Imagine being pulled over in a “driving-while-brown” situation and then having your car seized by the police—without even being charged with a crime. Maria Hinojosa discusses how this is happening across the country with The New Yorker magazine staff writer Sarah Stillman. Sarah wrote a feature article for the magazine titled “Taken” where she investigates this pattern of civil forfeitures.
Sarah Stillman is a staff writer for The New Yorker and a visiting scholar at NYU’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute. Her recent work has received the National Magazine Award, the Michael Kelly Award for the “fearless pursuit and expression of truth,” the Overseas Press Club’s Joe & Laurie Dine Award for International Human Rights Reporting, and the Hillman Prize for Magazine Journalism.
Latinos have made their power felt in the New York City mayor’s race in a way not seen before, with celebrities like John Leguizamo and Junot Diaz endorsing candidate Bill DeBlasio. And in Brooklyn, the first Mexican-American ever will be on the city council. Politician Carlos Menchaca visits the Latino USA studios and talks about being not only the first Mexican-American councilmember, but also the first openly gay legislator to represent Brooklyn.
Photo courtesy Carlos2013.com
Carlos Menchaca is a product of public schools and public housing, He is a native of El Paso, Texas raised by a single mother who immigrated from Mexico, In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Carlos worked day and night, bringing together local leaders, community groups, and everyday New Yorkers to coordinate response efforts and hold New York City, State, and Federal officials accountable.
As New York City Council member, Carlos will represent residents of the 38th Council District, which encompasses Sunset Park, Red Hook, Greenwood Heights, Borough Park, Windsor Terrace and Bay Ridge Towers.
Conventional wisdom says that Spanish-language movies don’t do well in the United States. But Mexican actor Eugenio Derbez set his sights north of the border, and his movie “Instructions Not Included” had the biggest opening weekend a Spanish-language movie has ever had. He joins Latino USA to talk about his crossover project.
Photo courtesy Pantelion Films
Eugenio Derbez is arguably the most popular Mexican comedic actor of his generation. Due to his incredible ability to transform himself into any character, and to his extensive career in television, film and theatre, Much of his popularity is due to his television programs Al Derecho y al Derbez, XH-DRBZ, Vecinos, La Alegría del Hogar and La Familia P. Luche, which have had many of the highest audience ratings.In recent years, his outstanding career and his enormous ability as an actor have paved his way into the American film industry, allowing him to work alongside renowned actors such as Adam Sandler, Katie Holmes and Al Pacino, among others.
“Instructions Not Included” is his cinematic directorial debut.
Serving in the military can help immigrants gain U.S. citizenship. But vets who commit crimes may find themselves deported despite their service to the country. Latino USA speaks with a vet awaiting deportation and with filmmaker John Valadez, currently working on a documentary highlighting the cases of veterans who have been deported.
Photo courtesy Flickr
John Valadez is an award-winning director who has been producing documentaries for PBS for the last X years. He has been a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow, A Rockefeller Fellow and is a founding member of the New York Chapter of the National Association of Latino Independent Producers. He has worked on projects for Carleton UK Television, Frontline, American Masters, CBC, TLC and HBO.
Craig Shagin is a lawyer in private practice in Pennsylvania, where egis firm is active in immigration law. He is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. He has authored numerous articles and books on various aspects of immigration law, including “Deporting Private Ryan: The Less Than Honorable Condition of the Non-Citizen in the United States Armed Forces.”
Latino USA explores the contributions Latinos made to the fight during World War II, and we learn about one soldier who captured around 1,500 prisoners of war. We speak with Prof. Maggie Rivas-Rodríguez, who has collected over 600 stories of Latino WWII vets.
Photo courtesy Voces Project
And check out the Voces Oral History Project’s piece on Latino WWII vets:
Maggie Rivas-Rodriguez is an Associate Professor of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin. She has more than 17 years of daily news experience, mostly as a reporter for the Boston Globe, WFAA-TV in Dallas and the Dallas Morning News. Her research interests include the intersection of oral history and journalism, U.S. Latinos and the news media. Since 1999, Rivas-Rodriguez has spearheaded the U.S. Latino and Latina Oral History Project “Voces”.
Actress Rita Moreno and her fans send Latino USA an audio postcard from her book signing at La Casa Azul Bookstore in New York City’s “El Barrio” neighborhood.
*Correction: In this piece, Rita Moreno says that Raul Julia won an Oscar. Julia did not win an Oscar. Benicio del Toro did for “Traffic”, making him the third Puerto Rican actor to win the award. Julia was nominated for several awards and won the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards, as well as the Emmy.
