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PANEL TODAY: The Value of Foreign Diplomas

US Immigration Reform Forum - Fri, 03/01/2019 - 12:13pm
PANEL TODAY: The Value of Foreign Diplomas

[html]Bryan Griffith
February 26, 2019 - 2:53pm

           
Categories: Local Blogs

On civility

ElPasoSpeak - Fri, 03/01/2019 - 5:00am

This came in from a thoughtful reader:

Somewhere it is written that courtesy is the lubricant of civil discourse.  Apparently, that does not work in social media and other electronic forums.

Jason Gay, a writer for the Wall Street Journal, said, “Social media in 2016 is like stepping into a trash bag of angry bees. There’s disturbing, genuine hate, a sociopathic lack of empathy, and almost zero engagement with opposing opinions, unless it is to demonize or insult them ad hominem.” (From “Sixteen Thoughts on Colin Kaepernick,” Sept. 7, 2016, Wall Street Journal.)

The term for these angry bees is trolls.  Elpasospeak seems to have attracted a crew of regulars that have taken up residence under the metaphorical bridge and pounce on anything or anyone who ventures an opinion.   They yell in ALL CAPS, can find fault in anything, and manifest all the other characteristics described by Mr. Gay.   One wonders if they are waiting for the second coming with a box of Crucifixion Nails.

Wait.  That would require action – real action and commitment – and maybe personal risk.

In my youth, I heard the term slacktivism — “Engaging socially in activism that requires little or no effort as part of a lifestyle or self-identity. Slacktivism requires no personal investment and usually produces no appreciable results.”  With the advent of the internet and social media, slacktivism has morphed into clicktivism, re-postivism, liketivism, and blogging.  Same characteristics:  no personal commitment or risk (especially when posting anonymously), no effort, and no appreciable results.

When a person was standing on a soapbox, he or she at least had to go to the street corner or town square and face his or her audience.   It was hard to be a troll when you had a person in front of your instead of a computer screen.

Let us examine outrage.  An observer of the modern news media has commented that today’s news stories seek to evoke one of two reactions:1) you should be scared to death about this news, or 2) you should be outraged.

Lance Morrow, also of the Journal, calls outrage the signature emotion of American life; he labeled it an addiction.  In describing modern political discourse, he wrote, “The various tribes have broken off negotiations with all differing points of view. They excuse themselves from self-doubt and abandon the idea of anything so weak as compromise or, God forbid, ambivalence: No other perspective could possibly be valid. … People give themselves over to the pleasures of self-righteousness and self-importance that come with being wronged when you know you’re in the right. “

“Outrage presents itself as an assertion of conscience, but in practice it mostly bypasses conscience and judgment, and goes straight to self-righteous rage, ……But, like so much else today, it has gotten to be a racket. The coin of anger is debased. Indignation has become a meme—not an authentic political or moral reaction to facts in a serious world, but rather a reflex, a kind of irresponsible playacting, or worse, a mania. When everyone is outraged, then real grievances lose their meaning, and the endless indulgence of outrage becomes, objectively, immoral.”

It seems like we cannot be merely dissatisfied – we must be outraged.

Categories: Local Blogs

CPAC 2019 Offers Little for Immigration Restrictionists

US Immigration Reform Forum - Fri, 03/01/2019 - 12:02am
CPAC 2019 Offers Little for Immigration Restrictionists

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This week, conservatives from across the country are gathering right outside Washi...

Categories: Local Blogs

Former National Security Officials Weigh In on President's Immigration Emergency Declaration? Should We Care?

US Immigration Reform Forum - Fri, 03/01/2019 - 12:02am
Former National Security Officials Weigh In on President's Immigration Emergency Declaration? Should We Care?

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The rhetoric is high-flying,...

