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June 28 2016
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Meet Alaleh Kianerci; The Prosecutor Named Checked In The Brock Turner Stanford Rape Letter

- Alaleh Kianerci is the Santa Clara Deputy District Attorney attorney who fought to get Brock Turner prosecuted. She's been practising law since 2007 when she was admitted to the bar and, prior to that, she attended the University of California Santa Barbara and then the Santa Clara University of Law. -The Brief - 6/24/16

Momentum Builds for Iranian American Candidates

- With the New York and Washington primary elections fast approaching, Iranian American candidates Anna Kaplan and Cyrus Habib are poised to have strong showings and advancing towards their respective general elections. If successful, they will become the first Iranian Americans to be elected to the U.S. Congress and to state office. - 6/23/16

San Francisco State University announces $5 million gift to establish the Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies

- San Francisco State University has received a $5 million gift from alumna and Iranian-American philanthropist Neda Nobari to establish the Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies (CIDS). This endowment establishes SF State as an academic pioneer in the field of Iranian diaspora research. - 6/22/16

Muslim Comedian Negin Farsad On How To Make White People Laugh

- An Iranian-American Muslim female comedian with a master's degree in African-American studies walks into a cafe. No, this isn't the beginning of a joke; it's the beginning of a profile on Negin Farsad. -Shannon Carlin, Refinery29 - 6/22/16

Virginia Civil Rights Activist Strives to Bring Diversity to Democratic National Committee

- For Yasmine Taeb, coming to the United States from Iran exposed her to the harsh challenges of immigrant life and sparked a desire to advocate for those in similar situations. As a human rights and civil liberties activist, Taeb hopes that she can bring a unique perspective to politics by serving as a member of the Democratic National Committee. She is running for one of Virginia's five DNC seats. - 6/13/16

Iranian-Canadian Academic Detained During Visit to Iran

- Iranian-Canadian woman Homa Hoodfar, a scholar and expert on gender and development in Islam, was arrested on June 6, 2016 during a visit to Iran after being summoned to Evin Prison in Tehran. - 6/9/16

Orange County Doctor Sets Out to Combat Party Politics

- When Dr. Max Gouron moved to Texas in 1972, getting involved in politics was a distant thought. Born and raised in Tehran, Gouron moved to the United States to attend Rice University in Houston on a full scholarship and later went on to obtain his M.D. from the University of Texas Health Center. In 1999, he moved to Orange County and has been a practicing anesthesiologist for almost two decades. - 6/6/16

Bleed the Night: Award Winning Zombie Short Film by Reza Ghassemi

- Audrey is stuck in limbo with no sign of escaping the living-dead. She wakes up time and time again, alone in the trunk of a car, unsure of reality. An ode to Korean crime thrillers like Oldboy and I Saw the Devil, Bleed the Night surprises audiences with its unique narrative on rebirth and second chances. - 6/6/16

Cyrus Habib Kicks Off Campaign for Lieutenant Governor of Washington State

- On May 16, the highest-ranking Iranian American in political office and the first Iranian American to serve as a State Senator filed paperwork to run for Lieutenant Governor of Washington State. His campaign for Lieutenant Governor, the highest state office after Governor, began with a kick-off event in downtown Seattle - 6/2/16

Discriminatory 'VISA Act' Moves Forward

- Legislation targeting Iranian and other visa seekers for enhanced security measures moved forward in the House today after a contentious committee debate. The bill, which would also subject visa applicants and their American family petitioners to DNA testing, was advanced by the House Judiciary Committee on a party-line vote, setting up a potential final vote before the full House within weeks. -NIAC - 5/28/16

A Model Returns to Iran for a Stylish Trip Through Her Native Country

- Watching Leila Rahimi strike a pose in the gardens of Iran's oldest palaces and mansions, you would never suspect that 15 years had lapsed since the Iranian-American model and illustrator had visited her birth country. In her vibrant head wrap and flow-y tunic, she appeared right at home. -Vogue - 5/27/16

How a singles column changed a Persian-Jewish girl's life

- My parents came to L.A. from Shiraz, Iran after the 1979 Iranian Revolution. My father worked two jobs -- as a rabbi at a shul, and at a car yard in Anaheim. And my mother worked three jobs -- as a nightly mikveh lady, elder caretaker and mother. They always made sure my siblings and I had everything we needed... -Chaya Leah Esakhan, SCPR - 5/26/16

Maryam Mirzakhani, First Iranian Woman to be Elected to the National Academy of Sciences

