Democratic convention video highlights

Friday, July 20, 2007
Time: 8:11 PM

NOTE: The following videos are best watch in full-screen mode, which is achived by clicking on the full screen symbol on the lower right hand of the player (highlighted in red in the image below).

This weekend, I'll be providing highlights from last night's Democratic convention. Since the News-Times could afford to send a reporter to either of the political party's big event, you can tune into HatCityBLOG for watch all the speeches from the nominees.

First up to bat, the nomination of Lori Kaback for Town Clerk.

Next, the nomination of the person who will finally give City Clerk Jean Natale her long overdue pink slip, Eileen Coladarci.

For the position of Treasurer, the Democrats nominated former assistant state attorney, former member of the Board of Education and Democratic Town Committee, Brain Cotter.

For more information on the Danbury Democratic Committee's platform for 2007, click here.


Time: 4:45 PM

Even in the mist of sorrow surrounding the Sao Paulo Brazilian plane crash, which killed all 186 people on board, the anti-immigrant xenophobes somehow find a way to turn a tragedy into a joke that only a bigot would find amusing.
Posted by: TheMemphisKid Fri, Jul 20 2007
It is sad. I think all the Brazilians should return home to help their fellow countrymen through the mourning process.
...and you wonder why many call Danbury a hotbed of bigotry and racial intolerance towards immigrants.

Helena Abrantes on "Community Forum"

Time: 1:51 PM

Democratic mayoral candidate Helena Abrantes made an appearance the local access show "Community Forum" to talk about her candidacy, her "issues" with Mayor Boughton, and her vision for Danbury.

The person who wants to give Mayor Mark his pink slip has come a long way from her first appearance in front of the camera and time will tell if her message of change and vision for the future will resonate with the residents of Danbury who are concerned about the direction of the city.

One thing is for certain...if last night's energized Democratic convention was any indication, this will not be like 2005.

Municipal election breakdown

Time: 10:35 AM

As I process the footage from last night's Democratic convention, here's the breakdown of all the nominees.


Thursday, July 19, 2007
Time: 4:01 PM

According to channel 4, there is a strong possibility of a tornado dropping in the Botsford area, which is not far from Danbury.

I'm shutting down system and preparing for the Democratic convention at City Hall tonight. I would encourage everyone in the area to shut down your computers and unplug them from the electrical source until the storm has passed.

UPDATE (from cell phone): Just got word that a tornado touched down in New Milford. Do not have any specifics but just giving a heads up plans to travel on Route 7 later today.

Keep your eye on the ball

Time: 1:48 PM

Okay, the day is here.

I guess people have been wondering why I haven't talked about the people running for office on the Democratic and Republican ticket. Well, quite simply, I've been quite busy gathering information and preparing stories to get into who running against who. For instance, it was well known for at least a month that Democrat-turn Republican D.A.Y.O. President Pudgie Delohery was being courted by the Democratic-turn Republican leadership of Wayne Baker and company to run against Lori Kaback. In fact, I last week, I went to the Catholic War Veterans Hall where the D.A.Y.O meetings take place and met with Delohery who all but confirmed the obvious.

Yeah, I could have done a post on how pathetic the Republican party is that they had to go out and find a former Kaback supporting Democrat to will their Treasurer slot or I could have ran off a list of questions surrounding Delohery but in the end, you have to ask yourself, what's more important, the issues that are not being covered, or the political desperation of a party that grabbed a candidate to run for Town Clerk not because of experience, but on the gamble that she's "popular" enough to beat Kaback, a person who actually collected more votes than Mayor Boughton in some wards and was second only to the Mayor it terms of total votes in '05.

Yeah, I could have written about that or the countless tips and bits of info I've received over the last month but my interest is elsewhere right now. My thoughts go back towards an interview I did with Jesse Jackson one week before the '06 primary. During the interview, I asked him for his comment on a political dirty trick the Lieberman camp was doing to Lamont supporters and he told me something I'll never forget. Basically he said it's not important and the only thing that was important was to "keep your eye on the ball." In other words, that silly stuff is of little meaning when it comes to what's important to people and to the big picture...A CHANGE IN THE WAY THINGS ARE DONE.

In '06, Jackson's "eye on the ball" was the war and making a statement by beating Lieberman in the primary... in '07, my "eye on the ball" is putting a spotlight on the political stubbornness of a Republican Party that has gone out of control.

So, what's more important, silly political nonsense or a change in the way things are done in Danbury. This election will not be about a popularity contest, it won't be about who can throw the most dirt, it won't even be about illegal immigration. It WILL be about the mayoral record of Mark Boughton and the record of the Republican majority of the Common Council and the job they done in the last two years.


Let other babble about stupid stuff, I haven't the time for that type of stuff and the readers who email me with their concerns about the condition of Danbury don't have time to read silliness either. The people I talk to, who are Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, are VERY concerned about a number of issues in Danbury that are either not being addresses, or created by the current administration and are looking for answers to their concerns so they can make a sound decision come election day in November.

I've learned from my interview with Rev Jackson and I'm interested in only one thing, doing what I can to lay out a case for change and with my years of material, I plan on presenting my case to the residents of Danbury who have been let down by a mainstream media that stubbornly refuses to report properly on what's happening in this city. will all be witnesses.


Time: 1:15 PM

Hey, is this mic still on?

Wow, how time flies. I can't believe that it's been two years since I started this crazy thing. When I started this blog on this date in 2005, I had no idea that a little local blog would turn into a site where people around the world would come to visit. Heck, the only reason I started the site was because I was familiar with the local nonsense in Danbury but didn't want to fill up my first site, ConnecticutBLOG, with Danbury-related topics.

