the time of his murder, was trying to help Andrade’s estranged wife and daughter escape to safety.

A 25-year-old off-duty motorcycle cop from Flint, Michigan was killed when he was rear-ended by Ramon Felix Pineda, 28 an illegal alien from Mexico.  Officer Vincent Owen D’Anna was riding down the road when a drunken Pineda hit him from behind.  D’Anna was penned beneath Pineda’s Camaro and dragged for some distance before Pineda stopped the car and tried to flee the area on foot.  Local good Samaritans, who witnessed the accident, tackled Pineda and prevented him from fleeing the scene until authorities arrived.  Those good Samaritans lifted the Camaro off of D’Anna who died from his injuries a few hours later in the hospital.

A 25-year-old illegal alien from Guatemala was sentenced this week following his conviction in July for the savage rape and beating of a 73-year-old East Hartford, Connecticut woman.  Alejandro Cuy Xum received 20 years for the attack on the woman, who is confined to a wheelchair and an oxygen tank and has since lost every single thing in life she enjoyed:  her independence in her own love-filled home, her many neighbor friends, her pet dog, and any possible sense of security.

Deported “activist” and Toast of Tijuana, Elvira Arellano has now asked Mexican President Felipe Calderon to appoint her as Mexico’s Ambassador of “Peace and Justice” so that she can return to the United States.  She’s also asked Calderon’s help in obtaining a VISA.

A pickup crammed with 10 illegal aliens being smuggled into the US from Mexico crashed in an extremely remote area in California’s Mojave Dessert killing one alien and injuring nine others.  The pickup, rented in Los Angeles County, was driven by a 19-year-old man and crashed through a guardrail plunging 200 feet down an embankment.  Five riding in the open bed were ejected.  Those who could walk or be dragged fled the scene, but were apprehended by a California Patrol helicopter.  Five Care-Flight helicopters were used to transport the injured to medical care in Las Vegas, Loma Linda and Palm Springs.

Sabien Velasco, a 27-year-old illegal alien from Columbia, now holds the honor of being the very first illegal alien in New Jersey to be reported by police, after his arrest, to immigration officials under the state’s new law less than a week old.  Velasco was arrested in Elmwood Park, New Jersey on aggravated assault and weapons charges after police found him chasing his family through their home wielding a machete.  Velasco is currently unemployed and has been in the U.S. illegally for some five years.

25 of the 29 illegal aliens nabbed at that hog Smithfield processing plant last week in Tar Heels, South Carolina used stolen identities to obtain employment.  Two victims associated with these identity thefts lost more than $10,000 each and another victim was evicted from their subsidized housing because of substantially increased income reported on her social security account.  U.S. Attorney George Holding said the group may have purchased or stolen the identities through a “myriad of ways” – including computer hacking, fraudulent e-mails and Dumpster diving – and didn’t acquire the information from a single location.  “It’s an epidemic problem,” Holding said Tuesday.

An ICE raid at Fairfield, Ohio’s Koch Foods netted over 161 illegal aliens employed at the plant, which is nearly half of the entire workforce.  More arrests are expected as authorities are able to track down those who escaped when the employees scattered.  Twelve were found in a walk-in freezer and required medical care.  40 of those arrested have been granted a “Humanitarian Release” and won’t be immediately deported, as they either have health issues or are the sole caregiver for a child or other family member.  But 20 others (12 men and 8 women) from Mexico, Guatemala and Peru are facing charges of forgery and identity theft and are being detained for trial in Butler CountyAuthorities describe Koch Foods as an “egregious violator” of US immigration laws and has had the company under investigation for two years.  They are watching two other unidentified companies there also that remain under an ongoing investigation.

A Fairfield, Ohio restaurateur, Jing Fei Jiang, an illegal alien from China, has been convicted and sentenced to a year in prison for transporting, harboring and employing illegal aliens in his restaurant.  Jiang has 30 days to cough up $100,000 to the feds, or have his restaurant seized.  Also arrested at the home owned by Jiang in which his illegal employees were sheltered, were “several” additional illegal aliens from China and Mexico, who are in the process of deportation.

