Friday, June 22, 2012

RANDOM SHOTS - George Zimmerman Police Report Released, Air Force Breast Feeders Reprimanded, NBC Fruad Again, and More


George Zimmerman's statements to Police on Night of Shooting to made Public

In Miami, Florida, Reuters is reporting that George Zimmerman's statement that he made to the Police the night the he was attacked by Trayvon Martin is being made public.

The report says, "You're going to die tonight" were among the last words Florida neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman heard from Trayvon Martin before he shot and killed the bigger 17 year old assailant as he was on top of him trying to smash Zimmerman's head into the concrete pavement.

The death threat from Trayvon Martin came as Martin was pounding his head into the concrete pavement and trying to smother him, according to Zimmerman's statements to detectives in the central Florida town of Sanford soon after the killing on a rainy night in February.

Audio recordings of the statements were released by Zimmerman's lawyers late Wednesday, giving the public the opportunity to hear Zimmerman's account of what happened on the night of February 26 in his own words for the first time.

The outline of Zimmerman's account has been known for months. The deadly encounter began when Zimmerman spotted Martin walking slowly through a gated community in Sanford, and reported him in a non-emergency call to police as a suspicious person.

Zimmerman who was on Neighborhood Watch that night began following Trayvon Martin, but then lost track of him. Then out of nowhere Martin reappeared suddenly and punched him to the ground.

According to Zimmerman, Martin then got on top of him and began beating him, repeatedly slamming his head into the concrete sidewalk.

"He just started punching me in the face and I started screaming for help," Zimmerman told detectives in one of the tapes released by his lead attorney Mark O'Mara.

"I couldn't see and I couldn't breathe ... He grabbed my head and started hitting it into the sidewalk," he said.

"I could see people looking and some guy yells out 'I'm calling 911' and I says 'help me, help me, he's killing me,'" Zimmerman said.

"And he (Martin) puts his hand on my nose and on my mouth, and he says 'you're going to die tonight' and I don't remember much after that ... I couldn't breathe and he still kept trying to hit my head."

Zimmerman then recalls, however, that he felt Martin's hand go down his side and he thought he was reaching for the handgun he was carrying in a holster attached to his waistband.

"I thought he was going for my firearm so I grabbed it immediately and as he banged my head again I just pulled out my firearm and shot him."

In a written statement to police, also made public by O'Mara, Zimmerman recalls what then happened as his fatal encounter with Martin ended with a lone gunshot to the young man's chest.

"The suspect sat back allowing me to sit up and said "you got me," Zimmerman wrote in the sworn statement.

"At this point I got in top of the suspect, holding his hands away from his body."

The release of Zimmerman's statements to police came soon after Sanford officials announced that the police Chief whose department initially failed to arrest Zimmerman was fired on Wednesday.

Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee had been on paid leave since March 22 amid outrage over his handling of the racially charged case.

Lee contended that Zimmerman was protected under Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law, which gives people who feel threatened broad latitude to use deadly force to defend themselves.

Zimmerman, who is back in custody after the recent overturning of his release on bond, has since been charged with second-degree murder and faces 25 years to life imprisonment if convicted at a trial for which no date has yet been set.

Zimmerman has been crucified and hunted since the attack by Martin.

Some in the black community have actually called for his murder while others have called for the death penalty. He has recieved death threats, and the lynch mob mentality of the liberal new media has acted as though it would have been better that he be killed that night than defend himself with a gun.

We are supposed to give a man the benefit of doubt, at least we are until he is proven guilty. I usually support those who on the face of it appear innocent.

But yes, I have sometimes questioned the courts and the system. This may be one of those cases where I may end up questioning the court and the system. The reason is that it appears that in Zimmerman's case, he'd be lucky to get a fair trial.

It appears that the court has been comprimised through poilitical pressure, and justice system as a whole has been poisoned against him. They don't appear satisfied until he is dead for killing his assailant.

NBC Fraud Exposed Again - As It Again Edits Coverage To Deceive The Public!

To NBC viewers, it appeared to be a 49-second video clip introduced by veteran anchor Andrea Mitchell to illustrate her contention that GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney is "out of touch".

What viewers didn't know was that NBC had selectively edited the video clip to manipulate viewer perception and keep voters from hearing Romney's full message.

Can you say collusion with the Obama White House?

NBC is taking heat again for selective editing a day after presenting video of Mitt Romney seemingly awestruck by the process of ordering a sandwich at a convenience store.

