Can you explain about the punishments to the convicted persons in the U.S.? Is there any chance that the crime rate is declining due to these punishments?
Yazhini Parvatham, Chennai
In the United States, most sentencing for crimes is under state jurisdiction. This means that each state sets the punishment for crimes committed in that state. Punishments can vary state by state. Punishment can be in the form of a fine or incarceration in jail or prison. Punishments are different for different crimes. Serious crime is punished more severely than minor crimes. Some states have discretionary sentencing, which means that the sentence is up to the discretion of the judge hearing the case. In other states, the state statutes set a mandatory sentence which is given to any person convicted of the crime, no matter the specific circumstances. Many states have a mixture of both discretionary and mandatory sentencing.
Many factors affect crime rates. Some efforts as simple as improving street lighting or increasing police patrols can help to deter crime. Whether specific types of penalties or punishments are effective in deterring crime is a topic of continued study for sociologists around the world.
Each major party in the U.S. has won two consecutive terms in the election? What does it reflect the mind of the American people?
The United States is a democracy in which U.S. citizens vote for leaders to represent them. The candidate with the majority of the Electoral College votes is elected. It is possible that a political party may win more than two consecutive terms as long as the majority of the electoral votes go to the candidate of that political party. In the U.S. a president may not serve over two consecutive terms, but the next president may be from the same political party. For example, Republican Ronald Reagan served two presidential terms, and his Republican successor George H. W. Bush, only served one term.
Election outcomes are determined by those who vote. Elected officials make important decisions that affect people, such as decisions on road construction, education and government assistance. People should take advantage of their right to vote, since it is one of the most important ways to impact the political process.
Can you explain about the operation of the U.S. Army and its strength?
The U.S. Army is one of five military forces of the United States of America. The others are the Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard. The U.S. military is an all-volunteer force. The President is the Commander-in-Chief of all branches of the armed forces and works with the Secretary of Defense to form military policy. All branches of the military work together during operations and joint missions. Each branch of the military maintains active duty personnel and reserve duty personnel.
As of the beginning of 2012, there were 561,979 service men and women on active duty in the U.S. Army, including 467,537 enlisted personnel and 94,442 officers. There are over 75,500 women serving on active duty in the U.S. Army. The Army employs soldiers in many roles: physicians and combat medics, construction and engineering, legal and law enforcement, and transportation and aviation specialists. Most people join the Army at the rank of Private and can work their way up in the ranks to Sergeant, Master Sergeant and Command Sergeant. Many soldiers remain in the Army for their entire working career.
I along with my wife am holding a B1/B2 visa issued in 2003. This visa is expiring on 23rd Feb 2013. I wish to know whether I have to wait till the expiry and apply for the renewal. If not can I apply before the expiry and if so when? Is there a renewal or it will be as if I am applying for a new visa? If there any agency authorized by the consulate or should we have to apply directly to the consulate? Can I be briefed about the methodology?
You do not need to wait until your 10-year visa expires to apply for a new one. To apply for a new visa, you will need to fill out a DS-160 Application form and schedule appointments to have your fingerprints taken and for an interview at the U.S. Consulate General in Chennai. You will find all the details and forms you need for applying for a new B1/B2 visa at www.ustraveldocs.com/in.
How can I get job opportunities in the US? Whom and where should I contact?
Many public and private employers advertise job openings on their own websites. Others list jobs with employment agencies, in newspapers serving the city where the job is located, or on websites, which locate employees to fill available jobs. Getting a job opportunity in the U.S. involves having good skills and experience that match an employer’s needs. Contacting employers directly, using online and print resources, and employment agencies are the best ways to locate job openings with U.S. companies.
For asking questions regarding America, write to firstname.lastname@example.org