Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sonia Sotomayor's Gutsy Start in '78

At the tender age 24, a daring Sonia Sotomayor took on an elite Manhattan law firm -- and won!

So reports the LATimes (At Yale, Sotomayor won apology from law firm - 5/28/09):
While interviewing for jobs during her final year of school, [Sotomayor] accused the firm, then known as Shaw, Pittman, Potts & Trowbridge, of discriminating against her by asking questions about the qualifications of Puerto Ricans and other minorities.

Sotomayor's complaint caused a campus furor. A student-faculty panel found the complaint warranted and ordered Shaw Pittman to write her a letter of apology.
That incident speaks volumes for why Sotomayor is the perfect choice to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. No shrinking violet...Sotomayor had the guts to take on a wrong -- even if it jeopardized her career with the uber powerful Manhattan corporate legal establishment.

Sotomayor's challenge caused the law firm to reconsider its ways. Remarkably, that firm is now recognized as a leader in diversity. Now that's change we can believe in!

How many Supreme wannabes would dare such a thing?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Don't Let Me Drown: A Dominican-Mexican Love Story in Brooklyn by Cruz Angeles

At the center of Cruz Angeles's compelling first feature Don't Let Me Drown are Lalo (E.J. Bonilla) and Stefanie (Gleendylis Inoa), two high-school kids living in Brooklyn.

Lalo comes from a Mexican immigrant family that struggles financially. His father (Damian Alcázar), formerly a janitor at the World Trade Center, now works at Ground Zero cleaning up debris.

Stefanie's family is Dominican and they moved from Manhattan to Brooklyn after her sister was killed in the attacks. While her mother (Gina Torres) tries to hold the family together, her father (Ricardo Antonio Chavira) is overwhelmed by the loss and cannot control his anger.

In the midst of their family turmoil and exactly one month after the WTC attacks, Lalo and Stefanie meet at a birthday party, and although they start off on the wrong foot, the ice melts, and their budding friendship becomes a clandestine romance.

Don't Let Me Drown features an elegantly poignant story, layered characters and standout performances. The textures of the city and the lives of the families are shaded with a wistful sense of struggle but the heart of the film is a refreshing and honest love story.

Sundance 2009 Review: Cruz Angeles' Don't Let Me Drown

Cruz Angeles, "Don't Let Me Drown": Daydreams, Grief and Hope

DON'T LET ME DROWN—Introductory Remarks and Q&A With Cruz Angeles and Maria Topete

Overcoming Obstacles To Love

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Sonia Sotomayor: Supreme Niuyorican!

President Barack Obama has nominated Appellate Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor for the U.S. Supreme Court. If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Sotomayor will become the first member of Latino heritage to serve on the nation's highest court.

From the AP (Obama picks Sotomayor for high court):
Judge Sonia Sotomayor is a self-described "Niuyorican" who grew up in a Bronx housing project after her parents moved to New York from Puerto Rico. She has dealt with diabetes since age 8 and lost her father at age 9, growing up under the care of her mother in humble surroundings. As a girl, inspired by the Perry Mason television show, she knew she wanted to be a judge.

A graduate of Princeton University and Yale Law School, a former prosecutor and private attorney, Sotomayor became a federal judge for the Southern District of New York in 1992.

As a judge, she has a bipartisan pedigree. She was first appointed by a Republican, President George H.W. Bush, then named an appeals judge by President Bill Clinton in 1997.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Drums Along the Hudson: A Native American Festival May 17th

The Seventh Annual DRUMS ALONG THE HUDSON: A NATIVE AMERICAN FESTIVAL will take place on Sunday, May 17th, 2009 in Upper Manhattan’s Inwood Hill Park from 11:00 am until 6:00 pm, rain or shine. The event is FREE to the public and presented by Lotus Music & Dance.

DRUMS ALONG THE HUDSON features Manhattan’s only open air pow wow, which is a celebratory gathering of Native people. This year’s pow wow will be led by Louis Mofsie and the Thunderbird American Indian Dancers and will feature other indigenous and international artists.

A multi cultural family-oriented festival, DRUMS ALONG THE HUDSON includes exhibitions of world dance and drumming traditions as well as Native American crafts and international cuisines. The festival combines a celebration of Native American heritage, culture, and art with the diversity of New York City itself.


Thursday, May 7, 2009

NYJets' Mark Sanchez: Franchise Player & Latino Role Model

Viva Mark Sanchez! New Jets QB celebrates his Mexican heritage NY DailyNews

NYJets 2009 NFL Draft pick QB Mark Sanchez:

Jets fans react to selection of Sanchez:

Sanchez' USC '08 highlights & USC fan reaction the draft:

Sanchez on being Latino & a role model: