Saturday, October 19, 2019

I just don't care

"I just don't care."  It's not a phrase I use all the time but, yes, I can use it.

When it comes to veterans exposed to chemicals or other issues, sure, I care.  When it comes to civilians killed or wounded in war, sure I care.

But I can't be the world's sin eater and I can;t bleed for everyone and I won't.

Several e-mails to the public account ( insist I am missing an important story.  I'm not missing the story -- I don't think it's all that important -- I just don't care.

And, fact of the matter, the media hasn't given a damn about this until Donald Trump became president.

The story in question has happened over and over under Bully Boy Bush and under Barack Obama.  But the media did an initial report -- sometimes -- and then let it die.  They've worked overtime on this story, the Tweet below is just one example.

  1. A Marine combat veteran who served in Iraq and suffers from PTSD and traumatic brain injury is facing "imminent" deportation to El Salvador -- a country he left at 3 years old.

Boo f**king who.

His mother says this is being done to him by "his country."

No, it's not.  His country is El Salvador and that is his choice.  He came to the US at the age of 3, 35 years later he's being deported.

He chose not to become a citizen, his choice.

There should be no sympathy at all for him.

'He fought for the country!'  No, he didn't.  Iraq didn't attack the US so just drop that b.s.  Even if it had (which it didn't), he was paid to do the job he did.  He was offered the job (serving in the US military), he took it, he was paid for it.  He's not owed a lot more than what he has received.  (He didn't get appropriate treatment for his PTS -- I'm sorry about that but that hardly makes him unique.  Use his case to fight for better treatment and care from the VA, absolutely, but that's about all.)

Those of us who actually care about immigrant rights -- as opposed to those who were silent while Barack Obama became deporter-in-chief but found a voice after Donald Trump became president -- have repeatedly asked for one thing: A path to citizenship for immigrants.

The child in your neighborhood elementary school, she or he doesn't really have it.  Their parents trying to make a life in this country?  They don't have it.

You know who has it, people enlisted.  Bully Boy Bush, in fact, made it very easy for those who serve in the US military to have citizenship.  Barack Obama continued the policy.  Many service members serving in Iraq and Afghanistan became citizens as a result of this -- became citizens while stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A path to citizenship was created for this category of persons.

I don't know why the hell Jose Segovia Benitez didn't want to become a US citizen but that was his choice.  He had a path to citizenship.  He never pursued it.  That's on him.

I can fight for all immigrants to have a path to citizenship.  And I will do that.

But if someone has a path created (and there were no real qualifications or credentials needed, just that you were serving in the US mimlitary) and they choose not to pursue that path  that exists, that's on them.

I don't have the time to baby the world.  A grown man of 38 who has a path to citizenship and doesn't use it?  I'm not shedding tears.

He was a grown adult, he had a path to citizenship and he refused to pursue it.  That's on him.

I get it, he suffers because of the war, that's why he has domestic abuse charges.  He was convicted though.

Guess what?  No country wants criminals.  They have to keep their own, yes.  But if you break the law and you're not a citizen (he was convicted on domestic abuse charges and on  drug charges)?  Your host country is going to move to deport you.

I'm sorry this was to hard for you to grasp.

Basty Garcia insists her brother joined the military (in the 90s) because "he was patriotic."

No, he wasn't.

He joined the military for many reasons -- maybe benefits, certainly the salary, maybe for fun and travel (there weren't never-ending wars when he enlisted).

But if he were patriotic to the US, he would have attempted to become a citizen.

Maybe she means he was patriotic to El Salvador?

That is his country.  It's his country of record and, yes, it's his country of choice.

He was not someone living in fear of ICE with no path to citizenship.

Now immediately after 9/11, while Bully Boy Bush was persecuting Muslims, BBB did make it temporarily easier for some to become citizens.  I can understand those who might have feared it because they suspected it was a trap.

Let's go personal for a second,  During this period (immediately after 9/11), I had friends who decided to become citizens so they wouldn't live under the threat of deportation and a few who decided not to.  I'm going to reference two, but not use their real names.  Diya had been in the country for three years.  She was from India.  She had a green card.  She came to this country to marry (arranged marriage).  Her husband was an American citizen (he'd come here from India several years prior on a green card and gone through the citizenship process).  They had one child.  Juana was married to an American male (born in this country, first generation, family from Mexico).  She was born in Oaxaca and entered this country without documentation.  She and her husband had three children at the time (they now have five).  Diya struggled with the decision because she was not happy in the US.  She was adjusting to the country and had other issues (we'll get to that in a second).  She spoke with Juana and I (together) about this many times.  Juana had no desire to become an American citizen.  She was proud of Mexico and wanted only that citizenship besides, she insisted, Bush would never have a woman like her deported.