Categories: Local Blogs

No Nobel Peace Prize for Trump

EPN - Border Analysis - Thu, 02/28/2019 - 11:00pm
Wednesday was a bad day for Donald Trump. Not only was he proved to be the corrupt individual […]
Categories: Local Blogs

Rep. Justin Amash: 'The President Doesn't Get To Just Declare an Emergency'

US Immigration Reform Forum - Thu, 02/28/2019 - 12:10pm
Rep. Justin Amash: 'The President Doesn't Get To Just Declare an Emergency'

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Categories: Local Blogs

Do you know who was seen in town?

Refuse the Juice - Thu, 02/28/2019 - 11:16am
Certain somebodies from a certain election team that won a couple of elections with a yearly GDP of less than three percent were in El Paso recently. I'm sure they were in town help Bonart secure his 1,000 acre private... Brad Kanus
Categories: Local Blogs

Meet the Empower Squad: Chica Chat launches supportive movement for El Paso’s next generation of women in entrepreneurship

Borderzine - Thu, 02/28/2019 - 10:39am

The El Paso business community is getting a fresh, feminine makeover thanks to the new organization Chica Chat.

“We’re here to empower each other, and to help each other, and to provide a safe space for women,” Chica Chat treasurer Ashley Valdez says.

The nonprofit organization brings together young women who are entrepreneurs to provide them with the tools and knowledge for success.

President Zoë Gemoets says she was reading the book “Work Party: How to Create and Cultivate the Career of Your Dreams” by Jaclyn Johnson when the idea for the group came to her.

“At the end of the book she asks, ‘what are you doing to help the women of your community?’” so I was like ‘damn, what am I doing?’ I could totally do this,” Gemoets explains.

She reached out to Valdez, Anais Chavira, now Chica Chat’s secretary and Lola Vaughn who serves as vice president of the group, and in just a few months they’ve taken Chica Chat from an idea to a fledging non-profit organization.

Chica Chat founders, clockwise from top left: Lola Vaughn, Zoë Gemoets, Anais Chavira and Ashley Valdez.

Their Instagram account @letschicachat started in December and has more than 800 followers. Gemoets estimates that the January 10th launch event drew close to 80 women and there were 30 people at the second meeting in February. The first two meetings in their monthly “Working the Net” series attracted a variety of women from business owners to accountants to bloggers.

“I think the point is to create a space monthly where girls know, on the first Thursday of every month I’m gonna be able to attend something that’s meant for me, that’s gonna help me grow as a person,” Vaughn says.

Chica Chat’s founders hope to connect business-minded women in El Paso in ways that are mutually beneficial, including linking small business owners with photographers and graphic designers who can help them market their businesses.

Meetings will occasionally feature business women from El Paso as guest speakers to share their knowledge with the budding entrepreneurs.

Barracuda Public Relations owner Marina Monsisvais, who was the guest speaker at the group’s February meeting, says she feels Chica Chat is filling a void that was missing in El Paso when she entered the business world.

“When I was starting out, I think that having something like this would have been tremendously helpful,” she says. “How neat would it be to outside of your personal circle to have that other group of young, empowered women who are doing something that you can bounce ideas off of,” Monsisvais said.

Chica Chat’s women are working to combat the idea that women need to compete against each other in order to succeed.

“We need to stop tearing each other down,” Valdez says. “We’re here to help each other.”

Chica Chat attendees stand together following the group’s February “Working the Net” event.

This supportive approach is especially apparent on the group’s social media, where they refer to their members as their “hustlin’ sisters” and their “chicas.” They put out calls for them to “be strong” and improve their community. They post words of affirmation in the form of colorful graphics that remind their followers that they’re made of “brains and beauty” and an “inspiration to someone else”.

“I think if we can push the message that we’re all sisters, that we’re all trying to prosper together, it’s really important to foster that environment because it trickles down,” Vaughn explains.

While women of all ages are welcomed at Chica Chat, millennials are the target audience. “Millennials are just a completely different generation. We’re constantly trying to push each other up the totem pole and help each other out,” Vaughn says.

