Our Roots

Episode 5 – Family Separation at The Border: A Recap

Episode Description: The past few months have been a constant barrage of tweets, breaking news headlines, and articles about the “immigration crisis.” This administration has had no shortage of excuses when it comes to directing blame and skirting accountability for the separation of families at the border. So what statements are fact and which ones are fiction? Listen to this week’s episode to get a recap of the events and learn what sides of this issue still require our attention and call for us to stay involved to prevent further infringement of human rights.

 

We briefly talked about this topic in our first episode of the season (Woke in Review) and we wanted to revisit the topic to provide you with a better account of what has been happening. There has been so much that has happened and the administration has not been honest about what is happening.

During our conversation it was interesting to find that the three of us had learned about the family separation issue at different times. Maddie spoke about how she heard about it earlier in 2018. She was keeping up with the deportations and rhetoric around it but the family separations wasn’t really in the forefront till the pictures came out of the kids in the detention centers. Westley first heard of it back in February and the issue did not entirely catch Lina D’s attention until she saw a headline that positioned the issue as if the kids were being rescued from human trafficking situations. This was in May and her bullshit meter went off especially since Session’s Zero Tolerance policy had taken effect on April 6th.

Let’s do a recap of the situation and take a look at the chronology of events.

The articles below were used as a resource.

The Intercept: The U.S. Has Taken More Than 3,700 Children From Their Parents — And Has No Plan For Returning Them

Politifact: What You Need To Know About The Trump Administration’s Zero-tolerance Immigration Policy

CNN: The Remarkable History of The Family Separation Crisis

The Timeline

  • April 6, 2018: The “zero tolerance” policy orders authorities to criminally prosecute all individuals crossing the border illegally- includes asylum-seekers and parents arriving with small children.
  • April 2018 to May 2018: 1,995 children reported to be separated at the border
  • May 26, 2018: Trump tweets that the democrats are to blame for a “law” that separates families at the border. The tweet reads:

Put pressure on the Democrats to end the horrible law that separates children from there* parents once they cross the Border into the U.S. Catch and Release, Lottery and Chain must also go with it and we MUST continue building the WALL! DEMOCRATS ARE PROTECTING MS-13 THUGS. 9:59 AM – May 26, 2018

*Spelling has been maintained from the source

  • May 2018 to June 2018: Additional 2,342 children were reported to be separated. This is in addition to the approx 1,500 children that were separated from Oct 2017 to earlier this year.
  • June 20, 2018: Trump signs executive order to stop separating families at the border

There is a lot here that we should fact check so let’s start with fact checking Trump’s statement about the “law.”

There is no such democratic law that is separating families- it’s actually the zero tolerance policy that is enabling the separations. Zero tolerance ends up criminalizing all adults who cross the border illegally. That means that children cannot remain with their parents once they are charged.

Trump has made mention of “loopholes” that have contributed to the “immigration crisis”

What exactly is he referring to?

  • Flores v Reno: 1997 court settlement requires the government to release children from immigration detention either to their parents, relatives or protective programs.
  • 2008 Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act signed by Bush made this a law
  • 2015 a federal judge in California ruled that Flores requirements apply to unaccompanied minors and to children apprehended with their parents. The judge also ordered the Department of Homeland Security to release parents detained along with their children.

The Trump Administration reversed these protections with Zero Tolerance Policy.

We talk through what was happening with families at the border prior to the Trump administration:

  • Before Trump came into office, families were detained together, sent back immediately or paroled into the country
  • Prosecutions were rare: cost, time-consuming, previous administrations felt broad use of the ‘prosecute-first’ option was needlessly harsh, only used for repeat offenders
  • Now, prosecution is happening across the board and has become the uniform policy.

We mention how the administration started plotting the implementation of this policy

  • considering separating families at the border since the early months of his presidency
  • harsh treatment deter illegal immigration- John Kelly, then the Homeland Security secretary

The area that isn’t being considered by the administration and is not being elevated enough, is the traumatic impact these events have on the children.