Francisco Santos, a 17-year-old illegal alien from Mexico, is quarantined near Atlanta with active (communicable) tuberculosisSantos, a day laborer, finally became so ill that he went to a local hospital for (free) treatment last week and, when diagnosed with TB, refused treatment and tried to leave.   His 8-member immediate family is currently under testing and, if possible, authorities will extend testing to all those Santos has come in contact with in recent weeks.  Santos has also become the poster child of sorts for the unprecedented escalation of TB in Georgia and South Carolina, the latter location seeing over 131 TB cases discovered among workers of one poultry plant caused by illegal aliens who (obviously) are not screened for disease when they sneak over our border.   The CDC reports more than 300 cases discovered in South Carolina each year now nowadays.  FRIDAY UPDATE:  Four people living with Santos have tested positive for TBSantos will likely be fully recovered and these others having completed treatment by the time he is actually deported.

Some 50 members of the notoriously violent MS-13 gang in the Boston area have been the target of ICE raids this week, although it is unknown how many were actually apprehended.  To date, nearly 5,000 violent thugs from some 350 gangs nationwide have been taken into custody since Operation Community Shield began in 2005.  The Boston area raids were implemented by Operation 13 that targets MS-13 members.

Jose Ramirez, 18, and Porfirio Ramirez-Baca, 34, both illegal aliens, are jailed in Woodbridge, Virginia on two counts of assault and battery and two counts of abduction with the intent to defile after attacking a teenage couple.  The pair followed a 17-year-old boy and his 18-year-old girlfriend while walking to their car late at night and stopped the teenage pair from driving away.  One attacked the boy, punching him repeated in the face, while the other grabbed the girl out of the car, threw her down on the ground,  pinned her down and began groping her “inappropriately.”  Both of the teenagers were able to escape and called police.  Following the illegal pair’s adjudication in District (for the adult girl) and Juvenile Court (for the boy), they will face deportation by ICE.An illegal alien (whom police will not identify) , driving a pickup truck reported as stolen in May, was finally arrested near Gila Bend, Arizona after several attempt to flee, resisting arrest and causing several minor injuries to Border Patrol agents.  After his apprehension, he kindly revealed to the agents that he suffered from HIV and Tuberculosis…just before they found about $700,000 worth of marijuana in the back of the truck.  The alien is receiving medical care before continued incarceration, trial and eventual deportation.

Madian Santos, 36 and an illegal alien, was apprehended in Kingman, Arizona while smuggling 5.5 pounds of heroine hidden in the engine manifold.  (Hmmm…  I may be blond, but wouldn’t that be an exceptionally hot place??)  Santos told police he was an illegal alien living in North Carolina and was headed home following a trip to Bakersfield, California.

Nearly 900 pounds of marijuana have been seized along the New Mexico border with Mexico this week in two separate incidents.  In one, a “suspicious” truck hiding out in the dessert was discovered by Border Patrol agents on foot, but the driver was able to flee the scene, ditch his truck, and sneak back into Mexico.  Details of the other incident are unknown.

McAllen, Texas officials are tiring of the prevalent use of one of their city parks as a sleeping and trashing ground for illegal aliens, many of whom arrive there fresh over the border seeking housing and inquiring of “work in New Orleans.”

Mourners in North Bergen, New Jersey are anything but safe in visiting love ones in local cemeteries.  One cemetery alone near the Grove Reformed Church has become home to some 140 illegal alien Latino vagrants and many others are living in other cemeteries in the area.  One 56-year-old woman was sexually assaulted at the cemetery last month and another woman was accosted and her necklace stolen.  Local police claim their hands are tied.  The Mayor says he wasn’t aware there was a problem.  Meanwhile, area residents are furious from police inaction, having the vagrants use their outdoor water faucets to clean up in the morning, and many say they have been approached by drunken males who were panhandling and harassing them.

Those two National Guard soldiers in Laredo, Texas have pled guilty to helping to smuggle a healthy number of illegal aliens across the very border they were there to protect.  Sgt. Julio Pacheco and Sgt. Clarence Hodge, Jr. face about a decade in prison.  The status of the cases against Pacheco’s sister and brother-in-law, who are charged with helping the two soldiers, is unknown.

Hector Valesquez-Nava, 24 and illegal alien from Mexico, changed his plea from not guilty to nolo contendre Wednesday to two counts of gross vehicular manslaughter in Los Angeles.  Nava, with a blood alcohol level three times California’s legal limit, crashed into a car last April instantly killing movie director and producer Robert Clark (Porky’s, Porky’s II, A Christmas Story, and Loose Cannons), and Clark’s 24-year-old son, Ariel, a promising jazz musician studying at Santa Monica College.  With Nava’s plea, he cut his potential imprisonment (if convicted on the earlier count) from a max of 12 years to 6.  Nava was already serving two years probation for pleading guilty to a prostitution-related charge in LA in 2005.

