1961 Freedom Riders & PBO @ OSU 2013 Commencement

1961 Freeom Rides1961 Freedom Riders Map

Freedom Riders were civil rights activists who rode interstate buses into the segregated southern United States in 1961 and following years to challenge the non-enforcement of the United States Supreme Court decisions Irene Morgan v. Commonwealth of Virginia (1946) and Boynton v. Virginia (1960),  which ruled that segregated public buses were unconstitutional.The Southern states had ignored the rulings and the federal government did nothing to enforce them. The first Freedom Ride left Washington, D.C., on May 4, 1961,  and was scheduled to arrive in New Orleans on May 17.

Boynton outlawed racial segregation in the restaurants and waiting rooms in terminals serving buses that crossed state lines. Five years prior to the Boynton ruling, the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) had issued a ruling in Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach Company that had explicitly denounced the Plessy v. Ferguson doctrine of separate but equal in interstate bus travel. The ICC failed to enforce its ruling, and Jim Crow travel laws remained in force throughout the South.

The Freedom Riders challenged this status quo by riding interstate buses in the South in mixed racial groups to challenge local laws or customs that enforced segregation in seating. The Freedom Rides, and the violent reactions they provoked, bolstered the credibility of the American Civil Rights Movement. They called national attention to the disregard for the federal law and the local violence used to enforce segregation in the southern United States. Police arrested riders for trespassing, unlawful assembly, and violating state and local Jim Crow laws, along with other alleged offenses, but they often first let white mobs attack them without intervention.

The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) sponsored most of the subsequent Freedom Rides, but some were also organized by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). The Freedom Rides followed dramatic sit-ins against segregated lunch counters, conducted by students and youth throughout the South, and boycotts of retail establishments that maintained segregated facilities, beginning in 1960.

The Supreme Court’s decision in Boynton supported the right of interstate travelers to disregard local segregation ordinances. Southern local and state police considered the actions of the Freedom Riders as criminal and arrested them in some locations. In some localities, such as Birmingham, Alabama, the police cooperated with Ku Klux Klan chapters and other whites opposing the actions and allowed mobs to attack the riders.

For more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_Rides
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US Minorities Civil Rights Timeline 1863-1963 (ProPresObama.org Civil Rights Timelines ™)

US Minorities Civil Rights Timeline 1964-2016 (ProPresObama.org Civil Rights Timelines ™)

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Ohio_State_University.svg

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President Obama to deliver spring commencement address

2-20-2013 osu.edu

Marks third time in university history that the U.S. president speaks at graduation ceremony

Columbus, Ohio — President Barack Obama will be the commencement speaker for The Ohio State University spring commencement. The ceremony takes place at noon on Sunday, May 5, in Ohio Stadium.

“This is a historic occasion for the university, the city of Columbus, and our graduates and their families,” said President E. Gordon Gee. “We are honored to have President Obama address our graduates at the university’s largest commencement ever. To be sure, this is a signal moment in the life of one of the most vibrant and vital universities in our nation.”

President Obama has begun his second term after making history when he was elected as the nation’s first African-American president.

For the entire article: http://www.osu.edu/news/newsitem3625

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Ohio State University 2013 Commencement Ceremony
President Obama – Commencement Speaker
Ohio Stadium.  Columbus, OH
Sunday, May 5, 2013 @12:00 PM ET

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Commencement Live Stream: http://commencement.osu.edu/video.html 

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30 thoughts on “1961 Freedom Riders & PBO @ OSU 2013 Commencement

  1. WH

    Saturday, May 4, 2013

    All Times Eastern

    President Obama receives the presidential daily briefing

    7:00 AM
    8:00 AM
    9:00 AM
    10:00 AM
    11:00 AM
    President Obama attends the Central America Forum on Sustainable Economic Development
    San Jose, Costa Rica

    12:00 PM
    1:00 PM
    President Obama delivers remarks and take questions from the press at the Central America Forum on Sustainable Economic Development
    San Jose, Costa Rica
    San Jose, Costa Rica