  • children who are traumatized by that separation
  • traumas they suffered along the migration journey or in their country of origin
  • hundreds of immigrant children were placed in state foster care facilities across the country.
  • parents will have a difficult time proving their right to reunification.
  • Once in foster care the kids become wards of the state. They have their care and custody decisions handled by state welfare agencies and then by a state court.
  • Parents are given an opportunity to prove their ability to take care of their kids but due to their undocumented status this proves difficult. Especially because the courts  consider a parent’s undocumented status and their willingness to cross the border illegally as proof of parental unfitness sufficient to terminate parental rights.
  • For deported parents seeking reunification with their children, the prohibition on re-entry can be a major hurdle. It means parents cannot enter the U.S. to contest the termination of their parental rights. If parents do attempt re-entry after deportation they risk arrest, which further hampers their efforts to be reunited with their kids. Courts have repeatedly confirmed that an undocumented immigrant’s motivations for illegal reentry are irrelevant, and thus treat deportation as abandonment.

We reference the story of Alejandra and Temo Juarez to make a case for becoming informed about what is happening in our country and stress the importance of staying on top of what policy changes mean. You can read more of the story in the article: Chicago Tribune: Facing Deportation, Wife Of U.S. Marine Chooses To ‘self-deport’ To Mexico

So to inform you on the latest policy and the implications that it has on the ongoing immigration conversation we disset what has happened since the signing of the executive order.

CNN: What Trump’s Family Separations Executive Order Does

  • maintain family unity,” a new position from the administration which had been defending the separation of families and blaming the families themselves for putting themselves in the position of being separated by crossing the border illegally
  • adults will not be turned over to the Justice Department when they face criminal charges, and will instead stay with their children in detention with the Department of Homeland Security.
  • Justice Department will continue to prosecute adults who cross the border illegally in federal court, the order says, Trump asks that families be housed together “where appropriate and consistent with law and available resources.”
  • Called out that family cases would be prioritized
  • Seeks to change the policy dictated by Flores v. Reno
  • Didn’t require families to be reunited but court order from San Diego judge ordered that the administration reunite all children with their families by July 27th
  • some 700 children remain in youth shelters.
  • government says some of the parents are not eligible to be unified. Some have criminal records, or they’re locked up in county jails or state prisons. And then, there are hundreds of parents the government has lost track of. They were released into the U.S., or they’ve already been deported back to Central America.

What can we do to take action and stay involved?

The Cut: What You Can Do Right Now to Help Immigrant Families Separated at the Border

The Rolling Stone: 5 Things You Can Do to Fight Family Separation Right Now

  • Volunteer at organizations that support intake along the border
  • Donate to nonprofits
  • Contact your elected officials
  • Vote

 

Want to read more about this topic? Take your pick from the articles below.  

The Washington Post: Fact-checking Immigration Spin On Separating Families And 1,500 ‘lost’ Children

CNN: Us Lost Track Of 1,500 Immigrant Children, But Says It’s Not ‘legally Responsible’

Politifact: Donald Trump Blames Democrats For Own Immigration Policy Separating Families

USA Today: Trump Signs Executive Order On Immigration, But Says ‘zero Tolerance’ Will Continue

PBS: Trump Administration Seeks To Close Immigration ‘loopholes’

NBC News: Judge Orders U.S. To Reunite Families, Stop Border Separations

Episode 4 – Boycott For What

Boycott For What

 

Episode Description: In today’s social media dominated world we see outraged calls for boycotts when brands, companies, or celebrities take part in actions that reflect tone death opinions, appropriate cultures, or misrepresent reality. But how committed are we to these calls for boycotts? In this week’s episode we recount the role boycotts have played in history and discuss the evolving role that boycotts have in society today.    