Bush didn't deport her, she was right there.  And Barack didn't and, so far, Trump hasn't.

But that could change with Trump or the next president.  She knows that.  She made her choice. It was the choice she wanted and I respect it.

Diya was having problems with her marriage and her mother.

She was having big problems with her marriage actually and didn't feel it was right to discuss it with anyone.  We had no idea how bad it was -- her friends -- because she felt it would break her vows of marriage to discuss with anyone what she was going through.

The only one she had spoken to was her mother (who lived back in India) and her mother would shame her for it and blame her for it.

Diya decided to pursue citizenship.

It's good that she did because shortly after she became a citizen (six months?), she filed for divorce.  Only at that point did she share the abuse (physical and verbal) that she was living with.  She goes back to India once a year for three weeks but she will tell you that the US is her home and her son's home.  She will tell you that she's glad she became a citizen.

For Diya, that was the right decision.  I respect her right to make that decision.  Again, Juana made a different decision and I respect that decision as well.

If Juana ever gets deported though, it would be a hard case to argue because she chose not to become a citizen.  She made the choice.

Jose Segovia Benitez had numerous chances to become a citizen.  The path to citizenship that so many of us are arguing needs to be created for Dreamers?  Jose had that as a member of the US military.  He elected not to become a citizen.  He made that decision while serving, he made that decision again (repeatedly) after he returned to the US.

As a veteran, he committed crimes and was prosecuted.  He has a criminal record now and he is not a citizen?

It's not a surprise that he is being deported.

It's not really a tragedy either.

A tragedy is ICE busting up a home where the family had no path to citizenship.

Someone who chose not to become a citizen?

I just don't care.

There are real issues in this world.

You make decisions -- as adults -- and you live with them.

Nothing more can be done for Jose because Jose made the decisions that he made.

And, if we're really honest, Jose hurts the immigration issue.  We are fighting for immigrants who want to become citizens of the US.  And when someone who has a path chooses not to and then wants to whine that he's being told he has to leave, it really needs to be stressed this person is not the immigrant we're arguing for.

Jose chose not to become a citizen, Jose broke several laws and ended up with conviction and prison time.

Again, I just don't care.

I can't bleed for the world.  I can't cut a vein open on my wrist because you want to now change the choices you made.  That's on you.  You weren't a kid and you had opportunities you elected not to utilize.  That's on you.

It's no tragedy.  It's no crisis.  It a response to the choices that you made.

The following sites updated:

photographs - bay area activists defend the right of immigrants to stay

Journalist, activist, artist and author David Bacon's latest book is The Right to Stay Home: How US Policy Drives Mexican Migration (Beacon Press).  

David Bacon Fotografias y Historias
Photographs by David Bacon

In two demonstrations last week people in the Bay Area stood up to defend immigrant members of our community.

In Berkeley on October 14, Mayor Jesse Arreguin and other community leaders announced that the City of Berkeley was passing a resolution calling on Congress to act to presesrve Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for refugees and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, for young people brought to the U.S. without papers as children.  If action is not taken, over a million people will lose work authorization and the legal ability to remain in this country.

May people spoke out at the rally across the street from Berkeley's old City Hall.  They included young people like Crista Ramos and Kruz Morales.  Other immigrants like Cristina Morales and Rose Carranza represented the TPS Committee for Permanent Residency Now! and East Bay Sanctuary Covenant, and were supported by Pierre Labossiere of the Haiti Action Committee and Ramon Cardona of Centro Latino Cuscatlan.  Berkeley's poet laurate Rafael Jesus Gonzalez read poetry.

On Friday, October 11, the Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity organized a vigil in front of the ICE office in San Francisco, calling on Governor Gavin Newsom to pardon to men so that they will not be deported, and can remain with their families in the U.S.

Charles Joseph is facing transfer to ICE custody upon release from prison. When he was younger, Charles Joseph's father was incarcerated and deported. Joseph is a member of musician Lew Fratis' musical development and performance program at the California State Prison, Solano.  His mother, Alumita Siva, and his lawyer, Francisco Ugarte, spoke to the rally.

Saman Pho, a 43-year-old father of four from Oakland, a construction worker and Teamster Union member, was taken into custody when he reported to U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement on Sansome Street.  His sister Monica Sok spoke out for him.

On the sidewalk people dug into their pockets and raised the bail money needed for a young person who was being freed from custody, but then being turned over to immigration authorities for deportation.