    President Obama departs Costa Rica for Washington DC

    2:00 PM
    3:00 PM
    4:00 PM
    5:00 PM
    6:00 PM
    7:00 PM
    7:25 PM
    President Obama arrives Joint Base Andrews

    7:35 PM
    President Obama arrives the White House

    8:00 PM
    9:00 PM
    10:00 PM

  2. 1961 Freedom Rides

    Freedom Riders were civil rights activists who rode interstate buses into the segregated southern United States in 1961 and following years to challenge the non-enforcement of the United States Supreme Court decisions Irene Morgan v. Commonwealth of Virginia (1946) and Boynton v. Virginia (1960),  which ruled that segregated public buses were unconstitutional.The Southern states had ignored the rulings and the federal government did nothing to enforce them. The first Freedom Ride left Washington, D.C., on May 4, 1961,  and was scheduled to arrive in New Orleans on May 17.

    Boynton outlawed racial segregation in the restaurants and waiting rooms in terminals serving buses that crossed state lines. Five years prior to the Boynton ruling, the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) had issued a ruling in Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach Company that had explicitly denounced the Plessy v. Ferguson doctrine of separate but equal in interstate bus travel. The ICC failed to enforce its ruling, and Jim Crow travel laws remained in force throughout the South.

    The Freedom Riders challenged this status quo by riding interstate buses in the South in mixed racial groups to challenge local laws or customs that enforced segregation in seating. The Freedom Rides, and the violent reactions they provoked, bolstered the credibility of the American Civil Rights Movement. They called national attention to the disregard for the federal law and the local violence used to enforce segregation in the southern United States. Police arrested riders for trespassing, unlawful assembly, and violating state and local Jim Crow laws, along with other alleged offenses, but they often first let white mobs attack them without intervention.

    The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) sponsored most of the subsequent Freedom Rides, but some were also organized by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). The Freedom Rides followed dramatic sit-ins against segregated lunch counters, conducted by students and youth throughout the South, and boycotts of retail establishments that maintained segregated facilities, beginning in 1960.

    The Supreme Court’s decision in Boynton supported the right of interstate travelers to disregard local segregation ordinances. Southern local and state police considered the actions of the Freedom Riders as criminal and arrested them in some locations. In some localities, such as Birmingham, Alabama, the police cooperated with Ku Klux Klan chapters and other whites opposing the actions and allowed mobs to attack the riders.

    For more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_Rides

    • Freedom Riders (Reason): American Treasures of the Library of Congress

      The Freedom Riders of the early 1960s, organized by the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) rode through the South seeking to integrate the bus, rail and airport terminals. This Associated Press release includes a map and a descriptive text that illustrates the routes taken and the history behind the freedom rides. Together, the map and text record the individual cities visited, when and where violence occurred, and how many people were arrested.

      For more: http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures/trr071.html

    • Freedom Riders – The Road to Civil Rights – Highway History – FHWA

      The Road to Civil Rights Freedom Riders. Branch described the start:

      The thirteen riders embarked [from Washington, D.C.] on the morning of May 4 in two groups, one on Greyhound and the other on Trailways. According to plan, they scattered throughout each bus in various combinations-some whites in the back and Negroes in the front, with at least one interracial pair of seatmates and a few riders observing less conspicuously from traditional seats. [Parting the Waters, p. 413]

      For more: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/highwayhistory/road/s26.cfm

    • The Legacy of the 1961 Freedom Rides

      Posted by Jim Leach on October 18, 2011 at 10:12 AM EDT

      On Wednesday, October 19, law students, participants in the civil rights movement, and others will gather at the White House for a screening of Freedom Riders and a panel discussion of the legal legacy of the 1961 Freedom Rides. The screening is part of National Endowment for the Humanities’ (NEH) “Bridging Cultures through Law” film series.

      NEH is proud to have funded Freedom Riders, which recently won three Emmy® Awards. The film chronicles the inspirational story of how more than four hundred black and white Americans challenged Jim Crow laws in the Deep South through nonviolent action and created great change. Their courage in the face of coercive abuse helped lead to the end of segregation on buses and trains and in public facilities. Produced by Stanley Nelson and Laurens Grant, and based on Raymond Arsenault’s 2006 book, Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice, Freedom Riders premiered on PBS’s American Experience.

      The film screening will be followed by a panel discussion with Raymond Arsenault (the author), Diane Nash (the lead organizer of the Freedom Riders), and John Seigenthaler (an assistant to Attorney General Robert Kennedy). The discussion will also draw on the experiences of seven other Freedom Riders who will be in the audience, as well as students who recently recreated the bus journey taken by the Freedom Riders this past spring.

      For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/10/18/legacy-1961-freedom-rides

    • Freedom Riders send Voting Rights message to US Supreme Court

      May 01, 2013 8:20 AM PDT By Melissa Johnson – (WSFA)

      MONTGOMERY, AL- Freedom Riders for Voting Rights will arrive in Montgomery Wednesday afternoon, ending a two-day pilgrimage across Mississippi and Alabama. Their journey will culminate on the steps of the Alabama State Capitol, where they say they’ll hold a news conference to discuss the continuing struggle for voting rights. Since Tuesday, they have been traveling by bus to ten sites where someone fighting for the Voting Rights Act of 1964 was killed.

      The pilgrimage is called “Never Again, Never Forget”. It was planned in response to the current US Supreme Court case Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder, et al., an Alabama case that seeks to strike down Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. It’s a provision that requires states with a history of discrimination at the polls to get federal permission before making any changes in how they conduct elections, no matter how small. Shelby County attorneys argue that times have changed and the law is outdated, so this provision should be taken out. The Freedom Rider’s want to keep Section 5 in place. They are making this Pilgrimage to make their voices heard.

      “We want to send a message to the Supreme Court that we want section 5 of the Voting Rights Act kept alive. We want it kept because it is the pre-clearance section. We need to send a message to the President, to the Congress, and to the Supreme Court that we will not be silent when they are trying to take away voting rights.” said Mayor Johnny Ford of Tuskegee.

      For more: http://www.wsfa.com/story/22129754/freedom-riders-send-voting-rights-message-to-us-supreme-court

  3. President Obama to deliver spring commencement address

    2-20-2013 osu.edu

    Marks third time in university history that the U.S. president speaks at graduation ceremony

    Columbus, Ohio — President Barack Obama will be the commencement speaker for The Ohio State University spring commencement. The ceremony takes place at noon on Sunday, May 5, in Ohio Stadium.

    “This is a historic occasion for the university, the city of Columbus, and our graduates and their families,” said President E. Gordon Gee. “We are honored to have President Obama address our graduates at the university’s largest commencement ever. To be sure, this is a signal moment in the life of one of the most vibrant and vital universities in our nation.”

    President Obama has begun his second term after making history when he was elected as the nation’s first African-American president.

    For the entire article: http://www.osu.edu/news/newsitem3625

  4. With Or Without Hillary, They Want A Woman In 2016

    MAY 2, 2013, 2:02 PM PEMA LEVY – tpm

    Talk of a first woman president inevitably comes with the name Hillary Clinton attached. But in their quest to break the last glass ceiling, EMILY’s List isn’t pinning all their hopes on the former secretary of state.

    With or without Clinton, EMILY’s List wants to see a woman on the ticket in four years. To that end, the group, which works to elect pro-choice, Democratic women, launched a campaign Thursday to make sure a Democratic woman runs in 2016.

    “We do not know if Hillary is going to run,” EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock said at the launch of the “Madam President” campaign in Washington, D.C. “But we are hopeful that she may. And if she chooses not to, our options are far from exhausted. EMILY’s List has a deep bench of strong women candidates.”

    Schriock declined to say whether the group was in conversations with any women, but she did name women she believes would make strong candidates: Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, former Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire and Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).

    Though there appears to be little doubt that Americans are ready to elect a woman if it’s Clinton, EMILY’s List presented research showing that Americans are ready to elect a woman president, period.

    Their poll, conducted by the Democratic Anzalone Liszt Grove Research, found that 90 percent of likely 2016 voters across nine battleground states would consider voting for a qualified woman for president, while 86 percent believe America is ready for a woman president. Perhaps due to the excitement over Clinton, 72 percent of respondents said America is likely elect a woman in 2016.

    For more: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2013/05/emilys-list-woman-president.php?ref=fpb

  5. Remarks of President Barack Obama
    Weekly Address
    Mexico City, Mexico
    May 4, 2013

    Hi, everybody. Today, I’m speaking to you from the road – a trip to Mexico and Costa Rica.

    I’m here because Latin America represents an incredible opportunity for the United States, especially when it comes to my top priority as President: creating good, middle-class jobs.

    On Friday, we learned that our businesses created another 176,000 jobs last month. That’s 2.2 million new jobs over the past year, and 6.8 million new jobs over the past 38 months.

    But as I’ve said before, I won’t be satisfied until everyone who wants a job can find one. So I’m going to keep doing everything I can and going everywhere I need to go to help our businesses create jobs.

    Now, one of the best ways to grow our economy is to sell more goods and services Made in America to the rest of the world. That includes our neighbors to the south.

    Right now, over 40 percent of our exports go to the Americas. And those exports are growing faster than our trade with the rest of the world. That’s why I visited Latin America this week – to work with leaders to deepen our economic ties and expand trade between our nations.

    In Mexico, I also talked about immigration reform, because that’s an important issue that affects both our countries.

    The truth is, right now, our border with Mexico is more secure than it’s been in years. We’ve put more boots on that border than at any time in our history, and illegal crossings are down by nearly 80 percent from their peak in 2000. But we’ve got more to do – not just to secure the border but to fix an immigration system that is badly broken.

    In recent weeks, we’ve seen a commonsense immigration reform bill introduced in the Senate. This bill is a compromise, which means that nobody got everything they wanted – including me. But it’s largely consistent with the principles I’ve laid out from the beginning.

    It would continue to strengthen security at our borders and hold employers more accountable if they knowingly hire undocumented workers.

    It would provide a pathway to earned citizenship for the 11 million individuals who are already in this country illegally.

    And it would modernize our legal immigration system so that we’re able to reunite families and attract the highly-skilled entrepreneurs and engineers who will help create good paying jobs and grow our economy.

    These are all commonsense steps that the majority of Americans support. So there’s no reason that immigration reform can’t become a reality this year.

    In the meantime, I’ll keep working with our neighbors on our common security and our common prosperity. Millions of Americans earn a living right now because of the trade between our nations. And after this week, I’m as confident as ever that we can build on our shared heritage and values to open more markets for American businesses and create more jobs for American workers.

    Thanks and have a great weekend.

  6. At NRA Convention, Dueling Narratives Displayed With Guns

    May 04, 2013 3:01 AM by WADE GOODWYN – NPR

    The National Rifle Association is holding its annual convention in Houston this weekend. More than 70,000 people are expected to attend for speeches and demos and acres of guns, ammo and camo.

    The NRA is coming off of a major victory: the defeat of gun control legislation in the Senate. While the talk in the convention hall is about keeping up the fight and staying true to the Constitution, a small protest against gun violence is being held outside.

    Gathering In Protest

    It’s a lonely vigil that the activists from No More Names keep outside the Houston Convention Center. They read the names of Americans killed by gunfire in the U.S. since the mass shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn.

    Heather Ross doesn’t seem fazed by being ignored. What does faze her is how long it can take her to read all the names of those killed in one day. Ross says some days can take 20 to 30 minutes.

    “You would just look at the whole list and it kept going and going and going and going. … It just doesn’t end,” she says.