- Maryam Mirzakhani, a Professor of Mathematics at Stanford University, was recently elected to the National Academy of Sciences. One of the highest honors for scientists in the United States, new members are elected by current members based on their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. - 5/13/16

U.S. Senate Effort to Lift Dual Nationals Restrictions Blocked

- Washington, DC - The Senate voted Tuesday afternoon to approve legislation authorizing the Federal Aviaton Administration, but an amendment authored by Sen. Jeff Flake that would repeal discriminatory Visa Waiver Program (VWP) restrictions on certain dual nationals was blocked from consideration. - 4/20/16

NIAC and PayPal Take Steps to Address Payment Concerns Within Venmo

- The National Iranian American Council ("NIAC") and PayPal Inc. issued the following joint statement regarding certain difficulties Iranian Americans were having using Venmo during the Persian New Year - 4/20/16

In Loving Memory of the late Professor Houman Younessi

- O'Saadia, our righteously just Houman will eternally be remembered.... It's others who did not care for humanity, that are trusted to oblivion bin - 4/18/16

EU Restrictions on American Travel Delayed, Congress Must Act

- NIAC Action Executive Director Jamal Abdi issued the following statement after the European Commission delayed a decision to suspend the Visa Waiver Program for American travelers by three months - 4/14/16

End Visa Waiver Discrimination!

- "We strongly urge Congress to vote in favor of the new 'Flake amendment' to ensure that other countries do NOT reciprocate and treat American travelers as second-class citizens!" - 4/12/16

'It's like having home inside home'

- Drive along Pomona Road and you'll find the new home for followers of one of the world's oldest religions. The gleaming square building with an impressive collonaded portico is the Dar-e-Mehr Zoroastrian Temple, or DMZT. It is the meeting place and sanctuary for some 1,000 followers of Zoroastrian faith from across the tri-state area. -Lohud Journal News, NY - 4/5/16

The Biggest Regret of My Life

- When President George W. Bush was up for reelection in 2004, I was 17 years old, just one year shy of being able to vote in the elections. I turned 18 one month after Bush was re-elected. His margin of victory in the popular vote was the smallest ever for an incumbent president. It's one of the biggest regrets of my life. -Elham Khatami, NIAC Action - 4/4/16

A New Year brings A New Home for the New York Area Zoroastrian Community

- New York, March 26, 2016: Today, six hundred Zarathushtis (Zoroastrians), their friends and families from the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut came together to celebrate a once in a lifetime event - the opening of a Zoroastrian religious and cultural community center in Pomona, NY. - 4/3/16

Iranian American Organizations Host Norooz Reception In Washington, D.C.

- On March 17, 2016, ten Iranian American organizations came together to co-host the second community-wide annual Norooz (Iranian new year) reception in Washington, D.C. Among U.S. Government officials in attendance were Valerie Jarrett, Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, and Leon Rodriguez, Director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at the Department of Homeland Security. - 4/1/16

Frequently Asked Questions on the Visa Waiver Restrictions

- The Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act (H.R. 158) prohibits citizens of countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program from visiting the United States under the program if they are dual nationals of or have recently traveled to Iran, Iraq, Sudan or Syria. It was signed into law on December 18, 2015, as part of the Omnibus Appropriations Act of FY2016. -NIAC - 4/1/16

NASA names asteroid after Iranian scientist

- The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has named an asteroid in the solar system after Firouz Naderi, an Iranian scientist and the former director for Solar System Exploration at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). - 3/31/16

Poet Fatemeh Shams takes on politics in post-revolution Iran

- Fatemeh Shams and Dick Davis have never met in person. She is a young Iranian poet living in London, a voice of Iran's post-revolution dissident. He is a medievalist translator and poet who lives more than 3,000 miles away in Ohio. Several years ago, after a friend showed Davis some of the poems that Shams had written, he emailed her, asking if he could translate her work from Farsi to English. -Corinne Segal, PBS - 3/30/16

6th Annual Pars Equality Center Gala Features Congressman Mike Honda's Support for Persian Americans

- On Saturday, March 5, 2016, Pars Equality Center (PEC) held its 6th Annual Nowruz (Persian New Year) Gala at San Francisco's Marriott Waterfront Hotel. Known for being a sold out event each year, and hosting over 800 guests, this year's fundraising gala featured special guest Congressman Mike Honda and raised nearly $500,000.00. - 3/28/16

Iranian student organizations host Iranian New Year celebration at University of Connecticut