When this site started, it was a very basic site that used the same old, tired, boring Minima template that many old, tired, boring blogs still use today. I didn't put much energy into the site for the first year because my main interest was the war in Iraq and the corruption cases in Connecticut (e.g. Ernest Newton). As time passed, three things became apparent to me. 1.) There were a great deal of stories unfolding in Danbury that the local media was ignoring, 2.) No one was reporting on anything that was happening at City hall (meetings) and 3.) No one was holding any elected official accountable for their statements. After attending a town hall meeting and asking the mayor and chief of police TWO simple questions on immigration, hearing the mayor's response, and hearing the reaction from the audience who corrected him on some of his "facts", it became crystal clear to me that I needed to focus more of my attention on Danbury and with that, this site began to really take off.

After two years, I'm proud to say that the roles are reversed as ConnecticutBLOG is no longer my primary blog and I focus a great deal of my attention to this site as well as the community blog, My Left Nutmeg. Blogging isn't easy, in fact, it's pretty damn hard as you have to be on message with at least one post every single day and that is no easy task. With the advent of YouTube, the experience I acquired videotaping the Lamont/Lieberman race, and the encouragement of my readership, I've worked hard to bring to the nation's attention, the many issues happening in the area as well as the political theater of this little Connecticut city that often goes overlooked.

Now ranked on Technorati as the 168,496 most popular blog on the internet, recognized last year as one of best local blogs in the country, and with 200 daily unique visits, 50,000+ unique visits and 78,000+ page views since '05, and now a record 5,500-7,000 visits a month, I think it's fair to say that someone is getting the message*.

As we enter this second year, we're going to do a little more than cover silly politics as there is much more to Danbury than political gridlock, political incompetence, and narrow-minded anti-immigrant bigots who run around the area and act like they have no common sense. Danbury is a wonderful place to live that has a wonderful history and a great community and as time goes on, we're going to focus more on the things that make Danbury a great place to live.

NOW, that not to say that we're not going to keep our eye on the political ball, nor does it mean that we're not going to cover this campaign season in a way that never been seen before, it's just that there's a greater story in Danbury that needs to be told and it involves an ever changing community that has changed the landscape of the area that I remembered when I first set foot on Main Street twenty years ago. Be on the lookout for more interviews, stories on start-up businesses, festivals and local events that you've probably overlooked in the past. I'll debunk the belief from many that there isn't anything to do in Danbury these days...

Finally, as always, this site wouldn't be what it is without your readership and consistent encouragement and for that, I thank you.

With that, lets get back to the show!

(* Web Stats is not an exact science. A fairly large percentage of my readership view this site using a RSS reader which is not picked up with the stat counter. Because of this, the numbers on sitemeter are always going to be lower than the actual viewership by at least 25 percent).

Congressman Murphy assists residents experiencing passport problems

Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Time: 12:54 PM

As many frustrated travelers deal with the National Passport Center's inability to process passport on time, Congressman Chris Murphy is stepping in offer his assistance.

The National Passport Center has been inundated with passport renewals and applications. Since January, Murphy has been able to resolve more than 150 passport issues for vacation, honeymoon, business, family emergency, school and church travel.
"As families look forward to vacations, newlyweds plan their honeymoons and school and church groups make travel plans, they need to know that they must get their passport in order long before their trip," Murphy said. "Unfortunately, the new federal rules are creating a logjam in processing passport paperwork. I'm here to help those who find themselves in a situation where they may not be able to travel."


"Until we have a signed law in hand to deal with this problem in the long term, Connecticut residents who need a valid passport in the coming months should start the process now," Murphy said. "If they fear they won't get their passport in time, they should contact my office."
Murphy said he and his staff can help constituents within two weeks of their travel date who still have not received their passport, or who have a travel emergency and need one immediately.

If you're experiencing problems obtaining your passport, contact Congressman Murphy's office.

Washington D.C. Office
501 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-4476
Fax: (202) 225-5933

New Britain Office
1 Grove St.
New Britain, CT 06053
Phone: (860) 223-8412
Fax: (860) 827-9009

22-26 West Main Street
Meridan, CT 06450
Phone: (203) 630-0815
Fax: (203) 630-1903

111 days...

Time: 10:12 AM

until we have a REAL City Clerk.

The story of Tereza Pereira

Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Time: 12:52 PM

I've been receiving a great deal of emails from across the state about the Santos family and a couple of readers requested that I re-post my coverage of similar, which is just as heart-breaking...the story of Tereza Pereira.

Pereira came to the United Staes on a visitor's visa 19 years ago and made a living cleaning homes and businesses in the area.

She started working toward legal status in 1997, had legal representation and went to his court cases properly. In December 2000, she had a hearing in which she could apply for a status called "cancellation of removal." This status is given by a judge to individuals so that they can stay in the United States under the condition that they lived in the United States for ten years or more, have good moral character, and have children who are citizens of the United States.

Now, here's where things get really screwed up...
At the hearing, the judge set a 30-day deadline for Pereira to file a her application. He also set a final hearing date for April 30, 2001.

But Pereira's attorney at the time did not submit the application, and on April 30, 2001, the judge ruled that Pereira had 60 days to leave the country voluntarily. If she did not leave, then the judge would order her removal.

According to Boyle, Pereira's attorney at the time told her the decision would be appealed, but no appeal was ever filed.
The attorney filed a motion on July 30, 2001, to reopen the case, seeking to file the late application. A judge, however, denied the motion.

The attorney then sent a letter of appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals, which subsequently lost the letter. On March 26, 2004, the appeals board wrote to Pereira's attorney, asking that the appeal papers be refiled. The attorney, however, did not do so, and on June 4, 2004, the appeals board ordered Pereira removed from the United States in a written decision to the attorney.

Pereira and her family say they were never notified of the decision, despite calls to the attorney asking for updates on the case.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested Pereira on a deportation warrant Jan. 24 at her Skyline Terrace home. She was taken to Hartford and then placed in Cumberland County Jail in Portland, Maine.

Like the Santos family, a teen (who was born i this country) was left behind while a mother was in jail and faces an uncertain future if his mother is deported.
Thiago Lima, who was born in America, is taking advanced placement and honors classes as a sophomore at Danbury High School. He is less than a year away from a black belt in kickboxing and is a member of Danbury High's cross-country and track teams.