Angel Lopez, 33 and illegal alien from El Salvador will be serving 4 to 10 years in a Pennsylvania penitentiary for aggravated assault of his distant relative , Santos Lopez, in Warminster in MarchAngel used his switchblade to slash Santos’s stomach open and delivered several stab wounds to his arms and back.  “It had to do with alcohol,” he explained to the judge via an interpreter.  Prior to the incident, Angel had already been deported once from the US back to El Salvador.  Following his incarceration, the feds will deport him again.

Eddie Carbajal-Lile, an illegal alien from Mexico, has been caught after fleeing the scene of a hit-and-run car crash in Lima, Ohio that killed 17-year-old Paul Watry.   Two other teens were injured in the crash.  Lile will now face a potential 15-year sentence in an Ohio prison…prior to being deported.

Perfecto Rios, 17, illegal alien from Mexico and gang-banger from Concord, North Carolina, has been arrested there on a myriad of severe criminal complaints, including five counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon of two Hispanic businesses, first degree rape and first degree kidnapping of a female clerk during one of those robberies, and more that a dozen other crimes committed in nearby communities.

Miguel Hernandez, 44 and illegal alien from Mexico, was arraigned on two counts of aggravated driving under the influence of alcohol in Grayslake, Illinois.  Hernandez was exceptionally drunk when he plowed into 19-year-old Heather LaMarche, causing her vehicle to roll several times and burst into flames. While two of Heather’s passengers did escape before the fire, Heather did not.  She suffered extreme burns and died at the hospital within hours.  Hernandez was also injured, appearing in court with both legs in casts.  Hernandez was driving without a license and will likely also be charged with  reckless homicide.

A Chinese restaurant owner has been sent to one year in prison by a Federal Court in Knoxville, Tennessee for conspiring to harbor, house and employ Hispanic illegal aliens.  While counsel for Pun Wan Chan stridently argued that “everyone else is doing it” and that Chan had used a Knoxville employment agency that advertised in the local Chinese newspaper to exclusively fill his employment slots (said employment agency only representing illegal aliens purportedly), the court held that what Chan did was to take advantage of illegal immigrants, who would be too afraid of discovery and deportation to report labor law violations or other mistreatment.

 Peligro, Will Robinson!!

If traffic hazards were not notoriously enough already during the Labor Day Weekend, now we will welcome the onset of Mexican semi-trucks that will begin their crossing of the Border carrying Mexican goods into the US on Saturday.  The Teamsters Union is appealing to the 9th District Court of Appeals in San Francisco for an emergency injunction to Bush’s final implementation to his father’s 1994 NAFTA Treaty.  “Before providing unconditional access throughout the country to tens of thousands of big rigs we know little to nothing about, we must insure they meet safety and environmental standards,”  No kidding!  Hmmm…  I wonder if the drivers will speak English?  Or is that just a requirement for Mexican truck drivers entering Laredo, Texas?  FRIDAY UPDATE:  The onset of this pilot program will not begin before Thursday, Sept. 6, when up to 44 Mexican trucks will begin DAILY “long hauls” into the United States. By the end of September, that numbers is expected to increase to 174. Our government worries that “further delays might jeopardize diplomatic and trade relations with Mexico. 

Hasta la Vista

Two more illegal aliens working on roofing jobs near Great Falls, Montana are on their way home via deportation.  They follow five illegal alien roofers deported from Great Falls last month and another six illegal alien roofers nabbed in Glasgow three weeks ago.  Roofing companies started arriving in the area in droves following a June 16 hail storm that caused significant damage in the area.

Ten illegal aliens were apprehended in DuBois, Pennsylvania during a traffic stop Monday.  Nine of the illegal aliens were from Mexico (8 men, 1 woman all between the ages of 20 and 26), and another was a juvenile female illegal alien from Guatemala.  All will be deported by ICE.

Five illegal aliens from Mexico were discovered in a freight train car just outside of Abilene.  The two men and three women are being held by ICE to prepare for their deportation.

Missouri has nabbed it’s first illegal alien under Gov. Blunts 5-day-old mandate for state officers to check citizenship for every person arrested.  Jose Guadalupe Delacruz, illegal alien from Mexico, was arrested in Jefferson City in connection with an assault.  County police called Missouri’s Highway Patrol, who verified Delacruz was an illegal alien, as well as being wanted in Jackson County, MO to answer a warrant for driving with a revoked drivers license.  Delacruz is slated for deportation. 