In the future, the women behind Chica Chat hope to be able to fund a co-working space for their members through grants, complete with photography areas for women in the group who are social media influencers and a daycare area for working mothers.

Vaughn, a mother herself, says that ultimately, she wants Chica Chat to foster a supportive culture for future generations of El Paso women.

“The goal at the end of my day is to create an environment that trickles down so that when my little girl is 23, she’s in a loving sisterhood environment here in El Paso,” she says.

Click hear to read Meet the Empower Squad: Chica Chat launches supportive movement for El Paso’s next generation of women in entrepreneurship

Categories: Local Blogs

The Mayor's Race...Cont'd

Max Powers - Thu, 02/28/2019 - 7:35am
...while we do not know if for certain Cassandra Hernandez will run for mayor, it is almost certain that someone else is... ….Oscar Leeser. You gotta hand it to him. He left the Mayor's office right before he had to raise taxes, and now wants to come back! "When I... Max Powers
Categories: Local Blogs

EPISD board

ElPasoSpeak - Thu, 02/28/2019 - 7:34am

The EPISD board of trustees is a mess.

Of the seven elected positions two are currently unoccupied and a third is occupied by someone appointed by the board and not elected by the voters.

In the past cycle we have had two elected board members resign because they had higher political aspirations.  One member left to run for congress and another left to become a congressional staff member.  So much for the kids.  So much for keeping a promise.

A third member resigned because of residency issues.

We are left with three retired teachers and an executive working for a local not for profit.

The school superintendent runs the district.  The board is supposed to give the superintendent direction.

I hope the voters are careful in who they chose in the May election.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Convicting Chapo Is On Amazon

EPN - Border Analysis - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 11:00pm
Finally, my book Convicting Chapo is on Amazon for sale. Here are a few excerpts from the book […]
Categories: Local Blogs

Border life meme of the week: The burrito cooler

Borderzine - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 10:16pm

Get a taste of food culture on the border where Texas, New Mexico and Northern Mexico meet. Browse our food section here.

Click hear to read Border life meme of the week: The burrito cooler

Categories: Local Blogs

A look at what’s on at the 2019 Chicago Feminist Film Festival this week

Borderzine - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 10:00pm

Five films with a Hispanic flavor will be screened at the Chicago Feminist Film Festival, which began February 27 and runs through Friday, March 1st.

The Film Row Cinema of Columbia College Chicago is hosting the fourth edition of the festival, which is free and open to the public. Three productions from Colombia, Spain and Cuba with local directors stand out, together with two productions from the United States directed by Latino filmmakers. In addition, migration, and refugees and racism are the protagonists of four other films, a feature film and three short films. Most screenings will be followed by a debate, in some cases with the presence of the directors.

Migrantes y refugiados son los protagonistas de cuatro filmes que se proyectarán en la cuarta edición del Festival de Cine Feminista de Chicago. Destaca el largometraje Crystal Swan, que cuenta la historia de una joven DJ bielorusa, que en la década de los 90 trata de llegar a Chicago persiguiendo el sueño americano, pero termina en un lugar muy distinto. También interesante es el cortometraje The European dream: Serbia, dirigido por el periodista español Jaime Alekos, que documenta las torturas de la policía húngara a los refugiados y migrantes que se quedaron atrapados en Serbia cuando, en 2016, intentaron cruzar la frontera entre Serbia y Hungría para entrar en la Unión Europea. Además, se proyectará un cortometraje que trata sobre racismo y otros cinco sobre temas varios están dirigidos por cineastas latinos, entre los cuales una historia que tiene lugar en Cuba y otra en Colombia. El evento, que es gratis y abierto a todo el público, tendrá lugar entre el 27 de febrero y el 1 de marzo en el Film Row Cinema del Columbia College Chicago.

