Residents of Pembroke Pines and the town of Southwest Ranches have voiced opposition to the detention center since Immigration and Customs Enforcement (aka ICE) first announced it had chosen the Southwest Ranches/Corrections Corporation of America proposal in June 2011.
Jose Machado is a 17-year-old high school student who came to the U.S. at the age of 6 and with the support of an attorney has filed for a visa that would allow him to stay and gradually obtain permanent immigration status. Machado told The Florida Independent Saturday that his mother was deported in 2011 after losing her immigration court case. Machado now lives with a cousin, goes to school and works to help pay bills.
Machado opposes the privately managed immigration detention center because “they’re trying to make money from detaining immigrants,” adding that “it symbolizes separation of family, damaging people psychologically and emotionally.”
Denise Schroder — a resident of Southwest Ranches who, with about six other people, was at the event to show her support for the proposed immigration detention center — told the Independent, “I believe it’s a holding place. I don’t believe it’s a prison, where they treat people bad because they’ve done bad things.”
Schroder said it would be good “if the government came up with something” to help immigrants and create a system that would allow them to “pay their fair share.” She also said “there is a right way and wrong way of doing it and coming here illegally is not the right way to do it.”
“I support this because I know it is going to create more jobs, and the revenue that’s coming from it, I want the money for my town,” Schroder said.
Since November of last year we have been posting videos from Cuentame’s “An Honest Conversation” video series. The project was created to show the direct, sober, honest and often painful stories of LGBTQ Latino youth, their friends, families and the community in general. From bullying to abuse, struggle to triumph, this series aims to break taboos within the Latino community while changing paradigms within this fast-shifting demographic.
The final video in the series focuses on the Moreno family in Arizona. Gay siblings, Samantha and Guillermo, sit down with their mother and offer up their stories. From Samantha dealing with the fact that her father hasn’t spoken to her partner in nearly 12 years, to Guillermo understanding a balance between his Catholic faith and being gay, the two show how being gay can be a family affair. The Morenos presents a framework that does not hold Latino family culture and queer sexuality mutually exclusive. Challenging yet hopeful, they are an example of how an honest conversation can change the family dynamic for the better.
Increasingly, feature-length political documentaries are using new technology to get their films seen. You may recall that the Sarah Palin biopic The Undefeated was made available last September on video-on-demand and pay-per-view to approximately 75 million homes through major cable and satellite companies such as DirecTV, Dish Network, and Time Warner Cable. Now in time for the election cycle, liberal filmmaker Robert Greenwald is employing the same methods with his take on Koch Brothers Exposed which starts streaming on May 8th.
After all, there’s the recent ruling out of the D.C. Circuit Court that paves the way for uncloaking the flood of secret money they’ve been pouring into our elections and into our policy. And they continue their attacks against filmmaker and journalist Robert Greenwald. Not only do the super-wealthy conservative funders refuse to publicly debate their policy positions, they are using their vast wealth to distort those positions to the public to make them more acceptable.
They’re doing it with environmental policy directly by funding misleading ads and giving massive campaign contributions to lawmakers like Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) so as to keep any functional regulations at bay.
They’re doing it by funneling at least $1 million to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the group behind the horrific “stand your ground” laws, and the union-busting laws in places like Wisconsin and Ohio. And they’re doing it by propping up Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) who faces a recall election due entirely to his role as a Koch-funded puppet.
Unfortunately though the Kochs don’t believe in being candid or transparent with the citizens of this country, and that’s in large part because they are not interested in the democratic process per se, just what they can manipulate and extract from it.
Last week marked the release of the latest feature film from acclaimed director Robert Greenwald and our friends at Brave New Foundation: Koch Brothers Exposed.
This film uncovers the corruption of the billionaire brothers who bankroll a vast network of organizations that work to undermine the interests of the 99% on issues ranging from Social Security to the environment to civil rights—and points the way to how Americans can reclaim their democracy. The film features expert interviews, investigative exposés and extras about what the billionaire Koch brothers are doing to our democracy.
Watch the preview trailer right now.
Want to see more? Brave New Foundation is making the film available immediately on DVD with an Action Guide so that you can watch with family and friends and then do something to make a difference.
Get the DVD now, for only $20 (including shipping and handling), and $5 of each DVD purchased will go to support the work of Common Cause.
After you sign up to receive the DVD, please register to host a screening at your home, library, church or local community center. There is a downloadable Action Guide for you to use in preparing your discussion of the film and helping your audience take effective action on the issues you care about.
Robert Greenwald’s documentary resume now offers a near complete litany of right-wing scourges: He’s gone after, most famously, Fox News (“Outfoxed”), the Iraq War (“Iraq for Sale: The War Profiteers”), and Wal-Mart (“The High Cost of Low Price”), and he’s just released his latest liberal piece of agit-prop: “Koch Brothers Exposed,” which according to Alternet.org, weaves together a series of short films that examines the principals of Koch Industries, one of the nation’s top polluters and infamous for their funding of think-tanks that aim to deregulate business and scale back government programs such as Social Security, Medicare and the new healthcare reform law. (The DVD is available here).
“The Kochs are breathing, human representatives of the worst of the 1 percent — it’s the way they use their money to advance their economic self-interest and their ideology,” Greenwald told Alternet. “It’s not just about having money; it’s the use of the money, the use of the power — it’s the use of the money and power to impress and take advantage of others. And it’s the fact that they are fighting tooth and nail to make sure that capitalism has absolutely no restraints on it. And capitalism without restraints is a very ugly beast.”
I’ve never been the biggest fan of Greenwald’s work, from an aesthetic perspective, but from an advocate’s point of view, the guy has become an undeniable force in the ways of social media and political cinema. After going up a week ago, the trailer (see below) has already received some 45,000 views on YouTube.
Greenwald’s “Kock Brothers Exposed” is not the only film to go after the Koch brothers. In November, I wrote about another film called “Greedy Lying Bastards,” which actress Darryl Hannah recently came on board as an executive producer, and follows the political influence of the Koch Brothers and their efforts to spin their way out of the facts of global warming and the environmental devasation of the fossil fuel industry.
It will be interesting to see whether these new docs can raise awareness for the evils of the Koch brothers and help bring about change.
Robert Greenwald discusses his latest investigative documentary, “Koch Brothers Exposed” with MSNBC’s Martin Bashir. Greenwald responds to the latest personal attack by the Koch’s and invites them to come on national TV to debate. Buy your copy today at kochbrothersexposed.com!
Documentarian Robert Greenwald screened a portion of his upcoming documentary, Koch Brothers Exposed, at a lunch in midtown hosted by The Common Good today. In the documentary, Mr. Greenwald, who previously directed exposés about Fox News and Walmart, makes the case billionaire businessmen Charles and David Koch are having a “dire impact” on “core American values” through their political donations to conservative think tanks, activist groups and politicians.