Loco Politicos

Immigration and Customs Enforcement criminal investigators will no longer be involved in immigration work site enforcement or conduct checks for illegal alien prisoners.  Almost 1,000 ICE Office of Investigations agents will be reassigned exclusively to customs investigations, reducing the manpower involved in detention and removal of illegal aliens to 4,000 nationwide, according to documents obtained by The Washington Times and interviews with ICE union representatives.  Great.  Just great.

Dr. Gene Rogers, Director of Health & Human Services for Sacramento County in California — and medical director since 1999 for their Indigent Services Program — has been fired.  Dr. Rogers filed suit against the county in 2003 questioning the county’s hard budget cuts while not cutting non-emergency medical care provided daily to scores of illegal aliens.  He cited “cases and case histories of patients who essentially have come up from Mexico for the express purpose of being treated here, and then leaving to return home,” Dr. Rogers said. “I’ve watched illegal immigrants brazenly demand free, non-emergency health care that was meant for our poorest citizens. I’ve heard them and their families complain. They feel entitled to it.”   The suit remains under appeal in Federal Courts.

Shoot me.  Texas Gov. Rick Perry and 150 local business leaders are in Mexico City this week chatting about economic initiatives in renewable energy and the energy sector in general between Texas and Mexico.  Gov. Perry just had to make the statement that the plan to build a fenced/virtual border wall between the U.S. and Mexico “sends a bad message” and “won’t work.”  Perry said he favors building short spans of walls in some urban areas on the border. He also said immigrants should be issued ID cards with biometric data that would allow the government to keep tabs on them.  Otherwise, “we know how to deal with border security, and you don’t do it by building a fence; you do it by putting boots on the ground,” Perry said.  Yes, Gov. Perry…but we just can’t seem to get enough boots. 

The Border Patrol Chief of Laredo, Texas — one of the most dangerous illegal alien entry points in the US — made his department’s role quite clear this week:  “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again,” Carlos X. Carrillo, Border Patrol chief of Laredo, Texas, told guests at a town-hall meeting Thursday. “The Border Patrol’s job is not to stop illegal immigrants. The Border Patrol’s job is not to stop narcotics. … The Border Patrol’s mission is not to stop criminals.  The Border Patrol’s mission is to stop terrorists and terrorist weapons from entering the country.”  A furious Republican presidential candidate Tom Tancredo called for Carrillo’s immediate resignation.  As expected, Carrillo has now profusely apologized.  “It’s painfully obvious to me that I could have done a better job of articulating my talking points,” Carrillo groveled.

The AFL-CIO and the ACLU have joined forces with several immigrant rights groups in California and have filed suit against the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration in an attempt to block implementation of the coming national crackdown on employers hiring illegal aliens.  The crackdown relies upon the SSA generating letters to employers of employee identifications that do not match federal records and providing 90 days for the employers to correct same or risk severe fines.  The suit cites the SSA database as being full of errors, and therefore destined to produce erroneous reports, and that “tens of thousands of workers will lose their jobs right before the holidays.” 

Muy Estúpido

Two “immigrant rights” coalitions that splintered over political differences in Los Angeles last year (the “March 25 Coalition” continued their protests, while “We Are America Coalition other shifted its focus on helping illegals obtain legal citizenship and voter registration drives) have now rejoined and have renamed themselves the “We are All Elvira and Saulito Coalition“.  Instead of calling for workers to boycott their jobs (which never worked well), they are now planning a boycott of commerce on September 12, in which no Hispanics will spend money.

Notorious radical Ricardo Juarez, leader of “Mexicans Without Borders,” is a devout follower of Mexican Communist Guerrillas…the Marxist Zapatista Army of National Liberation?   His idol is Mexican revolutionary and leftist rebel Emiliano Zapata?  Where’s his ski mask and AK-47?   I’m shocked!  Say it ain’t so!

An illegal alien from Mexico apparently died from desert heat while illegally crossing our border near Tucson, Arizona.  His body was found by a local rancher on his land with no identification.  The man’s death brings the total to 156 of desert deaths of illegal aliens near Tucson since October 1, 2006.