During an afternoon broadcast of "Andrea Mitchell Reports," video of the GOP presidential candidate seemed to show a politician out of touch as he discussed ordering a hoagie at Wawa.

“It’s amazing," Romney said, as the Pennsylvania crowd appeared to laugh. Then viewers saw Romney say, "You have a touch-tone keypad, and you touch that, touch this, go pay the cashier, there’s your sandwich.”

What viewers didn't see or hear was nearly three minutes of Romney discussing the nightmare of paperwork faced by an optometrist he'd talked to in trying to get the post office to change his address.

He expressed mock amazement at Wawa's efficiency to underscore how the private sector often runs circles around the clumsy bureaucracy.

"We went to Wawas and it was instructive to me, because I saw the difference between the private sector and the governmental sector. People who work in government are good people and I respect what they do, but you see, the challenge with government is that it doesn’t have competition,” Romney said in a portion edited out of the segment.

Mitchell called it amazing. No shit it's amazing! It's amazing that this is taking place from NBC who has been pretty respected in the past.

But Mitchell invoked an old perceived campaign stumble by George Bush, who supposedly marveled at a supermarket scanner at a grocers' convention during his failed 1992 re-election bid. Even though Bush was actually impressed not by an ordinary scanner, but by a then state-of-the-art device that could weigh food and read damaged bar codes, the anecdote was reported by The New York Times and offered as evidence that Bush was out of touch with everyday Americans.

Representatives for the Romney campaign declined to comment, but officials from the Romney camp had reached out to the Peacock Network, which promised they would correct the issue.

At the opening of Tuesday’s show, Mitchell addressed criticism over the misleading edits.

“There’s been a lot of discussion about a conversation you and I had yesterday, Mitchell said to MSNBC contributor Chris Cillizza, “We ran clips of Mitt Romney in Cornwall, Pa., talking about his trip to a Wawa.”

“The RNC and the campaign both reached out to us saying that Romney had more to say about that visit, about federal bureaucracy and innovation in the private sector,” she added before playing the unedited clip from the rally.

Lauren Skowronski, a spokeswoman for NBC, which owns MSNBC, denied that any deceptive editing took place saying, "MSNBC did not edit anything out of order or out of sequence and at no time did we intend to deceive our viewers."

But how can she deny what's right in front of you? Convenience is a great ally, isn't it?

Last August, Ed Schultz of MSNBC played an edited clip in which then-presidential candidate Rick Perry described the national debt as a “big black cloud that hangs over America” to make it sound like a racial dig at President Obama. Schultz later apologized.

And in March, NBC was caught editing the audio of George Zimmerman's 911 call as he watched Trayvon Martin in the minutes before he fatally shot the Florida teen.

On a tape edited and played on the “Today” show, Zimmerman was heard calling Martin “suspicious” and volunteering that he was “black.”

But the full, unedited tape showed that Zimmerman only mentioned Martin’s race when asked by the 911 dispatcher. The edit was an attempt on the part of NBC to make it sound like Zimmerman was racially profiling Martin - when in fact he wasn't.

Supposedly the network fired three people after getting widespread criticism. I don't see anyone getting fired over this. Their blatant bias is going to be a problem for them in the future.

One would hope that, sooner or later, they will want to be more than just a mouth piece for the Democrat Party and the Obama White House.


Airmen Reprimanded, and the woman behind the Air Force breast-feeding photo fired! 

About time! According to reports, the Air Force Sergeants in the photographs of them breast feeding while in uniform have been reprimanded by the Air Force for violating a rule stating that military uniforms cannot be used to promote a product or cause.

Supposedly the photos were meant to be released for National Breast-feeding Awareness Week, in August, but on its Facebook page, Mom2Mom said they were not meant to be exploiting the issue.

"The military photographs were NEVER meant to exploit, promote or to use the military uniform to help our group."

Their very stupid idea was that they wanted to remove the stigma from breastfeeding, as if there is a "stigma". Military moms at Fairchild Air Base, in Washington, don't seem to understand that no one cares - unless the military moms are doing it in uniform in public.

And along with both Sergeants in the picture being officially reprimanded, the Washington state woman who orchestrated the controversial photos of military moms breast-feeding their kids in uniform was fired from her civilian job as an X-ray technician.

Crystal Scott, the spokeswoman for the Spokane-area Mom2Mom group, said her employer blamed media coverage of the controversy when she asked why she was fired.