If Pereira, who has been in the United States for 19 years, is deported, she would have the option of taking her sons with her. Bryan Lima, 6, likely would return with his mother, but Thiago isn't so sure he would, he said.

"I am not very fluent in Portuguese. I can't write it. If I go to Brazil, I would be far behind," he said. "My brother likely would be behind, too, but would have several years in the school system."

The education system in Brazil is divided into four main levels: preschool, fundamental, intermediate and higher education.

Most 15-year-olds are in the intermediate level, which is comparable to high school but usually takes three years.

To go to college, students are required to take an entrance examination, called the "vestibular." They take an exam -- in Portuguese -- geared to the area of study they plan to pursue, Maria Theresa Diniz Forster, a spokeswoman at the Brazilian Embassy in Washington, D.C., explained.

Thiago said he'd likely have to wait several years to learn the language before trying to get into college.

But if he stays in America, Thiago hopes to attend New York University or Boston College to study English when he graduates from Danbury High in 2009.

Thiago would face obvious hardship, too, living in America without his mother. The family hasn't decided whether this is an option or whether Thiago's father would stay or go to Brazil.

"I wouldn't see my mom," he said. "That's what I face."

Attorney Michael Boyle picked up the case and filed motions to delay the deportation proceedings. He also filed a complaints against the lawyers who previously handled Pereira's case. Eventually, Pereira was ale to get out of jail and later, she talked about her ordeal.

The following information below are two posts on the Pereira's case, which were posted here, that I combined into to one report

As a sneak preview of the upcoming video posting of the immigration forum held at the Wilton Library last week, here is exclusive video of Tereza Pereira's attorney, Michael Boyle, views on Mayor Mark Boughton's immigration "enforcement" policy.

For those who don't know, attorney Boyle was able to get Pereira released from jail and have her immigration case re-opened after filing a motion with the court.
A federal immigration judge in Hartford had agreed to reopen Pereira's immigration case and release her from jail after her attorney, Michael Boyle, had filed a motion in Hartford Immigration Court on Tuesday. It described previous attorneys' errors that led to Pereira's arrest at her Danbury home last month.

The judge agreed with Boyle that Pereira and her husband Lima, who both started working with Hartford-based lawyers in the 1990s to gain legal status, did not receive a fair hearing before immigration officials.

After several errors and miscommunication by previous attorneys, immigration officials ordered both of them removed, Boyle said. Pereira and Lima say they were never notified of that decision.

His comments at the forum echoes those of other individuals who have spoken out against Mayor Boughton's policy and as more details surrounding Pereira's situation, as well as the events surrounding the arrest of eleven day-laborers last year, come to the surface, expect more people top step forward and express their opinion (and/or outrage).

From this year's Stop the Raids Forum", here's video footage of Tereza Pereira in which she describe her ordeal.

The money trail: Mayor Boughton re-election finance disclosure

Monday, July 16, 2007
Time: 5:28 PM

"Follow the money trail"

The quote above is a old political saying that still applies today. To illustrate this, I'm providing something the News-Times didn't offer it's readers in it's report on the mayoral race, the Itemized Campaign Finance Disclosure Statements.

First up to bat, Mayor Boughton.

Seeing who gave money to a campaign is pretty damn important as well as informative. When looking over the numbers I said to myself "why should I be the only one to have fun" so I decided to share the love and make these public statements available to everyone.

Look over the numbers, check who gave to campaigns and town committees, and tell me if you notice anything of interest (e.g. registered Democrats giving money to the Boughton). We'll keep a list of anything that's of interest so everyone's on the same page.

Once I'm complete uploading all the statements (Boughton, Abrates, DanburyDTC and RTC, I'll provide commentary on items that caught my attention.

Click here to download (pdf file). I'll provide a easy to read online browser version soon.

UPDATE: As a primer, Ivon Aclime touched on this subject last week on his show "Ideas at Work and Beyond" with guest former Mayor Gene Eriquez and Lynn Taborsak decoding several of Mayor Boughton's campaign contributions. You can watch the entire episode over at his site.

Bigotry alive and well on the News-Times board (AGAIN)

Time: 4:11 PM

I miss Elizabeth Putnam. Read these comments from today's News-Times article on Ridgefield's plans for a dog park.
Posted by: boredwithbs58 Mon, Jul 16 2007
They should make parks for other animals to play in, too: Brazilians, Ecuadorans, Dominicans- pretty much anyone of negroid ancestry. Keep the public safe!!

Posted by: ILLEGAL AND LOVING IT! Mon, Jul 16 2007
Hey bored58 - they do... it's called Squantz Pond.

Simply more of the same...anti-immigrant scum rising to the surface by a newspaper that does a horrible job monitoring comments.

It's simple, get rid of the comment section of the News-Times website. The lack of monitoring by the newspaper only does a disservice to the area and reinforces the belief among many in the state Danbury as a hotbed of xenophobia and anti-immigration sentiment in Connecticut.

Tell the News-Times to get their act together or get rid of the comments.
Main Contacts

It seems like others are beginning to question the use of the message boards also.
...Normally comments like that would have been deleted immediately. NT has no notion of brand management whatsoever.


SHO- frankly, I'd prefer they do away with the message boards altogether. moderating them is a full time job, and the NT's recent downsizing has left these forums ripe for abuse.


Illegal - I agree, these board offer no value add whatsoever and they only serve to underscore how irresponsible the NT has become in offering bigots a platform to spread their vile rhetoric in our community.

There are ways to moderate boards effectively, but regrettably, the NT staff just isn't tech savvy enough for the job at hand. Maybe the new ownership will change that, but I doubt it.

UPDATE (6:15 P.M.): Racist quote is still on the News-Times site.

UPDATE (9:15 P.M.): Quote is still on the News-Times site.

UPDATE (7/17 @ 11:32 AM): Still posted online.

UPDATE (7/18 @ 12:30 PM): Bigoted comment still online.

