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Join us this Saturday for two events hosted by the Immigrant Youth Forum
Date: Saturday, November 2nd
Time: 12:00 – 3:00 pm
Location: Ultimate Comics (6120 Farrington Rd. Durham, NC 27517)
Date: Saturday, November 2nd
By: José Rico
My name is Jose Rico and I am a Community College student here in North Carolina. In fact, I have been a community college student for the past five years. Why so long? As an undocumented student, I do not qualify for in-state tuition nor am I eligible to receive any federal financial aid. Wanna know the whole spiel, read it here:
The UNC-System also has a similar policy, which you can read here:
Now, has it always been this way? The answer is No. At the community college level, the policies for undocumented students has changed five times over the last decade*. At one time, each college adopted each own policy, some of them even banned undocumented students. Here at the North Carolina Dream Team, we have advocated for educational opportunities and tuition equity since our founding. In fact, our very first action was a hunger strike in May 2010 to push Senator Kay Hagan to co-sponsor the Dream Act. The result? She voted against it.
As of right now, there are 12 states in the Untied States that have their own versions of the Dream Act. North Carolina, is still keeping undocumented students like me in the shadows, and allow schools like Wake Tech to implement policies that are keeping us “at the back of the bus” when it comes to registration. Here is an email sent by the admissions office at Wake Technical Community College:
If you notice, this email was sent to all the students identified by Wake Tech to be undocumented. If you look closely you’ll see that this was sent for the registration period for the Spring of 2013. Classes for the Spring began on January 7th, but the college forces all undocumented students to register a week after classes had begun. Most of the time this limits us from registering for any math or physics courses or classes for which a professional license will be needed to work at the end of the program of study; like a nursing degree. THESE POLICIES ARE UNJUST, UNFAIR AND DISCRIMINATORY.
We must take a stand, so join us one more time to ask for in-state-tuition to ALL North Carolina students.
Where? Wake Technical Community College, Main Campus, 9101 Fayetteville Road, Raleigh, NC
When? Thursday, August 15th, 2013 @ 2:00pm
NC Dream Team
*As of Monday, August 5th, NCCCS have opted to once again change their policy to allow DACA youth to register at the same time as all the other students; still leaving undocumented youth behind and charging both DACA and non-DACA students out-of-state tuition.
“Comics Speak!” Proyecto de Arte Ayuda a Adolescentes a Expresar Sus Pensamientos sobre Identidad y el Racismo
Presentación Final: Viernes, Mayo 17 de 6:00 – 8:00 pm en el ArtsCenter de Carrboro
(Chapel Hill, NC) Mexinegro, un Moreno, Mexicano, superhéroe multiétnico que lucha en contra de villanos racistas no es fácilmente reconocido como el personaje de un héroe, o por lo menos, aún no. Pero, si los quince adolescentes participando en el proyecto “Comics Speak!” tienen la última palabra, éste y otros personajes llegarán a ser tan conocidos como el “Iron Man o Wolverine”. Desde el principio de Febrero, un grupo de jóvenes Morenos, Latinos, y multiétnicos han estado trabajando con el artista visual Luis Franco y el poeta y escritor Kane Smego en el Centro de adolescentes Street Scene para crear sus cómics como parte del proyecto “Comics Speak!” El proyecto es una colaboración entre el público de Chapel Hill y la Oficina de Artes Culturales, Sacrificial Poets, Volunteers for Youth, NC Dream Team, y Ella Baker Woman’s Center for Leadership and Community Activism. El proyecto une a jóvenes Afroamericanos, Latinos y multiétnicos para hablar sobre la identidad racial y el racismo por medio del cómic. En las palabras de uno de los artistas jóvenes, Gerardo Alvarez, “Este programa me ha permitido usar mis habilidades artísticas para entregar un mensaje importante a mi comunidad.”
Por medio de una serie de doce talleres, cada sábado por la mañana, y su trabajo fuera de la escuela, estos jóvenes han sido entrenados en el desarrollo de su personaje, a través de poemas escritos sobre ellos mismos y sus experiencias con el racismo. De ahí, crearon su historia, hicieron un guión gráfico, dibujaron y colorearon los varios cuadros para dar vida a los superhéroes en cada pagina de su cómic. Habrá una exhibición del arte y poesía de los jóvenes, en el ArtsCenter en Carrboro el 17 de Mayo de 6-8 pm. La exhibición es gratis y abierto al público, y le dará la oportunidad a la comunidad de hablar con estos artistas jóvenes y hacerles preguntas sobre su proyecto.