    There are some victims who are not quite 1 year old, and others have no name or age at all, Ross says. For them, she reads, “No name, no age.”

    “You just know where they died. That’s horrible,” she says. “Can you imagine if you died and no one knew who you were — they have no identity for you? They pull people in to identify you and they can’t because your face is gone and there’s nothing?”

    For more: http://www.npr.org/2013/05/04/181025490/at-nra-convention-dueling-narratives-displayed-with-guns

  7. As federal sequester cuts hit home, the Bay Area’s long-term unemployed brace for the worst

    5/03/2013 04:35:21 PM PDT By Patrick May – mercurynews.com

    Throughout the Great Recession, California’s One-Stop Career Centers have served as way stations of hope, places where safety nets fashioned from state and federal unemployment benefits have helped the jobless stay afloat as the storm swirled around them.

    This week, as word spread that the budget stalemate in Washington would mean a nearly 18 percent cut in federal extension benefits, these refuges seemed more and more like recessionary triage centers for the wounded. Slashing both benefits for claimants and operating budgets for the culled staff trying to help them, the federal sequester is now hitting home in a big way.

    “I’m begging the government: Please don’t cut these benefits,” said Rosa Sanchez, a 50-year-old single mother from Santa Clara desperately seeking work since she was laid off after 10 years as an English development specialist for a local school district. “I share my apartment with my teenage son and my elderly mother, and we simply can’t live without that help.

    “I’m willing to work,” Sanchez said during a visit last week to the Campbell center, “and they talk about a job boom in Silicon Valley, but there are no jobs available for me.”

    There’s a lot at stake for these frustrated job-seekers. Under the law, the unemployed can collect up to 26 weeks’ worth of state benefits, and then another 47 weeks of federal extension payouts.

    But as part of the so-called sequester cuts mandated by Congress in 2011 as a way to force itself to cut the national deficit, California now will receive $250 million less from the federal government to hand out to those who have been out of work for more than 26 weeks. While another 500,000 Californians who have not reached their 27th week will continue to receive their state unemployment checks as usual, a nearly equal number of unemployed now face potentially drastic reduction in their personal budgets.

    The irony of the sequester cuts has not been lost on the long-term unemployed. While they watched lawmakers hustle to restore funding for airport security slashed by the stalemate, these residents now into their second year of job-hunting feel unfairly singled out as their benefit reduction starts to kick in this week.

    To people who’ve been unemployed for a long time and are already struggling to hold on to the little they’ve got left, these cuts will be devastating,” said Gay Plair Cobb, CEO of the Oakland Private Industry Council, which helps administer the Oakland One-Stop center. “Congress is essentially pushing people deeper into poverty.

    For more: http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_23166026/federal-sequester-cuts-hit-home-bay-areas-long

  8. Why the US economy is taking so long to recover

    5/4/13 By PAUL WISEMAN | Associated Press – 1 hr 42 mins ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The American economy and job market are moving in the right direction, just not very quickly.

    The news Friday that U.S. employers added a solid 165,000 jobs in April and unemployment fell to a four-year low of 7.5 percent came as a relief.

    The Dow Jones industrial average surged 142 points, or 1 percent, on the news to close at a record 14,973. The better-than-expected April numbers erased worries that the U.S. economy was stalling for the fourth year in a row — a fear that had emerged after a disappointing jobs report for March. Friday’s report also showed job growth in March and February was stronger than first estimated.