Tom Bennett's state of denial is an insult to everyone's intellegence

Time: 2:24 PM

It seems like Tom Bennett and John McGowan are either suffering from a case of memory loss or are just trying to insult the public's intelligence.

For those who are not aware, for some time, Bennett and co-hosts John McGowan (Vice President of Elise Marciano's local anti-immigration group) and a coward, who too afraid to get in front of the camera, that goes by the name "Bones", have constantly used the television airwaves to spread hate-speech, racism, homophobia and violence against immigrants. Due to their profane and indecent language, which repeatedly violated the rules and regulations set forth by Comcast, we here at HatCityBLOG called upon Comcast to terminate Bennett contract and remove his show, BigT Talk and Variety" from the local access lineup.

Recently, due to readers complaining to Comcast, the higher-ups at the cable company finally took action and sent Bennett a written warning.

Also, after my testimony in front of the cable advisory board, the members of the committee ruled Bennett's show as "adult content" and advised Comcast to move his show from it's current spot time slot of Friday from 9-10 PM to Friday from 10-11 PM.

Since Comcast issued the warning, Bennett and his whack-pack have been on a crusade to back peddle from their statements as well as Bennett repeatedly stating that he "hopes" someone violent assaults yours truly. In what can only be described as laughable, Bennett and McGowan recollection of their outrageous (if not criminal) statements are an insult to everyone's intelligence and symbolizes what happens when people stand up to xenophobes and bigots who think they can say whatever they want without any sense of accountability.

For your viewing pleasure, I took the effort to make a little video montage that sets the record straight.

Bennett and his co-hosts clearly don't get the message. The consistent threats issued on this "adult" show towards members of the immigrant community are not only extremely dangerous, but could lead to an innocent person getting hurt by one of Bennett's deranged anti-immigrant fans. Please tell Comcast that anyone who advocates killing another group of people should be immediately removed from the airwaves (if not investigated by the authorities).

Dave King: Comcast Head Coordinator:
Phone: 203-792-1265

Candiann Roswell: Comcast Coordinator:
Phone: 203-792-1265

When emailing Comcast, please cc and we'll post your message on the site (personal information will not be published).

The comments to the Santos situation tell the story.

Sunday, July 15, 2007
Time: 12:12 PM

I find it laughable that the anti-immigrant elected officials and a laughable blogger are playing the sympathy card for the Santos family...I guess the Santos are different than the other individuals who, in similar situation were swept up in the ICE madness. It's amazing what campaign season can do to people and the flip-floppers aren't fooling anyone...espicially the friends and supporters of the Santos family.

This post is bumped to the top as a friendly reminder of the xenophobes who pollute our great city with their madness.

First, here are some lovely comments from the anti-immigrant bigots that bring shame to Danbury.
Posted by: BadDog01 Fri, Jul 13 2007

Lets Stop The BOO HOOING And DEPORT Them. They committed a Crime By Coming Her ILLEGALLY. Take her kids with her if thats what the problem is


Posted by: AMERICA FIRST Fri, Jul 13 2007

'..a DEPORTATION ORDER, but an appeals court ruled against..'

They CHOSE to remain here ILLEGALLY all this time and KNEW the consequenses.

America is now starting to ENFORCE our immigration LAWS.

No one is breaking up this family, the daughter is free to go live with them in Brazil, and when she turns 18, petition for them to come to the US the LEGAL way, following OUR RULES.
Case closed.


Posted by: Carson Fri, Jul 13 2007
How come they are still here? The resources are stretched to the limit and the roads are crowded.

We lost an estimated 48,000,000 to keep that from happening.

The Unacknowledged Holocaust

Back in the 60’s the Federal Government came into the public schools and brainwashed us as little children with the message that the children we were about to have were unwanted because the population was rising so fast. They launched a program called, “Zero Population Growth”. They pushed Family Planning and birth control pills. I think you and I now both know that you only have to trick people for their few child bearing years and there is no going back.

Many of us never had a say in the future of our unborn.

I am the result of two living cells. One from each of my parents. They are the result of two living cells, one from each of their parents. I wasn't just born. I am a continuation of life. I am a living thing that reaches back into time perhaps 400 million years and the result of billions of joining of pairs of cells. It is possible that if you were to follow my cells back to my parent’s cells and beyond that my family tree touches every living thing here on earth. That is if we limit ourselves to believing life was created here on earth. If it rained down from the immensity of the universe it could reach back into that immensity of time and space, and who knows what relationships and who knows what species.

At least until I came up against the Federal Government and their plan to control the population.

I have seen the Federal Government do little else to control the population.

The open border, United States laws only apply to some, is a serious slap in the face. No, not a slap in the face, it reaches well beyond that. Maybe back to the beginning of time and stretch to the bounds of the universe.


Posted by: voiceofreason Fri, Jul 13 2007
Typical BS article. Two sentences regarding the facts of the case and the rest emotional drivel.

There was a deportation order. There was an appeal of the deportation order. They lost the appeal. They defied the deportation order and were arrested.

America is the land of the free, not the land of the lawless. The system gave them a shot and they lost.

I believe the remark on birth control relates to the open borders and LaRaza mantra that "we need illegal immigration" because Americans aren't having babies and the population is aging. Yes there was a push over the past 40 years toward family planning.

Americans were so successful meeting that end that the open borders lobby feels it justified to replace the children that weren't born due to family planning with an illegal and foreign population. A population that steals American jobs, health care and educational resources, just to name a few.

There are a lot of racial remarks here today and as usual, it's the illegal alien advocates making them.


Posted by: voiceofreason Fri, Jul 13 2007
They may have come here legally but the second they overstayed their visa, they became as illegal as a drug dealer sneaking over the southern border or islamic terrorists overstaying their visas to fly planes into the World Trade center.

It's our country. We get to decide who comes and stays. The system set up for these decisions ruled against these people. They defied the order and were arrested as they should be.


Posted by: voiceofreason Fri, Jul 13 2007
They may have come here legally but the second they overstayed their visa, they became as illegal as a drug dealer sneaking over the southern border or islamic terrorists overstaying their visas to fly planes into the World Trade center.