- In celebration of the Persian New Year, over 300 people gathered in the Rome Ballroom Saturday night dressed in suits and dresses as part of an event organized by the Iranian Cultural Organization and the Iranian Student Association. -Daily Campus - 3/28/16

U.S. Calls On Iran To Release Father, Son Jailed Without Charges

- The United States has called for the release of two Iranian-American citizens detained without charge in Tehran. Family members say businessman Siamak Namazi was arrested in October while his father Baquer, 80, was detained last month. Both men are believed to be in Tehran's notorious Evin prison. - 3/19/16

10th Annual Persian Arts Festival in New York

- The Persian Arts Festival celebrates 10 years of showcasing the work of hundreds of Iranian American artists from around the world at the prestigious new Brooklyn venue, National Sawdust. - 3/18/16

Against the Odds: A Big Achievement for A Small Community

- On March 26th, Zoroastrians, traditionally known as Zarathushtis, from the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut will come together to celebrate a once in a lifetime event the inauguration of the new Arbab Rustam Guiv DareMehr building, a religious and cultural community center, in Pomona, NY. - 3/17/16

Norooz in Orange County: Saturday March 26 at UC Irvine

- This year Farhang Foundation celebrates Nowruz in Orange County at our new home at the University of California, Irvine's Claire Trevor School of Arts on Saturday, March 26, 2016 from 11:30 PM - 5:00 PM, join us for a full day of actives for the entire family - 3/13/16

Why is Venmo Targeting Norooz?

- Critics of the Iran nuclear deal have a lot of concerns. Some claim the Ayatollahs are now literally swimming in pools filled with sweet American cash. Others are distraught that Iranians may no longer be resigned to travel via flying coffins now that Airbus and Boeing are allowed upgrade the country's civilian airliners. -NIAC Action - 3/12/16

PAAIA Releases 2016 National Survey of Iranian Americans

- The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) today released the findings of a national public opinion survey examining the attitudes of Iranian Americans with respect to U.S.-Iran relations, the newly implemented nuclear agreement with Iran, and the experience of the Iranian American community. - 3/11/16

Universally Iranian: artists without borders - in pictures

- enerations of Iranian artists who have emigrated have struggled with a dualism. On one hand, they want to make art speaking to universal issues. On the other, the market may expect their work to reflect a homeland where they no longer live. -Matteo Lonardi, Guardian - 3/11/16

The HAND Foundation Sponsors Various Norooz Persian New Year Events and Banners

- Today, the California-based HAND Foundation announced it will be underwriting local Bay Area events, such as Iranian Federated Women's Club Norooz 2016 event with Santa Clara Supervisor Dave Cortese on Tuesday, March 15th and San Francisco City Hall's Norooz 1395 celebration hosted by on Friday, March 25th. - 3/10/16

Azita Raji sworn in as U.S. Ambassador to Sweden

- First Iranian-American Ambassador, Azita Raji, was sworn in by Vice-President Joe Biden on March 6th, 2016 to head the US Embassy in Sweden. Azita Raji is an Iranian-born American investment banker, financial analyst and philanthropist. She was nominated by President Barack Obama in October 2014 to serve as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States to the Kingdom of Sweden, and confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate in February 2016. - 3/10/16

Norooz Celebration at San Francisco City Hall

- You're invited to the celebration of Norooz 1395 at the San Francisco City Hall hosted by Iranican on Friday, March 25th! Join us for an evening filled with cultural delights, music, dance, and celebrations - all from Iran's great heritagel - 3/7/16

NIAC's 6th Annual Norooz Day of Service: Saturday, March 12, 2016

- Join Iranian Americans nationwide in honoring the Iranian New Year (Norooz) tradition of beginning a good year through acts of kindness. During NIAC's 6th Annual Day of Service on Saturday, March 12, we look forward to reining in a wonderful new year by cleaning parks and beaches, serving food to those less fortunate than ourselves, and caring for the ill and elderly. - 3/6/16

Call For Submissions: Iranian Mural Competition

- Farhang Foundation is calling on aspiring and veteran artists to submit original designs that conceptualize aspects of Iranian culture. Eligible designs will be considered as the central artwork featured on a series of murals in prominent areas of Los Angeles. - 3/6/16

Enforcing Iran sanctions still tangles Iranian-Americans in 'spider's web of laws'

- The U.S. has imposed hundreds of sanctions against Iran for more than 30 years to temper the country's nuclear ambitions. And even though the sanctions against Iran were eased with January's nuclear disarmament deal, rules about how people in the U.S. can interact with Iran remain virtually unchanged. And their enforcement has brought harsh consequences. -PBS - 2/29/16