“Comics Speak!” nació como respuesta a la necesidad dentro de la comunidad, de expresión, discusión, y colaboración. El propósito era dar fuerza a jóvenes de color y usar su arte como una forma de confrontar los obstáculos que ellos y sus comunidades enfrentan a diario. Pero también queríamos celebrar sus identidades y culturas vibrantes. El proyecto dió espacio e instrucción para que estos jóvenes puedan formar una relación e identificar estos temas usando arte visual y poesía como forma de comunicarse con su comunidad. El proyecto fue una extensión de dos talleres previos realizados por Sacrificial Poets de Chapel Hill, que identificaron el deseo de jóvenes de utilizar el arte para expresarse de una manera que fuera positiva y afirmando sus identidades.
El proyecto fue comisionado por el Público de Chapel Hill y la Oficina de Artes Culturales como parte de su anual “Into the Streets: Community Art Projects,” que conecta a artistas con grupos de la comunidad para crear arte temporal o permanente que directamente involucra y beneficia a las comunidades de Chapel Hill y Carrboro.
Acerca de la Oficina del Público y Artes Culturales
La oficina de Público de la ciudad de Chapel Hill y la Oficina de Artes Culturales, una división del Departamento de Parques y Recreación, desarrolla e implementa programas de arte para aumentar el acceso del público a las artes, provee oportunidades para que artistas locales puedan mostrar su trabajo y promover el entendimiento y conocimiento del público en las artes. La Oficina está aconsejada por y trabaja con la Comisión de Artes Puúblicas de Chapel Hill, una comisión de 11 miembros voluntarios establecido en 1992 y apuntado por el Ayuntamiento.
Contacto: Jeffrey York, Administrador de Artes Publicas, firstname.lastname@example.org, (919) 968-2750
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“Comics Speak!” Art Project Helps Teens Express Their Thoughts about Identity and Racism
Final Presentation: Friday May 17 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm at the ArtsCenter in Carrboro
(Chapel Hill, NC) Blexican, a Black, Mexican, multiethnic super hero who fights racist villains is not a readily recognized super hero persona, at least not yet. However, if the fifteen teens participating in the “Comics Speak!” project have their say, this character and others will become as well-known as Iron man or Wolverine. Since early February, a group of Black, Latino, and multiethnic teens have been working with visual artist, Luis Franco, and poet and writer, Kane Smego, at the Street Scene Teen Center to create their comics as part of the “Comics Speak!” project. The project is a collaboration between the Chapel Hill Public & Cultural Arts Office, Sacrificial Poets, Volunteers for Youth, NC Dream Team, and The Ella Baker Women’s Center for Leadership and Community Activism. The project brings together African American, Latino, and multiethnic youth to discuss racial identity and issues of racism through the expressive medium of the graphic novel or comic book. In the words of one of the young artists, Gerardo Alvarez, “This program allowed me to use my art skills to deliver an important message to my community.”
Through a series of twelve, Saturday morning workshops, and work outside of class, the teens have been coached in the development of their character’s persona through writing poems about their selves and their own experiences with racism. They then crafted story lines, created storyboards and plot sequences, and then drew and colored the various frames to bring their super heroes to life on the pages of their very own comic. The teen’s artwork and poetry will debut in an exhibition at the ArtsCenter in Carrboro on May 17 from 6-8 pm. The exhibition and performance is free and open to the public, and will give the community an opportunity to speak with the youth artists and ask them questions about the project.
“Comics Speak!” grew out of a response to a community need for expression, discussion, and collaboration. The goal was to empower youth of color to use the arts to confront the obstacles they and their communities face on a regular basis, as well as celebrate the vibrant cultural identities they possess. The project provided space and instruction for these youth to connect and identify these issues, by using both visual art and spoken word as a means of communicating with the community at large. The project was an extension of two earlier community workshops conducted by Chapel Hill’s Sacrificial Poets that identified a desire for an artistic means of expression for the teens that was positive and identity-affirming.
The project was commissioned by the Chapel Hill Public & Cultural Arts Office as part of their yearly Into the Streets: Community Art Projects, which connects artists with community groups to create temporary or more permanent artwork that directly engages and benefits the communities in Chapel Hill and Carrboro.
About the Office of Public & Cultural Arts
The Town of Chapel Hill’s Public and Cultural Arts Office, a division of the Parks & Recreation Department, develops and implements art programs to increase public access to the arts, provides opportunities for local artists to display their work, and promotes public understanding and awareness of the arts. The Office is advised by and works collaboratively with the Chapel Hill Public Arts Commission, an 11-member volunteer board established in 1992 and appointed by the Town Council.
Contact: Jeffrey York, Public Arts Administrator, email@example.com, (919) 968-2750
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Next Monday DMVs across North Carolina will be re-issuing drivers
licenses to DACA youth. The pink striped licenses that will be issued
to us have been bashed as discriminatory and getting one may even be seen by some as being complicit in the government’s signaling out of undocumented people. I’ve been in conversations in which documented people look at me as if they want to save me… they are outraged that this is happening and some have even apologized for the outright discrimination the state is engaged in. The funny thing about that is that I’m not outraged…not at all. I’ve already won this battle. In fact, I won it back in 2010 when I declared myself to be undocumented and unafraid. All I need now is a license that forces the government to acknowledge me and my position as an undocumented person who refuses to be afraid and live in the shadows. A regular license would not accomplish that so thank you, North Carolina!
We’re on the same page. This has been more about dropping the fear than anything else.
The truth is that the alternative to a pink striped license came close
to being nothing at all. I’m going to check my privilege here because
the fact is that throughout the period that I have this license I will
have deferred action and that means I won’t be deported. Even if I
decided to not get a license, I would still not be risking the same
thing by driving without a license because deportation would be off
the table…even if only temporarily. There are others in my community that don’t have this privilege. My parents and older brothers and sisters certainly don’t. Having a drivers license in the family will be good no matter what color the license is. For me to not get one or to get caught up in picking a fight about how discriminatory this license will be is closing the door on an opportunity to open a conversation about drivers licenses for all undocumented people.
Again, the color that it comes in is secondary to the goal of empowerment that allows us to take this licenses and force them to be on our terms with an added level of accountability for the
discrimination that will happen no matter what.
At the NC DREAM Team we may have different opinions and some of us will get one of these licenses and others of us will decide not to.
The bottom line, though, is that we will drive without fear.
As the NC DREAM Team our priority is to help undocumented youth
recognize our individual and collective power. We seek to activate our communities and escalate in our efforts. We are guided by the voices of those directly affected:
· We welcome these licenses as an opportunity for some of us to have
an option that we did not have before.
· We are not safer with a regular license because discrimination still
happens on the basis of our skin color and the perceived immigration
status. At the end of the day we are still subject to deportation and harassment from law enforcement no matter what kind of license we get issued.
· Undocumented youth in North Carolina have been coming out as
undocumented, unafraid and unashamed since 2010. We will not allow a pink stripe to re-instate the shame that we gave up feeling with the empowerment of our community.
We aim to be empowered to get a pink striped license and take it as an opportunity to be undocumented and unafraid because we know how to fight back. If you are undocumented and were previously issued a regular license then go ahead and put that pink tape on your drivers license! You are undocumented. No need to hide it. Be empowered by it!
We are taking these licenses and engaging in this fight knowing that
the biggest and most important battle is the one in our head that
leads us to our own individual liberation independent of politicians,
policies, anti-immigrant groups, allies, the non-profit industrial
complex and anything and anyone in between.
Join us on March 25th at 3:30pm at the DMV at 2431 Spring Forest Road North Raleigh, Unit 101, NC 27615. We will rally to declare that we will drive without fear!
Holding our drivers licenses hostage may be a game of politics for Anthony Tata, the Department of Transportation Secretary. But for Mayra Aguilar, a local DACA eligible youth and young mother from Garner, it is about survival and being able to care for her family and drive without fear. Mayra has requested a meeting with NCDOT Secretary Tata to seek accountability. This meeting is scheduled for today at 4 pm.
We need our community to stand behind Mayra and all undocumented youth across North Carolina. It’s time to get our licenses back!