Posted by: chevy4x4girl Fri, Jul 13 2007
why is it always about how 'great' the illegal immigrant family is, and how 'harmless' they are and how 'unfair' it is to them that they face deportation?

Yes they work hard, I had that drilled into my head the 50 times it was mentioned in this article.

Its tough luck, they knew the possible concequences of their actions when they decided to over-stay their visas.. It just happened to take many many years to catch up to them.

The fact that they are such a tight-knit, hard-working, good hearted family has nothing to do with the fact that they have broken the law by over-staying the visa. Their personality/family lifestyle is irrelevant in this situation and, by law, we must treat all those who fit under this particular situation, the same as any other in this situation, regardless of their families hard work or time frame they have been here for.

We can pick and choose favorites when it comes to Immigration. If we deport Joe Blow, someone doesnt have a large, well know, hard working family we should treat all other illegal immigrants the same. You can't feel bad for one family and let them slip through the long arm of the law while another is deported. Either deport all the illegals taken into custody or don't deport any of them. But if the 2nd is the case... Well a lot of people like me are going to be very angry. :)
...and the winner for most disgusting post goes to:
Posted by: Liberace Fri, Jul 13 2007
Rayany is welcome to stay at my place while her folks are in jail... woo-woo! ;) (o)(o)
Elise Marciano's zombies are REALLY a class act. I think this poster of the NT board said it best.
Posted by: littlegatinha Fri, Jul 13 2007
You anti immigrants just completely disgust me. You complain about immigrants who don't learn English or assimilate, you complain about immigrants not paying taxes. This family has done all of that. So, what you're showing here, is that you lie through your teeth when you say "Immigrants welcome, Illegals not". These people overstayed their VISA's. They were trying everything they could to become legal.'re showing what you really are, which is a bunch of Nativist Bigoted Xenophobes.
Enough of the bottom feeder that our mayor is pandering towards, here's a peek at the real voice in Danbury...the silent majority (who don't spend their day typing their hatred on a keyboard because they WORK) who are going to help make a difference come November.
Rodrigo is my best friend and his family has always treated me like family!! i can't believe that this is happening... Everyone please show your support for this great family
July 11, 2007 3:56 PM

Anonymous said...

Rodrigo is one of the funniest and nicest guys I have ever met. It disgusts me that such a wonderful family has to go through such terrible times, when Main St in Danbury is full of illegal immigrants who do nothing but cheat and steal to get by. Please help in any way that you can. This family deserves to be here as much as anyone born here.
July 11, 2007 5:53 PM

Dan said...

I Can't believe what is going here. I can't imagine what there going though. I’ve known Rodrigo from a young age. In recent year we have become good friends. Their family is extremely kind and they are in no way any kind of threat to anybody else. They pay their taxes and they were trying to become legal. Rodrigo and his brother might have been born in Brazil but they both we raised American. That the only why of life they known. Their parents only wanted the best for their children. Now they are being ripped from the life they have come to love. Worst of all Rodrigo’s little sister is left all alone to defend for herself. She has some friends and relatives to lean on for support but that is no replacement for her family.…. Please help this family in their time of need
July 11, 2007 6:02 PM

Ronald said...

I dont know Rodrigo. I know he's from Danbury, born in Brazil, went to school, has a family and even though he doesn't have a piece of paper that says he's allowed to stay in this country, he is still an American. What has happened here is not justice, nor the American way. Rodrigo isn't the only hard working immigrant in the US. Many of those so called "cheaters" and "stealer's" on Main St in Danbury also work hard, just like Rodrigo and his family. The system has failed. Money talks. Unless this site raises thousands of dollars, nothing will happen. If you cant donate money, call/send a letter to the governor, send a letter to your state representatives, go to the mayors office and speak with him. As Americans we have the right to be heard. A family should not be separated, especially a family that has been trying to adapt and become American. The US is their home. What good does deporting them to a distant place do, for a family that has established its roots here in the US? Nothing. Oh yeah, FUCK BUSH.
July 11, 2007 8:00 PM

Nicole said...

The Santos Family are the nicest kind hearted people you could know. When my twin sister had no where to go they took her in feed her and put a roof over her head. They don't deserve this they were only trying to do the right thing by getting a green card and this is what they get in return. I think this country is so messed up and I think we need a real president that wouldnt rip families apart and treat them like criminals. My prayers are with the Santos family.
July 11, 2007 8:20 PM

Rayany said...

I would like to start off by thanking everyone who have shown their support. MY family and I greatly appreciate it. No one can take the place of my family. I miss them so much. I thank God for their health and that they are alive but the pain that we are going through is indescribable and to say the least, unbearable. Coming home to an empty house not hearing their voices, kills me inside. Please if anyone in the legal system can help my family we would eternally be grateful.
July 11, 2007 8:31 PM

Joel B said...

I've had the privilege of knowing Rodrigo for over 15 years from the time that he was only seven years old. He and I have a lot in common in the sense that both our families came to this country to better our lives and manifest a brighter future. As an immigrant myself who came here at around the same time that Rodrigo and his family arrived to the US, I have been fortunate enough to graduate from college and am now moving towards starting a professional career, a goal that we all strive to achieve. Rodrigo has been no exception to that because he was also attending college and striving to achieve that same goal.

While others work to provide a living for themselves, he has always worked hard to provide a living for his sister, brother, and loving mother. I strongly believe that this kind of character and self-sacrifice is what makes not only the perfect example of a good American, but also a human being.

Rodrigo has lived his life, as the perfect example of what all immigrants to this country should strive to accomplish.He has always paid his taxes, paid his bills, and has constantly worked hard to do so, while at the same time providing enough time to go to school and take care of his family. A man with such heart and moral fiber should not have to see his efforts and all he has worked so hard for go to waste.

This country needs decent and hard working people like Rodrigo and his family to keep us moving forward and to keep providing the safe haven for those who seek to better their lives and provide a brighter future not only for ourselves, but for those we care about.