Historias sobre migrantes y refugiados más cinco películas dirigidas por latinos protagonizan el Festival de Cine Feminista de Chicago 2019

Por Anna Bonet

La migración tiene muchas caras y todas las historias son tan diferentes y únicas como las personas que las han vivido. Por ello, cada uno de los cuatro filmes con esta temática que se proyectarán durante el Festival de Cine Feminista de Chicago lo hacen desde una perspectiva diferente.

En el caso del largometraje de ficción Crystal Swan, la historia nos lleva a la Bielorrusia de los años 90, cuando una joven DJ decide emigrar a los Estados Unidos en busca de su sueño americano, pero acaba en un sitio muy distinto al que se imaginaba. El filme, una coproducción de Bielorrusia, Alemania, Estados Unidos y Rusia, dirigido por Darya Zhuk, se proyectará por primera vez en Chicago, que es la ciudad donde precisamente quiere llegar la protagonista de la película.

 

Otra historia sobre migración, en este caso real, es la que nos cuenta Little Rebel, dirigida por Guido Ronge y Aimie Vallat. La protagonista es la extraordinaria Isatou Jallow, una mujer de Gambia que en 2012 llegó a Seattle pidiendo asilo. A la fecha, Isatou se ha graduado en la universidad y se ha convertido en abogada. Ahora lucha por los derechos de las mujeres, los refugiados y las personas con discapacidades. Su historia es la de una sola mujer, pero es también la de muchos otros migrantes que buscan un país de acogida huyendo de la pobreza, los desastres naturales, las persecuciones políticas o las guerras.

 También real es la de Strangers Ourselves, una producción canadiense protagonizada por una mujer de 86 años. La directora Lora Murray cuenta la historia de su abuela, Elizabeth Rapley, quien desde 1979 ha ayudado a 92 refugiados a establecerse en Canadá.

Por último, The European Dream: Serbia documenta las torturas que sufrieron en 2016 miles de refugiados y migrantes que quedaron atrapados en la frontera entre Serbia y Hungría, cuando intentaban entrar en la Unión Europea. La investigación, dirigida por el periodista español Jaime Alekos, incluye los testimonios de aquellos quienes sufrieron esa dura y humillante experiencia. Este es, además, uno de los cinco filmes dirigidos por cineastas hispanos, entre los cuales encontramos el cubano Damián Calvo que presenta Obini Batá: Women of the drums. Las protagonistas de este filme son un grupo de bailarinas que desafiaron la tradición al convertirse en las primeras mujeres cubanas en tocar los tambores.

También se proyectará en el festival el filme Mani Cura, película que fuera seleccionada para participar en el último Festival de Cannes y que cuenta las historias —basadas en hechos reales— que se esconden detrás de las manos las mujeres más ricas de Colombia. La dirección es obra de la colombiana Gisela Savdie. También de origen hispano es Rhonda Mitrani, de padres cubanos y argentinos, que presenta Supermarket, un corto de género fantástico protagonizado por una mujer quien en una visita al supermercado come una aceituna le cambia la vida. Finalmente, en Egg day, Grasie Mercedes, de origen dominicano, utiliza el humor negro para contar una experiencia autobiográfica: El periplo de lo que significa el proceso que ella y su pareja atraviesan para quedar embarazada a través de la fertilización in vitro.

Además, durante el festival se proyectará la producción holandesa Your Hair is Cute, obra de la directora Cíntia Taylor, que aborda en forma de monólogo poético las sutilezas del racismo en nuestras sociedades.

Durante los tres días que durará el Festival de Cine Feminista de Chicago 2019, se presentarán un total de tres largometrajes, 40 cortos y dos webseries provenientes de 15 países. El primer día abre con el largometraje Be Natural: The Untold Story de Alice Guy-Blaché, dirigida por Pamela B. Green. La película, narrada por Jodie Foster, muestra la travesía de Green en busca de archivos audiovisuales por todo el mundo. Los largamente olvidados clips de entrevistas ayudan a reconstruir la historia de Blaché, la primera directora estadounidense de cine, y, en consecuencia, a rescatar la historia de las mujeres en este arte. Be Natural es un testimonio de la continua desigualdad de género en la industria cinematogáfica.

