Stephen Crowley/The New York Times
Gloria Castillo, 22, works from 10:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. at a Burger King in West Dallas, earning $252 a week before taxes. She and her husband, who have two boys ages 7 and 8, work different shifts.
(click post title to view read article and view video on nytimes website)
From the car window, the whole fast-food experience is a numbing routine. Pull up. Order from the billboard. Idle. Pay. Drive away. Fast food has become a $120 billion motorized American experience.
But consider the life inside that window on Loop 12 in West Dallas. There is a woman with children and no health insurance, undereducated, a foot soldier in the army of the working poor. The fry cook sneezes on the meat patties. Cigarettes go half smoked. Cameras spy on the employees. Customers throw their fries and soft drinks sometimes because they think it’s funny.
tags: immigration jobs texas american poor
22 November 2006
So, I am finally getting out of Ann Arbor for a little bit to visit some family :) I haven't gone anywhere in a while, so I wanted to be sure I was up to date on all the latest travel regulations. After hearing that they threw away this little girl's peanut butter and jelly sandwich, I had to go to the source. I don't know about you, but I always bring my own food, water, etc to the airport cause everything is way overpriced AND gross. It looks like I can still bring food, as long as none of it is liquid-like, but no water. I am already feeling parched!
Click the title link to see all prohibited/allowed items. I won't poke fun now, but some of them did make me laugh. Ok, I'll tell you one that did - the gel bra! hehe. Luckily, you are allowed to wear this through the security area.
Have a great weekend!
15 November 2006
14 November 2006
How does this make any sense? (click title of post to read full article from USA today)
"City Council members (in a suburb of Dallas, Texas) unanimously approved fines for landlords who rent to illegal immigrants, making English the city's official language and allowing local authorities to screen suspects in police custody to check their immigration status."
English is used here as an indicator of legal citizenship status. How does that make any sense? I know a lot of people back home in Miami that speak very little, or poor English, and are fully legal citizens. Talk about politicizing and criminalizing language! Arguments like these really incense me, because they terrorize people. Then, the advocates wonder why people get angry and get into fights. Hello! I'm angry, and I don't even have to worry that anyone's going to come knocking on my door to see whether or not I speak English, and then use that against me in terms of immigration status.
Then, there's that part about landlords being fined for renting to illegal immigrants. Now, I understand, as a property owner, that it is my responsiblity to be sure that there is, like, no drug ring action happening in my condo, and that I get my rent check on time. But, how does a mere landlord gain the credentials and reponsibilities of an immigration officer? That is not my job, and it is not the job of any landlord in Texas (well, I guess now it is!). See, it just doesn't make any sense.
All of these policies come out of fear. Fear of what? Fear that their city is going to "become Hispanic." Well, they should've realized a long time ago that that city that they think is "theirs" doesn't really "belong" to anyone. It is not their job to "make it white." And, if they really want to see whose land it is, then it is definitely not historically theirs. Texas, before it belonged to the US, was most assuredly part of Mexico. And, before it was part of Mexico, it belonged to the indigenous people who lived there.
That's the end of my rant for today . . .
tags: immigration language texas english spanish
13 November 2006
The Bluest Eye is playing at Plowshares Theater through the end of this weekend. Don't worry about getting a bad seat because it's general admission! I just bought my tickets, and I am super excited to see this adaptation of Toni Morrison's book. Here the description from the theater's website:
Eleven year-old Pecola Breedlove has desired the love of her family and friends all her young life. Instead, she faces constant ridicule and abuse. Blaming her dark skin, Pecola prays for blue eyes - as blue as Shirley Temple's. Everyone adores little blue-eyed girls. Her prayers are granted in the most poignant way. The Bluest Eye is the heartrending story of a young black girl's tragic coming of age in 1941 Ohio. Toni Morrison’s poetic and piercingly relevant debut novel is brought to the stage with loving care by playwright Lydia R. Diamond.
tags: theater women art toni morrison detroit black
07 November 2006
Read the article linked above. NYC now makes it possible for transgendered people to "change" their legal gender with or without undergoing surgery. This has many interesting implications for the use of the words 'sex' and 'gender' in society, well in NY anyway, and how people perceive themselves v the way the world interprets them. But, what I am unclear of is, does this mean that there are still only two legal genders, male and female? What if a person rejects both of those categories?
tags: new york gender transgender language
tags: new york gender transgender language
06 November 2006
a poem from Staceyann Chin on tomorrow's necessity . . . I have already sent in my absentee ballot, so you all go on and exercise that right.
Why the Fuck Should I Vote in 2006? (only a portion, go to her myspace to read the whole thing)
by Staceyann Chin (www.myspace.com/staceyannchin)
Less than twenty-four hours
before the mid-term elections
the weeks have tricked us
into days/the moment
descends and my fingers itch
for a poem
a great rage to inspire you
to rise you up
early or late tomorrow
to go vote
and the ill winds that flapped
incumbent at the throats of old women
who marched in Selma
for the children who will never know
the New Orleans into which they were born
New York City and how this town
has become a place
only the wealthy can enjoy
vote against these small boxes we pay
entire months wages for
I have to cut something else
snip away at the doors Black teenagers can walk through
pile all the Puerto Ricans on top of each other
call them Mexicans
because you don't know better
if your mother is Dominican
if your father is from Barbados
your older brother is still in Belize
grandfather is in Nigeria
if your maternal grandmother is Jamaican
if you have never seen the city where your people are from
white as a WASP and liberal
or you used to be republican
tags: vote poem art staceyann chin culture