[. . ]

Exhibition Schedule
Exhibitions of photographs are scheduled for the following venues and dates:

In the Fields of the North / En los campos del norte
Scheduled exhibitions:

September 1, 2019 - December 22, 2019
Hi-Desert Nature Museum, Yucca Valley
January 5, 2020 - March 1, 2020
Community Memorial Museum of Sutter County, Yuba City
March 15, 2020 - June 21, 2020
Los Altos History Museum, Los Altos
March 21, 2021 - May 23, 2021
Carnegie Arts Center, Turlock

In Washington’s Fields
Scheduled exhibition:

February 5, 2020 - July 15, 2020
Washington State History Museum, Tacoma, WA

More Than a Wall - The Social Movements of the Border
Scheduled exhibition:

August 29,, 2020 - November 29,, 2020
San Francisco Public Library

Scheduled exhibition:

April 10, 2020 - May 1, 2020
Uri-Eichen Gallery, Chicago IL

In the Fields of the North / En los Campos del Norte
Photographs and text by David Bacon
University of California Press / Colegio de la Frontera Norte

302 photographs, 450pp, 9”x9”
paperback, $34.95 (in the U.S.)

order the book on the UC Press website:
use source code  16M4197  at checkoutreceive a 30% discount

En Mexico se puede pedir el libro en el sitio de COLEF:

Los Angeles Times reviews In the Fields of the North / En los Campos del Norte - click here

En los campos del Norte documenta la vida de trabajadores agrícolas en Estados Unidos -
Entrevista con el Instituto Nacional de la Antropologia y Historia

Entrevista en la television de UNAM

David Bacon comparte su mirada del trabajo agrícola de migrantes mexicanos en el Museo Archivo de la Fotografia

Trabajo agrícola, migración y resistencia cultural: el mosaico de los “Campos del Norte”
Entrevista de David Bacon por Iván Gutiérrez / A los 4 Vientos

"Los fotógrafos tomamos partido"
Entrevista por Melina Balcázar Moreno - Laberinto

Das Leben der Arbeiterschaft auf Ölplattformen des Irak

Die Kunst der Grenze für "eine andere Welt"

Die Apfel-Pflücker aus dem Yakima-Tal


"Documenting the Farm Worker Rebellion"
"The Radical Resistance to Immigration Enforcement"
Havens Center lectures, University of Wisconsin, click here

San Francisco Commonweallth Club presentation by David Bacon and Jose Padilla, click here

EN LOS CAMPOS DEL NORTE:  Farm worker photographs on the U.S./Mexico border wall
Entrevista sobre la exhibicion con Alfonso Caraveo (Español) REALITY CHECK - David Bacon blog

Cat Brooks interview on KPFA about In the Fields of the North  - Advance the time to 33:15

Book TV: A presentation of the ideas in The Right to Stay Home at the CUNY Graduate Center

Other Books by David Bacon

The Right to Stay Home:  How US Policy Drives Mexican Migration  (Beacon Press, 2013)
Illegal People -- How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants  (Beacon Press, 2008)
Recipient: C.L.R. James Award, best book of 2007-2008

Communities Without Borders (Cornell University/ILR Press, 2006)

The Children of NAFTA, Labor Wars on the U.S./Mexico Border (University of California, 2004)

En Español:

EL DERECHO A QUEDARSE EN CASA  (Critica - Planeta de Libros)


For more articles and images, see and

Veterans report being turned away from VA health care

This is from DAV:


A core mission of the Department of Veterans Affairs is to provide health care to veterans, especially those who have disabilities related to their service. Recently, DAV leaders have heard that some veterans are not even being allowed to apply for VA health care and instead are being turned away by the VA because of their final other than honorable discharge characterizations such as general discharge, other than honorable conditions or entry level separation. Each type of characterization has a unique set of circumstances for each discharged veteran, and even if not characterized as honorable service, the characterization that is assigned is not necessarily a ban to receive medical care at the VA or to qualify for other state or federal benefits.

Recognizing that many veterans with other than honorable discharges served in combat or under hardship conditions and may have incurred physical and mental wounds because of that service, Congress and the secretary of veterans affairs expanded access to VA health care for these veterans.

According to a 2017 Government Accountability Office report, approximately two-thirds of service members separated for misconduct had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury or another mental health condition, and government leaders acknowledge that in many instances those conditions contributed to the circumstances that led to the other than honorable discharge.

“We are troubled to hear that the VA might be turning away veterans from getting needed care,” said Washington Headquarters Executive Director Randy Reese. “These veterans may be eligible for some health care services, and at the very least, they have the right to apply and get a decision.”

