Volume XXIX Number 29 July 22, 2005

FrontPage Stories

Juror Number Eleven Speaks on the Issues That Convicted Councilmen

By Raymond R. Beltrán

Seven o’clock Wednesday morning, Robert Varela delved back into the regular grind of buttoning up his brown uniform, jumping into those box-shaped trucks, and shipping packages for the United Parcel Service. To anyone else, it’s just another day, but to him it’s barely the second day after his two-month long civic duty as juror eleven in one of San Diego’s most prominent grand jury indictments in the city’s history, indictments that ultimately led to the conviction of former San Diego City Councilmen Ralph Inzunza and Michael Zucchet for wire fraud conspiracy, corruption, and extortion.


Ralph Inzunza. File Photo.

“I’m just glad the whole thing’s over. I’m ready to move on with my life,” said 32-year-old Varela. “It’s such an enormous responsibility, you know.”

‘Disheartened’ and ‘saddened’ are the words he uses to express his feelings toward the guilty verdict, but that’s because he admits that even though he was on the jury, he is still a San Diegan and this is his city too.

To consolidate the jury’s findings that led to the guilty verdict, they found that the councilmen were accepting campaign moneys equaling $23,150 in contributions and $18,000 in cash from a Las Vegas lobbyist named Lance Malone, who represented a Las Vegas strip club owner by the name of Michael Galardi. The quid pro quo? That the councilmen would push to put strip club restrictions, specifically the No Touch Law binding club goers’ from touching dancers, on the city council docket and ultimately try to get it repealed in the meetings.

So, who did what and what was provided the jury that the city councilmen were found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt? Varela sat down with La Prensa San Diego and touched on a few significant topics that he felt led the jury to what he stated was a ‘right and just decision.’

La Prensa: Talk a little bit about the task of the jury and the level of security or insecurity there was in coming out with a guilty verdict.

For the rest of the story, please follow this link:


Protests, Polemics and Proposals at Border Governors’ Meet
Gathered in the old northern Mexican cotton-growing capital of Torreon, Coahuila, governors and their representatives from the 10 U.S.-Mexico border states concluded their annual conference this past weekend (July 16-17, 2005). Meeting during an increasingly charged atmosphere along their common frontier, the states’ chief executives issued proposals for border security, law enforcement, environmental regulation, and education. While not endorsing any specific reform, the governors called for the promotion of legal immigration and respect for the law in both Mexico and the United States.


Cercana la Retribución a Ex-Braceros Mexicanos
Por: Luis de la Teja
A unas semanas de que se les retribuya a los Ex braceros de 1942- 1962 su compensación económica.


López Obrador’s Presidential Bid at a Time of Doubt for Mexican Politics
By Hampden Macbeth
After surviving an impeachment challenge earlier this year, the popular mayor of Mexico City, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, has emerged as the frontrunner in Mexico’s 2006 presidential election and has since announced that he will resign his post at the end of July to formally seek the presidency. At a time in which Vicente Fox’s legacy is being pessimistically assessed as he finds himself knee-deep in a lame-duck presidency, López Obrador’s candidacy offers an interesting narrative on some components of contemporary Mexican politics.


Latinos Disappointed, Still Holding Out Hope for a Hispanic Nominee
President Bush’s nomination of John G. Roberts to replace Sandra Day O’Connor as the next Supreme Court justice was met with surprise and disappointment by many Latino civic leaders who hoped that the president would take this opportunity to make history by nominating the first Hispanic judge.



Stories

México del Norte
Por Jorge Mújica Murias
Las Remesas no Andan en Burro
Hace unos días, la chicana Tesorera de Estados Unidos, Anna Escobedo Cabral, dio una clase en la Torre del Caballito. Los alumnos fueron los miembros de la Comisión de Relaciones Exteriores para América del Norte, que preside Silvia Hernández. La californiana que reemplazó a la chilanga Rosario Marín como Tesorera, les explicó dos que tres cositas sobre las remesas, esa lanota nuestra sin la cual México ya hubiera tenido una revolución.

Congressional Hispanic Caucus Responds to Roberts Nomination to Supreme Court
Washington, DC –  Following President George W. Bush nomination of Judge John G. Roberts to the U.S. Supreme Court, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) expressed disappointment that the President did not nominate a Latino to fill the seat to be vacated by Associate Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.  The CHC previously called on the President to fill the vacancy with a qualified Hispanic dedicated to equal justice and a judicial system that is fair to the Latino community.

Muchas Noticias de Actividades en la ciudad de Tijuana
Por: Paco Zavala
La cintura del año, implica el transcurso del periodo de julio, agosto y septiembre, meses en que hay muchas actividades en todos los ámbitos en la ciudad de Tijuana, estos son meses de vacaciones, la feria de la ciudad, retorno a clases y las fiestas patrias. ¡Ujule! necesitamos un costal y grande repleto de billetes para sortear todo éste periodo de tiempo. En fín, ya veremos como salimos, pero salimos del bache.