    Nearly four years after a devastating recession, the U.S. economy and job market are far from a full recovery, but they have made steady progress. Here is an overview of America’s economic health:

    —HIRING: PICKING UP BUT FACING A LONG SLOG
    —UNEMPLOYMENT: FALLING — BUT STILL HIGH
    —THE ECONOMY: GROWING SLOWLY
    —CONSUMERS, HOUSING AND THE STOCK MARKET: LOOKING UP
    —EUROPE: MAKING THE U.S. ECONOMY LOOK GOOD

    For more: http://news.yahoo.com/why-us-economy-taking-long-recover-172954700.html

  9. WH

    Sunday, May 5, 2013

    All Times Eastern

    President Obama receives the presidential daily briefing

    9:45AM
    President Obama travels to Columbus, OH

    7:00 AM
    8:00 AM
    9:00 AM
    9:45 AM
    President Obama travels to Columbus, OH

    10:00 AM
    President Obama departs Joint Base Andrews

    11:00 AM
    11:15 AM
    President Obama arrives Columbus, Ohio
    Rickenbacker International Airport, Columbus, OH

    12:00 PM
    12:30 PM
    President Obama delivers the commencement address for the Ohio State University Ceremony
    Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH

    1:00 PM
    2:00 PM
    2:05 PM
    President Obama departs Columbus, Ohio
    Rickenbacker International Airport

    3:00 PM
    President Obama arrives Joint Base Andrews

    3:25 PM
    President Obama arrives the White House

    4:00 PM
    5:00 PM
    6:00 PM
    7:00 PM
    8:00 PM
    9:00 PM
    10:00 PM

  10. Michelle Obama: Gun violence has children fearing death every day

    5/03/13 12:56 PM ET By Justin Sink – TheHill

    First lady Michelle Obama said that students at a high school just five miles from her family’s Chicago home told her that “every day they wake up and wonder whether they’re going to make it out of school alive.”

    In an interview with “CBS Sunday Morning” that will air this weekend, the first lady said that when she met students after delivering a speech last month on gun violence, she was struck by the extent to which fear dominated the children’s everyday lives.

    “I mean, every single kid worries about their own death, or the death of someone, every single day,” Obama said.

    The first lady traveled to her hometown to advocate for new gun controls ahead of the Senate’s vote last month on a bill that would expand background checks on gun purchases. The vote fell five senators short of the 60 needed.

    In the interview with CBS, Obama said that lawmakers have an “obligation to these kids” to try again.

    “We have millions of kids living in these kinds of circumstances who are doing everything right,” Obama said. “And we, as a nation, have to embrace these kids and let them know that we hear them, and see them. One kid told me he felt like he lived in a cage, because he feels like his community is unseen, unheard and nobody cares about it.”

    Read more: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/297647-michelle-obama-gun-violence-makes-schoolchildren-fear-death-daily

  11. Gabrielle Giffords to receive “Profile in Courage” award

    Mar 8, 2013- Tim Gaynor – Reuters

    PHOENIX (Reuters) – Former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords is set to receive the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award for her efforts to curb gun violence since she was seriously wounded in a Tucson shooting rampage two years ago.

    Gifffords is to receive the award, given annually by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, in recognition of the “political, personal, and physical courage she has demonstrated in her fearless public advocacy for policy reforms aimed at reducing gun violence,” the foundation announced on Friday.

    The award, named for President Kennedy’s 1957 Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Profiles in Courage,” is to be presented to Giffords by foundation president Caroline Kennedy at a ceremony in Boston on May 5.

    Giffords, a Democrat, was shot in the head when a gunman opened fire on a congressional outreach event in Tucson in January 2011, killing six people and wounding a dozen others. She resigned from Congress a year after the shooting to focus on her recovery.

    Following the attack that killed 26 people at a Connecticut elementary school in December, Giffords and her husband, former astronaut Mark Kelly, founded a lobby group aimed at curbing gun violence and challenging the political clout of the well-funded gun lobby.

    “Instead of retreating following the tragic shooting that ended her Congressional career, she has recommitted herself to fighting for a more peaceful society free from hate and violence. She is a true Profile in Courage,” Caroline Kennedy said in a statement released by the foundation.

    For more: http://news.yahoo.com/gabrielle-giffords-receive-profile-courage-award-002219295.html

    • Giffords receives Profile in Courage award

      5/5/13 Associated Press – 15 mins ago

      BOSTON (AP) — Former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords received the 2013 Profile in Courage award at the John F. Kennedy Library on Sunday in recognition of the political, personal, and physical courage she has demonstrated in her fearless public advocacy for policy reforms aimed at reducing gun violence.