The VA estimates that there are about 500,000 veterans currently living with other than honorable discharges. In part due to the discharge status itself and the prevalence of service-related mental health conditions, other than honorably discharged veterans are at twice the risk of suicide, are more likely to be homeless and face barriers to stable employment. While they can apply to the military review boards for a discharge upgrade, those boards have long wait times and low grant rates.

“Congress gave the VA the independent authority and responsibility to decide whether an individual veteran with an other than honorable discharge should receive access to VA health care and other benefits,” said Reese. “We at DAV are working to ensure that no veteran is denied the right simply to apply.”

A veteran with an other than honorable discharge may be eligible for VA health care and benefits like compensation, pension and vocational rehabilitation if the VA finds that the veteran’s service was honorable for VA purposes. Veterans with other than honorable discharges who are interested in applying for VA benefits have a right to submit an application and receive a written decision. DAV national service officers can help veterans fill out an application and assist them through the VA’s character of discharge determination process.

We want to hear from you

DAV, in partnership with the Veterans Legal Clinic of Harvard Law School, is interested in hearing from veterans who have other than honorable discharges and were turned away from receiving health care at the VA. If you are or know such a veteran, please fill out and mail the response card in this magazine. You can also respond by emailing or by speaking to a DAV national service officer. To find the service officer nearest you, visit, hover on the “Veterans” tab and click “Find Your Local Office.”

Center for Reproductive Rights Sues Department of Health and Human Services for Failing to Comply with Freedom of Information Act Requests

From the Center for Reproductive Rights:

(PRESS RELEASE) —Today, the Center for Reproductive Rights filed a complaint against the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for failing to produce records related to the Office for Civil Rights’ (OCR) operations and enforcement of civil rights laws.

Lawyers say the complaint, which comes after two Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests went effectively unanswered, is critical in revealing shifts in OCR’s priorities that harm the office’s efforts to combat discrimination and protect patient privacy. 

In 2018 the Trump administration created the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division (CRFD) within OCR purportedly to enforce religious and moral refusal laws. While the stated rationale for the establishing this division was to handle an increase in religious and moral refusal complaints, historically only an extremely small fraction of the complaints received by OCR are related to these issues. Despite this, HHS sought to increase CRFD’s budget by over $1 million in Fiscal Years 2019 and 2020, while simultaneously reducing overall funding for OCR.

On August 30, the Center for Reproductive Rights submitted two Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests seeking budget and staffing details of the CRFD and information related to OCR’s HIPPA enforcement activities. Although a 2009 law enacted by the Obama administration specifies that any funds collected as a result of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) violations must be used to enforce health data privacy and security regulations, suspicion has been growing regarding the funds’ distribution

“There is simply no reason to hide this critical information from the public. Every day ordinary Americans rely on the Office of Civil Rights to do its job and protect them against discrimination,” said Katherine Gillespie from the Center for Reproductive Rights. “The public deserves to know how the Trump administration has retreated from this critical enforcement role and we must hold them accountable.”

HHS has failed to share any information or provide a final response within 20 days since the initial requests were submitted, which is required by law.

“The Trump administration has repeatedly used the Office of Civil Rights to pursue a politically motivated agenda at the expense of protecting patient privacy and enforcing civil rights laws,” said Kalpana Kotagal, a partner in Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC's Civil Rights & Employment practice. “Americans have a right to understand the justification for increasing the budget of this division—which is a solution in search of problem—while slashing funding for critical offices that combat discrimination and protect patients.”

The Center previously filed a FOIA request seeking information to understand why HHS created the CRFD. The Center for Reproductive Rights is represented by Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll throughout this litigation. 

Center for Constitutional Rights and Transgender Law Center Raise Up Legacy of Transgender Resistance and Resilience in Wake of Historic Supreme Court Arguments

From the Center for Constitutional Rights:


October 8, 2019, Washington, D.C. – Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights and Transgender Law Center joined dozens of LGBTQ and civil rights organizations on the steps of the Supreme Court to show that LGBTQ people in the workplace deserve to live freely and authentically without fear of discrimination.

“We know that it’s wrong for a boss to fire someone because of who they are – to say ‘you can’t work here’ because you’re transgender,” said Kris Hiyashi, executive director of Transgender Law Center. 

“We know that it’s wrong for the White House to lobby the Supreme Court to push trans and queer people out of public life. And the Supreme Court Justices know it too.”

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes V. EEOC, et al., and will decide whether gender identity discrimination against transgender people falls under the category of sex discrimination that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibited in 1964. Five appellate courts have already ruled that anti-transgender discrimination is prohibited sex discrimination, and the highest Court is expected to hand down their decision in summer 2020.