The photo of Air Force Sgt. Terran Echegoyen McCabe and Staff Sgt. Christina Luna breast feeding their babies was supposed to be designed "to pressure the military into being more accommodating to nursing moms.

Ands honestly, with cuts in the military these days, I can't see why our military needs to have breast feeding moms in the service? Maybe they should be discharged and have the freedom to conduct themselves as they please - outside of the military which requires them to conduct themselves in a certain manner?

From what Scott told Right This Minute, amazingly Crystal Scott appears to not understand what she did wrong. She supposedly said, "I was doing something for the good of people. I feel like our organization is making positive changes for women all over the world. To be punished for something that was good was unfortunate."

Imagine that, she just doesn't get it! It seems that Scoot is living in dreamland, how could she think this was good? Good  for who?

The women in Air Force uniforms who opened their tops and exposed then selves as they breastfed their children made the Air Force and service women breast feeding nothing but a dirty joke at the local Veterans organizations that I've been to. And like it or not, that's the way it is. The picture has become the source of dirty jokes.

And besides the regular media, it was on the cover of Air Force Times for all in the Air Force and other branches to see.

When a career Air Force retiree at our American Legion got tired of being joked with over the picture - he grabbed it - crumbled it up and threw it in the garbage can saying it did not represent the great folks in America's Air Force!

Fact is, he's right!

These two should have never allowed themselves to be photographed in uniform. Anytime a soldier, sailor, Marine, or airmen wears "the uniform"  - they are representative of the entire branch of service.  
The idea that two people serving in the Air Force would not think enough about their branch of service or pride enough in their uniform to allow themselves to be photographed with babies suckling at their breasts shows their complete disrespect for that uniform or the Air Force.

The pictures, though great to laugh at, had me wondering, "what were they thinking?"

It amazes me how anyone can actually think that they can put something on the Internet and it not end up all over the place? Why are these people so stupid to think such a thing?

And by the way, if someone out there is going to write me to say that I am against breastfeeding - then they miss the point.

I personally don't care if these two women want to do porn or strip in front of the cameras in the future for a living, it's not about that.

It is strictly about having some respect for your service, your unit, and the uniform you wear while you're representing that branch of service.

As a veteran who served in the Marine Corps, I know for fact that our troops in the military know exactly what I'm talking about. There are all sorts of rules and regulations pertaining to what you can and cannot do in uniform. And yes, 99% of our military work very hard to bring nothing but respect and admiration to their uniform.


Government Trust being questioned as Drones patrol over American Citizens

Trust is a big deal in our lives, and it seems that we are losing trust in our own government to such an extent that Americans have started asking if our government in working in the best interest of us as citizens.

The latest breech of trust is the assertion by the federal and state government that drones, the same type being used in combat zones overseas, will not be used maliciously against Americans.

The problem that government authorities have these days is a simple one: Americans don't trust them!

The prospect that thousands of drones could be patrolling U.S. skies by the end of this decade is raising the specter of a Big Brother government that peers into backyards and bedrooms.

The worries began mostly on the political margins, but there are signs that ordinary people are starting to fret that unmanned aircraft could soon be circling overhead.

Jeff Landry, a freshman Republican congressman from Louisiana's coastal bayou country, said constituents have stopped him while shopping at Wal Mart to talk about it.

"There is a distrust amongst the people who have come and discussed this issue with me about our government," Landry said. "It's raising an alarm with the American public."

Another GOP freshman, Rep. Austin Scott, said he first learned of the issue when someone shouted out a question about drones at a Republican Party meeting in his Georgia congressional district two months ago.

It scares me when an ACLU lobbyist may be right about something. And yes, my grandpa once said that in cases like this - it just goes to show you that a broken clock can be right at least twice a day.

In this case, an American Civil Liberties Union lobbyist, Chris Calabrese, said that when he speaks to audiences about privacy issues generally, drones are what "everybody just perks up over."

"People are interested in the technology, they are interested in the implications and they worry about being under surveillance from the skies," he said.

The level of apprehension and distrust is especially high in the Conservative blogosphere, where headlines blare "30,000 Armed Drones to be Used Against Americans" and "Government Drones Set to Spy on Farms in the United States."

When Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, a Republican, suggested during a radio interview last month that drones be used by police domestically since they've done such a good job on foreign battlefields, the political backlash was swift. NetRightDaily complained: "This seems like something a fascist would do. ... McDonnell isn't pro-Big Government, he is pro-HUGE Government."

