Howard's Sermons and Article Clippings.

Howard's Sermons and Article Clippings.

About Me

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Im a Mainline protestant minister who loves serving in multicultural and urban contexts. I'm very interested in how liberation theology and existential-humanistic psychology are applied to the praxis of pastoral care and counseling. My most profound encounters with God come as we sojourn as brothers and sisters seeking the inbreaking of God's reign, here and now.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Star Tribune Letter of the Day April 8, 2012 Republicans will have a hard time taking back the White House if they continue to alienate Latino voters ("Arizona case blurs immigration debate," April 25). Florida Sen. Marco Rubio's attempt to offer a Republican alternative to the Dream Act comes too little, too late. Generations of Latino voters and their allies will remember how politicians talked about immigration. We should extend compassion and hope to children who are here through no fault of their own. If we truly practice family values and compassionate conservatism, we will not punish children for their parent's actions. THE REV. HOWARD DOTSON, Maple Grove Star Tribune Letter of the Day Dec 4 2011 GOP presidential candidates Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry should be commended for using both their heads and hearts when it comes to immigration policies. We are a nation of immigrants. We need to remember how we treated the Chinese, Irish, Italians and Polish when our ancestors came to this land of opportunity. Where are Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty in our national consciousness today? If our immigration quotas were the same today as then, the door for a legal pathway would be much wider. Why do we have such a scarcity mentality in this land of milk and honey? This displaced anger toward immigrants really should rest with the bankers, Wall Street traders and corporate executives. The laborers in the fields, the housekeepers and landscapers are not the source of our economic hardship. The undocumented laborers among us contribute more to our Social Security system and pay more taxes then they consume in public benefits. If we are to find a humane and lasting solution to this challenge, we need to address more than just border security and workplace enforcement. With compassion and reason, we can see the human plight of the undocumented among us and appreciate where their hearts are. Family values for the whole human family. THE REV. HOWARD DOTSON, MAPLE GROVE Star Tribune April 16, 2009 REMEMBER THE STRANGER Let immigration agenda make ethical sense As a nation of immigrants, we need to remember the hospitality the Native Americans extended to the starving pilgrims. In the Hebrew Bible, we are commanded to extend hospitality to strangers because we were once strangers in Egypt. President Obama is right to realign Immigration and Customs Enforcement priorities. If we truly value family values, we will focus our efforts on deporting violent criminals, and allow hard working families to put bread on their tables for their children. What happens to the children when the breadwinners are deported? THE REV. HOWARD DOTSON, ST. PAUL

Sunday, February 26, 2012

He Gave Me Roses

The documentary Saving Face reminds me of this poem I heard read on the Domestic

Violence Rememberance.

Please keep your eyes, ears, hearts and minds open to the plight of far too many.


He Gave Me Roses

I got flowers today.
It wasn't my birthday or any other special day.
We had out first argument last night, And
He said a lot of cruel things that really hurt me.
I know he is sorry and didn't mean the things he said because
He sent me flowers today.

I got flowers today.
It wasn't our anniversary or any other special day.
Last night, he threw me into a wall and
Started to choke me.
It seemed like a nightmare.
I couldn't believe it was real.
I woke up this morning sore and bruised all over.
I know he must be sorry because
He sent me flowers today.

I got flowers today and it wasn't Mother's Day
Or any other special day.
Last night he beat me up again and
It was much worse than all the other times.
If I leave him what will I do ?
How will I take care of my kids ?
What about money ?
I'm afraid of him and scared to leave.
I know he must be sorry because
He sent me flowers today.

I got flowers today. Today was a very special day.
It was the day of my funeral.
Last night, he finally killed me.
He beat me to death.
If only I had gathered enough courage and
Strength to leave him,
I would not have gotten flowers today.

-- Author Unknown

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Give it Time It all works out

I love the saying,"What goes around comes around."

Someone I helped a great deal betrayed and defamed me.

Now when you google this person the first link is a photo of their mugshot.

Justice prevails in time.

Dec 4 Star Tribune Letter to the Editor

GOP presidential candidates Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry should be commended for using both their heads and hearts when it comes to immigration policies.

We are a nation of immigrants. We need to remember how we treated the Chinese, Irish, Italians and Polish when our ancestors came to this land of opportunity. Where are Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty in our national consciousness today?

If our immigration quotas were the same today as then, the door for a legal pathway would be much wider. Why do we have such a scarcity mentality in this land of milk and honey?

This displaced anger toward immigrants really should rest with the bankers, Wall Street traders and corporate executives. The laborers in the fields, the housekeepers and landscapers are not the source of our economic hardship.

The undocumented laborers among us contribute more to our Social Security system and pay more taxes then they consume in public benefits.

If we are to find a humane and lasting solution to this challenge, we need to address more than just border security and workplace enforcement.

With compassion and reason, we can see the human plight of the undocumented among us and appreciate where their hearts are. Family values for the whole human family.

THE REV. HOWARD DOTSON, MAPLE GROVE

Monday, March 14, 2011

Bill Would Repeal In-State Tuition For Immigrants

Bill would repeal in-state tuition for immigrants

Published February 11th, 2011

The Education Committee heard testimony Feb. 7 on a bill that would repeal in-state tuition rates at Nebraska’s universities and colleges for children of illegal immigrants who are not lawfully present in the United States.

