politics

Candidates of Color on Their Way to Historic Wins

June 5th saw eight states head to the polls to vote for everything from Sheriffs to U.S. Senators. Those races had a lot of historic potential with candidates of color seeking to make history with unprecedented wins. Here’s who made it through to the November general election.

Kevin De Leon

Kevin de León grew up in the San Diego neighborhood of Logan Heights and was raised by his immigrant mother who supported her family by working as a housekeeper. He was the first in his family to graduate from high school and later went on to become the first Latino Leader of the California Senate. de Leon came in second place in California’s top-two winner primary election system and will face first place winner, Dianne Feinstein.

After his primary win, de Leon said, “This race is a fight for California’s future…Real leadership is doing the right thing even when no one is watching – or running against you in an election.”

Deb Haaland

Deb Haaland is a former New Mexico Democratic State Party Chair, attorney, and former tribal administrator. She is a member of the Laguna-Pueblo Tribe and if she wins in November, she will be the first Native American to serve in the U.S. Congress in the 242 years since Native Americans were first colonized.

“Tonight, New Mexico made history,” Haaland said after her primary win, calling her victory a “victory for working people, a victory for women and a victory for everyone who has been sidelined by the billionaire class.”

Michelle Lujan Grisham

Michelle Lujan was born in Los Alamos, New Mexico, and grew up in Santa Fe, and serves New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District. She is currently the Chair for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. She won her primary putting her on track to become the first Democratic Latina Governor in U.S. history. She would succeed Susana Martinez, who is term-limited and was the first Republican Latina Governor in U.S. history.

Ricardo Lara

Ricardo Lara was raised by immigrant parents and in 2012 became the first openly gay person of color to be elected to the California Senate. If Lara wins the November election for Insurance Commissioner he would become the first openly gay statewide officer holder in California history.

“We must fight for our place at the table and show the world we have the right to pursue our dreams,” he said. “I look forward to working together with grassroots leaders to advance a progressive, inclusive and effective agenda for all and make history in California.”

Ammar Campa-Najjar

Ammar Campa-Najjar, 29, is running for Congress in California’s 50th district. He lived in San Diego before his family moved to Gaza as a child. However, Campa-Najjar, his brother and mother relocated back to San Diego after the war broke out. His working-class upbringing motivated him to run and give back to working families.. Born to a Mexican-American mother and Palestinian father, Campa-Najjar could be the first Latino-Arab American to be elected to Congress.

Charges Against Disgraced Parkland Officer And New Florida Law Raises Questions for Teachers

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Charges Against Disgraced Parkland Officer And New Florida Law Raises Questions for Teachers

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The arrest of Scot Peterson, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School sheriff’s deputy who heard shots fired inside the school and hid outside is raising some troubling questions for teachers.

Labeled a coward cop by many, Peterson has been charged with eleven counts of child negligence, culpable negligence, and perjury for his inaction and lies he made about his role while under oath.

Armed and tasked with providing security for Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Peterson can be seen hiding in video footage during the Parkland shooting. Many parents of slain children, such Manuel and Patricia Oliver, believe that Peterson should have risked his life and entered the school and do whatever he could to stop the shooter, Nikolas Cruz on February 14, 2018.

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The aftermath of the shooting has resulted in an uprising of teen activism, the arrest of Peterson, and changes in the law.

One such law passed in Florida last month, allows teachers to carry firearms.

The law has raised many questions and much controversy, such as concerns about racism and implicit bias that many fear could result in the shooting of black students. The charges against Scot Peterson and the passage of the gun law that allows teachers to be armed in classrooms has raised questions about the responsibility of those teachers who might choose to arm themselves at school. The Florida Education Association, Florida’s teachers’ union, is particularly concerned because they fear that Peterson’s arrest, could set precedence for holding armed teachers accountable for injuries or death of students on their watch, should they choose not to use their weapon to subdue a school shooter. Tort law speaks very specifically about negligence which the teacher association fears teachers, like Peterson, could be charged with under the new law: “Negligence is the unintentional failure to live up to the community’s ideal of reasonable care, having nothing to do with moral care. An individual who has behaved negligently is one who has not lived up to a certain imputed duty or obligation to conform to a certain standard of conduct for the protection of others against unreasonable risk of harm.”