John Whitehead, president of the Rutherford Institute of Charlottesville, Va., which provides legal assistance in support of civil liberties and conservative causes, warned the governor, "America is not a battlefield, and the citizens of this nation are not insurgents in need of vanquishing."

There's concern as well among liberal civil liberties advocates that government and private-sector drones will be used to gather information on Americans without their knowledge.

A lawsuit by the Electronic Frontier Foundation of San Francisco, whose motto is "defending your rights in the digital world," forced the Federal Aviation Administration earlier this year to disclose the names of dozens of public universities, police departments and other government agencies that have been awarded permission to fly drones in civilian airspace on an experimental basis.

Giving drones greater access to U.S. skies moves the nation closer to "a surveillance society in which our every move is monitored, tracked, recorded and scrutinized by the authorities," the ACLU warned last December in a report.

There is a real anxiety over not being able to trust the government and it goes to the heart of the question as to exactly why does our government believe we need eyes in the sky watching our every move? 

This has now spilled over into Congress, where a bipartisan group of lawmakers have been meeting to discuss legislation that would broadly address the civil-liberty issues raised by drones.

A Landry provision in a defense spending bill would prohibit information gathered by military drones without a warrant from being used as evidence in court. A provision that Rep. Rush Holt, D-N.J., added to another bill would prohibit the Homeland Security Department from arming its drones, including ones used to patrol the border.

Scott and Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., have introduced identical bills to prohibit any government agency from using a drone to "gather evidence or other information pertaining to criminal conduct or conduct in violation of a regulation" without a warrant.

"I just don't like the concept of drones flying over barbecues in New York to see whether you have a Big Gulp in your backyard or whether you are separating out your recyclables according to the city mandates," Paul said in an interview, referring to a New York City ban on supersized soft drinks.

He acknowledged that is an "extreme example," but added: "They might just say we'd be safer from muggings if we had constant surveillance crisscrossing the street all the time.

But then the question becomes, what about jaywalking? What about eating too many donuts? What about putting mayonnaise on your hamburger? Where does it stop?"

In a Congress noted for its political polarization, legislation to check drone use has the potential to forge "a left-right consensus," he said. "It bothers us for a lot of the same reasons it bothers conservatives."

The backlash has drone makers concerned. The drone market is expected to nearly double over the next 10 years, from current worldwide expenditures of nearly $6 billion annually to more than $11 billion, with police departments accounting for a significant part of that growth.

"We go into this with every expectation that the laws governing public safety and personal privacy will not be administered any differently for (drones) than they are for any other law enforcement tool," said Dan Elwell, vice president of the Aerospace Industries Association.

Discussion of the issue has been colored by exaggerated drone tales spread largely by conservative media and bloggers.

Scott said he was prompted to introduce his bill in part by news reports that the Environmental Protection Agency has been using drones to spy on cattle ranchers in Nebraska. The agency has indeed been searching for illegal dumping of waste into streams but is doing it the old-fashioned way, with piloted planes.

In another case, a forecast of 30,000 drones in U.S. skies by 2020 has been widely attributed to the FAA. But FAA spokeswoman Brie Sachse said the agency has no idea where the figure came from. It may be a mangled version of an aerospace industry forecast that there could be nearly 30,000 drones worldwide by 2018, with the United States accounting for half of them.

Fear that some drones may be armed has been fueled in part by a county sheriff's office in Texas that used a homeland security grant to buy a $300,000, 50-pound ShadowHawk helicopter drone for its SWAT team.

The drone can be equipped with a 40mm grenade launcher and a 12-gauge shotgun. Randy McDaniel, chief deputy with the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office, told The Associated Press earlier this year his office had no plans to arm the drone, but he left open the possibility the agency may decide to adapt the drone to fire tear gas canisters and rubber bullets.

Earlier this year Congress, under pressure from the Defense Department and the drone manufacturers, ordered the FAA to give drones greater access to civilian airspace by 2015.

Besides the military, the mandate applies to drones operated by the private sector and civilian government agencies, including federal, state and local law enforcement.

Reps. Ed Markey, D-Mass, and Joe Barton, R-Texas, co-chairs of a congressional privacy caucus, asked the FAA in April how it plans to protect privacy as it develops regulations for integrating drones into airspace now exclusively used by aircraft with human pilots.

