How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

Young Egyptian Americans identify with crisis from afar

LA's Egyptians mobilized with protesters at home from 89.3 KPCC on Vimeo.

KPCC interns Cecilia Gregoriades and Faun Kime went out last weekend and spoke with a couple of younger Egyptian Americans, including a young woman from a half-Egyptian family who still identified closely with anti-government protesters in Egypt. Like their parents, these young people are closely monitoring the crisis from here.

The unrest in Cairo and elsewhere is well into its third week, with tension escalating between the protesters calling for democratic reforms and the Egyptian military. There have also been clashes between anti-government protesters and those who support president Hosni Mubarak, a close ally of the United States who has ruled for 30 years and is considered a dictator by many. According to Human Rights Watch, at least 297 people are known to have died in the violence.


In the news this morning: Arizona birthright bill to return, Salazar files set to be released, Dream Act students worry after going public,

Egypt: Protesters swell, drawn by Google's Wael Ghonim - Los Angeles Times After being detained for 12 days, the freed Google executive has turned into "an icon of Egyptian resistance."

Bill Denying Birthright Citizenship in Arizona Will Come to a Vote Next Week - Fox News Latino The sponsor of the Arizona Senate legislation pulled it earlier this week in committee, fearing a losing vote, but says now that he plans to bring it back for a vote on Monday.

Chipotle Workers Fired over Immigration Status Sue for Backpay - Fox News Latino Two former employees, among the hundreds fired after a recent immigration audit, have filed a lawsuit claiming that they were not paid on time.

At the Courthouse: Forde declining to testify - Arizona Daily Star A former militant member of an anti-illegal immigration group, Shawna Forde faces the death penalty for her involvement in the home invasion killing of a Latino man and his 9-year-old daughter in a small Arizona border town.


Readers' thoughts on the birthright citizenship debate

Photo by johnwilliamsphd/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Over the weekend, NPR featured a post that summarized a series on the birthright citizenship battle that appeared recently on Multi-American. The response from readers since has been phenomenal, with a long string of informed, if impassioned, comments.

The issue of birthright citizenship - and the goal of some legislators to deny it to children of undocumented immigrants - is at the center of the immigration debate at the moment. Last night, two anti-birthright citizenship bills introduced in the Arizona Senate last month were pulled by their sponsor after they failed to win enough support in a committee hearing. But the debate over who should be a U.S. citizen continues to thrive, with a spate of bills pending in Congress and in the states, including an Arizona House bill that has yet to be heard and most recently a state measure proposed in Montana.


First Arizona anti-birthright citizenship bills falter in state Senate

Photo by Robert Haasch, courtesy of Border Action Network

A protestor outside the Arizona state Capitol in Phoenix yesterday, February 7, 2011

State Senate legislation in Arizona that sought to deny automatic U.S. citizenship to children born to undocumented immigrants failed to register enough support in a committee hearing late yesterday, leading its sponsor to pull the two bills, at least for now. From the Arizona Republic:

Based on questioning from committee members, the bills didn't appear to have enough support to move forward.

Sen. Ron Gould, R-Lake Havasu City, could bring the bills back to the committee later, or they could be referred to a committee that may be more receptive.

"It's going to come back," said Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Phoenix, who opposes the package.

The Arizona Daily Star reported:
Even before any testimony, Sen. Adam Driggs, R-Phoenix, said the proposal, based on that idea of Arizona citizenship, raises a host of unanswered questions.

"I don't understand how you become an Arizona citizen if you move to Arizona, what the bureaucratic model would be," he said. "Do you then need to bring your own birth certificate and both of your parents' birth certificates?"

There were also several children who spoke against the bill, including 12-year-old Heide Portugal who said she was born in this country but her parents were not and that a measure like this, had it been in effect, would have denied her citizenship.


In the news this morning: First AZ anti-birthright citizenship bills fail, little optimism for bipartisan reforms, an increasingly diverse U

Graham, Schumer try again on immigration - USA Today News that Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), and Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), have begun "very early talks" about reviving bipartisan immigration reform isn't being greeted with much optimism. One editorial suggested they merited "either a medal or a long rest in a quiet spot in the country."

Birthright-citizenship bills pulled - Arizona Daily Star Two Arizona state Senate bills that sought to deny U.S. citizenship to children of undocumented immigrants failed in committee last night, with sponsor Sen. Ron Gould failing to get enough support. Two companion House bills have yet to be heard.

Among Nation’s Youngest, Analysis Finds Fewer Whites - New York Times Study finds that whites continue to make up a smaller share of an increasingly diverse U.S. population, representing less than half of all 3-year-olds in 2009.