Executive Director: National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP)
This is poverty. It’s a reality - we don’t want to see or hear it - we are content with our dollar whoppers - and .50 cent jumbo size upgrade. In the meantime it lines with billions the pockets of a few. Afraid to pay more? Afraid your pseudo food called whopper will cost a bit more next time? This is poverty - get used to it.
I have an idea, how about we just stop profiting from immigrants AND/OR students altogether? This should be more of an Obama scandal today…Have you been ripped off by loans or lack of access in community colleges or 4 year institutions? Hit me up - for documentary series https://www.facebook.com/axelcaba
By Axel Caballero
Our current immigration system is broken. Deportations are at a record high, families are being separated, immigrant workers exploited, human lives are being lost at the border, there is rampant persecution and discrimination of immigrants and a perpetuation of negative stereotypes and criminalization of migration in the media.
How did we get here? How did we sacrifice basic human and civil rights in the name of political posturing, agendas and money interests? What can we do to reverse this?
The problem is that our current perspective of immigration has been driven for far too long by xenophobic nativists, fringe politicians, absurd pundits and profiteering allies and has been based on a false concept of criminalization. It has been translated into a draconian persecution that has violated our country’s commitment to human rights.
Fear and hate now control the debate. We see a daily barrage of images, words, actions and comments that portray immigrants as “criminals, leeches, invaders and dangerously different” to just name a few. This has been going on for decades – and its whole purpose has been for our society to be afraid, to exclude, abuse and thus support and enact policies that institutionalizes this very effectively.
Below we’ve outlined the five most common ways immigrants are slandered in the media and policy.
¡Patrañas! - The question is who’s civilization is more violent - the one that has engaged in two world wars - countless wars after (secret and not so secret) and ravaged the middle east. The one that builds an industry of machinery and military complexes to keep profiting over death. The one that turns a blind eye to massacres in schools and of children. Or the ones to whom apparently he is referring to - those that if they ever do take up arms - they usually fight to take their countries’ back? - Who is the violent civilization here Mr. King?
By Axel Caballero
In January 2013, the staff at Cuéntame received a phone call from 10-year-old Stephanie Pucheta and her mom María Ortiz. Their request seemed simple and straightforward at the time: Would Cuéntame help in bringing back Stephanie’s dad, Julio Cesar Pucheta, from deportation?
María and Stephanie were desperate; they had tried many avenues and contacted different immigration lawyers to no avail. Virtually broke and seemingly with nowhere else to turn to, they made the call after seeing one of our documentary campaign videos on immigration cases. Stephanie’s father had been in detention for over a year after a traffic violation and his removal proceeding was eminent. The Pucheta family story seemed all too common — reflecting precisely the horrors of our broken immigration system: A family on the verge of separation — with no resources, no legal remedies and no access to effective representations.
By Axel Caballero
Agreed, the window of opportunity is wide open for the passage of substantial immigration reform. Immigration reform is, after all, the next big ticket item. It’s the coveted prize that allegedly holds the key to millions of Latinos nationwide who will soon fall in line with whatever the powers that be decide to pass as “immigration reform”. No matter what it is, just slap the word “reform” to it and you will keep the community happy. After all, would anyone in their right mind want to anger the same community that just proved to be a deciding factor in the last election? No, of course not. So then call it “reform”, enlist the help of Latino-sounding names and sell, sell, sell as much as you can — no matter what it includes. The details don’t matter. Slap the word “reform” and everyone will fall in place.
By Axel Caballero and Kristel Mucino
The tragedy in Colorado demonstrated the devastating lethality of AR-15 type guns, like the one used in the Aurora shooting, and has caused many to question whether it makes sense to allow the purchase of military-style assault rifles. What a lot of people don’t know is that these rifles are also the weapons of choice among ruthless Mexican drug cartels. In the last 6 years, over 60,000 people have lost their lives in Mexico’s wave of violence.
The failure of the United States to enact meaningful gun regulation is not only affecting the United States; it is also fueling violence in Mexico. Among the victims are countless innocent bystanders, journalists, and children. The brutal truth is this — the AR-15s and many other guns used by drug lords, gangs, and kidnappers come from the United States.
According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), more than 70 percent of the weapons seized in Mexico in the last three years and submitted for tracing came from the United States.
How do these weapons end up in the hands of Mexico’s brutal drug lords? Look at the video on gun trafficking produced by WOLA and Cuéntame and embedded here.
By Axel Caballero
With the Supreme Court’s decision on Arizona anti-immigrant law SB1070, we need now more than ever, to stand together and send a strong & united message: In this country - We Are All “Illegals”!
The decision, while hopeful in some areas, leaves a huge gap - one in which allows for the discrimination, persecution on profiling of our community. The underlying problem is that as a culture we have defined immigrants as “illegal” entities.
We use the word often, spreading it in every day life - in the media, in our conversations. We have to move away from this frame of mind. Actions are “illegal”, human beings ARE NOT!
This is why Cuéntame partnered with Outernational, Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, Residente of Calle 13, Pop/Latin Producer Thom Russo as well as video & photo submissions from over 100 fans worldwide to produce a powerful, creative and important music video.
This release highlights the absurdity and obsolescence of the very notion of human beings deemed “illegal” in the year 2012.