Monday, September 13, 2010

Two Traveling Muslims Discover What America Really Is

Bassam Tariq and Aman Ali
America is a country of people who are sometimes portrayed as unaccepting and rude, but Aman Ali and Bassam Tariq discovered something completely different.

The two decided to go on a quest across America to visit 30 mosques and blog their travels. They started up in New York, headed all the way west to California, and ended their journey in Michigan. With the way the media has portrayed Americans in the past, one might expect them to encounter friction or difficulties on their trip across our nation. However, Ali and Tariq were pleasantly surprised to find the opposite.

The Muslim travelers blogged about their pleasant experiences in places like Georgia, Florida, and Nevada, and they hashed on a very spiritual experience visiting the spot where America’s first mosque stood in North Dakota. Now, a cement block styled mosque sits on the land where the original structure once was, and it is surrounded by some graves of people who were among the nation’s first Muslims. One of the travelers described his prayer experience as so exciting and touching that he felt as if he were falling.

They recapped other experiences such as being welcomed with open arms in a confederate souvenir shop, and visiting a mosque that took a community 12 years to build with their bare hands. In one post, they recalled their car breaking down in a small town in Montana, and they were forced to ask a fisherman for a ride into town.
When he approached the fisherman after their car broke down, Tariq says, he didn't know how he'd be received. He asked if he could hitch a ride to town and the fisherman "happily does it." When the man asked Tariq what he was doing in Montana, he told him about their 30 mosques journey. "And he doesn't flinch and doesn't get worried," Tariq said. "For me, it was like, 'Wow! That America still exists.' "

Drash.  In fact, the most trouble they saw was from a mosque in Mobile, Alabama. The personnel asked them to leave after discovering that they were working in conjunction with CNN to publicize their blog and travels.

All in all, it’s nice to see some positive publicity about our great nation.

References:  Information in this article was obtained courtesy of CNN and Wayne Drash, 2 Muslims travel 13,000 miles across America, find an embracing nation, CNN, Sept. 10, 2010 (“Drash”).

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Hazleton Sets the Stage for an Influx of Local Immigration Laws

Hazleton, Pennsylvania.  What do we know of it? It’s a place that has seen a recent population influx of 7,000 people—mostly Latino—over the last decade, which is about a third of its original population.  Most of the people who came to Hazleton are here illegally, but, as one could expect, some are not.

Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta
Now this population surge has been the source of blame for the increase in crime in the Luzerne County area.  And, who better to point the finger at than the illegal aliens?  Hazleton Mayor Barletta pushed through  ordinances that punish landlords and businesses for renting to or hiring illegal immigrants.  The laws were recently struck down by the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in a decision that stated:

Regulatory 'cherry picking' is not concurrent enforcement, and it is not constitutionally permitted. ... It is, of course, not our job to sit in judgment of whether state and local frustration about federal immigration policy is warranted.  We are, however, required to intervene when states and localities directly undermine the federal objectives embodied in statutes enacted by Congress. … Whether Hazleton inadvertently stumbled into this exclusively federal domain, or decided to defiantly barge in, it is clear that it has attempted to usurp authority that the Constitution has placed beyond the vicissitudes of local governments.

Letters.  Vic Walczak, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union in Pennsylvania, expressed his view that the local immigration ordinances, "distracted local governments from solving the real problems that they were facing."  King.  But, in a recent press release, Mayor Barletta made it clear that his city's fight is "not over yet."  Video: "Mayor: Illegal Immigration Fight 'Not Over Yet' " - The Associated Press.

Similar legislations are being sought by states and municipalities across America.  It seems as though this barrage of local immigration laws is only just beginning.

References:  Information in this article was obtained courtesy of The Philidelphia Inquirer,, and the Associated Press. Larry King, Federal appeals court strikes down Hazleton's immigration ordinances, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Sept. 10, 2010 (“King”), and Letters, Immigration is the province of the federal gov.,, Sept. 12, 2010. (“Letters”).

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Day to Remember: 09.11.2001

I always remind myself to take a deep breath on this day; close my eyes; say a prayer, and; revisit my thoughts and memories of that sorrowful day.  We should all come together, and we should think about how far we've all come as individuals and as a people.  And, we must remember how quickly it can all be taken away.

Many of us had family and/or friends who were lost in the tragedy.  Maybe those we knew helped with the clean-up.  Or, perhaps they went away afterward to fight on foreign soil.  All of us, of course, will be affected by it for the rest of our lives, and some more than others.

Here at R. Basso Law, we will be dedicating today to everyone involved in 09/11, and we will be wearing red, white, and blue in support of our proud country.  Let us all be inspired by America and its people, today!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Website in Development!

Sorry for the lack of posting as of late.  I'd like to inform you, my readers, that I am now hosting a webpage at:

It is currently under construction, and since I am busy developing the webpage myself, I have been unable to provide any recent summaries.  I will keep my eyes peeled for a catchy article or case and be sure to post here soon.  Be advised that once is more complete
, this blog may be permanently moved to that domain.  But again, I will keep you all posted.  Thanks for your support!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Obama Administration Focuses Employers Hiring Illegals, Rather than the Illegals

A brief discussion of:

Nicole Busch, Company Audits Up, Illegal Worker Arrests Way Down Since 2008,, Aug. 23, 2010.

Recently, we have been hearing about the Obama administration's commitment to immigration reform.  Whether it is expanding on former legislation or providing new strategies, at least the effort is there to remedy America's immigration issues.

This FoxNews article, reports that, "under President Obama, the numbers of arrests and deportations of illegals taken into custody at work sites plummeted by more than 80 percent from the last year of the Bush administration."  Id.  Despite the apparent decrease in work site enforcement under Obama, John Morton, the director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE"), assures the public that no administration in the nation's history has removed more illegal aliens than the Obama administration last year.

According to Fox, the Obama administration is seeking to isolate the employers for enforcement.  The hope is that prosecuting the people in charge of hiring the illegals will help to curtail other employers from doing the same; or at least influence them to take more care in determining a prospective employee's immigration status.  Julie Meyers, former ICE director under Bush, says she agrees that auditing and targeting employers is the right track, but that it falls short.  According to Meyers, the administration should have continued to charge the illegals, too, instead of turning a blind eye and letting work site enforcement drop 80%. 

Marshall Fitz, director of immigration policy at the Center for American Progress, gave FoxNews his impressions by defending the Obama administration's strategy: "rather than high-profile raids that target workers and let employers off the hook this administration has decided to focus on criminal and bad actor employers."  Id.  He continued that, "[n]o one is talking about giving a free pass for fraud, or ID theft is to be taken lightly [sic], but we know the vast majority of the workforce did not commit any crime."  Id.  Perhaps Mr. Fitz is unaware that applying for work without meeting proper immigration requirements is a crime.

Information in this article was obtained courtesy of