 

So what is a boycott? According to Webster, boycott refers to an action in which one engages in a concerted refusal to have dealings with (a person, a store, an organization, etc.) usually to express disapproval or to force acceptance of certain conditions. In today’s world, it feels like there is a call for a boycott almost everyday. Social media has facilitated this given the ease and rapidness of information transfer. But before we dive into the boycotts of today, let’s talk about the role boycotts have played in history considering the fact that social media did not exist back then.

Maddie kicks off the history lesson by recounting the details of her favorite boycott- the Boston Tea Party. Lina D expands upon the history of the Grape Boycott and Cesar Chavez.  This is a noteworthy boycott because it reflects how widespread the force of this type of action had and it highlights the length of commitment to a cause. The grape boycotts took place between the 1960’s and continued to surface until the 1980’s. If you want to read the full deep dive given by Lina D in the episode see below. You can also read about other boycotts in this PBS article.

Cesar Chavez & The Grape Boycott:

  • He was born to immigrant parents and in 1939 he moved to California with his family to work various fields up and down the state
  • He encountered working conditions that he would dedicate his life to change: wretched migrant camps, corrupt labor contractors, meager wages for backbreaking work, bitter racism.
  • He drew from the of civil rights movement, insisted on nonviolence, relied on volunteers from urban universities and religious organizations, allied himself with organized labor, and used mass mobilization techniques such as a famous march on Sacramento in 1966 that brought the grape strike and consumer boycott into the national spotlight.

Chavez founded the National Farm Workers Association in 1962. His union joined with the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee in its first strike against grape growers in California, and the two organizations later merged to become the United Farm Workers.

  • Although the first contracts were signed in 1966, there were many more years of strife. In 1968 Chavez fasted for 25 days to protest the increasing advocacy of violence within the union. Victory came finally on July 29, 1970, when 26 Delano growers formally signed contracts recognizing the UFW and bringing peace to the vineyards.
  • Fast forward to 1984 when Chavez inaugurated an international boycott of table grapes in response to the grape industry’s refusal to control the use of pesticides on its crops

Boycotts played a large role in changing unfair conditions. We take a look at how effective boycotts have been with a special lens to the efficacy of consumer boycotts today. You can also read this article that explores the times that company boycotts work.   

  • “Boycotts are rarely the precipitating factor for change. Rather, they bring attention to an issue and signal the magnitude and intensity with which a group feels a particular way,” Schweitzer said. “In most cases, a small minority of people call for a boycott that the wider community fails to support by taking substantive action.”

Let’s take a look at some modern day boycotts that have actually worked. In response to the HB2 bill passed by North Carolina, the NBA announced on July 21, 2016, that the league would move its 2017 All-Star Weekend from Charlotte to New Orleans. The loss of revenue to North Carolina was estimated at $100 million. You know that drove some change when this action hit Charlotte’s bottom line. Then in 2017 we saw NFL viewership drop 9.7% with the Kaepernick boycott. In a boycott of Arizona immigration legislation, the liberal polling firm Center for American Progress wrote a 2010 report called “Stop the Conference” that estimated that Arizona lost $45 million in convention business because of a boycott called after passage of SB 1070. This law targeted illegal immigration.

Although historically they’ve been successful we have to consider if social media is watering down the effectiveness since everyone and there momma can demand a boycott. We talk about social media’s role in boycotts by choosing to make an example of recent calls for boycotts. Here is where we give our 2 cents:

  • H&M
  • Dove
  • Starbucks: 106,920 mentions of #BoycottStarbucks posted across social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram from Saturday through Monday.
  • Kanye:
    • Said that slavery was a choice on May 1, 2018
    • large crowds were expected to greet the debut of Kanye West’s fashion label’s collaboration with Australian sportswear brand 2XU. The line boasted $375 bike shorts and $415 neoprene leggings. A 2016 Yeezy launch in Sydney had found fans lining up around the block, but this time, according to The Sydney Morning Herald, customers were a no-show and the event was shut down after just 45 minutes.

Lina D is a proponent of speaking with your dollars. If you are currently giving financial support to an entity that does not align with your values, you should reconsider. Although you might think that it is only 1 voice, you would be surprised about the impact it can have.

After a review of these events, we ask ourselves “how long are boycotts meant to last?” Listen in to hear our opinions. We also provide our thoughts on what the solution should be long term. What are your thoughts?

Episode 3: The Move In: A Look at Cohabitation Trends

Episode Description: Are you thinking about taking the next step and moving in together? Listen to this episode to get all sides of the story. Cohabitation can be a scary step and it may not be for everyone. We talk about the pros and cons of cohabitation and look into the most recent trends.

 

What is cohabitation? It’s a situation in which a couple chooses to live together and have a sexual relationship. Cohabitation has been defined as “two unrelated persons of the opposite sex who share common living arrangements in a sexually intimate relationship without legal or religious sanction.”

Lina D opens up the episode by discussing how she was raised to think about cohabitation. Growing up in a Salvadoran household meant there were strong views against cohabitation. Her mom believed that marriage before sex was a requirement so living with the boyfriend was out of the question. She gives a recount of how her parents always talked negatively about cousins that were cohabiting and having kids. Interestingly enough, they were less concerned about people who were living together without kids but there was still an element of judgement. Lina D talks about the words (in Spanish) that are used to describe the partner: el marido or el mari-novio which was said in such a tone that showed a type of disdain and disapproval for the situation. What’s worse, is that women somehow lost their identity when they decided to move in with their significant other. All of the sudden they would be referred to as “la mujer.” Maddie and Westley explain how in Haitian culture they weren’t as judgemental but it was still preferred that couples get married before they decided to live together.

Maddie and Westley also share their views on cohabitation. Maddie would never do it because it would get in the way of her leading a celibate life. Westley agrees that his upbringing led him to believe that only married couples should live together, but when he was young he said he would only do it if he felt something special for the person. Westley and Lina D then discuss how they came about deciding to move in together.

So what are the stats around living together? We take a look at Pew Social Trends and find that one-in-four parents living with a child in the United States today are unmarried. “Driven by declines in marriage overall, as well as increases in births outside of marriage, this marks a dramatic change from a half-century ago, when fewer than one-in-ten parents living with their children were unmarried (7%).” Trends show that fewer Americans are getting married, and that it’s becoming more common for unmarried people to have babies. In 1970 there were 26 births per 1,000 unmarried women ages 15 to 44, while that rate in 2016 stood at 42 births per 1,000 unmarried women. Meanwhile, birthrates for married women have declined, from 121 births per 1,000 down to about 90. This one came as a shock to Lina D- you should listen to the banter between Maddie and Lina D. In 1997, the first year for which data on cohabitation are available, 20% of unmarried parents who lived with their children were also living with a partner, now that share has increased to 35%. Pew Research found some interesting trends tied to age. Roughly half of those living with an unmarried partner are younger than 35. Since 2007, the number of cohabiting adults ages 50 and older has grown by 75%.

 

We discuss our views on whether cohabitation is bad. Some studies have shown that living together prior to marriage most likely ends in divorce, but more recent studies show the opposite- cohabitation alone isn’t the culprit for divorce. According to this Time article living together doesn’t totally keep people from divorce, but it isn’t the marriage killer it was once thought to be. Here are some interesting facts surfaced by this article:

  • What leads to divorce is when people move in with someone – with or without a marriage license – if they aren’t mature and either choose incompatible partners or conduct themselves in ways that threaten the longevity of a relationship.
  • Economist Evelyn Lehrer (University of Illinois-Chicago) says the longer people wait past 23, the more likely a marriage is to stick. Her analysis shows that for every year a woman waits to get married, right up until her early 30s, she reduces her chances of divorce.
  • 70% of all women aged 30 to 34 have lived with a boyfriend and many are educated and wealthy.

