Sunday, May 11, 2014

Immigrant of the Day: Professional Boxer Bermane Stiverne (Haiti), New Heavyweight Champion


Born in Haiti and now fighting out of Las Vegas, Bermane Stiverne knocked out Chris Arreola and became the first Haitian-born heavyweight champion.  For the ESPN report on the fight, click here.

Stiverne won a vacant heavyweight world title in the first boxing event to be held at the Galen Center on the campus of the University of Southern California.  With the victory, Stiverne became the first Haitian-born heavyweight titleholder.  He claimed the belt that Vitali Klitschko vacated in December to turn his focus on politics in Ukraine.


May 11, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Escape from Cuba: Yasiel Puig's Untold Journey to the Dodgers


Jesse Katz in Los Angeles Magazine tells the story of enigmatic Los Angeles Dodger star Yasiel Puig, who fled Cuba by hook or by crook to Mexico and ultimately the United States.  As Los Angeles Tims reporter Bill Plaschke writes,

"In an account featuring on-the-record interviews and court records, Katz details how, in June of 2012, Puig was smuggled to Mexico by members of the Los Zetas Mexican drug cartel, his trip funded by a Miami air-conditioning repairman named Raul Pacheco who was on probation for attempted burglary. The smugglers held Puig in a seedy Mexican hotel for more than two weeks while attempting to extract increased payments from Pacheco. Eventually Puig was taken from the hotel by a gang organized by Pacheco and soon thereafter joined the Dodgers by signing a $42-million contract.

The stunning timeline doesn't even scratch the surface of a compelling tale that recounts Puig's humble childhood in a tiny rural village, how he was dropped from his Cuban league team for disciplinary reasons, reports of his failed defections, and accusations that he turned in potential defectors to the Cuban government while planning his own escape."


April 16, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Former Immigrant of the Day Signs Multi-Year NBA Contract

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Former DREAMER Gets NBA Contract


Former Dreamer, ImmigrationProf Immigrant of the Day, and Pacific 12 2012 Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year, Cal basketball player Jorge Gutierrez recently signed a 10 day contract with the NBA's Brooklyn Nets.  Gutierrez is one of a handful of Mexican nationals, including Horacio Llamas, Eduardo Nájera, and Gustavo Ayónto, to play in the National Basketball Association.



March 16, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Championship Fight Cancelled, Champ in Immigration Lock-Up



Boxing was in the news yesterday with Mexican superstar Canelo Alvarez returning to the ring after his tough loss to Floyd Mayweather, Jr. 

ESPN reports the IBF junior middleweight champion Carlos Molina was jailed in Clark County Detention Center in Nevada after immigration officials discovered that Molina had been deported in 2006 and re-entered the country illegally. Molina had been scheduled to defend his title last night against Jermall Charlo at the MGM Grand Garden on the undercard of the Saul “Canelo” Alvarez-Alfredo Angulo main event. Because of Molina's detention, his fight was canceled.

Interestingly, Alfredo Angulo, who fought in the main event, had his own immigration problems a while back and was held in immigrant detention for a lengthy period of time in 2012.


March 9, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, February 10, 2014

Migrant Workers Exploited to Make Sochi Winter Olympics Happen

Photo Courtesy of

The Winter Olympics in Sochi have attracted interntaional attention. Think Progress reports on something not likely to be covered in the television coverage. 

As the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, kick off this week, many Central Asian migrant workers who transformed the small resort town into a lavish, international winter sports hub will not be around to celebrate. Over the course of seven years of construction, at least 700 workers were not paid, with hundreds expelled to their home countries. 

The International Olympic Committee has launched a full investigation into the claims that hundreds of migrants who worked on the Sochi Games have not been paid.  NPR reports that activists, including those voicing concerns on the treatment of migrant workers, are suffering harassment and fear that it will escalate after the Olympics conclude and the world is not watching.


February 10, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Multilingual Coca-Cola ad sparks anger

On Super Sunday, ImmigrationProf blogger Rose Villazor favorably noted Coca Cola's multilingual Super Bowl commercial.  It appears that teh television spot has generated some controversy from English only advocates concerned that immigrants "fail to assimilate."

Judge for yourself.




Given the outcome of the one-sided football game, it seems that the Super Bowl advertisements and half time show have gotten all of the attention.


February 5, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Here's an Ad about R--skins that its Makers Don't Have the Money to Show During Sunday's Superbowl



The National Congress of American Indians did not have the funds to run this ad during the Super Bowl. You should watch it and share it anyway.

Want to get involved? Here's how to contact the DC team, the NFL, and the DC team's hometown paper: DC Team @redskins Roger Goodell & NFL @NFL @NFLcommish  Washington Post DC's hometown paper is still using the R-word in its coverage of the team.

My co-blogger, Professor Rose Villazor, brought this video to my attention.


February 3, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, January 31, 2014

Deport Justin Bieber? The Movement Continues

Shining a Super Bowl Spotlight on Human Trafficking



Have you had enough Super Bowl hoopla yet?   Denver Broncos versus the Seattle Seahawks. Hall of Fame QB Payton Manning versus Shut-Down, Trash Talking DB Richard ShermanThe Super Bowl commercials to watch.   Office pools and potlucks.  When will the game begin?

Christine Pelosi offers a somewhat less upbeat of what the Super Bowl brings with this Huffington Post story about human trafficking and Super Sunday:  

"While merchants peddle Super Bowl gear, human traffickers peddle people. As we prepare for football festivities, merchants peddle Super Bowl gear and human traffickers peddle people. Though human trafficking is endemic 365 days a year, it is especially rampant on Super Bowl Sunday."