      Giffords, who was seriously wounded in a 2011 shooting when a lone gunman opened fire as she met with constituents in a Tucson, Ariz., shopping mall, and her husband, former astronaut Mark Kelly, have been lobbying for more gun control legislation.

      This year, on the second anniversary of the January shooting, the couple started Americans for Responsible Gun Ownership, an organization that “supports the right to bear arms and responsible public policy on guns and gun ownership.”

      Caroline Kennedy, President of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, presented the award to Giffords.
      Kennedy took a moment to salute the first responders and the citizens of Boston. Referring to the Boston Marathon bombings last month, Kennedy said, “All Americans have been inspired by the countless acts of selfless bravery and compassion we saw during the violence that struck this city on Patriots Day.”

      In presenting the award to the former Arizona Congresswoman, Kennedy said, “Gabby Giffords has turned a personal nightmare into a movement for political change.”

      Earlier Sunday, Giffords and Kelly spent time visiting victims of the marathon bombings at Spaulding Rehabilitation Center in Boston.

      “For victims of the Boston Marathon bombings, we extend our deepest sympathies to all of you who have endured violence and loss,” Kelly said.

      “Courage means doing everything we can to prevent other parents from having to endure that loss,” he said.
      Alluding to her disappointment in Congress’ failure to pass gun control legislation last week, Giffords called for courage from lawmakers.

      “I believe we all have courage inside,” she said. “I just wish there was more courage in Congress.”
      “It’s been a hard two years for me,” Giffords said, “but I want to make the world a better place more than ever.”

      Kelly also praised his wife.

      “There are people who make things happen. There are people who watch things happen. And there are people who wonder what just happened,” Kelly said. “Gabby Giffords is a person who makes things happen.”
      Kennedy cited Giffords’ strength to carry on a difficult fight.

      “Our family is still suffering from the heartbreak caused by gun violence,” Kennedy said. “No one should have to lose a husband, a wife, a father, a child, to senseless murder.

      “But as our nominee has shown, out of that pain and tragedy, we must find the strength to carry on, to give meaning to our lives, and to build a more just and peaceful world.”

    • May 5, 2013

      REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
      AT THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY COMMENCEMENT

      Ohio Stadium
      Columbus, Ohio

      1:00 P.M. EDT

      THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. (Applause.) Hello, Buckeyes! O-H!

      AUDIENCE: I-O!

      THE PRESIDENT: O-H!

      AUDIENCE: I-O!

      THE PRESIDENT: O-H!

      AUDIENCE: I-O!

      THE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you so much. Everybody, please be seated. Thank you, Dr. Gee, for the wonderful introduction. I suspect the good President may have edited out some other words that were used to describe me. (Laughter.) I appreciate that. But I’m going to let Michelle know of all the good comments.

      To the Board of Trustees; Congresswoman Beatty; Mayor Coleman; and all of you who make up The Ohio State University for allowing me to join you — it is an incredible honor.

      And most of all, congratulations, Class of 2013! (Applause.) And of course, congratulations to all the parents, and family, and friends and faculty here in the Horseshoe — this is your day as well. (Applause.) I’ve been told to ask everybody, though, please be careful with the turf. Coach Meyer has big plans for this fall. (Laughter.)

      I very much appreciate the President’s introduction. I will not be singing today. (Laughter.)

      AUDIENCE: Aww — (laughter.)

      THE PRESIDENT: It is true that I did speak at that certain university up north a few years ago. But, to be fair, you did let President Ford speak here once — and he played football for Michigan! (Laughter.) So everybody can get some redemption.