Call NC Secretary of Transportation Tony Tata RIGHT NOW: 919-707-2800, 919-707-2834
Sample Script: “Hi, I’m calling to support driver licenses for DACA immigrant youth like Mayra Aguilar who is meeting with Secretary Tata today. Mayra is a young mother and needs to be able to drive without fear. She needs a drivers license and Secretary Tata has a responsibility to keep all of North Carolina safe with licensed and insured drivers. We must put safety over hate politics.”
Earlier last month, NC Secretary of Transportation, Anthony Tata, decided to stop issuing driver’s licenses to DACA youth and has since kept our licenses hostage. For him, it is a game to flex his power and in that game all North Carolinians lose.
Even after a favorable statement from our Attorney General, Roy Cooper, the NCDOT is still refusing to change this discriminatory policy. Tata is knowingly and intentionally attacking us as immigrant youth and in the process is violating federal directive and abusing his power to bully our communities.
Anthony Tata has the power to re-issue drivers licenses. We demand he do so immediately. We ask you to demand with us!
1) Sign & Share the petition:
2) Call NC Secretary of Transportation Tony Tata RIGHT NOW: 919-707-2800
Sample Script: “Hi, I’m calling to support driver licenses for DACA
immigrant youth like Mayra Aguilar who is meeting with Secretary Tata
today. Mayra is a young mother and needs to be able to drive without
fear. She needs a drivers license and Secretary Tata has a
responsibility to keep all of North Carolina safe with licensed and
insured drivers. We must put safety over hate politics.”
3) Call Eric Boyette (NC DMV Commissioner) – (919) 861-3015
Sample script: “Hi, I am calling to ask that the NC DMV adhere to the
statement made by Attorney General Cooper saying DACA holders have a
right to obtain driver licenses by NC state law. I ask that this
official statement be reflected in the DMV’s requirements for driver
licenses immediately. Thank you!”
WE NEED OUR LICENSE BACK!!!
La marcha sigue en pie! Nos vemos mañana, Martes, afuera de las oficinas del Departamento de Transportacion. Mas detalles:
Cuando: Martes, 22 de Enero a las 9am
Donde: 1 S. Wilmington St. Raleigh, NC
*Bring your banners, caps and gowns, and matracas.
**Parking: Street parking or on-site parking decks at 120 S. Wilmington St. and also 115 S. Wilmington St. ($2/hour).
Para mas informacion, favor de contactar a:
Jacki Aguilar: 919-395-8458
Jose Rico: 919-802-0508
After weeks of going back and forth on the recent change in policy by the DMV to not grant drivers licenses to immigrant youth that benefit from President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), it has become evident that the NC Department of Transportation does not intend to change back its policy. They will continue to hold our drivers licenses hostage.
Only weeks ago, the DMV stated that they would stop issuing drivers licenses until they heard from the opinion of Attorney General Roy Cooper. Late last week, Cooper issued a statement explaining that DACA beneficiaries not only hold legal presence, but that the state is required to issue us driver licenses:
“It is therefore our opinion that individuals who have been granted deferred action under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy directive are lawfully present in the United States during the period of deferment. As such, N.C. Gen. Stat. 20-7(s), which states that DMV shall issue a drivers license of limited duration to person who present valid documentation demonstrating deferment and meet all other statutory requirements, requires that such licenses be issued.”
Following Attorney General Cooper’s clarification, US Citizen & Immigration Services (USCIS) also issued a formal statement in regards to driver licenses for DACA recipients:
“Deferred action is a discretionary determination to defer removal action of an individual as an act of prosecutorial discretion. For purposes of future inadmissibility based upon unlawful presence, an individual whose case has been deferred is not considered to be unlawfully present during the period in which deferred action is in effect. An individual who has received deferred action is authorized by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to be present in the United States, and is therefore considered by DHS to be lawfully present during the period deferred action is in effect.”
According to recent USCIS data, as of this month there are 14,777 immigrant youth that were given deferred action in the state of North Carolina.
However, it has become apparent to us that our state’s Department of Transportation does not care much for these clarifications. They continue to discriminate DACA youth and have given no sign of changing back the DMV policy that keeps us from obtaining a driver license. They have also found an ally in their bullying of immigrant youth with Lt. Governor Dan Forest.
A recent statement given by NC Lt. Governor Dan Forest expresses:
“A person entering the United States illegally should not be afforded the privileges reserved for US citizens..”