Click here for a different point of view.


January 31, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Another Foreign Boxer With U.S. Immigration Problems



Professional boxing is one of the most international of all professional sports, with championship boxers found in nations around the world.  Boxers quite frequently have immigration hold-ups, with gritty Mexican fighter Alfredo Angulo not long ago held in detention by U.S. immigration authorities for months and ex-heavyweight champ Mike Tyson denied a visa to travel to the United Kingdom.

Dan Rafael on reports that Heavyweight Artur Szpilka, who was turned away by the Department of Homeland Security upon his arrival at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago last Sunday and immediately sent home to Poland, has secured the proper visa and is scheduled to return to the United States on Friday night. Time was of the essence for Szpilka (16-0, 12 KOs)  because he is scheduled to face Bryant Jennings (17-0, 9 KOs) in a 10-round fight between potential heavyweight title challengers on Jan. 25 at the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York.  The match will be televised on HBO.


January 21, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, January 20, 2014

SUPER BOWL SUNDAY: Choir Of Refugee Children To Sing National Anthem At 7th Annual Run For Refugees


With the Super Bowl teams set, we wanted to highlight a special run set on the morning of Super Sunday.

A group of refugee children will sing the National Anthem at the 7th annual Run for Refugees 5K race. The choir will kick off the race at 10 a.m. on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 2.

With more than 800 runners and walkers expected, the Run for Refugees raises awareness and support for refugees who have settled in Connecticut. The event benefits IRIS - Integrated Refugee & Immigrant Services, New Haven's refugee resettlement agency. Since 1982, IRIS has resettled about 5,000 refugees, people forced to flee their home countries because of persecution. Last year IRIS helped more than 400 refugees and immigrants from nations such as Congo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Eritrea, and Cuba. Services include job placement, English language training, healthcare coordination, education and youth services, immigration legal assistance, housing, and case management.



January 20, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, January 10, 2014

Mike Tyson thinks what Dennis Rodman has done is 'treason'




Because this whole Dennis Rodman-North Korea story wasn't crazy enough, let's add some Mike Tyson? After Rodman apologized for shouting down a CNN anchor this week, the former heavyweight boxing champ has decided to weigh in with his thoughts about Rodman. 




January 10, 2014 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Former Heayweight Champ Mike Tyson Barred Admission into UK

Saturday, December 14, 2013

IMMIGRANT OF THE YEAR 2013: David "Papi" Ortiz, Boston Red Sox

Friday, December 13, 2013

Latinas Play Squash? Ivy League Imports Squash Stars From Unlikely Places






The Wall Street Journal reports on an interesting development in the Ivy League.  A squash match between Cornell and Columbia last weekend featured two star players with backgrounds not common to the Ivy League. Reyna Pacheco grew up undocumented in a hardscrabble part of San Diego after her mother left Mexico with no money and no job. Now she's one of the best women's squash players at Columbia University. Jesse Pacheco. unrelated to Reyna, is the current captain of the Cornell team and an All-American. From the Bronx, she is the daughter of a single mother from Ecuador who lost her job when Jesse was in middle school.

Cornell won 3-0.


December 13, 2013 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Immigrants in the NFL: Sebastian Janikowski (OAKLAND RAIDERS)


It is Sunday in December so it seems appropriate to highlight the National Football League today.

Born in Poland, Sebastian Janikowski is a placekicker for the Oakland Raiders of the National Football League. He played college football for Florida State and was a two-time consensus All-American. Nicknamed the Polish Cannon, Janikowski is considered to have one of the strongest kicking legs in the league, and leads the NFL in kickoffs for touchbacks.

In September 2011 on a Monday Night Football game, Janikowski tied the NFL record for the longest field goal at 63.


The Raiders play the New York Jets later today.

By the way, another foreign-born placekicker, Morten Andersen, is the leading scorer in NFL history.


December 8, 2013 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, November 29, 2013

Immigration Article of the Day: Labor and Immigration Issues in Sports by Dr. Anthony Borgese


Labor and Immigration Issues in Sports by Dr. Anthony Borgese - Associate Professor - City University of New York

Abstract: Every year, international athletes come to play professional sports in the United States. Are they stealing jobs from Americans, or should they be welcomed for their talents? Should they be entitled to special treatment with regard to immigration and labor laws, or should they have to go through the same procedures as any immigrant applying for United States citizenship? The purpose of this article is to determine the historical and cultural framework with regard to the use of sports as a vehicle to achieve immigrant assimilation in the United States. This article also addresses the topic of athletes coming into the United States to “steal” jobs from Americans. Second, this article discusses the legal issues as well as the overlapping labor issues concerning immigration and worker migration. Third, the article is also important in the post-9/11 period because of immigration and security issues.


November 29, 2013 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, November 1, 2013

David "Papi" Ortiz World Series MVP

Friday, September 27, 2013

Immigrant of the Day: Hanley Ramirez (Dominican Republic), Los Angeles Dodgers



Hanley Ramírez (born December 23, 1983) is a Dominican professional baseball shortstop and third baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers of Major League Baseball (MLB). Ramírez was the 2006 National League Rookie of the Year. In 2009, he won the National League batting title and in 2010 finished runner-up in the Home Run Derby. A three-time All-Star starter, Ramirez is hitting .346 for the MLB Western Division champion Los Angeles Dodgers.  Bleacher Report suggests that, on a team with many players having outstanding seasons, Ramirez may be the Dodgers' true MVP.



September 27, 2013 in Current Affairs, Sports | Permalink | Comments (0)