Huh?  The LAPD is ceasing impounding vehicles for drivers stopped without driver’s licenses.  “The decision touches on what has long been a hot-button issue, because many unlicensed drivers who have their cars towed are illegal immigrants who cannot get driver’s licenses.”  So Los Angeles officers, who have been impounding some 40,000 autos annually, have stopped until they receive a ruling from the city attorney on whether a 2005 ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals applies to them.  Fortunately, the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol are continuing the impoundments, in belief the 9th Circuit ruling has nothing to do with them.  Do read this link and, at the bottom, a digest of the Oregon case that was the basis for the 9th Circuit Court’s review.

An estimated 25,000 to 50,000 illegal aliens in Oklahoma have fled to Arkansas or Kansas in recent weeks fearing the impact of Oklahoma’s recent law to seriously crack down on illegal immigration that will take effect on January 1, 2008.   Ironically, Arkansas is poised to pass a similar law in their state, and Kansas is giving the idea some serious thought, too.  In Arizona, where the illegal alien population is estimated at some 500,000, about 100 illegal aliens are believed to be leaving the state each day in advance of the state’s January 1 crackdown on employers.

Hundreds of public school students in Arizona are struggling to learn English from teachers who don’t know English themselves. Nine of 32 school districts reviewed failed miserably.  I doubt that is confined to Arizona. 

Muy Buenos!

Nearly 70% of Arizona voters polled last week strongly approve of their state’s law to severely punish employers who knowingly hire illegal aliens, as well as the fed’s recent deployment of current law requiring employers to fire illegal aliens if their identities are found to be questionable and can’t resolve same in 90 days.

Good ole Arizona Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s much maligned hotline has nabbed another dozen illegal aliens, including two bonafide smugglers, thanks to a tip provided by an anonymous caller.

A US District Judge has upheld Arizona’s new voter identification laws requiring all voters to submit proof of US citizenship and various forms of identification before being allowed to vote in the state.  The vast majority of contentions presented by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund were rejected in the ruling, but two more remain for consideration.

Missouri’s Governor ordered Tuesday a crackdown on state-paid construction companies who hire illegal aliens.  In addition to existing requirements for contractors to provide paperwork ensuring their workers are employed legally, the state will now regularly audit said paperwork and conduct spot inspections at work sites to review workers’ own documentation.  On the day before, Gov. Blunt ordered all of his Highway Patrol, Capitol Police and Missouri Water Patrol to check the citizenship status of “everyone they present for incarceration. 

NCAA: You Would Deny Funds to a Grieving Family?

This post I read on Houston’s Clear Thinkers blog has me a tad bit miffed.  I really don’t have a working knowledge of the NCAA or its power-mongering antics, but I happily defer to Mr. Kirkendall’s opinions with all enthusiasm.  And the story he so eloquently shares reveals a lack of compassion by the NCAA the likes of which stun me.  Has the NCAA achieved “a new level of absurdity”?  Undeniably.

One of the most promising high school football athletes from Texas this year was murdered last weekend in Houston by a thug who thought shooting Herman Mitchell was an appropriate solution to a dispute they shared for some time over the ownership of a Pitt Bull.  

Mitchell and three of his pals headed out last Friday afternoon to play a scrimmage game at Westfield High School.  They got as far as their apartment complex parking lot when they spotted the tan-and-white dog in the possession of Emile “Rusty” Lewis, 19 and a Louisiana native transplanted to Houston in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  Mitchell and Lewis had been arguing for some time as to which of them “owned” the dog.

After an argument and ultimate fistfight, Lewis went to his own apartment in the complex, retrieved a rifle, and returned to gun-down Mitchell with a multitude of shots.

It probably won’t come as a surprise that Lewis has a rap sheet half a mile long of convictions for drugs and weapons charges since his arrival two years ago from New Orleans.  A rifle was recovered in Lewis’s apartment at the time of his arrest and his right eye was swollen and beginning to turn black.  Nevertheless, Lewis has insisted he had nothing whatsoever to do with Mitchell’s murder.  Witnesses disagree.

Young Mitchell, a 6-foot, 200-pound All-District linebacker from Houston’s Westfield High, was eagerly looking forward to joining OU’s Sooners team on a full scholarship next year.  Mitchell had received a myriad of offers from universities across the country, but turned them down in favor of his favorite team, the Sooners.  Oklahoma fans were looking forward to having Mitchell join the Sooners, too.