This is yet another attack on us. You and I have a choice to make: Will we remain silent or fight back?
Here’s what we need to do:
1. Sign the petition and make calls:
2. Come to the protest organized by local immigrant youth TOMORROW:
When: Tuesday, January 22 @ 9am
Where: 1 S Wilmington St. Raleigh, NC
*Bring your banners, caps and gowns, and matracas.
**Parking: Street parking or on-site parking decks at 120 S. Wilmington St. and also 115 S. Wilmington St. ($2/hour).
For more info on the protest please contact:
Jacki Aguilar: 919-395-8458
Jose Rico: 919-802-0508
See you there!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 29, 2012
Contact: Viridiana Martinez (919)704-0599
Youth Come Out as UNDOCUMENTED and UNAFRAID in NC Legislature
Undocumented Youth Face Anti-Immigrant Committee in NC Legislature
As the newly developed Standing House Committee on the State’s Role on Immigration works on drafting a comprehensive anti-immigrant plan for NC, undocumented youth are determined to drop the fear and face the members of this committee by showing up at the committee’s meeting and making themselves heard.
“My name is Uriel Alberto; I am undocumented, unafraid, and unashamed!” Uriel is an undocumented youth who is determined to be present at the committee’s meeting. When asked why he simply states “I refuse to be bullied and intimidated by this committee and choose to empower my community.”
This will be the third of a total of six meetings that this committee will have. These committee meetings are open to the public and like in the past two meetings a large number of anti-immigrant supporters are expected. The environment that these undocumented youth will be in will be a hostile one.
NC DREAM Team and other undocumented youth will show presence in tomorrow’s meeting in an effort to stop the spread of Arizona SB 1070 copycats across the south and a possible similar bill draft for NC.
Where: 16 West Jones St. Raleigh, NC 27601; ROOM 643 Legislative Office Building,
When: 1:00 pm, 2-29-2012
What: Undocumented Youth Face Anti-Immigrant Committee in NC Legislature
Who: NC DREAM Team
# # #
(En español abajo.)
As a team, our approach to the issues that face our community remains bold, unrelenting and defiant of an oppressive system. We are warriors. We are luchadores. Our fighting spirit also serves as a strong reminder to maintain a happy balance and never forget to celebrate ourselves, our communities and our cultures as we work toward a better future for all immigrants.
Tomorrow we fight again in LUCHADORAS 3 at Motorco in Durham from noon to 3pm. Come for lucha, sangre, miedo… y tacos!
We keep an open mind when seeking opportunities to fundraise that engage our community in ways to further our cohesive mission, while still having fun. Luckily, we’ve met cool folks doing cool things. We had the opportunity to partner up with Jeff and King, longtime Durham event promoters Jeff Johnson and King Kenney. They brought all-female lucha libre to Durham. Three of our team members participated in and helped organize the first two LUCHADORAS events (we decline to reveal their identities as to honor the tradition of lucha libre. Osea, respeta!). Jeff and King graciously donated the proceeds from the second event in January to the team. Thank you to them and everyone in the community who came to support the cause. And we’d like to thank mystery Brooklyn man Josh, who knowingly donated $100 to buy a signed luchadora poster with all the money going to the team. (If you’re reading this, send us your address!)
So why do we luchar in the ring, and continue to luchar in our communities? The parallels are incredible. Here are La Sirenita de Tijuana’s thoughts:
I’ve always had an obsession with lucha libre for various reasons: 1) because my uncle used to take me when I was little in Mexico with my cousin 2) because when I turned six we moved to the U.S. for good and I was practically raised an American but without letting go of my roots 3) for this reason all that is “Mexican” is very important in my life.
I never in my life imagined i would be a luchadora. I have always known about lucha libre, I went to the matches as a girl but I never really asked myself or studied what the true meaning of this sport was to the spectators. Why does it feel so special? In the beginning lucha libre was an institution of entertainment that little by little sewed itself into the fabric of Mexican culture. With the creation of the personas of the luchadores and the fights being between good and evil, the people started to relate with them given that the evil characters could well represent foes from real life. It was this way that lucha libre became part of the community, of the every day life and how a lot of luchadores became superheroes.
A lot of luchadores like El Santo, Blue Demon, Huracán Ramírez became pop culture legends via their cult movies in which they fight against zombies, the mummies of Guanajuato, the crazy scientists that want to subjugate us for their own evil interest, etc.