State legislation passed in 2006 offered in-state tuition to students who:

•resided with his or her parent, guardian or conservator while attending a public or private high school in Nebraska;

•graduated from a Nebraska high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma;

•resided in Nebraska for at least three years before the date the student graduated from high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma;

•have the bona fide intention to make Nebraska his or her permanent residence;

•are registered as an entering student in a state postsecondary educational institution no earlier than the 2006 fall semester; and

•provided to the state postsecondary educational institution an affidavit stating that he or she will file an application to become a permanent resident at the earliest opportunity he or she is eligible to do so.
Fremont Sen. Charlie Janssen, introducer of LB657, said children of illegal immigrants should not be considered residents of the state and therefore are not eligible to receive in-state tuition rates.

“Nebraska should not grant in-state tuition to illegal immigrants unless they do to all citizens,” Janssen said.

Giving a benefit or subsidy to someone who is not lawfully present and denying it to someone who is lawfully present is in direct violation of federal law, he said.

Dale Monsell, representing Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, testified in support of the bill.

These students are not legally employable in the U.S. after they graduate, Monsell said, and their education should be the responsibility of their nation of origin.

John Wiegert, a resident of Fremont and supporter of the bill, said in-state tuition for illegal immigrants directly rewards people for their parents’ illegal acts.

Shirley Mora James, president of the Nebraska Hispanic Bar Association, testified in opposition to the bill.

According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Mora James said, granting in-state tuition to an undocumented student is not one of the benefits regulated by illegal immigration reform.

Individual states must decide whether or not to allow illegal immigrants to attend post-secondary institutions, she said, and the state of Nebraska has the authority to grant admission to undocumented students if it chooses to do so.

J.B. Milliken, president of the University of Nebraska, also opposed LB657.

The ability of undocumented young people to contribute to the state’s economy depends on their education, Milliken said in a letter to the committee.

The state claims that education is a priority, he said, so repealing a law that promotes education is counterproductive.

Rev. Howard Dotson of the Westminister Presbyterian Church testified in opposition to the bill, saying education plays an important role in the Latino community.

Nationwide, 50 percent of Latino youth fail to graduate high school, Dotson said. Having more Latino high school graduates in Nebraska who attend college will provide the community with invaluable mentors, he said.

The committee took no immediate action on the bill.

Immigration Bill Gets Mixed Reception in Lincoln

Immigration Bill Gets Mixed Reception In Lincoln

Senator Doubtful Measure Will Get Out Of Committee

POSTED: 2:35 pm CST March 2, 2011

LINCOLN, Neb. -- A Nebraska lawmaker who has introduced an Arizona-style immigration bill said he is doubtful the bill would even get out of the Judiciary Committee as state senators openly questioned it at Wednesday's public hearing in Lincoln.

Sen. Charlie Janssen, of Fremont, told the committee that his bill, LB-48, would help Nebraska get a handle on what he believes is a serious illegal immigration problem. Janssen testified lawmakers cannot ignore their obligation to taxpayers as health care and education costs rise.

Janssen was among the first to testify in a packed hearing room. Janssen said he was grilled by his colleagues during the hearing on everything from costs of enforcement to what constitutes reasonable suspicion.

Janssen said the bill is a cost-saving measure for a state that faces a nearly $1 billion shortfall.

The legislation would require police to confirm the residency status of suspected illegal immigrants who have been stopped for another reason.

"(LB-48) makes it open season on immigrant women and children -- putting targets on their heads."
- Shirley More-James, resident


LB-48 got a mixed reception at the hearing as lawmakers and residents spoke.

"I think you have to look at the overall picture of what LB-48 will do -- deter illegal immigration into the state of Nebraska," proponent Susan Smith said.

But residents opposed to the bill spoke about concerns of racial profiling.

"(LB-48) makes it open season on immigrant women and children -- putting targets on their heads," Shirley Mora-James, a resident who opposes the bill, said.

Lincoln Police Chief Tom Casady said he is also opposing the bill because enforcement costs would be too high and many who are arrested would just walk.

" It exposes the state and counties to serious liabilities and expenses in defending themselves." - Judge David Piester A retired federal judge also weighed in on the bill.

Judge David Piester said law enforcement agencies could end up paying the price in enforcing an Arizona-style immigration law if it's approved.

"It exposes the state and counties to serious liabilities and expenses in defending themselves," Piester said. "Equal protection and discrimination claims would almost certainly follow."

Community activists present at the hearing agreed and said they hope the bill never gets out of committee.

"Charity and reason will prevail," the Rev. Howard Dotson said. "It's a federal responsibility -- the senators understand that."

Arizona's bill has been suspended pending a court challenge.

Copyright 2011 by KETV.com. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved

Mayor Suttle's Focus on At Risk Youth

Day 14: Vote No because Mayor Suttle has focussed on at-risk youth
Posted on January 23, 2011

As an urban pastor, I have seen far too much poverty and violence. I serve on the Mayor’s Clergy Advisory Council and I’ve had the privilege of following his administration’s work over this past year.

Mayor Suttle has the vision and the strategy to bring peace and prosperity to our streets.

His three Es (education, employment and enforcement) and the From Poverty to Prosperity initiative will help keep our kids in schools and bring jobs to our under employed communities. We stop the bullets when more kids achieve their caps and gowns and have access to jobs.

Our law enforcement officers cannot suppress the violence on their own. It takes a village of concerned citizens to bring peace to our streets. We are One Omaha, and Mayor Suttle understands our commitment to educate and empower all of our citizens.

Mayor Suttle has made the difficult but necessary choices that have preserved our essential public services.

This recall will distract and detract us from the critical peacemaking work underway in our communities. The bottom line is that life is sacred.

Mayor Suttle’s vision will continue to help save lives and secure a brighter future for our youth. “Blessed are the peacemakers.”

Rev. Howard Dotson
Presbyterian Church (USA) pastor serving in Omaha

P.S. Join Mayor Suttle and Rev. Dotson tonight – From Poverty to Prosperity