There's been no response so far, but Acting FAA Administrator Michael Huerta will probably be asked about it when he testifies at a Senate hearing.

It will be interesting to see all of the excuses the government will come up with tin their effort to say that they NEED to watch lawful citizens living a lawful lives.

The whole idea of drones over our heads completely stinks! We cannot afford to allow the government to get a way with it!


Asians overtake Hispanics as largest US immigration group

Asians recently passed Hispanics as the largest group of new immigrants to the United States, according to a survey on Tuesday predicting a demographic trend bringing powerful economic, social and political changes.
The survey by the Pew Research Center found the ranking switch of two largest groups of newcomers to the United States started in 2009.  And it determined that the growing Asian population in the United States is not only large, but it is thriving.

"Asian Americans are the highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group in the United States," the study concluded.

This is a big deal!

For the first time, the influx of Asians moving to the U.S. has surpassed that of Hispanics. The Pew center said the change in immigration figures is largely due to declining ilegal immigration from Mexico – the source of more U.S. immigrants than any other country.

The reasons are the lack of jobs in the U.S., as well as a crack-down on illegal immigration, and the fact that American employers have increased their demand for high-skilled workers.

Skilled labor is now at an all time low in the United States. Some see the reason as while more young Americans are being pushed to attend college and universities, actually in record numbers more than ever before, training Americans in skilled high-tech jobs has taken a back seat in American schools.

An expansive study by the Pew Research Center details what it describes as "the rise of Asian-Americans," a highly diverse and fast-growing group making up nearly 6 percent of the U.S. population. Mostly foreign-born and naturalized citizens, their numbers have been boosted by increases in visas granted to specialized workers and to wealthy investors as the U.S. economy becomes driven less by manufacturing and more by technology.

"Too often the policy debates on immigration fixate on just one part — illegal immigration," said Karthick Ramakrishnan, a political science professor at the University of California-Riverside and a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. "U.S. immigration is more diverse and broader than that, with policy that needs to focus also on high-skilled workers."

"With net migration from Mexico now at zero, the role of Asian-Americans has become more important," he said.

About 430,000 Asians, or 36 percent of all new immigrants, arrived in the U.S. in 2010, according to the latest census data. That's compared to about 370,000, or 31 percent, who were Hispanic.

The Pew analysis, released Tuesday, said the tipping point for Asian immigrants likely occurred during 2009 as illegal immigrants crossing the border from Mexico sharply declined due to increased immigration enforcement and a dwindling supply of low-wage work in the weak U.S. economy. Many Mexicans already in the U.S. have also been heading back to their country, putting recent net migration at a standstill.

As recently as 2007, about 390,000 of new immigrants to the U.S. were Asian, compared to 540,000 who were Hispanic.

The shift to increased Asian immigration, particularly of people from India, China and South Korea, coincides with changes in U.S. immigration policy dating to the 1990s that began to favor wealthy and educated workers.

The policy, still in place but subject to caps that have created waiting lists, fast-tracks visas for foreigners willing to invest at least half a million dollars in U.S. businesses or for workers in high-tech and other specialized fields who have at least a bachelor's degree.

International students studying at U.S. colleges and universities also are now most likely to come from Asian countries, roughly 6 in 10, and some of them are able to live and work in the U.S. after graduation. Asian students, both foreign born and U.S. born, earned a plurality (45 percent) of all engineering Ph.D.s in 2010, as well as 38 percent of doctorates in math and computer sciences and 33 percent of doctorates in the physical sciences.

Several bills pending in Congress that are backed by U.S. businesses seek to address some of the visa backlogs, through measures such as eliminating per-country limits on employment-based visas or encouraging investment in the sluggish U.S. real estate market. They have stalled amid broader public debate over immigration reform that has focused largely on lower-skilled, undocumented workers.

In recent years, more than 60 percent of Asian immigrants ages 25 to 64 have graduated from college, double the share for new arrivals from other continents.

As a whole, the share of higher-skilled immigrants in the U.S. holding at least a bachelor's degree now outpaces those lacking a high-school diploma, 30 percent to 28 percent.

"Like immigrants throughout American history, the new arrivals from Asia are strivers," said Paul Taylor, executive vice president of the Pew Research Center and co-author of the report. "What's distinctive about them is their educational credentials. These aren't the tired, poor, huddled masses of Emma Lazarus's famous inscription on the Statue of Liberty. They are the highly skilled workforce of the 21st century."

