Saturday, September 17, 2016

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month! This is my seventh year celebrating it as a staffer at the White House, and it’s hard to believe it will be the final one.
Growing up in a Mexican-American family in San Antonio, Texas, I was raised to be proud of both my Mexican and American heritage. I was taught the values of this country by my parents, grandparents, and very large network of extended family and friends. I was taught that anyone can achieve their dreams, if they work hard. But I never thought I’d end up in the White House. And as someone who’s worked on public policy and social justice issues all her life, I never thought I’d get the opportunity to be part of the progress we’ve made under this remarkable president.
Under President Obama, we’ve brought back the economy from the brink and helped make sure more families have access to the same basic opportunities: a good-paying job, affordable health care, and a good education. Since the President took office, about 4 million more Hispanic Americans have health care than before, and more Hispanic students are graduating high school than ever before.
And last year, across every race and age group in America, incomes grew at the fastest rate on record -- and Hispanic American families had some of the fastest income growth.
I started my career fighting for DREAMers, and am personally proud of our work to bring these inspiring young people out of the shadows and to keep families together. Through the President’s executive actions to modernize our immigration system, more than 740,000 DREAMers have been able to contribute to the only country they’ve ever known.
But we all know there is more work to do. And while we have not achieved our ultimate goal of passing commonsense immigration reform, we have broadened and deepened the coalition of support, and I am confident we will get there because you will continue to fight for it.
When I reflect on the work we have left to do, I think of the values my family taught me in San Antonio, and of their boundless faith in this country: the idea that if we stay optimistic and stick together, progress is possible.
Mil gracias,
Felicia Escobar
Special Assistant to the President for Immigration Policy
The White House

In 1974, I led an expedition to explore the great New England Seamount Chain. Thousands of feet underwater, the chain includes four underwater volcanic mountains that formed over 100 million years ago when the North American plate migrated over a "hot spot" -- an area where heat rising through the earth melts rock into magma, creating massive undersea volcanoes like in the Hawaiian Islands.
Standing high above the surrounding ocean floor, these massive undersea mountains are visible oases of life in an otherwise vast, undersea desert. On their rocky slopes, fragile deep sea corals feed in the nutrient rich waters that flow past.
Protecting these unique habitats is critical to the survival of not only these beautiful coral gardens, but also the small fish and other marine creatures that call these magical gardens home. They need these nurseries of the very deep in order to survive. And we need them -- as a foundational element of our food chain.
As the first-ever national marine monument established in the Atlantic Ocean, this designation is vital to both the ongoing protection of some of our most important underwater ecosystems and the future climate resiliency of our oceans, which are essential guardians of our future.
The monument will provide refuge for protected animals, like sea turtles and whales, as well as species of coral found nowhere else on Earth. It also encompasses three underwater canyons that are even deeper than the Grand Canyon.
Protecting this area bolsters the sea’s ability to sustain itself, but it is also critical to protecting ourselves -- and our future. It’s also an ongoing reflection of President Obama’s commitment to conservation. To date, he has protected more land and water than any other president in history.
That’s pretty incredible.
Dr. Bob Ballard
Department of Ocean Engineering
The University of Rhode Island

No comments:

Post a Comment