      In my defense, this is my fifth visit to campus in the past year or so. (Applause.) One time, I stopped at Sloppy’s to grab some lunch. Many of you — Sloopy’s — I know. (Laughter.) It’s Sunday and I’m coming off a foreign trip. (Laughter.) Anyway, so I’m at Sloopy’s and many of you were still eating breakfast. At 11:30 a.m. (Laughter.) On a Tuesday. (Laughter.) So, to the Class of 2013, I will offer my first piece of advice: Enjoy it while you can. (Laughter.) Soon, you will not get to wake up and have breakfast at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday. (Laughter.) And once you have children, it gets even earlier. (Laughter.)

      But, Class of 2013, your path to this moment has wound you through years of breathtaking change. You were born as freedom forced its way through a wall in Berlin, tore down an Iron Curtain across Europe. You were educated in an era of instant information that put the world’s accumulated knowledge at your fingertips. And you came of age as terror touched our shores; and an historic recession spread across the nation; and a new generation signed up to go to war.

      So you’ve been tested and you’ve been tempered by events that your parents and I never imagined we’d see when we sat where you sit. And yet, despite all this, or perhaps because of it, yours has become a generation possessed with that most American of ideas — that people who love their country can change it for the better. For all the turmoil, for all the times you’ve been let down, or frustrated at the hand that you’ve been dealt, what I have seen — what we have witnessed from your generation — is that perennial, quintessentially American value of optimism; altruism; empathy; tolerance; a sense of community; a sense of service — all of which makes me optimistic for our future.

      For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/05/05/remarks-president-ohio-state-university-commencement

  12. GOP WRONG WAY

    Florida rejects Medicaid expansion, leaves 1 million uninsured

    May 5, 2013 at 12:01 pm Posted by Sarah Kliff – washingtonpost

    It seemed like a watershed moment for the Affordable Care Act when Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R), a staunch Obamacare opponent, embraced the Medicaid expansion in February.

    “While the federal government is committed to paying 100 percent of the costs, I cannot deny Floridians who need access to health care,” Scott told reporters at a press conference.

    Scott wouldn’t be the one to “deny Floridians” a part of the health care law—but the Florida legislature had other plans. Lawmakers adjourned Friday after passing a budget that does not include funding for a Medicaid expansion. Unless the Republican-controlled legislature comes back for a special session later this year—which some Democrats are calling for—Florida will not expand Medicaid in 2014.

    In Florida, where one in five non-elderly residents lack insurance coverage, the consequences are especially large: An estimated 1.3 million Floridians were expected to gain coverage through the the Medicaid expansion. About a quarter of those people—Floridians earning between 100 and 133 percent of the Federal Poverty Line—would still be eligible for tax subsidies on the health insurance exchange.

    For more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/05/05/florida-rejects-medicaid-expansion-leaves-1-3-million-uninsured/

  13. May 05, 2013

    Statement by the President in Honor of Cinco de Mayo

    Today we honor the victory of the Mexican people in their fight for freedom at the Battle of Puebla 151 years ago. On Cinco de Mayo we celebrate the contributions and heritage of Mexican Americans and we recognize the strong cultural, familial, and economic ties that bind the United States and Mexico.

    This week, I was proud to visit Mexico to reaffirm our vision for the Americas as a region of shared opportunity and prosperity. I left even more convinced that we have historic opportunities to expand trade and make our economies even more competitive, so that we continue creating good jobs in both of our countries.

    In Mexico, I also emphasized the need to pass commonsense immigration reform that lives up to our tradition as a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants, including generations of Mexican Americans who have enriched our country. Fixing our immigration system is one of my top legislative priorities and I am hopeful that we can make immigration reform a reality this year.

    Cinco de Mayo reminds us that America’s diversity is America’s strength. Today, as we celebrate the contributions and history of Mexican Americans and Hispanics in America, let us celebrate the larger story of America and our unique immigrant heritage.

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    THIS POST IS NOW CLOSED NBLB

    Come on over to my newest post titled: ” U.S.-ROK Alliance 60th Anniversary & S. Carolina House 1st CD Spec Election 2013″

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