Please, if there is anyone out there with an ounce of compassion or soul who can provide some sort of aid in this family's time of need, I ask from the bottom of my heart that you please do so. He is one of my best friends, and it pains me deeply to see him and his family have to endure such a grave injustice. My prayers go out to Rod, his brother Ronnie(who was also one of my best friends as a child) his sister, his loving mother and father.

Thank you and God Bless.
July 11, 2007 8:42 PM

Roger said...

Plz lets all try to help Rodrigo. He and his family dont deserve to go through this. The system does not work in this country. I know Rodrigo for a few years now and I know for fact that he loves this country. Let's all try to make his dream come true. My prayers are with the Santos family.
July 11, 2007 8:50 PM

Jeffrey said...

I've known Rod for quite some time now and he's only been nice to the people around him. For this to be done to him and his family is just plain insanity. I've never met his other family members before but if I would have i bet they would have been really nice people, most Brazilians are. These people are trying to make a living and the gov't just take them away for no good reason. I bet if the gov't were living in a low profit country they would do the same thing, try to live the "American Dream". Although im only 15 and cannot do anything to provide a donation to his family, which i would definitely do, i pray for the Santos family and all my wishes are for you. Thank you.
July 11, 2007 10:28 PM

Michelle Santo said...

This is all surreal to me, I can't even believe that this could happen to someone after being in this country for most of their lives. Rodrigo is one of my best friends, and one of the most amazing people I have even meet! It breaks my heart to know what him and his family are going through....

"Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
July 12, 2007 8:10 AM

Julie said...

I have to say I am truely amazed this is happening! I don't know Rodrigo, but I do know his brother Roney, and he's one of the nicest guys I know. To hear of this happening is truly sad and my heart goes out to him and the rest of his family.
July 12, 2007 8:22 AM

John said...

Roney has been one one of my best friends since 6th grade. Roney Joe and I would hang out just about every weekend. Rayany Hang in there.
July 12, 2007 9:31 AM

Anonymous said...

I have been friends w/ rodrigo for 10 years now and its crazy that this is all going on feels so unreal i didn't believe it at first. Rodrigo is the nicest guy ever always in good spirits and making sure we r keeping our head up. Rod and his family shouldn't have 2 be going through all this its not right. This world is falling apart day by day time 4 a new president who knoes what the hell he is doing. Please every1 help this family that is in alot of need

July 12, 2007 9:59 AM

StopHatinOthers said...

This is what our nation has turned into. It's truly sad.

To the family and friends, I say be strong. It may be a little while, but justice will be served. Let this be a wake up call for anyone that has been on the fence regarding the recent immigration debate. We need to get organized to help this family and then we need to continue to pressure our politicians to do the right thing and put an end to these tactics.

Rally around this family, but don't forget that this battle is just beginning. There will be others that need our help. This incident and others like them, may help turn the tide and start us moving toward real immigration reform.
July 12, 2007 10:40 AM

Katherine said...
To whomever wrote the comment that these people should be legal by now and that they are only paying the price. You are right they should be legal by now! They have been living here for about 18 years. However they did come to this country LEGALLY. But they are not the only family in this situation there are thousands of people who have been living in this country for perhaps the same reason your ancestors came here for struggling to become legal. And like this family, they too pay their taxes and follow the rules. But because this country has absurd laws to attempt to kick everyone out of the country especially after 9/11' this family has not become legal. They have spent thousands on lawyers and if they were criminals they would never show up to their court appearances when requested to do so, which they did. This family is going through hell right now. There are more details which I am not entitled to discuss and out of respect for the family will not do so. Please, you are entitled to your own opinions, but before you sit there and judge because thank God, you are not in the same situation get the facts right!
July 12, 2007 11:05 AM

Mary said...

Wow..I'm in total shock that this is happening..i just saw one of the brothers Saturday night..he looked soo happy. Ive known this family for years..I grew up with them, even though ive lost contact with breaks my heart to see this happen to them. I will pray for them!
July 12, 2007 11:18 AM

kary said...

I am absolutely disappointed about the system and the way they have been handled this case it really frustrates me to know how law sometimes can forget human sense. I know Rodrigo and he is a great young man willing to work hard as most of us who have come to this country to make our best in order to benefit ourselves, families and therefore this country. But let’s not allow this situation to destroy us and keep supporting showing our affection. I will pass this to my relatives and friends as well and try to expand it along so we can all unify and be in heart and action with Rodrigo and his family! Thanks a lot for whoever created this excellent site!!!
God bless this family and everybody!
July 12, 2007 2:52 PM

Chris said...

Congressman Chris Murphy and his staff have been working on the Santos family's case all afternoon and he is eager to hear from anyone who is concerned about them. Please call his Washington D.C. office at 202-225-4476.

BTW Murphy told me that Mayor Boughton(!!) called him about the Santos. Why this sudden case of compassion, Mayor Mark? What's in it for you??
July 12, 2007 3:01 PM

Ronald said...

Boughton obviously knows this will be a high profile type case. I wonder if election day approaching and him wanting to look like he has compassion has anything to do with Mr. Mark caring about this can only wonder...
July 12, 2007 3:07 PM

Dan said...

Why is it that we're punishing those who are trying to follow the rules? The people who are trying to stay in the country legally are somehow the ones in trouble, and for what reason? Is it merely the fact that the police are lazy and can't find the energy to go and find the illegal immigrants who aren't paying their taxes, or looking for a way to legally be here? Was there a quota to fill? What happened to this country? There's room for us all.
July 12, 2007 3:10 PM

Anonymous said...

Well first I would like to say here is a family that is trying to do what is right. They are not trying to beat our system. There children went to school with our children and did not get into any kind of trouble. Here we have other immigrants who get arrested for D.U.I, Drive with out license, no car insurance getting into fight robbing people, breaking into peoples homes and alls they get is a slap on the wrist MAYBE A FINE and some probation. If the court system can offer help to the trouble makers than why can't they help the good ones! Lets Try Our Hardest To Keep The Family Here They Have Been Here For So Long The Boys Know America As Home.
July 12, 2007 3:22 PM

Chris said...