Entre profesiones y oficios, ahí estamos
Por Yhamel Catacora
Lo hemos escuchado, visto, sentido y vivido, de alguna u otra forma, nosotros los “hispanos”, como cariñosamente se nos conoce, venimos a trabajar en todos los ramos, no sólo en esos que otros no quieren, simplemente en todo el que esté disponible. Como fruto de la labor de muchas domésticas, albañiles, carpinteros, plomeros, etc. etc. muchos de nosotros hemos podido poner un pie en la universidad, dos manos en un diploma universitario y otro pie en un brillante porvenir.

LA COLUMNA VERTEBRAL
Por Robert Davis; traducida al Español por Karina Flores-Hurley
Lupus: Mitos y Realidades
Existe una enfermedad debilitadora entre nuestra comunidad que pone a las mujeres Hispanas en doble riesgo de contraerla. Esta enfermedad puede causar inflamación, ligera sensibilidad y dolor en el pecho. No se trata del SIDA, o alguna forma de cáncer, es una enfermedad que tal vez no conozcas o de la cual no hayas oído hablar mucho  –el lupus.

National City Middle School Dominates Once Again
Once again National City Middle School dominated the Exploratory Technology category at the San Diego County Fair with 31 awards, topping last year’s total of 25 awards, with 16 First Place awards; eight 2nd place awards; 6 Best of Class; 1 Best of Show. All the students who took part in the competition were 8th graders and are part of the Midle School’s Exploratory Technology program.


Editorials

Editorial:
Ralph Inzunza and Michael Zucchet Convictions: A tragedy for all concerned
Councilmember’s Ralph Inzunza, Jr., and Michael Zucchet were found guilty of conspiracy, extortion, and wire fraud while serving as Councilmember’s for the City of San Diego by a Jury that found the evidence overwhelming. When all the legal wrangling is done and sentencing is carried out there is a good chance that these two men will spend time in jail.


Editorial:
Voting Guide/Guía de Votación
Especial Municipal Election/ Elección Municipal Especial


Commentary:
Raising the Sales Tax 1% for the poorest incorporated city in San Diego County, Why?
by Herman Baca, President
Mayor Inzunza, and “rubberstamp” city councilpersons Parra, Morrison, Zarate and Natividad have voted unanimously (7-20-05) to place an initiative to raise the city sales tax by 1% for the November election.

Commentary:
Suzie Peña Killing Should Unite, Not Divide, Blacks and Latinos
By Earl Ofari Hutchinson
The instant LAPD officers gunned down 13-year-old Devin Brown following a car chase last February, blacks took to the streets in rage and protest. Black leaders loudly demanded that the officer who shot Brown be fired and prosecuted. Blacks’ furious reaction to the Brown killing stands in stark contrast to their response to the recent the killing of 19-month-old Suzie Marie Peña.

Comentario:
La nominación de Roberts
Por Humberto Caspa, Ph.D
En un eclipse de sol, la luna se interpone entre este astro y la tierra. Los rayos solares disminuyen de intensidad momentáneamente, aunque no llegan a desaparecer del todo. Sí, fue así, como un eclipse de sol cuando el Presidente George W. Bush nominó a John G. Roberts Jr. a la Suprema Corte de Justicia. El grueso del partido Demócrata se enmudeció momentáneamente, sólo adherentes fieles a los ideales políticos de ese partido, particularmente defensores del derecho a la “libre elección de la mujer”, lograron responder con congruencia.

Comentario:
Terrorismo: Violencia Incontrolada, Dolor Interminable
Por Manuel R Villacorta O.
Terrorismo significa una sucesión de actos de violencia ejecutados para infundir terror. El terrorismo que sufren hoy las potencias occidentales, pretende crear la insatisfacción de la sociedad civil hacia sus gobiernos, sea cuestionando las acciones de éstos en el exterior como causa que genera los ataques al interior, sea cuestionando su capacidad para ofrecer seguridad a los ciudadanos.

Commentary
San Diegans Support Proposition A
By Philip Thalheimer
When the City Council unwisely voted 5-3 to decline the offer of the federal government to turn the Mount Soledad Veterans Memorial into a national monument protected under the Constitution of the United States, the people of San Diego decided enough was enough. In just four short weeks, the voters of this great city—people from all walks of life, political backgrounds and religious beliefs—successfully concluded the largest, most successful referendum petition drive in San Diego history by collecting a record 73,000 certifiable signatures. The City Council could not ignore the established will of the people, and on May 17 chose to let the future of the Mount Soledad Veterans Memorial rest with the voters by placing the issue on the upcoming mayoral ballot.