One OU Booster Club member, Adam Fineberg of Houston, began a campaign through the OU Booster site with a goal of raising $10,000 to help Mitchell’s family pay for his funeral.  He raised $4,500 within a matter of two days…and the NCAA shut him down.  The NCAA declared Fineberg’s fundraising to be a rules violation against the Sooners, citing the funds as “illegal financial assistance” to Mitchell’s brother, who is a sophomore fullback at Westfield High, and that the fundraising on OU’s Sooner Booster site was improper.

From the Oklahoma Sooners blog:

Oklahoma fan asked to stop fundraiser for Mitchell: Just hours after Oklahoma football recruit Herman Mitchell was shot to death Friday in Houston, Adam Fineberg started raising money for Mitchell’s family. But after raising $4,500, enough to cover almost half the cost of Mitchell’s funeral, Fineberg stopped. An OU compliance officer told him his actions would constitute an NCAA rules violation against the Sooners… That money is considered illegal financial assistance under NCAA rules because Mitchell’s brother is a sophomore fullback at Westfield High School in Spring, Texas, and because Fineberg is an OU fan who attends Sooner football games and solicited donations through an OU fan Web site… OU spokesman Kenny Mossman said the an official with the university’s compliance office contacted Fineberg on Monday asking to him halt his fundraising efforts until the OU received a rules interpretation from the NCAA. That interpretation came Tuesday. “This is not a permissible expense for OU or someone who could be construed as an OU supporter,” said Mossman, an associate athletic director for communications. “We’re not trying to be the bad guys, but we have to play by their rules.”

So Fineberg was left with no alternative but to return all of the donations, which he did Wednesday morning.

Later on Wednesday, Oklahoma University filed a request for a waiver with the NCAA to allow the university to collect funds for Herman Mitchell’s family.  “We will look at their waiver request quickly and very seriously,” NCAA spokesman Erik Christianson said on Wednesday.  Under the terms of the proposed waiver, any funds raised in excess of Mitchell’s funeral costs would be given to a charity to be designated by the Mitchell family.

I applaud Fineberg for his compassion, intent, and damned fine job.  Mitchell’s family lives very modestly and not by choice, and gone forever is their dream of watching their son and brother achieve the greatness for which he was undeniably headed.

Houstonians have now established a local site for donations, free from any strings the NCAA could possibly attach:

Herman Mitchell Memorial Fund
c/o InvesTex Credit Union
230 Cypresswood Drive, Suite H
Spring, TX 77388.

The fund is wholly legit.  Please call the credit union at 281-449-0109, or Toll Free at 1-866-449-0109 to confirm how your donations are tax-deductible, or for any other questions you may have. 

I found a heart-felt tribute to Herman by Hubert Wilson (I presume to be on of Mitchell’s friends) on ILovePoetry.com:

The Promise of Herman Mitchell

Coveted greatness denied.
Rarest talent all had eyed.
Incredible fleet Mercury of the gridiron seemed to glide.
Moving elusively from side to side.
Stunned opponents could not decide.
Often to no avail as they ineptly tried.
No real answers for number eleven were deftly applied.

August Texas afternoon saw this seventeen year old’s gift brushed aside.
Nefarious heated argument and pride.
Damned families to sad events eternally tied.

Countless unfortunates more than cried.
Racking their very souls.
Evaporating hope deep down inside.
Agony far and wide.
Many dreams in that gloomy humid parking lot also died?

Mitchell’s friends, teammates, coaches and family remember him in a candlelight vigil Sunday evening.

The family has announced Visitation services to be held Friday, August 31, from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Integrated Baptist Church, located at 4910 Martin Luther King Blvd. in Houston (77021).  Funeral services will be held Saturday, September 1, at 11 a.m. at the Windsor Village United Methodist Church, located at 6000 Heather Brook Drive in Houston (77085).

Accomplice to Horrific Knoxville Murders Has Charges Increased

One of the five arrested in connection with the heinous, horrific rapes and murders of University of Tennessee student Channon Christian and her boyfriend Christopher Newsom in January — the only one to remain charged by Federal authorities — has received an upgrade of sorts in his charges that can effectively double the prison time he may receive.

Eric Dewayne Boyd, the low man on the totem pole so to speak, was originally charged with being an accessory after the fact of the car-jacking of Channon and Chris, having helped Lemaricus Davidson escape authorities, hide out and even use his cell phone to seek additional help when police sought his trail.  Now, courtesy of a Federal Grand Jury in a superseding indictment, Boyd remains an accessory to the car-jacking, but it is now stipulated that Boyd knew beforehand that serious bodily harm or death had already occurred when he agreed to help Davidson.  In short, it means Boyd knew Channon and Chris had been killed in connection with the carjacking, but failed to report the crime to authorities.