Thank you for putting up this site so quickly.

Danbury is full of compassionate people who hate injustice and the great harm our terrible immigration laws do to so many, many people and families.

I hope they all find this site and help the Santos.
July 12, 2007 3:25 PM

Joel B said...

I just want to say thanks to everybody out there who has shown support. I am very pleased and grateful with the progress that's been made within the past 2 days that this has been going on.

Believe it or not, these types of things happen everyday in this country to many innocent people, not just the Santos family. The fact that we even have the Mayor of Danbury looking into this progress in itself and should not be taken lightly. Who cares what his motives are, or anyone else's for that matter? As long as they result in a positive out come for Rodrigo and his family.

Thanks again guys for all your support. It didn't think it was possible, but so far it looks like might actually be able to make a difference.

God Bless you all and thanks again.
July 12, 2007 3:34 PM

Joshway S. said...

We the people and by the people, do not exist no more! We live in a world of deception and evil power. Therefore the people is demanded to become a puppet or a machine to benefit the less God fearing corporate america!

For this shall I stand on this day, to say that my heart is full of hope and concern for the Santos family!

This all just shows you that this country shall reap what they have sowed, these are the last and evil days. For which the New World Order has whored their power in the presence of an hard working family!

Peace to all!
July 12, 2007 4:09 PM

keithk said...

roni santos has been a good friend of mine for about 6 years. i cant belive this happened to him and his family. these people did not cause trouble they just wanted to be called American citizens. they payed taxes and worked hard to support each other. how can this country take a family that was raised here their entire life and rip them apart like its nothing? how can they expect a 17 year old girl to survive without her on her own? i will do whatever i can to help.
July 12, 2007 4:44 PM

Santos Family Donations. said...

Many thanks to the Hat City Blogger for all of his support in this case.

The family is hoping and praying that this kind of attention can help them get released from jail.

Thank you to all that have commented. God bless.
July 12, 2007 5:03 PM

Nuno said...

Well, i have to say that it is unfair for these people to be thrown to jail. i know it's hard to keep up with paperwork and all. i wish them all the best and prayers are with them, and in the future make sure those papers are in order. it's imperative that you accomplished them in asap.
i know.
haven't been in jail though.
so with that said good luck, and may god bless your families
July 12, 2007 6:51 PM

Ericka. said...

I don't know any of them, but I do know someone who does and heard about this site and the family's situation from her. I honestly think that this is terrible. The United States laws and bills and proposals and all that other crap are ridiculous. It seems like all this family was trying to do is give their children and themselves the chance to live the life that everyone would want for their own. Is that really so wrong? All I can do is hope that the best happens for this family and I hope that someday they will be able to return to thier daughter, relatives, and the United States.
July 12, 2007 7:17 PM

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear of this. I would like to contact you privately, regarding an upcoming event, and a possibility perhaps, for fundraising for this family. If you have MSN or Yahoo messenger, I can give you my phone number on there, so that we can talk. I am a member of "Stop the Raids" We have a new blog here on blogger too. and I have placed the link to your blog, and to the newstimes story on there.
July 12, 2007 7:32 PM

Laz said...

My thoughts are with the whole family. I'm a cousin of a friend and with Stop the Raids in Danbury. I want what happened to be out in the open and I'll do anything I can to help. Please contact me at 240-3068. Let's do something together to help.

July 12, 2007 8:37 PM

Laz said...

My cousin is Amanda Peterson who is a friend of Roney's. I'm with Stop the Raids as well. My name is Alissa. I would like to see if we could have a press conference/speak out next week. I've spoken to Rayany already and she seems keen to the idea. Let me know if you would like to speak at this event. My phone number is 240-XXXX
Thanx and Bless you!
July 12, 2007 8:53 PM

Josue C. said...

I don't have any words to begin explaining of how unfair this country is. I have know Rodrigo for about two years and he has been one of the greatest and hardest working person i have ever met, always thinking of his family and of his future. I remember him talking about wanting to go to college and becoming someone in life but because of the papers situation he couldn't. It seems like yesterday having him over my place and just talking about things and now i probably wont see hima anymore. All we can do in this situation is pray and hope the best for him and his family. I will contact the Danbury Hispanic Center and see if there is anything we can do to help, but for now all we can do is pray and show some support to the Santos Family. GOD BLESS

PS. Count me on anything.

July 12, 2007 9:35 PM

Anonymous said...

I don't know this family. I simply work with someone who does.

I am so disappointed not only in our system and government but some of you. How dare you say "they're paying the price" - You are obviously a worthless incompassionate human being. or "hmm wonder why the mayor is getting involved" i say to you "WHO CARES" no matter what the motive - THESE PEOPLE WILL BENEFIT FROM IT. and help is being rendered. If you want to make stupid, incompetent comments, dont make them here. You apparently do not recognize the cause.

This situation is incomprehensible to any of us who are born and raised American citizens. I sincerely could not have any more hope or compassion for these people if they were not an upstanding, good family - people would not be reaching out like this. GOD BLESS THE SANTOS PEOPLE AND ALL OF YOU WHO ARE SUPPORTING THEM AND THEIR SITUATION! it's nice to see people come together for a good cause instead of being selfish and uncaring like people can be most of the time.

carolyn- im so sorry for you and your friends.
July 13, 2007 7:10 AM

Anonymous said...

I would like to say that I'm humiliated being American to say that other American people are doing this to the most Kind people ever. Anyone that disagrees and says they should go back is just cold hearted we are all Immigrants there is no difference. I love this family with all my heart I lived with them Roney is the Quiet guy untill you know him he took Carpentry, did some activities like Aikido down to earth Guy I will always care about you, Rodrigo Hilarious funniest guy you could ever meet you are like a brother to me, And of course Rayany the sweetest thing you will ever meet thanks for all our talks I love you. I cant forget about Neuza and Jose great people couldn't hurt a fly, These people tried to do the right thing and it blew up in there face. They could have stayed quiet and be here without any problem but no they went to us for help and thats how you treat them I truly am ashamed for all of you that think they should leave sorry not going to happen Not if I can help Everyone keep fighting and praying and everything will be okay. The Santos Family is here to STAY!!!!love Amanda
July 13, 2007 8:57 AM

Danbury said...