Iranian Businessman Buys Stake In English Soccer Team

- Iranian-British businessman Farhad Moshiri has bought a 49.9 percent stake in English Premier League team Everton FC, subject to approval by the league. Forbes, which estimates Moshiri's net worth at $1.79 billion, ranks him 894th among the world's billionaires. - 2/28/16

47 Organizations Urge Waivers for Dual Nationals

- On Tuesday February 23rd, 47 organizations including NIAC Action sent a letter to Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson requesting the Secretary to use his authority to waive restrictions so that individuals are not barred from visa-free travel to the United States on the basis of their national origin or family heritage. - 2/24/16

Silicon Valley Wants Changes in Visa-Waiver Crackdown

- Silicon Valley executives, stung by a law intended to make it harder for terrorists to enter the U.S., are publicly calling for a key provision on so-called visa waivers to be rescinded. -WSJ - 2/24/16

Branding Our Community: Norooz vs. Nowruz

- Iranian-Americans are a nascent diaspora, most of us having immigrated only in the past four decades. We are coming to our own, lifting our heads from the business grindstone and beginning to establish ourselves in other realms of diaspora influence and acceptance such as politics, philanthropy and culture. By doing so, we are promoting our beautiful arts and culture by sharing our rituals and festivals. The most uniting, revered and unanimous of these is Persian New Year or Norooz. -Noosheen Hashemi - 2/23/16

Is Congress Accusing Dual Nationals of Holding Dual Loyalties?

- Over the past several weeks, Iranian Americans and our friends in the Arab American community have grappled with the reality that, soon, we may face new restrictions on our travel simply because of our heritage. Under a new law passed by Congress, certain dual nationals are now barred from the U.S. Visa Waiver Program and thousands of European dual nationals have been notified that they are no longer welcome to travel to the U.S. visa-free. -Jamal Abdi, Huffington Post - 2/23/16

Iranian entrepreneur to expats: Move back home!

- She's worked in London. She's worked in Berlin. But 32-year-old tech entrepreneur Nazanin Daneshvar encourages tech savvy Iranians living outside the country to move back home and get to work. -PRI - 2/18/16

NIAC Action Commends Lawmakers Urging Visa Waivers for Dual Nationals and Visitors to Iran

- NIAC Action released the following statement welcoming two new Congressional letters urging the Obama Administration to utilize its waiver authorities under new Visa Waiver Program law to ensure certain dual nationals and other travelers are not barred from the program - 2/13/16

Tales of exile and of home: Iranian diaspora in literature

- When I was at university studying English literature, I took an interest in diasporic and migrant writings. Authors from India, Africa, Asia and the Caribbean all told the same kind of stories of exile and resettlement. Their books raised a shared set of concerns, reflecting homelessness, loss and attempts to reconstruct identity. -Sanaz Fotouhi, Guardian - 2/11/16

Cyris Habib Named to DNC Platform Committee

- Washington State Senator Cyrus Habib, the highest-ranking Iranian American in political office was recently appointed to the 2016 Democratic National Convention Platform Committee by DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz. - 2/8/16

Farhang Foundation Announces the Winners of the 2016 Nowruz Competitions

- Preparations for Farhang's 8th Annual Nowruz (the Iranian New Year) Celebrations at LACMA are underway as the Foundation selects the winning submissions from this year's Nowruz Multimedia Program and Nowruz Street Banner Competitions. - 2/3/16

Family of Imprisoned Iranian Producer: Canada Must Do More

- The family of prisoner of conscience Mostafa Azizi is calling on Canada to exert more pressure on Iran to release him following the prisoner swap that led to the freedom of four Iranian-Americans held in Iran. - 1/30/16

Visa Discrimination Now Being Implemented

- Obama administration announced details for how it will implement the legislatively mandated changes to the U.S.'s visa waiver program under the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act. Based on our reading, these plans will both cause major problems for non-U.S. Iranian dual-nationals in their travels to the United States and threaten to provoke European and other VWP countries to adopt similar restrictive measures against U.S.-Iran dual nationals. -NIAC Action - 1/22/16

Visa waiver restrictions for Iranians are motivated by hatred - not safety

- Sometimes, it doesn't take very long at all for the consequences of bad policies to be felt by innocent people. That was the case at London's Heathrow airport on Tuesday when Rana Rahimpour, a British-Iranian dual citizen, was denied entry into the US. Despite being British, she was rejected because of her Iranian citizenship. -Ali Gharib, Guardian - 1/22/16