This change in charges doubles Boyd’s potential sentencing from seven years to up to 15 years imprisonment.

(A “superseding indictment” is the same thing basically as an “amended indictment” filed in local, county and district courts, but Federal courts do use the term “amended”.  It is an indictment that supersedes, or replaces a previous one.)

Lemaricus Davidson, his brother Letalvis Cobbins, and George Thomas were originally charged in Federal court with carjacking, but the feds dropped the charges so the three could face an even longer list of charges by local authorities in Knoxville, as does Vanessa Coleman.  Davidson, Cobbins and Thomas were named in 46 counts, including 16 counts of felony murder and 20 counts of rape involving both victims. Coleman was named in 40 counts, including 12 counts of felony murder and 20 counts of rape.

Trials for all five are expected to occur sometime next year.

I don’t have the stamina to repeat the details of this horrific nightmare suffered by Channon and Chris.  But I wrote about it in length earlier.

Michael Devlin Bouncing About

There hasn’t been much information lately about Missouri’s most notorious alleged child molester, Michael J. Devlin, as many of his court hearings have been passed for a while.  However late last week, Devlin was temporarily transferred to St. Louis County to await his arraignment there on those 71 felony counts (69 forcible sodomy and 2 kidnapping) coming next month.

Franklin County Sheriff Gary Toelke facilitated Devlin’s transfer last week, but will have Devlin back in the Franklin County Jail soon after the arraignment is concluded.

The best news in all of this is for Devlin’s legal team, led by  Ethan Corlija, who will have a month to meet with Devlin without having to drive an hour or so each way.

As you may recall, the bulk of the state’s case against Devlin resides in St. Louis County, where one count of kidnapping and the vast majority of the sodomy charges relate to Devlin’s kidnapping and sexual assault of Shawn Hornbeck for over a four-year period.  The remainder of the counts relate to his kidnapping and sexual assault of Ben Ownby.  Both boys were miraculously discovered in Devlin’s clutches four days after Ben was abducted.

The entirety of the Franklin County charges concern Ben’s abduction.  Washington County added charges of attempted murder (for trying to suffocate Shawn in his first month of captivity), kidnapping, armed criminal action, three counts of forcible sodomy, and one count of attempted forcible sodomy relating to Shawn.  There are also six federal charges rounding out the cadre of four jurisdictions involved so far.

No plea agreement has been reached by any authority with Devlin.

The prosecutors in Franklin County have answered Corlija’s request for all the info they had on Devlin (Discovery), and D.A. John Rupp has reciprocated by requesting Corlija send his info also.  Ditto in St. Louis County.

As his current court docket stands, Devlin will appear September 10 in Washington County, where the judge will rule on defense requests for a change in venue, as well as to determine how the jury pool will be selected.  His arraignment in St. Louis County is scheduled for September 19 and will hear several preliminary motions filed there.  And on October 13, Devlin will return to Franklin County, where the judge will hear various defense motions filed there, inclusive of Corlija’s latest request for a change in venue.

And the Feds wait for their turn last at bat when all else in all counties is concluded.  When the dust settles in Missouri, Devlin faces federal charges of producing child pornography and transporting a minor (Hornbeck) across state lines for the purpose of conducting criminal sex acts.

More reading?  See info on Devlin’s transfer to St. Louis County and Toelke’s insistence that Devlin will be returning to Franklin County afterwards, and info about Devlin’s arrival in St. Louis County and the issues anchored there.

For background info, I’ve written previously about Devlin’s case here, here, here, here, and in about 25 other posts, at very least.  Probably the easiest way to find all of them is through wading through this Google Search.

A Joyous Day for Sen. Tim Johnson and South Dakota

Every good wish and warm though I can muster goes to South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson, who stood before 1,000 folks yesterday at his “Thank you, South Dakota” rally welcoming him home.  Thompson has endured a tremendous struggle since suffering a brain hemorrhage and subsequent brain surgery nine months ago, and he has a long road to hoe before full recovery.  Yet I’ve little doubt and every hope he will recover soon.

Thompson entered the stage in a wheelchair pushed by his son and stood to address the crowd for some 15 minutes talking of his ordeal and progress.  Ever a humorous and modest man, he slowly quipped, “Before I get too far along in my remarks, it must already be clear to you that my speech is not 100 percent. My doctors tell me that it will get there, and in fact, if you ask Barb, she will say that I am already talking too much. So let me ask one thing of you tonight. If you bear with me in this, I will promise you that when my speech is back to normal, I will not act like a typical politician and overuse the gift,” he said.