Maddie talks about the reasons why she would never consider moving in with someone before marriage. Ladies if your priority is to get a ring put on it, then listen to the episode to help you sort out your stance on the issue. Maddie offers great advice. She also references an article from Probe and explains how those who live together before they get married are putting their future marriage in danger.

Obviously living together isn’t a one size fits all issue. Make sure you listen to this episode and inform yourself on the different points of view.

Ep 1 – Woke In Review

Episode 1: Woke in Review

In the first episode of Bold & Bawdy we talk about the importance of staying woke, especially in today’s America. Trump’s coming into the presidency has awaken and embolden the spirit of racism in this country. We take a walk through the history of oppression that blacks have faced and highlight many of the events that are oddly similar to what is happening today in 2018.  

 

So what is woke?

Staying woke comes from “stay awake,” and it means to stay informed of the shitstorm going on in times of turmoil and conflict, specifically on occasions when the media isn’t focusing on the real issues.

We did some research to give you a recap of the history of systemic injustices and America’s commitment to keeping racism alive. It is said that “America’s original sin is racism.” The history of blacks in America started with slavery, followed by Jim Crow laws, then segregation, and then to today’s not-so-invisible hands guiding housing and education policy, the wage gap, health disparities, how banks give loans. And we can’t forget police brutality, food insecurity and disinvestment in black and brown communities. You can read this article about overt racism.

In history, the most overt acts of racism happened during the Jim Crow era (1877- 1950’s)

Lynching was a socially acceptable way to resolve anything and everything whites were angry about in relation to the free blacks. In the south, people were blaming their financial problems on the newly freed slaves that lived around them. From 1882-1968, 4,743 lynchings occurred in the United States, these are only the recorded numbers but we know that many were never recorded. You can read more in this NAACP article.

Another act of overt racism was the Race Riots. They are described as a “pattern of racial violence” that emerged in which white mob assaults were directed against entire Black communities. They were caused by a great number of social, political and economic factors. Joseph Boskin, author of Urban Racial Violence observed that there were certain general patterns in the major twentieth century race riots, we summarize them below and you can access the original article here for more.

  1. In each of the race riots, with few exceptions, it was white people that sparked the incident by attacking Black people.
  2. In the majority of the riots, some extraordinary social condition prevailed at the time of the riot: prewar social changes, wartime mobility, post-war adjustment, or economic depression.
  3. The majority of the riots occurred during the hot summer months.
  4. Rumor played an extremely important role in causing many riots. Rumors of some criminal activity by Blacks against whites perpetuated the actions of white mobs.
  5. The police force, more than any other institution, was invariably involved as a precipitating cause or perpetuating factor in the riots. In almost every one of the riots, the police sided with the attackers, either by actually participating in, or by failing to quell the attack.
  6. In almost every instance, the fighting occurred within the Black community.

 

The importance of social media

“Historians of the 1960s talk about how the media of the time helped establish a “new common sense” about race in America. I think the new common sense being established now is that   racism and the struggle against it do not exist somewhere in the distant past; racial activism didn’t end after King and the Black Panther Party. Technology has helped make today’s struggle feel both different from and continuous with the civil rights era. All the terror and greatness we associate with that moment is right in front of our faces, as near to us as our screens.” You can read more in the Wired article.

We talk about the role that social media plays today in allowing us to stay informed and how it is an effective way to stay connected to the cause. It also provides a platform to expose those that are racist.

 

Things we need to stay woke about in 2018

We wrap up the episode by highlighting many of the areas that should be on your stay woke list.

Immigration

  • ICE scandals including the arrest of 2 American women for speaking spanish in public and the 1500 undocumented children that are unaccounted for since they were taken in from the border

Wypipo

  • So we just calling cops on everyone?

Nationwide trend of police militarization

  • Images on the news of police wearing helmets and masks, toting assault rifles, and riding in mine-resistant armored vehicles are not isolated incidents
  • Unjust killings of black people by police should have been enough to prompt significant, nationwide reforms years ago. But it hasn’t been enough. Read more here.