The beautiful thing about lucha libre for me is that it started as one thing and transformed into a medium that gave the ignored people (people with a struggle) a voice. One important example is Superbarrio Gómez, a luchador from the barrio, inspired by all the luchadores and the daily injustices he and his barrio faced. Another exemplary luchador is Fray Tormenta, a priest. Through lucha libre, Fray Tormenta was able to finance his orphanage and he became a hero that gave his mass in a mask. The people loved him.
I believe that our project of introducing lucha libre to Durham is very similar to the origins of lucha libre in Mexico. We started it with the idea of doing something that excited us but without really knowing what lucha libre was all about. The reasons we started Luchadoras are valid and beautiful, like funding Thanksgiving lunches for lower income communities and now for the NC DreamTeam! The more we practice it though the more we learn about ourselves and of the sport and how we can use lucha libre as a tool to do something good in the community. It’s also always a good thing to introduce different cultures to people and provide a space or excuse for people from all parts of the city to congregate and enjoy something in common.
I love that we have made this a league of all women! In the beginning this wasn’t meant to be a feminist movement but it has given us more confidence in ourselves and at least for me, it has converted me into an aspiring luchadora. There are women in other parts of the world that have become luchadoras to empower themselves, some because their husbands abused them and others for different reasons, but I have a lot of respect for them. I hope that Luchadoras can be a way to empower the women of the Triangle. All women are welcome!
¿Por qué luchar?
Como equipo, nuestra manera de enfrentar los problemas que plagan a nuestra comunidad sigue siendo audaz, implacable y desafiante de un sistema opresivo. Somos guerreros. Somos luchadores. A medida que trabajamos hacia un futuro mejor para todos los inmigrantes, nuestro espíritu de lucha también nos recuerda de la importancia de mantener un balance feliz y de nunca olvidar que debemos celebrarnos unos a otros, celebrar nuestras comunidades y nuestras culturas.
Mañana luchamos de nuevo en Luchadoras 3 en Motorco en Durham de 12 a 3pm. Ven a ver lucha, sangre, miedo… y a comer tacos!
Nos gusta mantener una mente abierta en torno la búsqueda de oportunidades para recaudar fondos. Intentamos de que la forma en que recaudamos fondos sea siempre de una manera que se dedique a nuestra misión de cohesión en la comunidad y sin dejar de divertirnos. Por suerte, hemos conocido a gente padre haciendo cosas padres. Tuvimos la oportunidad de asociarnos con Jeff y King, quienes desde hace mucho tiempo son promotores de eventos en Durham. Jeff Johnson y King Kenney intoducieron lucha libre de solo hembras a Durham. Tres miembros de nuestro equipo participaron en los dos primeros eventos de LUCHADORAS (nos abstenemos de revelar sus identidades como un honor la tradición de la lucha libre. Osea, Respeta!) . El Jefe y El Rey decidieron donar las ganancias de la segunda edición de LUCHADORAS en enero para el equipo. Gracias a ellos y a todos los miembros de la comunidad que vinieron a apoyar la causa. También nos gustaría dar las gracias al misterioso hombre de Brooklyn, Josh, que pago $ 100 para comprar un póster firmado por todas las luchadoras y los cuales fueron donados en su totalidad a el equipo también. (Si estás leyendo esto, envíanos tu dirección!)
¿Por qué luchamos en el ring asi como seguimos luchando en nuestras comunidades? Alli les van los pensamientos de La Sirenita de Tijuana:
Siempre he tenido una obsesión con la lucha libre por varias razones: 1) porqué mi tío me llevaba a las luchas de niña cuando vivía en México con mi prima 2) porqué cuando cumplí seis años nos mudamos a los estado unidos para siempre y prácticamente crecí con la cultura americana pero nunca perdí mis raíces 3) por ésta razón todo lo que es “mexicano” se me hizo muy importante en mi vida.
