May 20, 2010
By Ben Feller
WASHINGTON (AP) – Confronting soaring frustration over illegal immigration, President Barack Obama on Wednesday condemned Arizona’s crackdown and pushed instead for a federal fix the nation could embrace. He said that will never happen without Republican support, pleading: “I need some help.”
In asking anew for an immigration overhaul, Obama showed solidarity with his guest of honor, Mexican President Felipe Calderon, who called Arizona’s law discriminatory and warned Mexico would reject any effort to “criminalize migration.” The United States and Mexico share a significant economic and political relationship that stands to be damaged the more the nations are at odds over immigration, which affects millions of people on both sides of the border.
Obama sought to show that he, too, is fed up with his own government’s failure to fix a system widely seen as broken. He said that would require solving border security, employment and citizenship issues all at once – the kind of effort that collapsed in Congress just three years ago.
The president’s stand underscored the forces working against him in this election year: the need for help from Republican critics, the impatience of states like Arizona after federal inaction, the pressure to show movement on a campaign promise, and the mood of the public disgusted by porous borders.
The Arizona law requires police to question people about their immigration status if there’s reason to suspect they’re in the country illegally, and it makes it a state crime to be in the U.S. illegally. People may be questioned about their status if they’ve been stopped by police who are in the process of enforcing another law.
The law will take effect July 29 unless legal challenges are successful. Almost twice as many people support it as those who oppose it, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll this month. It found that 42 percent favored it, 24 percent opposed it and another 29 percent said they were neutral.
February 9, 2010
By David Gutierrez
Cancer rates among Hispanics rise following migration to the United States, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Miami.
“This study is [reminiscent] of studies from the late 1960s that looked at immigrants from China and Japan to the United States,” said Otis Brawley of the American Cancer Society. “They raise risk of cancer by immigrating and raise rates for second generation Americans even more so.”
The researchers used data from the Florida cancer registry, International Agency for Research on Cancer, and 2000 U.S. census to compare the rates of various cancers among Hispanics of different national origins both in the United States and in their home countries, as well as rates among non-Hispanics in the United States, between 1999 and 2001. They found that cancer rates among Hispanics living in the United States are approximately 40 percent higher than rates in Latin America, although the specifics vary by national origin and cancer type. For example, rates of colorectal cancer practically double among Puerto Ricans moving to the mainland, while roughly tripling among Mexican and Cuban migrants.
Mexican immigrants had the lowest cancer rates overall, although rates of cancers associated with minorities, such as cervical, stomach and liver cancer, were high. “New Latinos,” which includes Hispanics from Central or South America, the Dominican Republic or Spain, also had high rates of “minority” cancers, as well as high rates of thyroid cancer and low rates of lung cancer.
The researchers attributed the rise in cancer rates among immigrants to the adoption of unhealthy lifestyle patterns prevalent in the United States, particularly dietary changes including a higher consumption of red meat. Lower levels of physical activity and higher tobacco and alcohol consumption are also likely culprits.
“For Hispanic populations, there are beneficial lifestyles associated with their origin that probably should be kept,” said lead author Paulo Pinheiro. “There are lifestyles that may be more prevalent in the United States that probably should be avoided.”