El Festival de Cine Feminista de Chicago (Chicago Feminist Film Festival) presenta películas independientes e internacionales, predominantemente cortos, que abarcan géneros experimentales, documentales y de ficción, y tiene como objetivo abordar temas de género, sexualidad, raza y otras temáticas que a menudo faltan en los medios de comunicación tradicionales. A su vez, esto significa crear espacios públicos inclusivos para que los artistas con poca representación obtengan visibilidad en la industria cinematográfica general. Otro objetivo es forjar conexiones entre el cine local, nacional e internacional. El festival considera que el arte desempeña un papel vital al reunir a las personas y alentarlas a pensar en profundidad sobre temas de igualdad y justicia social.

Para obtener más información o ver la programación detallada, visiten chicagofeministfilmfestival.com.

 

Categories: Local Blogs

New Data Emerges on Self-Petitioning 'Abused Alien Spouses'

US Immigration Reform Forum - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 6:07pm
New Data Emerges on Self-Petitioning 'Abused Alien Spouses'

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We know little about the extent to which the American right to due process is ...

Categories: Local Blogs

Additional Thoughts on Designating Mexican Cartels as Foreign Terrorist Organizations

US Immigration Reform Forum - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 6:07pm
Additional Thoughts on Designating Mexican Cartels as Foreign Terrorist Organizations

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My own preference would be for legislation creating ...

Categories: Local Blogs

A Reminder of How Immigration Policies Assisted in the 1993 World Trade Center Attack

US Immigration Reform Forum - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 6:07pm
A Reminder of How Immigration Policies Assisted in the 1993 World Trade Center Attack

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Twenty-six years ago this week, six Americans were k...

Categories: Local Blogs

Reviewing the Administration's Unaccompanied Children Program

US Immigration Reform Forum - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 6:07pm
Reviewing the Administration's Unaccompanied Children Program

[html]Patrick McHugh
February 27, 2019 - 10:40am

           
Categories: Local Blogs

H1-B Deadline Soon, New Regs for H-4 and EB-5 Are Coming a Little Later

US Immigration Reform Forum - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 12:02pm
H1-B Deadline Soon, New Regs for H-4 and EB-5 Are Coming a Little Later

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Looking at the near, and not-so-near horizons, there are three pro...

Categories: Local Blogs

The Mayor's Race

Max Powers - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 7:45am
It is still a year out, but it appears people are gunning for Dee Margo. Why? Dee has a couple of issues that work against him - he raised taxes, and he has a shitty track record when it comes to getting re-elected. So who is gonna run against Dee?... Max Powers
Categories: Local Blogs

What will the Times do?

ElPasoSpeak - Wed, 02/27/2019 - 6:45am

Max Grossman sent this in:

I am extremely pleased to report that Aaron Montes, one of the most driven and talented local investigative reporters in modern memory, has announced that he has been appointed Government Reporter of the El Paso Times. The new hire could not come at a better time. A few months ago our venerable daily lost veteran reporters Elida Perez and Aileen Flores, and we just learned that the Austin correspondent, Madlin Mekelberg, resigned in order to work for the Austin Statesman. Aaron distinguished himself at the El Paso Inc as an excellent journalist, investigating issues that many of his colleagues in the media refused to touch. As the only El Paso Times reporter specifically assigned to our City and County, we can be certain that the public will be better informed than ever before. I have no doubt that Aaron’s reports will serve as a strong check against government overreach and corruption. Congratulations Aaron! ***************************************** Now the question is “will the Times allow him to report what he knows or will they censor him?” We deserve better Brusut
Categories: Local Blogs
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by Dr. Radut