The Public Forum . . . El Foro Público
Epilepsy, an important and treatable issue for the Hispanic community
Thank you for your recent “Columna Vertebral” on epilepsy (published July 1, 2005), an important and treatable medical condition which affects Latinos of all ages. People with epilepsy, their families or their employers can get help for the many facets of epilepsy by calling the bilingual staff at the Epilepsy Foundation of San Diego County at 619-296-0161. Their website is www.epilepsysandiego.org.


Etc. Etc. Etc.
Entertainment,
Reviews, Sporting news, and other tid bits

El Muerto Lives
By Ana Hernandez-Bravo
The San Diego Comic Con International is the meeting place for both established names in the comic book industry and those who are just breaking through. As the San Diego Convention center buzzed with excitement, wonder, and joyful exploration, the artists and writers proudly displayed the fruits of their labor.


Embodiment of Norteño Landscapes
Review of The Devil’s Highway by Luis Alberto Urrea
By Elena Espinoza
The Devil’s Highway (2004) by Luis Alberto Urrea, is a true story that uncovers the multi-varied systems of corruption that sustains the machiavellian nature of the United States present immigration policies. It is the story of 26 men that travel from the interior of Mexico in search of the green gold with the aid of shark loans-enganchadores, displaced truths fed by the media-coyotes, and labor systems-meatpacking plants that assist in the importation and exportation of human labor.


Continúa el Impulso a la Cultura en Tijuana Presentarán el Gloria de Vivaldi
Por: Paco Zavala
Una de las más sobrias y exquisitas obras musicales de todos los tiempos es el Gloria de Vivaldi, obra en la que se vinculan la devoción con la creativa grandiosidad del maestro.


Enedina Lammers Rinde Homenaje a Lola Beltrán
Por: Paco Zavala
Conversar con Enedina Lammers, cantante de ranchero con residencia en Ramona, Ca. es un placer, porque Enedina es una mujer simpática, además de ser ama y señora de una encantadora sonrisa.


San Diego To Experience Mariachi Under the Stars
Seventh Annual Music Extravaganza to Feature Famed Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán
For the seventh consecutive year, San Diego music lovers will have the unique opportunity to hear Mexico’s most beautiful musical export under the Southern California summer skies. Presented as “Music Under the Stars” by the San Diego County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (SDCHCC), the seventh annual “¡Viva El Mariachi!” Festival will once again showcase the world’s best mariachi groups in what has become one of the city’s premiere cultural events.


VAMOS AL CINE
La escoria del demonio
“The devil’s rejects” se atreve a ir donde muchas peliculas no lo han hecho
Por Jose Daniel Bort
Es sumamente difícil sentarse a ver la violencia que destila la nueva película de Rob Zombie, “The Devil’s Rejects”, y esto es precisamente lo que su autor está buscando. Inspirado en los casi extintos “exploitation films” de los setenta, estos excrementos del demonio pueden ser la película bandera que revitalice el resurgimiento del género.


Parra Providing his Boxing Knowledge to the Next Generation
By John Philip Wyllie
Former California Bantamweight Boxing Champion “Bumpy” Parra enjoyed a highly successful professional career from 1962-1968. At one point, the San Ysidro native was the leading contender for the world title. Now 66, his days in the ring are long behind him, but Parra’s enthusiasm for the sport has never waned. Neither has his interest in helping those in the local Latino community.


Next in Line Full Card Fight Review
By Greg Goodrich
Saturday night at the MCM Grand Garden Arena, history was made and as usual controversy was on display. Upstart, Middleweight heir apparent Jermain Taylor (24-0) defeated longtime reigning champion Bernard Hopkins (46-3-1) via 12 Round Split Decision to claim the World Middleweight title, as well as annex the four major sanctioning body titles from the WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO in the process. Taylor joins Hopkins as the only man to accomplish such a feat, though Thomas Hearns and Oscar De La Hoya have come closest to matching the quintessential accomplishment.


Bullfight World
By Lyn Sherwood
An Old Star, A Bright Star, and A New Star On Tap In Tijuana
A grab bag of toreros is on tap, July 31, in Plaza El Toreo de Tijuana. Manolo Arruza, who retired, several years ago, and is on the comeback trail, heads a card that also features current star Eulalio López “El Zotoluco” and an up-and-comer, Juan Antonio Adame, facing a herd of bulls from the Marrón ranch.

Guerra’s Triumph Over Adversity Benefits Surf Dawgs
By John Philip Wyllie

In 2003, during his junior year at San Jose State USDHS alumnus Nick Guerra was faced with a double whammy. First, one of his closest friends unexpectedly passed away. Then, in the same week the promising star catcher blew out the elbow on his throwing arm. It was a lot to deal with for a 22-year old and at first Guerra didn’t handle it well.

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