The Farm Aid 30: Strength From Our Roots gathering occurred on September 17 & 18, 2015. During the 1980s farm crisis, a handful of farmers struggling to save their own farms started using their experience to help their neighbors fight back against foreclosure and abuse. The term “Farm Advocate” emerged to describe this frontline, farmer-to-farmer assistance.
Following the screening of the documentary film Homeplace Under Fire, the small group of farm advocates who are still at it, 30 years later, having saved thousands of farms during their careers, gathering for discussion.
Moderator: Charlie Thompson, Duke Institute for Documentary Studies
Mona Lee Brock, National Farm Crisis Center
Benny Bunting, Rural Advancement Foundation International – USA
Linda Hessman, Farm Advocate
Lou Anne Kling, Farmers’ Legal Action Group
Betty Puckett, Louisiana Interchurch Conference
Shirley Sherrod, Southwest Georgia Project
John Zippert, Federation of Southern Cooperatives
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Farm Aid was started by Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp in 1985 to keep family farmers on the land and has worked since then to make sure everyone has access to good food from family farmers. Dave Matthews joined Farm Aid’s board of directors in 2001.
For more information about Farm Aid, visit: http://farmaid.org/youtube Video Rating: / 5
2nd Annual Virginia Immigrant Advocates Summit was held Oct. 24, 2011 at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, VA. This is Part 1 of 4 videos from the Summit. It includes: Master of Ceremonies, Leni Gonzalez; Welcome from Rev. Carlton Elliott Smith, UUCA; Reading of Alberto Blanco’s poem “Mi Tribu” by Eric Manuel Giblin, Director of the Office for Hispanic Pastoral Svcs of the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, and Dan Gordon, Community Organizer with Jews United for Justice.
The Virginia Immigrant Advocates Summit 2011 was sponsored by Coalition of Asia Pacific Americans of Virginia, (CAPAVA), Centreville Immigration Forum (CIF), Jews United for Justice (JUFJ), Legal Aid Justice Center’s Immigrant Advocacy Program, Social Action Linking Together (SALT), Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington (UUCA), and Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations (VACOLAO). Video Rating: / 5
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Beginning July 1, a new state regulation will definitely require people found guilty of their first charge of driving a vehicle while intoxicated to operate a vehicle only with an ignition interlock product, which prevents a motor vehicle from being started when a vehicle owner is inebriated.
Presently, the law requires judges to require the interlocks for first-time offenders with a blood alcohol content of 0.15 percent or higher and for second and subsequent offenses of the DUI law. The legal driving limit is 0.08 percent.
About 4,500 interlock devices are installed in vehicles in Virginia, according to the Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program. The figure is definitely predicted to rise under the new rule.
Last year, 245 citizens were killed in alcohol-related crashes in Virginia and 28,162 drivers were founded guilty of DUI, according to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.
Excluding insurance hikes, a motorist’s very first DUI can easily cost between 0-,741 in fines, government fees, and costs. A second DUI costs between ,511-,511. A third costs between ,310-,760. Finally, a fourth DUI costs between ,880-,380.
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There are around 13 different fines, fees, and costs that may be assessed against a defendant if he is found guilty, pleads guilty, or pleads no contest:
Offense convictions carry no mandatory minimum period of incarceration for offenders, except if the offender had a minor passenger in the vehicle (mandatory incarceration of five days), if the driver had a BAC in excess of.15 (mandatory minimum incarceration of five days), or the driver had a BAC in excess of.20 (mandatory minimum incarceration of ten days).
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No statutory language in the state of Virginia prohibits pleading down DUI charges into lesser criminal offenses or even traffic violations. The ability to do so, however, is contingent upon the use of legal counsel and the case-specific nature of each DUI arrest. Likewise, pending case-specific factors, dismissal of charges may also be possible.
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Last week, 29-year old terminally ill, Brittney Maynard used Oregon’s Right to Die law to end her life. The practice of physician aid in dying is now expanding into New Mexico.
Physician aid in dying is commonly associated with practices like euthanasia and suicide, but Psychologist Carolina Yahne says they are very different.
“Someone has possibly less then 6 months to live, they are mentally competent,” Yahne says. “They are making a clear decision, like I know I am going to die and I don’t want to suffer any longer, nor do I want to put my family through suffering. So, if you are my doctor would you please prescribe the medication I need.”
Currently the right to die is legal in Bernalillo County. In January, Judge Nan Nash of the Second district court in Albuquerque ruled in favor of two doctors who wanted to be protected from prosecution if they provided the necessary prescriptions to Aja Riggs, a 49-year-old with cancer. Riggs is now in remission, and people are wondering what this means for the rest of the state.
“People are saying, wait a minute if we are going to do this we need to make a statewide decision,” Yahne said. “We don’t want little patch work counties here and there. So, the attorney general has made a stay. Essentially, it is a message saying wait, and let’s make a decision at a higher level possibly all the way to the supreme court of New Mexico.”
Joan McIver Gibson, is a retired philosopher and consultant in bio ethics, says that the main ethical argument is if physician aid in dying is any different then choosing to stop medical treatment.
“Is there something different, in a situation where I am terminally ill,” Gibson said. “Let’s say I’m in intractable pain and I just can’t be made comfortable. And I am still in my right mind, but I am not hooked up to a ventilator, there is no treatment that I can say please so I can die.”
Religious Communities, some of the main proponents against the practice of physician aid in dying, do see a difference. Dr. Eduardo Rivera, Senior Pastor at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church says that there is a difference between stopping advanced medical treatment and choosing to end your life.
“We applaud science, and medicine,” Rivera says. “We are actually in agreement with extending life as much as possible. We also agree that when there is a diagnosis or a prognosis of end of life then we agree that even those medical measures should be dropped. But that is as far as we go.”
Gibson says that the most important part of the debate is that people are talking.
“We keep the conversation open,” Gibson says. “That we respect people’s values on all sides of the issue. And I’m always reluctant to forbid something for everybody just because for me it might violate my code of ethics.”
Yahne says now that there is a court ruling she expects that patients will take advantage of it. Video Rating: / 5