The findings are part of Pew's broad portrait of Asian-Americans, immigrants or U.S.-born children of immigrants who come mostly from China, the Philippines, India, Vietnam, Korea and Japan.

Now tied with Hispanics as the fastest-growing U.S. group, the nation's 14.5 million Asian-Americans are slowly becoming visible as founders of startups in Silicon Valley, owners of ethnic eateries, grocery stores and other small businesses in cities across the U.S., as well as candidates for political office and a key bloc of voters in states such as California, Nevada and Virginia, according to experts.

Projected to make up 1 in 10 residents by midcentury, Asian-Americans as a whole tend to be more satisfied than the general public with their lives and the direction of the country. They lean Democratic, prefer a big government that provides more services, and place more value on marriage, parenthood, hard work and career success.

The Pew study also revealed wide variations among Asian subgroups in poverty, employment and education, which sometimes belied their typecast as a "model minority." For instance:

Poverty - As a whole, Asian-Americans had a poverty rate in 2010 of 11.9 percent, lower than the 12.8 percent for the general U.S. population. By country of origin, however, Koreans, Vietnamese and Chinese were more likely than the average American to live in poverty, at rates of 14 percent or more.

Education - The share of Asian-Americans who hold at least a bachelor's degree surpasses the national average, 49 percent to 28 percent. Vietnamese, however, fell below the national average at 26 percent. People from India were most likely to have a college degree, at 70 percent.

Unemployment -  Asian-Americans ages 25 and older were somewhat less likely to be unemployed than the national average for the first quarter of 2012 — 6 percent compared to 7.4 percent for all U.S. workers. But in terms of long-term unemployment, Asian-Americans fared much worse, with median duration of unemployment at 28 weeks, second only to African-Americans (31 weeks). The national average was 22 weeks.

Illegal immigration - While immigrants from Asia often obtain visas and arrive legally, many also sneak across the U.S. border or become undocumented residents after overstaying their visas. Up to 15 percent of Asian immigrants in the U.S. are here illegally, compared to 45 percent of Hispanic immigrants.

The Pew survey is based on an analysis of census data as well as interviews with 3,511 Asian adults living in the U.S., conducted by cell phone or landline from Jan. 3 to March 27. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.4 percentage points for all respondents, higher for subgroups.

So what does this all mean?

Well the reversal is a reminder of how the recession and bumpy recovery have altered who lives in America, and it can be seen as a sign of a possible boost in the long term for Democrats who have a stronger hold on immigrant voters.

In the short term, it could further sour some Americans' disdainful view of immigrants, who sometimes are seen as taking jobs or draining social services, particular in dire economic times.

The study found that Asians are three times more likely to be admitted on work visas, and 61 per cent of adult Asian immigrants (defined as 25 years old or older) in recent years have had at least a bachelor's degree – double the share of other arrivals, making them "the most highly educated cohort of immigrants in US history."

A survey of attitudes also found striking differences between Asians and the broader US society.

Asian respondents said they "are more satisfied" than the general public with their lives overall, their personal finances, and the direction of the country.

Asians respondents expressed stronger family values than the average American today, saying a successful marriage and being a good parent were key priorities. Wow, what a concept!

Also 69 per cent buy in to the notion that people can get ahead if they are simply willing to work hard, a view shared by a somewhat smaller share of the American public as a whole with only 58 per cent believe that today.

Asians' religious identities were found to be varied - mostly Catholic, Hindu, Protestant, Buddhist, Muslim and Sikh -  but fewer Asian American say religion is very important to their lives than the general American public.

Surprisingly, Asains are less likely to identify as Republicans.

Half are Democrats, while 28 per cent identify with or lean toward the Republicans. That in itself is surprising when one considers that Asians have much more in common with Conservatives and Republicans than the Liberal ideology that dominates the Democrat Party -a few reasons being solid family values, great work ethics, a great sense of community, and an abiding believe in freedom to acheive all that one can.  

Asians also appear to be less inclined to view discrimination against their group as a major problem as they believe that they can work to achieve and move ahead without anyone seemingly holding them back - this compared to the nation's two largest minority groups, Hispanics and Blacks, who have made discrimination an almost excuse for their not working as hard to get ahead as say Asians. 

For the most part, "today's Asian Americans do not feel the sting of racial discrimination" that was experienced by their predecessors who came in the 19th and 20th centuries, said Pew.