Dear Santos family and friends,

The injustice that ICE has inflicted on your loved ones makes me want to know what more we can do to support you beyond calling our Congressmen. I was inspired to read the name of Rosa Parks on this site and wondered if it isn't time to approach the ICE raids in the same way that Rosa and Martin Luther King approached the injustice of segregation, through a social movement.

The Santos case is not an isolated incident. ICE has arrested 50,000 immigrant workers in the past year. With one hand they withhold legal status, with the other they tear families apart. We have to change the immigration system to get people legal. But it's hard to get anything started as long as ICE can rip through a community at will.

Rosa Parks was a leader of the movement for African-American rights. Let's start a movement for immigrant rights. Let's dream big!
July 13, 2007 9:13 AM

NICOLE said...

My cousin is AGAINST THE RAIDS she is going to do everything for this family shes spoken at press conferences shes been in marches and shes not going to stop untill theres justice."I want what happened to be out in the open and I'll do anything I can to help. Please contact me at 240-3068. Let's do something together to help".

Alissa (Against the raids) LETS FIGHT BACK....

this family needs our help and being an american and married to a brasilian who was illegal I know how hard this was for my husband thats why I'm going to do everything in my power to help.
July 13, 2007 11:42 AM

Anonymous said...

To those that say they should be legal by now, yes they should but here they are TRYING the best that they can to legalize themselves but yet immigration didnt accept them! I too am an immigrant yet i was fortunate enough to have a father who was able to legalize me.And its not easy to become legal, for those who dont know, you spend so much money,so much hard work, so much sweat and tears in becoming a legal alien, and yet their are people who sit there and say "well if you've been here 18 years then you should be legal by now, well my father was here for 17 years before he became a legalized alien and yet he worked so hard and still my oldest brother due to his age was unable to get his green card so i know how the santos brothers feel and i definately know how my friend rayany feels and thats why im asking everyone please have a bit of heart realize that you shouldnt be arresting people that are here with good intentions, you need to arresting people that are here doing wrong! these people deserve to be here! i love Ray shes the sweetest person you'll meet and her mom is so cute i love her mom her family truly deserves to be here! I dont want to lose my friend i dont want her to have to move back to brasil because of this! its not fair that these people have to go through this! And i agree with what this last person said we should start a movement for immigrant rights because if it wasnt for immigrants this country WOULD NOT BE A FIRST WORLD COUNTRY! the only reason that this country is the way it is, is because of immigrants!

Renata Chaves*
July 13, 2007 12:22 PM


When I found out about this I couldn't believe it. I am one of Rayanys friends. I've known this family since i was 9 I'm 16 now... I know its not a very long time.. but its long enough to know that this family is a great family. Their mom (Neuza) was like a second mom to me. I was always over their house. And one thing I know is that Neuza, Rodrigo and Ronney are really hard workers. Actually the whole family is. I just don't understand why most of the people that get deported are the ones that never did anything wrong and are just trying to make they're life better here in the U.S. This family deserves to stay here. And + the two brother Rodrigo and Ronney are more dedicated to making their lives better than half the Americans here in the U.S...

i love this family and i just hope that everything goes well. If i could i would do anything to help them because i can't stand seein one of my closest friends (Rayany) suffering.
July 14, 2007 9:05 AM

Cleunice Brostel said...

RAYANY....I'm so sorry about all this..I'm praying for your family..
GOD BLESS YOU ALL....Please help them.////
July 14, 2007 4:02 PM

I was informed that Congressman Murphy is aware of the situation so PLEASE continue to contact him and the other elected officials and help make a difference.
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On September 26, 2007, ten plaintiffs filed suit in response to an arrest of aday laborers at a public park in Danbury, Connecticut. Plaintiffs amended their complaint on November 26, 2007.

The amended complaint states that plaintiffs sought to remedy the continued discriminatory and unauthorized enforcement of federal immigration laws against the Latino residents of the City of Danbury by Danbury's mayor and its police department.

Plaintiffs allege that the arrests violated their Fourth Amendment rights and the Connecticut Constitution because defendants conducted the arrests without valid warrants, in the absence of exigent circumstances, and without probable cause to believe that plaintiffs were engaged in unlawful activity. In addition, plaintiffs allege that defendants improperly stopped, detained, investigated, searched and arrested plaintiffs. Plaintiffs also allege that defendants violated their Fourteenth Amendment rights when they intentionally targeted plaintiffs, and arrested and detained them on the basis of their race, ethnicity and perceived national origin. Plaintiffs raise First Amendment, Due Process and tort claims.

Plaintiffs request declaratory relief, damages and attorneys fees.



Danbury Area Coalition for the Rights of Immigrants v.
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3:06-cv-01992-RNC ( D. Conn. )

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VIDEO: Danbury Peace Coalition Immigration Forum (April 2006)
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(VID) Helana Abrantes TV ad
(VID) BRT tax deferral presser
(VID) Helena Abrantes "Community Forum" interview

Danbury 2009 election results
(VID) 2009 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) 2009 Danbury Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate
(VID) 2009 DDTC nomination convention

Danbury 2011 election results
(VID) Saadi/Nero campaign kickoff

Danbury 2013 election results
(VID) 2013 DDTC nominaiton convention

Danbury 2015 election results

Danbury 2017 election results
(VID) Al Almeida concession speech
(VID) 2017 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) Al Almeida nomination acceptance speech

Danbury 2019 election results
(VID) 2019 NewsTimes Editorial Board interview with Mark Boughton and Chris Setaro
(VID) 2019 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) 2019 Danbury Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate
(VID) 2019 convention endorsement speeches from Mark Boughton and Chris Setaro