Iranian Americans' views on the Iran deal often fall along generational lines

- Negeen Sadeghi-Movahed dreams of hopping on a plane from John F. Kennedy International Airport straight to Iran, where she would spend weeks learning about her roots. It is, for the 22-year-old, one of the simple, hoped for fruits of a nuclear accord with Iran. Roozbeh Farahanipour, 44, has a darker vision - of a deal that strengthens a regime that doesn't care about things like human rights. -Sarah Parvini, LA Times - 1/21/16

BBC journalist stopped from flying to US over UK-Iranian nationality

- A BBC journalist has been stopped boarding a plane from London to the US because of her dual British-Iranian nationality. Rana Rahimpour, a presenter at the BBC's Persian service based in London, was stopped at Heathrow airport on Tuesday before catching a flight to New Jersey. US authorities told her she could no longer fly to the US under the visa waiver programme because of her Iranian citizenship. -BBC - 1/20/16

How does the Nuclear Deal Affect Personal Transactions Involving Iran?

- Many questions have arisen following yesterday's landmark announcement of implementation of the nuclear agreement reached last July between Iran and the P5+1 states (the United States, United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Germany). This deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (or JCPOA) has brought about much speculation about Iran's emergence from roughly a decade of punishing sanctions and its reintegration into the international economic and political sphere. -Farhad Alavi - 1/17/16

NIAC Applauds Release of Americans Imprisoned in Iran

- "The agreement to free Americans imprisoned in Iran - Jason Rezaian, Siamak Namazi, Amir Hekmati and Saeed Abedini - is a triumph of diplomacy that should be universally commended. Now, the freed Americans can be reunited with their families and friends after an extraordinarily trying time for everyone involved. We hope that they find solace in their freedom from the turmoil that they endured." - 1/16/16

The man behind Iran's most famous tower

- For 45 years, Iran's most famous modern monument, the Azadi (Freedom) Tower in Tehran (designed by architect Hossein Amanat), has been the backdrop to every major news story coming out of the country. -Rozita Riazati, BBC - 1/14/16

Iranian-Canadians find road to integration is a rocky one

- After meeting a number of the 160,000 Canadians of Iranian heritage, however, it's hard to reconcile the customary North American depiction of Iran as an extremist Islamic society of black-shrouded women and angry men who hate the West, with a country that Iranian-Canadians say is less repressive and more civilized than many recognize. -Todd. Douglas Todd, Vancouver Sun - 1/9/16 founder a second-class citizen under visa change

- Ali Partovi is the reason Silicon Valley loves immigrants. After moving to the United States from Iran when he was 11 years old, Partovi became a citizen, graduated from Harvard with a degree in computer science, sold a couple of startups, and invested in Facebook, Dropbox and Airbnb. Today, he runs, a nonprofit organization that focuses on getting more women and minorities into computer science. -SF Chronicle - 12/28/15

Canada's Iranian Diaspora Supports Thaw With Tehran

- Analysts and members of the Iranian-Canadian community say they are optimistic about a thawing of relations between Iran and Canada now that a new government is in power. Despite the fact that a large and dynamic Iranian diaspora calls Canada its home, recent relations between the two countries have been complicated. -Alireza Ahmadian, Highbrow - 12/28/15

Visa rules put Obama in a vise

- When the Obama administration decided to support a bipartisan push in Congress to change rules covering visa-free travel to the U.S., it did so in part to save the U.S. resettlement program for Syrian and Iraqi refugees. But since the new visa regulations have become law, they've faced a growing backlash. -Nahal Toosi, Politico - 12/26/15

Iranian-American Organizations Urge President Obama to Waive Discriminatory Visa Language

- A coalition of Iranian American organizations issued the following joint-statement regarding legislation recently passed into law concerning the Visa Waiver Program: As Iranian American civil rights and advocacy organizations, we are dismayed that Congress passed legislation to amend the U.S.'s Visa Waiver Program in a manner that risks discriminating against the Iranian-American community and other communities. - 12/24/15

An Iranian-American in Eastern Kentucky

- Discrimination is a word Parisa Shamaei-Zadeh uses often when describing her experience of being an Iranian-American in Eastern Kentucky. Shamaei-Zadeh, a senior at Paintsville High School and a student at Johnson County / Paintsville Early College Academy at Big Sandy Community and Technical College, wrote about her struggles and received $42,000 for the William C. Parker Diversity Scholarship at the University of Kentucky. -Independent Online - 12/22/15