Johnson’s son, Brendan introduced his father before “the homecoming that he dreamed of” during his entire recovery efforts.   “He has to learn to move again. He has to teach himself to talk,” said Brendan. He called it “a long, hard process,” and one his mother characterized “as not always pretty, but beautiful.”

Thompson was interrupted several times in his speech for standing ovations and, at the rally’s conclusion, he watched somberly as a four-tier birthday cake was wheeled before the crowd, who sang “Happy Birthday” to the Senator.  Thompson’s actual 60th birthday arrived quickly after his hemorrhage, but I doubt many birthdays in his life have been as sweet as this one.

May every blessing continue to come your way, Senator Thompson and family.

Welcome home.

Kerry Query: So Why Didn’t You Sue???

The final chapter of whether Sen. John Kerry would sue John O’Neil and Dr. Jerome Corsi and the publisher of their book “Unfit for Duty, Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry” that undeniably killed any chance that Kerry had of becoming our Commander in Chief in 2004, has closed forever.  (Thank you for the continued enlightenment, Beldar.)

The expiration of all statutes of limitations, the last coming August 25, 2007 in Kerry’s home state of Massachusetts, has surely left a bittersweet taste with O’Neil.  I imagine a huge sense of disappointment is felt by the 200 or so Swift Boat Navy veterans — including every single officer Kerry ever served under in Vietnam — who spoke out about Kerry’s myriad of lies told to advance his own political career and revealed the painful truths about the man John Kerry really was and is, none of which is honorable or good. 

This week’s death of any defamation claim Kerry could ever bring against the authors and publisher was predicted by everyone from Day One.  While some wackos will claim Kerry simply didn’t want to provide any more media time to the SwiftVets by resuscitating their claims in a defamation suit, he actually had no incentive to vindicate himself in court, because in doing so, claims made by him and O’Neil would be examined in detail and he would reap complete exposure as a fraud.  And time has undoubtedly dulled the memories of those paying even the slightest attention in 2004, giving Kerry an advantage today in the court of public opinion that a court of law could never have delivered.  Good move on his part.

Forever preserving the validity of so many who predicted this very outcome of inaction, Kerry has now protected himself from having to address the details of his Vietnam tour that he so highly exaggerated and touted in his 2004 run, from having to bring the entirety of his own questionable military records and service into public record, and certainly from ever having to answer the wholly damning testimonies of those who served with him that such a suit would have provided.

Most dastardly of all, Kerry will continue to skate past any accounting for his reprehensible claims before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on April 22, 1971, in which he told the Senators and a national audience that American troops “…had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam…” and insisted the entire U.S. military was committing war crimes “on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command.”

John Kerry was responsible for the propaganda effort that so effectively smeared all American servicemen in Vietnam as murderous, drug-addled psychotics and that created hatred in which returning veterans were cursed and spat upon in the streets.I found Beldar’s Blog about a year ago when Kerry once again began to test the waters for a renewed run for President.  No one else has provided the depth of coverage of the SwiftVets or Kerry that Beldar has, for which I am grateful.  Must Read of the Day is his post, “Sen. Kerry permits last statute of limitations for defamation to lapse, forever barring any defamation claim against SwiftVet authors O’Neill and Corsi.”   Double unmitigated dittos to Beldar for his outstanding gauntlet thrown to Kerry.  Unlikely we will see it come to pass, alas!

Remind yourself of the SwiftVets’ questions and complaints, review their ads and, for Heaven’s sake, watch the 1971 video where a 25-year-old O’Neill summarily vanquished Kerry’s anti-war rants on the Dick Cavitt Show.  Read Beldar’s extensive and remarkable archive of articles written on the subject.  Then find some heavy reading about Kerry’s unfortunate and well-documented history at WinterSoldier.com.

If there is anything at all I can find worthy of offering thanks to Kerry for, it is singularly for the consistent group of veterans and caring civilians who join Bert Brady daily at Terminal D, Gate 22 at DFW Airport to make damned certain our soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan receive a WARM, APPRECIATIVE WELCOME.  I can only hope soldiers returning home in every airport in the United States enjoy the same.

Thanks to John Kerry, soldiers who followed him home from Vietnam and Korea certainly did not, and that group included my loved ones.