Marta Moreno Vega was born in El Barrio “Spanish Harlem” of Puerto Rican parents born in Puerto Rico. Dr. Vega, an Afro Puerto Rican, has dedicated her professional life to developing culturally grounded institutions placing the history and culture of African descendants in the Diaspora in the time clock of world history. She is founder and president of the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, an international not for profit organization located in New York City which she created in 1976.
Reporter Valerie Hamilton tells the story of deportees who died in a 1948 plane crash. Their identities remained unknown until now. Also, Maria Hinojosa interviews Hamilton about the Woody Guthrie song “Deportee,” inspired by the crash. Additional reporting by Rebecca Plevin.
Photo: Tim Hernandez, right, and folk musician John McCutcheon, left, unveiling the new memorial dedicated to the victims of the deportee plane crash. Also unveiling the memorial were musician Lance Canales and Jaime Ramirez, the relative of two crash victims. Image courtesy of Rebecca Plevin/Valley Public Radio.
The plane crash victims:
Miguel Negrete Álvarez
Tomás Aviña de Gracia
Francisco Llamas Durán
Santiago García Elizondo
Rosalio Padilla Estrada
Tomás Padilla Márquez
Bernabé López Garcia
Salvador Sandoval Hernández
Severo Medina Lára
Elías Trujillo Macias
José Rodriguez Macias
Luis López Medina
Manuel Calderón Merino
Luis Cuevas Miranda
Martin Razo Navarro
Ignacio Pérez Navarro
Román Ochoa Ochoa
Ramón Paredes Gonzalez
Guadalupe Ramírez Lára
Apolonio Ramírez Placencia
Alberto Carlos Raygoza
Guadalupe Hernández Rodríguez
Maria Santana Rodríguez
Juan Valenzuela Ruiz
Wenceslao Flores Ruiz
José Valdívia Sánchez
Jesús Meza Santos
Baldomero Marcas Torres
Valerie Hamilton is an independent producer. She reports on issues on and around the U.S-Mexico border for U.S. and European public media. She’s based in Los Angeles.
Local governments in California, New Orleans, and Connecticut are implementing laws known as “TRUST acts,” limiting the scope of cooperation between local law enforcement and the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. We’ll hear pieces from Adrian Florido in California, Kate Richardson in New Orleans, and Lucy Nalpathanchil in Connecticut. We’ll also hear from a Connecticut TRUST act booster, state senate majority leader Martin Looney.
Photo: Josemaria Islas at a rally in New Haven, CT. His detention and pending deportation spurred the Connecticut TRUST act. Image courtesy of Unidad Latina En Acción.
Senator Looney is in his sixth term as Senate Majority Leader of the General Assembly, having first been elected to that leadership post in 2003. He is also Chair of the Executive and Legislative Nominations Committee and Vice Chair of the Legislative Management Committee. Since being elected to the State Senate in 1993 and prior to his election as Majority Leader, he served six years as Senate Chair of the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee; Chairman of the Banks Committee; and one term as Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee.
Adrian Florido is a reporter for the Fronteras Desk where he covers the U.S.-Mexico border, immigrant and tribal communities, demographics, and culture. Before joining KPBS, he was a staff writer at Voice of San Diego. There he reported on San Diego neighborhoods, focusing on immigrant and under-served communities as well as development, planning, land use, and transportation.
Kate Richardson is from Houston, Texas. She is an independent radio producer and contributor to WWNO in New Orleans. She helps run a community media project called The Listening Post and teaches Spanish at Delgado Community College.
Lucy Nalpathanchil is WNPR’s All Things Considered Host and Correspondent. She’s an award-winning reporter who has worked in several states since starting her career at WDUQ in Pittsburgh. Lucy now lives in beautiful New England where she reports on news stories in the Connecticut region and contributes to National Public Radio. While at WNPR, her stories have focused on immigration including New Haven’s controversial ID card program, efforts for an in-state tuition law for undocumented students, and the “Becoming American” series
Mexican deportees are often dropped off in dangerous border cities at night. Reporter Maria Zamudio takes us to the Mexican city of Matamoros to see what they face when they arrive.
For Maria’s report in The Chicago Reporter, click HERE.
Image courtesy of Maria Zamudio.
Maria Zamudio is an award-winning investigative reporter. She joined The Chicago Reporter Magazine to cover immigration, labor and health in 2011. Prior to joining the investigative magazine, she spent three years in California working for several daily newspapers. She’s a bilingual reporter and blogger with experience producing radio and video stories. She been awarded many prestigious fellowships including the New York Times fellowship in 2003. She graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2007.
Love our stories?
It is always a good time to support independent media. Your donation makes a difference and ensures that we keep producing the award-winning episodes you have come to expect from Latino USA.