Iranian-Americans Have Reached Highest Echelons Of Tech, But Still Failed To Stop Visa Restriction

- How influential is the Iranian-American community? A list just released by Persian Tech Entrepreneurs, a group of young Iranian-Americans active in technology, offers a window into how powerful this community is, especially in Silicon Valley. Many Iranian-Americans have reached the top ranks of some of the most important companies in Silicon Valley -Elizabeth MacBride, Forbes - 12/21/15

Secretary John Kerry's Letter to Iranian FM Zarif Regarding Visa Waiver Reform

- NIAC has obtained a copy of the original english language version of the letter Secretary of State John Kerry sent to Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif listing three instruments that the U.S. Government can use to ensure that the new Visa Waiver Reform law does not violate the JCPOA. While these are welcome steps from NIAC's perspective, it remains unclear how these steps will ensure that dual citizens are not discriminated against solely on the basis of their nationality. - 12/20/15

Now I'm a Second-Class Citizen

- I was lucky. My parents immigrated to the United States from Iran before I was born. They settled in Pittsburgh and built the humble beginnings of a successful life for themselves and their children. I was born as the first American in my family. I grew up oblivious to the sacrifices my parents had made for me and my siblings, to the unlimited opportunities at my feet. I took for granted the reality that I could be anything I wanted to be. -Elham Khatami, NIAC - 12/19/15

Iranian Americans Blast 'Discriminatory' Effort To Improve U.S. Visa Rules

- If Washington's intention is to improve current visa policies in order to prevent acts of terrorism in the United States, Iranian-Americans are not impressed. As the U.S. Senate prepares to vote on the Visa Waiver Program Improvement Act (H.R. 158) -- overwhelmingly passed by the House of Representatives in early December -- Iranian-Americans, civil libertarians, and European Union ambassadors are crying foul. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 12/18/15

New Politicized Visa Restrictions Harm Iranians and Undermine America's Core Values

- The recent bill passed by Congress aims to clamp down on the visa waiver program with provisions that essentially discriminate against Iranians. The ACLU calls H.R.158, passed last Tuesday by overwhelming support (419 yes), as a measure calling for "blanket arbitrary discrimination based on nationality and national origin." -Omid Memarian, Huffington Post - 12/18/15

U.S. Congress Set To Pass Visa Curbs On Visitors To Iraq, Iran

- A massive spending bill headed toward approval in the U.S. Congress this week includes new restrictions on travelers to the United States who have visited Iraq, Iran, Syria, or Sudan. - 12/17/15

A Call To Arms Against McCarthy 2.0

- Last week a friend sent me this ominous article about a bill that threatened to codify racist rhetoric into law. I dismissed it, thinking, "we have checks and balances to prevent stuff like that." -Ali Partovi, Techcrunch - 12/17/15

Take Action: Urge Congress and the White House to Reject Discrimination

- Our allies on Capitol Hill have confirmed that the omnibus will be released soon and the discriminatory provisions of the visa waiver reform bill (H.R. 158) that target Iranian dual nationals and those who have traveled to Iran are included in the bill. -NIAC Action - 12/16/15

What H.R. 158 Must Teach Us

- The recent House legislative draft, H.R. 158 Visa Waiver Program Improvement Act of 2015, sponsored by Rep. Candice Miller (R-MI), to provide enhanced security measures for the visa waiver program and passed by an overwhelming majority of 407-19 in the House of Representative, is a draconian and drastic departure from the constitutionality of the legislative body which empowers its members to draft laws for a civil society which the United States of America has symbolized for almost 300 years -Jamshid S. Irani - 12/16/15

A Brooklyn comedian has launched a Facebook campaign to stop a 'racist' bill from passing Congress

- Mitra Jouhari's Facebook campaign is part of a bigger internet push to get people aware of the bill and voice their disfavor of it. -Business Insider - 12/16/15

Am I Not American Enough?

- I was born and raised in Los Angeles county. The past 22 years, California has been my home. It has been my parent's home for the last 37 years. But because my Iranian-born parents automatically passed down their nationality on to me through jus sanguinis laws and I am an Iranian-American dual national, now I'm uncertain if freely traveling to see my family will be a possibility due to the recent passage of a discriminatory House bill sponsored by Rep. Candice Miller (R-MI-10). -Samira Damavandi, Huffington Post - 12/15/15
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