When Spanish in school was illegal: ‘When I Dream Dreams’ (video)


Once upon a time in America, Latino kids were not allowed to speak Spanish in school. This documentary recalls those days.

In 1918, Texas, along with many other states, enacted statutes that made the speaking of any language other than English on public school grounds illegal. These laws remained active until the U.S. Congress passed the Bilingual Education Act in 1968.

Through personal interviews with distinguished leaders and educators — all native Spanish/English-speakers — When I Dream Dreams explores the complex psychological and social effects of these laws by relating the experiences of these people as students and, later, as teachers, professors, and legislators.

When I Dream Dreams was made by four students enrolled in an alternative media course at Trinity University in 2001. It has won prizes and festival appearances around the United States, including Best Student Film at the San Francisco Latino Film Festival 2002, Best of the Fest at Cine Accion 2002, and official selection at San Antonio’s Cine Festival 2002. The piece takes its name from the poem by Carmen Tafolla.

From Archive.org

This just in: Apparently I am an ‘obvious American!’ Happy July 4!

I’ve been trying to make light of the Arizona “show me your papers” law in my stand-up but I don’t think people get it.

And I don’t think it’s because I’m a terrible comic (although that’s open to interpretation) but because people in general don’t really grasp what the law implies.

As a South American immigrant with a very paranoid Latina mother, I’ve lived with the fear of “show me your papers” most of my life.

Despite, being white and well assimilated (like a borg), I’ve carried my Social Security card and passport since I became a citizen.

Just last month, I was working on a film set and the consent form said, “Please provide proof of citizenship.” I panicked a little because I forgot my passport. As soon as I handed my paperwork to the agent, he looked me over and said,”Obviously, you were born in America…”

Mas…This just in: Apparently I am an ‘obvious American!’ Happy July 4!

Small Georgia town bans sale, use of ‘illegal alien paraphernalia’

(PNS reporting from DIXIE) The City of Morrow, GA voted yesterday to ban “illegal alien paraphernalia.”

City Ordinance 187 — the so-called Press A Tortilla Go to Jail law — is a response to the Supreme Court’s ruling that Arizona  SB 1070 was mostly unconstitutional.

The small town (population 4882) banned the sale and use within the city limits of:

“Illegal alien paraphernalia including, but not limited to

  • batas,
  • molcajetes,
  • tortilla presses,
  • international calling cards,
  • Mexican Coca-Cola and
  • Mexican soccer team accessories.”

The news wasn’t well received among Morrow’s small Hispanic community.

Five-year Morrow resident and Mexico native José Luis Gallegos said, “Qué se vayan a la chingada,” roughly translated as, “This is a heinous law.”

Mas…Small Georgia town bans sale, use of ‘illegal alien paraphernalia’

Obama’s DREAM announcement freaks out the right wing racists

President Barack Obama’s announcement today that he is halting the possible deportation of up to 800,000 DREAMERs has the right wing (racist) blogosphere in fits. Example: The Drudge Report (owned by Matt Drudge, who does not love sex with men) was so freaked out, they posted this headline and image but later took it down. POCHO Jefe-in-Chief Lalo Alcaraz grabbed a screenshot first, though. Mira!

GOP seeks Hispanic vote, taps Seagal for ‘You’re Busted, Beaner!’

Publicity photo courtesy 4REELZ network

(PNS reporting from HOLLYWOOD) Republicans scared to death worried about the GOP’s ridiculously awful poor standing with Hispanic non-Mexican-American voters have launched an election-year scramble to put a better spin on their party’s immigration problem. Their solution? A TV reality show starring Hollywood flunkie and all-around jackass, Steven Seagal.

Seagal leads the list of C-level actors in You’re Busted, Beaner!new Republican Party-backed reality series. Seagal stars as a cop who pursues “illegals” while promoting the GOP’s non-Mexican Hispanic-friendly agenda.

The show will be produced by Tinsel Town’s sole Republican, who prefers to remain anonymous.

Mas…GOP seeks Hispanic vote, taps Seagal for ‘You’re Busted, Beaner!’

ICE unveils first-ever resort-style hotel for immigrant detainees

Inviting metal benches say, "Sit, but for not too long!"

(PNS reporting from DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEJAS) U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is opening what they call the first-ever “resort-style hotel” for immigrant detainees.

Critics are calling the new Karnes County (TX) Civil Detention Center a “prison for profit” but ICE is marketing it as a migrant “destination” with “vast amenities” that will keep immigrant detainees coming back for more.

Mas…ICE unveils first-ever resort-style hotel for immigrant detainees

Franklin says ‘swarthy’ immigrants hurt our rep on Mars

(PNS reporting from PHILADELPHIA) Local publisher Benjamin “Sparky” Franklin (Poor Richard’s Almanac) is shocked by all the non-English-speaking dark-skinned foreigners in the City of Brotherly Love and worries about how our planet appears to residents of Venus and Mars.

The “swarthy” German newcomers are too stupid to learn English, the Society Hill resident charged in a recent newsletter:

Mas…Franklin says ‘swarthy’ immigrants hurt our rep on Mars

Alabama legislators to ‘import’ Canadian workers to fill jobs

Recent aerial photo shows rotting crops
(PNS reporting from DIXIE) In a move to avoid further financial ruin and humiliation, Alabama legislators are considering an unusual measure called the “Canuck Program” that would “import” laborers from Canadia to fill empty Alabama jobs.

Immigrant Mexican labor has all but disappeared from the Alabama landscape and the state has lost $10.8 billion in rotting crops and revenue.

Lawmakers desperate for solutions hope the Canuck Program will resuscitate the Yellowhammer State’s ignorant and bigoted economy.

Mas…Alabama legislators to ‘import’ Canadian workers to fill jobs

Daniel D. Portado tells Rachel Maddow about ‘self-deportation’ (video)

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POCHO Jefe-in-Chief Lalo Alcaraz joined the Rachel Maddow show on MSNBC Wednesday evening to discuss the fictional Daniel D. Portado character he created in 1994 to mock a racist California anti-immigrant measure. Lalo’s “self-deportation” hoax solution for undocumented residents was reborn last week as GOP hopeful Mitt Romney suggested “illegal” immigrants should “self-deport.”

Obama immigration officials run out of immigrants to deport, switch to deporting American citizens

In a curious move, the Barack Obama White House is campaigning tirelessly for the Latino  re-election vote while also deporting a record number of undocumented immigrants.

In a mad dash to burnish their law-and-order credentials, Obama officials have deported over a million undocumented immigrants during the past 2 1/2 years and are on track to out-deport the two-term Bush administration’s 1.57 million. In fact, they have deported so many undocumented immigrants they may have depleted the supply.

They have turned to an American resource to fill the void: deporting U.S. citizens. The instances are numerous, and growing:

Mas…Obama immigration officials run out of immigrants to deport, switch to deporting American citizens