Nunca en mi vida me imaginé que iba a ser luchadora. Siempre he sabido de la lucha libre, fui a las luchas de niña pero realmente nunca me pregunté o estudié lo que significa la lucha libre para los espectadores. ¿Por qué se siente tan especial? Al principio la lucha libre era una institución de diversión que poco a poco se cosió en la fábrica cultural de México. Con la creación de los personajes de los luchadores y las peleas entre los buenos y los malos (o los técnicos vs. los rudos) la gente empezó a relacionar con ellos ya que los rudos pueden representar enemigos de la vida real. Fue así que la lucha libre se convirtió parte de la comunidad, de la vida cotidiana y como los luchadores se convirtieron en superhéroes.
Muchos luchadores como El Santo, Blue Demon, Huracán Ramírez se convirtieron en leyendas de la cultura popular por medio de sus películas en donde pelean en contra de los zombies, las momias de Guanajuato, los científicos locos que quieren someternos para su propio malvado interés, etc.
Lo bonito de la lucha libre para mí es que empezó como una cosa y se transformó a un medio que le dio voz a la gente ignorada. Un ejemplo importante es Superbarrio Gómez, un luchador del barrio, inspirado por todos los luchadores y las injusticias diarias. Superbarrio dice de su razón por ser luchador, “Yo sentí, algunos años después, que la Lucha en las Arenas y lo que ahí acontecía, necesitaban un pequeño soplo. Yo quise que la Lucha Libre, ese gran simbolismo – real y cósmico, se trasladara fielmente, sin maquillajes, a la lucha social y política cotidiana.” Otro luchador ejemplar es Fray Tormenta, un sacerdote y “fundador de una casa hogar donde sostenía alrededor de [cincuenta] niños.” Por medio de la lucha libre, Fray Tormenta pudo financiar su orfanato y se convirtió en un héroe que daba misa en su máscara. La gente lo adoraba.
Pienso que nuestro proyecto en presentar la lucha libre en Durham es muy similar con la origen de la lucha libre en México. Lo empezamos con la idea de hacer algo que nos emociona pero sin completamente saber de que se trata la lucha libre. Las razones por empezar Luchadoras son válidas y bonitas, como fundar lonches de pavo para el dia de acción de gracias para las comunidades menos afortunadas y ahora para el NC DreamTeam. Lo más que lo practicamos lo más que aprendemos de nosotras mismas y del deporte y como se puede usar como una herramienta para hacer algo bueno en la comunidad. También es bueno introducir diferentes culturas a todos tipos de gente y proveer un espacio o una excusa para hacer la gente de todas partes de la ciudad congregar en un lugar y disfrutar de algo común.
Me encanta que hemos hecho esto una liga de todas mujeres. Al principio no era un movimiento feminista pero nos ha dado más confianza en nosotras mismas y tal si quiera a mí me ha convertido en una luchadora aspirante. Hay mujeres en otras parte del mundo quién se convirtieron en luchadoras para empoderarse, algunas porqué sus esposos abusaban de ellas y otras por otras razones, pero les tengo mucho respeto. Espero que Luchadoras sea una forma de empoderar a las mujeres del Triángulo. ¡Todas las mujeres son bienvenidas!
In November of last year, we lost Joaquin Luna, an 18-year-old undocumented youth from Texas. Joaquin, like many other undocumented youth in the United States, thought that he had no future. He saw no help available or anyone he could relate to since he had dreams on going to college and becoming an engineer. Many of us still mourn his departure.
Today, however, we have youth like 22-year-old Yanelli Hernandez from Ohio. Yanelli, just like Joaquin, realized that there wasn’t any help or future dealing with the reality of being undocumented. She came here all by herself when she was just 13. She never had the opportunity to go to school because, at the age of 15, she began working at a factory in order to help put food on her family’s table. Yanelli has been battling with depression to the point that she has already attempted suicide not once, but twice. She has been incarcerated for the past 9 months in Butler County jail. While detained, Yanelli has started taking classes and is hoping to start on her GED soon. She dreams of one day becoming a veterinarian.
Yanelli, Dream Act eligible-youth is set to be deported on Tuesday, January 31st.
Please, sign the petition here: http://action.dreamactivist.org/yanelli
TODAY, is National UndocuHealth Day.
The NC Dream Team will hold a solidarity vigil to call for a stop at Yanelli’s deportation and bring local immigrant youth together to raise awareness about the mental anguish and undocumented reality they face.
Where: YWCA of the Greater Triangle (Eliminating Racism Empowering Women), 554 E. Hargett Street
Time: 6:30pm until 7:30pm
When: Monday, January 30th—TODAY!!