While many believe that Peterson’s case is an anomaly and won’t set precedence, in August of 2018 the Florida Department of Education made an amendment to its insurance policy that makes it clear that armed teachers will not be covered for claims involving “armed instructional personnel while acting in the scope of their activities for the educational institution.”  And while state lawmakers have responded to the Parkland shooting by allowing more guns in public places, in this case schools, the Florida department of education has protected itself itself from lawsuits brought by parents or relatives of those who could be injured as a result of an armed teacher.

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When a state passes a law that encourages teachers to arm themselves to protect children in the classroom from school shooters, presumably other children, many other questions should be raised?

Is the hero teacher narrative at play? Is it fair to encourage teachers, trained to educate America’s children, to arm themselves and protect them or face neglect charges when they don’t or couldn’t?

Shouldn’t we be focused on common sense gun laws? Does it make sense to allow firearms in school?

When it comes to both a rallying cry for common sense gun laws and charges of negligence against Scot Peterson, many on Twitter are asking some of these questions and more.

TruthBeTold wants to know why the federal government isn’t being held responsible for not enacting strict gun laws and asks “What about Congress” What about the president? Didn’t they also fail to protect those children?”

12yearlagavulin and jon-e-lingo point out the irony of laws that protect police offers who shoot unarmed men but convict of negligence. Jonelingo points out how unlikely it would have been for Peterson to face jail time had he actually shot someone rather doing what he did which was not shoot.

Many on Twitter called Peterson a coward for not doing his job or being willing to “put his life on the line. Others, like Junebug, believe he’s being unfairly scapegoated.

Twitter user @LopezMaddox made a donut joke about the Broward cop to make about about Peterson’s lack of action.

The US Government Now Wants To Dig Through Your Social Media Accounts If You Apply For A Visa To Enter The Country

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The US Government Now Wants To Dig Through Your Social Media Accounts If You Apply For A Visa To Enter The Country

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The U.S. government is continuing to put its limitations on foreigners. As immigration agencies implement mandates by the Trump Administration over who is allowed to enter the country, they are adding at least one more restriction that could be a lot trickier to monitor.

For people seeking a U.S. visa, they must now turn over five years worth of social media handles, email addresses, and phone numbers.

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The BBC is reporting that previously, only foreigners that had been to countries where terrorism is rampant were told to turn over their social media information. Now it applies to everyone.

While the thought of an agent seeing embarrassing posts of you is enough to make you queasy, the violation of privacy is concerning many Americans.

This change in policy could affect more than 4.7 million people a year.

“National security is our top priority when adjudicating visa applications, and every prospective traveler and immigrant to the United States undergoes extensive security screening,” a State Department official told The Daily News. “We are constantly working to find mechanisms to improve our screening processes to protect U.S. citizens while supporting legitimate travel to the United States.”

Some non-U.S. citizens are concerned that being vocal against President Trump might be enough to deny you entry into the U.S.

Credit: @cjwerleman / Twitter

The Trump Administration first initiated this proposal last year, and now it’s been approved. The new social media questions are in place for anyone seeking a visa to enter the country.

“This attempt to collect a massive amount of information on the social media activity of millions of visa applicants is yet another ineffective and deeply problematic Trump administration plan,” Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU’s National Security Project, said in a statement last year, according to the Daily News. “It will infringe on the rights of immigrants and U.S. citizens by chilling freedom of speech and association, particularly because people will now have to wonder if what they say online will be misconstrued or misunderstood by a government official.”

READ: This ‘Roma’ Actor Has Been Denied A Visa For The Third Time And Might Miss The Oscars

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