The Court also heard arguments in Altitude Express Inc. v. Zardaand Bostock v. Clayton County. These cases focus on whether sexual orientation discrimination falls under the category of sex discrimination under Title VII.

During oral arguments, some Justices touched on the purpose of civil rights laws. They emphasized that these laws were not meant to be used to exclude certain groups. They touched on the fact that, as the plain language of the statute confirms, there is no transgender exclusion to Title VII or civil rights laws.

In a particularly poignant moment during oral arguments, the attorneys for the plaintiffs noted that transgender attorneys were populating the courtroom. The ACLU attorneys noted that the very presence of transgender attorneys at the Supreme Court undercuts the idea that transgender people cannot exist in the workplace or civic life.

“The Trump Administration has made a mockery of this nation’s civil rights laws by turning its back on LGBTQ people in the workplace” said Chinyere Ezie, staff attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights. “There is no LGBTQ carve-out to generally applicable civil rights laws. Therefore, we urge the Supreme Court to affirm the rights of LGBTQ people to live and work free from invidious discrimination.”

In July, the Center for Constitutional Rights and Transgender Law Center filed an amicus brief with the United States Supreme Court highlighting the stories of over 30 transgender people who have experienced discrimination in the workplace for being transgender. In the brief, civil rights attorneys argued that discrimination on the basis of transgender status is a form of sex discrimination and is thus illegal under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The brief was filed on behalf of 46 organizations dedicated to eradicating discrimination against transgender and gender nonconforming people. 

The Center for Constitutional Rights and Transgender Law Center centered the voices of transgender people in their amicus brief to connect the dots between discrimination experienced in the workplace and the horrific violence that has come to make headlines in recent months. 

“The Trump administration is doing everything it can to make people like me feel like we don’t belong,” said Tiara Gendi, a steering committee member of Black LGBTQIA+ Migrant Project.  

“The Trump administration refuses to enforce laws and constitutional protections against discrimination. Instead they encourage violence against us because of who we are and how we look. But we are here to say we belong here.”

The Center for Constitutional Rights works with communities under threat to fight for justice and liberation through litigation, advocacy, and strategic communications. Since 1966, the Center for Constitutional Rights has taken on oppressive systems of power, including structural racism, gender oppression, economic inequity, and governmental overreach. Learn more at

Freq Power: Art, Music & the Evolution of Consciousness

Serving the Greater Good & Having Fun in the Process...

Oct 17Public post
Check out our new collaborative project...
Art, Music & the evolution of consciousness ~
Full res version of this graphic here.
We are crowdsourcing memes. Check out the awesome art that has already been created & share any that inspire you.

Freq Power Meme Factory

We’re going to be featuring a ton of music as well. Here’s the first few tracks…

Freq Power Music Playlist #1 🎶 

For the sake of transparency, in the spirit of full disclosure, to understand our motivation, this is our ethos over here…
ψ Φ We are entangled wave~particles living in mutualistic symbiosis
∴ The more you empower others, the more empowered you become.

Freq Power Ethos

Here’s a transdimensional communiqué from Buckminster Fuller…

Power Structures About To Be Rendered Obsolete ~ Buckminster Freq Power Remix

Traditional human power structures and their reign of darkness are about to be rendered obsolete. In short, humanity has already achieved, technically, the total success all Utopians ever dreamed of; our problems now are entirely due to wrong thinking. This is only a crisis of ignorance.

Book Update

My 1500 page book is now going to be broken down into 2 books. I am pushing to get the first book out by December 10th.
If you subscribe at the annual rate, I will send you a 1st Run Limited Edition version of the book as soon as it is released.  There will only be 500 copies printed of the collector’s version. 
If you subscribe on a monthly basis, I will send you a 2nd run edition.  Word on the street is that there will be approximately 10,000 copies printed of that version.
Thank you to people who have subscribed already!! Much appreciated!!
I have your names set for a Limited Edition book.
I am going to start putting out subscriber-only content in November… would prefer to keep everything free but I have kids to feed over here… I used to think the “kids to feed” thing was silly, but these kids are growing fast & seriously have limitless appetites, and finding healthy food these days is a battle.
We have to get a hydroponic green house.
~ David DeGraw
Check the music playlist & let me know what kind of music you want to hear. It’s an eclectic crew over here… something for everyone…
You’re on the free list for Quantum Politics. For the full experience, become a paying subscriber.
© 2019 David DeGraw Unsubscribe
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