Many today forget that while Blacks claim racism after the Civil War, the Chinese were the only ethnic group in America to ever have been forbidden by law to enter the United States. in

Overall, Hispanics still far outnumber Asians in America. In fact, there are already more Hispanics than the 41 million Asians that Pew predicts will live in the United States by 2050, if the current trend continues.

Currently there are 18.2 million Asians in the United States or 5.8 per cent of population, up from one per cent in 1965, mostly from China, the Philippines, India, Vietnam, South Korea and Japan. This compares to 52 million Hispanics or 16.7 per cent of the population.

If anything good comes out of the surge in Asain immigrants, then hopefully it will be that these newer immigrants will want to be an American and assimilate into the American culture.

That would be much more positive than being immigrants who want to cling to the culture of their former countries of origin like many do today.


Australian man, 62, reportedly attacked by great white shark off Australian coast

Among the news outlets that I check, I love the The Sydney Morning Herald

Today there is a story about a man who is a Surf Lifesaver - no rookie when it comes to the ocean - who was attacked in his surf ski (kayak) but thankfully survived a great white shark attack off the coast of western Australia.

Reportedly, he believes he’s still alive because the great white became entangled in his kayak.

Martin Kane, age 62, was shaken but otherwise uninjured after the 9-foot shark cut through a group of four surf life saving club paddlers and bit his surf ski in half off of Mullaloo Beach north of Perth in western Australia about 7.15am on Wednesday, AAP reports.

Mr Kane said the attack felt like being "rammed by a jet ski" as he heard a loud crunching sound.

"Because it [the kayak] is a sealed unit, when the shark bit it, it went off like an explosion," Kane told reporters. "It really surprised me - I just didn't know what it was. It didn't strike me until I saw the fin that it was a shark."

"It really surprised me - I just didn't know what it was. It didn't strike me until I saw the fin that it was a shark."

Mr Kane was rescued by a fellow paddler after a petrifying few moments when he was forced to use his paddle to fend off the circling shark as he trod water.

He said he suspected stringers that run down the length of the ski and control the rudders saved his life.

"I suspect that its teeth were caught up in that and it was too bothered trying to get rid of the ski to chase me, so I'm very, very happy that was the case.

"I'm just very lucky to be here, very lucky to be able to see my grandkids again."

Surf Life Saving WA (Western Australia) community safety manager Chris Peck said Mr Kane and his rescuer paddled back to shore at great speed.

"He's turned around and saw the shark going through and used his paddle to fend it off, and in that time his mate's come through and picked him up," Mr Peck told AAP.

"Obviously they paddled at a great rate into shore."

The incident happened about 150m offshore, about 1km south of the Mullaloo Surf Life Saving Club where Mr Kane has been a member for the past 21 years.

WA Fisheries Shark Response Unit manager Michael Burgess said the shark was likely to have been a great white.

"It appears the shark was coming from behind and has taken a bite at the end of the ski," he told AAP. "There is documented evidence of great whites attacking small craft."

It was the second shark-related incident off Perth in a day, after a fisherman reported a five-metre great white had attacked a crab pot off Saxon Reef in Warnbro Sound, about 50km south of Mullaloo, at 8am (WST).

Mr Burgess said the two attacks, more than 50km apart, were likely to have been by different sharks, adding there was "some type of shark activity occurring along the Perth coast" at present.

"Obviously the whales are on their migratory pattern at the moment ... and there's a lull between two storms," he said. "When we do have large sharks close to shore, it's some kind of ecological event that's drawing them there."

Mullaloo Beach was closed for several hours as a Fisheries vessel patrolled offshore and retrieved the remains of Mr Kane's surf ski.

There have been four fatal shark attacks in WA since September.

It was the second shark-related incident off Perth less than 24 hours, AAP reports, following a fisherman’s report of a 16-foot-long great white attacking a crab pot off Saxon Reef in Warnbro Sound, about 30 miles south of Mullaloo early Wednesday.

So yes, if you may feel that you've seen it all by age 62 - well, Mr Kane proves it's never too late to get bit by a Great White!

Thank God, Mr Kane is alright!


Did you ever have one of those days when ...

Well, I was sent this picture. And yes, I thought I'd pass it along to those out there who understand the idea that you can be the hunter or the hunted  - or sometimes both!

I can't help but wonder how long it took for the guy who's taking that picture to tell his friend that there was a Mountain Lion right behind him close enough to call dibs on that elk?

Have a great weekend!

Story by Tom Correa

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