Ep 38 – Momma Always Said

We continue to celebrate the women that inspire us, and this week we dedicate this episode to our mommas! Whether you consider your mom your best friend, or whether she drives you crazy, OR both, moms hold a special place in our hearts. They have shaped who we are and not matter what we always remember their advice. Get to know us a bit better by listening to what momma always said to us.

 

Moms always give their advice and opinions on how they see life. Whether its cultural norms around dating, relationships, or career-related, these points of view were beaten into our heads. Some advice we took and it shaped who we are today, other pieces of advice we chose not to and it was okay because we are still amazing people!

Each co-host talks about their cultural background and highlights most important things their families brought up when they were growing up. Some of the topics that were the most popular topics where: dating & sex, gender roles, and career.

When it came to dating, relationships, and sex our mothers always turned to religion to explain why this topic shouldn’t even be worth our attention. And the most common thing momma said, “you have to wait until you are married.”

We discuss gender roles, and how actions from family reinforced certain gender stereotypes. Maddie describes how Haitian culture is very patriarchal, and that women were taught to be domestic. Momma always said, “no man will ever marry you if you can’t [insert domestic activity here].”

When it came to careers we learned that the approach between our families varied. For Lina D, momma always said, “education is key.” Whereas Westley and Maddie would always hear that they could only pursue a career that “brought honor to the family.”

We get into other nitty gritties of our childhood and what it was like growing up Latinx and Haitian. To close the episode we talk about our favorite pieces of advice that we would keep and pass down to younger siblings, friends, future children, and other loved ones.

Ep 36 – Black Love

We open this episode talking about our views on why black love is such a big deal to the black community. Representation matters and we can celebrate black love without putting down other relationships.

Role models are important and every community needs role models that can relate to their experience.  Unfortunately, political and social events have impacted the trends we see with black marriage and families. According to a Your Black World article, “only 45% of African-American households have a married couple, a contrast to 70% among Hispanics and 80% for Whites.” They also point out that in 1890, 80% of black households were comprised of both parents.  Over a century down the line, only 40% of African-American children stay in married-couple families.” Who is to blame?

Some perspectives out there are quick to blame the deterioration of black families on black communities themselves. However, we know that there are larger forces at play. The war on drugs and mass incarceration are major culprits.

We also debunk a couple of the myths concerning black marriage.  There is hope ladies! We have often heard, and Maddie has experienced that educated black women have it harder when it comes to finding a spouse. However, the facts show us that if you are educated, then your chances of finding a spouse are higher. According to this article, “among black women, 70% of college graduates are married by 40, whereas only about 60 percent of black high school graduates are married by that age.” The same trend is true for black men. “In 2008, 76% of black men with a college degree married by age 40, but only 63% of black men with just a high school diploma were married.” This data shows that education increases the likelihood of marriage for both African American men and women.

So with that good news, we talk about what black love looks like as depicted by some of our favorite shows growing up. We discuss our favorite memories and scenes from The Cosby Show and Family Matters, and even talk about Black-ish’s Bo and Dre. When it comes to iconic Black Couples we talk Will and Jada, Whitney and Bobby, and Oprah and Stedman. Each of these couples is iconic in their own way and we discuss what their image means for the culture. Of course we couldn’t help ourselves and we also talk black love in the context of the movie Black Panther. Spoiler alert is on deck, but don’t worry, if you haven’t seen the movie yet, we warn you when to stop listening!

Ep 13 – Meet The Fam: The Multicultural Edition

In this fan question inspired episode, Brock, Lina D, and Westley share their experiences when introducing their significant others to their families for the first time. Things do get dicey when certain family members learn that a friend is more than a friend, or when cultural barriers are met. Lina D gives her thoughts on essential guidelines to keep in mind when meeting Latino parents.