Culture

This Son Of Immigrants Posted A VERY Honest Tweet About The Loneliness Migrant Parents Feel And It Will Make You Want To Hug Your Mom

Immigration is a topic that is on the news daily but do we really understand the kind of hardships that migrants go through when adapting to our culture with their migration. We know that traveling across the border ⁠— whether legally or without documentation ⁠— can be a dangerous and emotional venture. We also know that living in a xenophobic society like ours is also highly risky for immigrants who seek a life in the United States.
However, the change from one community to another is an issue that makes a large impact on these lives but is not often discussed.

One issue that comes from this situation is the depression and loneliness that accompanies immigrant parents when they build new lives in the United States.

Twitter / @the_levantist

A viral Twitter thread posted on July 28th by @the_levantist brought to light a very important discussion about immigrant parents and depression. As the tweet points out, many migrant parents go from growing up in a very tight-knit community with a strong base of supportive friends and family to being in a new world that feels isolated from uninterested neighbors and co-workers.

While immigrant children are able to go to school to make new connections and friends, adults usually find that the stigma of being an immigrant stifles their ability to branch out. Broken English, a valid mistrust of government officials and programs and separation from their mother communities is common. It makes it that much harder for immigrant parents and adults to find the kind of human support needed to function in this world.

This loneliness results in depression. Mental illness is already a greatly stigmatized issue in most minority communities but is made even worse when a person experiences a distancing or cutting off from friends and family. As such, it makes it even harder to confront these problems and improve the situation.

Twitter really felt this thread and it soon received over 34k retweets, 125k likes and hundreds of comments.

Twitter / @dknyjade

This Twitter user explained that she has seen the same sort of struggle first hand. She tells about how difficult it was when her mother came to a new country, with no connections, no English proficiency and with a newborn baby. This a common picture of immigration in America and the loneliness of this situation is easy to feel.

This tweet suggests that the best way to handle this loneliness is for adult children to become counselors to their parents.

Twitter / @MHus66

Completely uprooting one’s life does take a huge toll on a person’s heart and mind. This tweet suggests that adult children of immigrants should remain conscious of this heartache. Of course, immigrant children have a lot on their plates already but helping a parent to get the mental attention they need is important to minimize depression and mental illness in the immigrant community.

Let’s not forget that these parents deserve big props.

Twitter / @BojorqueSophia

As this Twitter user expresses, we have to give it up to any immigrant parent who has gone through this transition and remained strong and determined. It takes a lot of bravery and dedication to decide to change your life for the better ⁠— even in the easiest of circumstances. To do so when everyone is rejecting you is an incredible act of courage.

Migrant mothers have an extra obstacle in their way when it comes to connecting with their communities.

  Twitter / @cazwithbeans

When immigrant mothers come to the United States and become stay at home moms ⁠— either by choice or necessity ⁠— it limits the number of adult interactions they are able to have. Without the immersion of daily conversations with other adults, it can stifle language fluency. That combined with a lack of time to socialize without children greatly impacts their ability to form important connections.

Of course, since it’s the internet, not everyone felt bad for immigrant adults and parents.

Twitter / @the_levantist

The human reaction to this painful reality would be empathy. Unfortunately, not everyone is capable of this. Some of the responses to this thread were ugly Nationalist talking points telling immigrant adults and parents to “Go back to where they came from.” The grossly racist sentiment is another problem that adult immigrants experience that add to the depression and anxiety they develop.

Luckily, not everyone feels this way about adult immigrants.

Twitter / @daavid_prhys

Most people realize that being an immigrant isn’t a free ride. It doesn’t come with easy access to the things one needs and it’s often very lonely if one doesn’t have a support system. Let’s not allow this conversation to end here. This is something that we as a community need to take seriously so that we are there to build support for those who have had to live without it.

A Photographer Is Capturing New Mexico’s Chicanx Community Through Portraits

Culture

A Photographer Is Capturing New Mexico’s Chicanx Community Through Portraits

Courtesy of Frank Blazquez

Photographer Frank Blazquez is paying a loving homage to Chicanx culture in the Land of Enchantment. The photographer is showing the world what it looks like to be Chicanx in New Mexico to highlight the diversity in a shared experience.

Frank Blazquez wants to show the world what Chicanx culture looks like outside of California.

“I am an Illinois transplant, so I was fascinated, and eventually obsessed, with the differences in my ethnicity’s iconography,” Blazquez says about the inspiration behind his project “Barrios de Nuevo Mexico: Southwest Stories of Vindication.” “For example, in New Mexico, as opposed to the Midwest and East Coast, there is a strong connection to American geography. You’ll see Latinx people with New Mexico state symbols tattooed directly on their faces and skulls. But refreshing similarities such as hairstyle also struck me.”

The other reason Blazquez started to document these lives was because of the devastating and widespread impact of drug addiction.

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Sleepy with his Daughter

A post shared by Frank Blazquez (@and_frank13) on

Blazquez admits to once having a drug problem and eventually overcoming those struggles. Some of the people that he photographs are former drug users or others who have sought redemption.

“I started in 2016 just walking around Albuquerque’s Central Avenue in the War Zone earning my street photography badge. When I almost died a couple of times, I started to use my Instagram page more often to set up shoots and contact homies from my former days of opiate abuse,” Blazquez explains. “My friend Emilio created the random handle @and_frank13 and I kept it after he died in 2017 from drug complications; an event that made me work harder to present portraits of New Mexicans demonstrating faces of dignity, hence my project ‘Barrios de Nuevo Mexico: Southwest Stories of Vindication.'”

Photography was a passion for Blazquez that grew into something bigger than him as he learned.

Blazquez’s interest in photography and love of his culture combined to create a photo series celebrating the people in his life. Blazquez turned his lens to the people in his life to capture a beauty he saw in his own community that is often overlooked and ignored.

Blazquez is hoping to show people that Chicanx culture has spread farther than California because of an exodus.

“Homies escaping the three strikes law in California created an exodus in the ’90s that transferred new symbols from organizations, namely 18th Street, Sureños, and Norteños,” Blazquez explains about the Chicanx community in New Mexico. “As New Mexico is an expanse of serene beauty that attracts people to escape from former lives, in turn, symbols were exchanged such as black and gray tattoo and font styles with purist craft structure adhering to Southwest archetypes—fat ass cursive and serif fonts with ornate filigree stems.”

He acknowledges that California is known for its Chicanx and Latinx communities but there is so much more to teach people.

“LA fingers do not represent the millions of brown people outside of California and it certainly does not represent native-born New Mexicans,” Blazquez explains. “I learned the Latinx experience is entirely different in various locations—the California stereotype doesn’t carry itself across America. It’s enlightening to know that brown culture grows and adapts independently.”

The photographer also wants to teach people that the Latino community is vast and diverse.

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Homemade New Mexican Tattoos // #dukecity

A post shared by Frank Blazquez (@and_frank13) on

“That the Latin-spectrum in America is not pigeonholed to any sole category,” Blazquez says. “Knowing that the labels Mexican, Mexican-American, Chicanx (a/o), Latinx (a/o), Hispanic, Mexica (not Hispanic nor Latino), Indo-Latino, Afro-Latinx (a/o) are just several of the hundreds of labels available to classify my culture’s diaspora is important.”

“Duke City Diaries” is a mini-series on YouTube that Blazquez has produced to take you deeper into the lives of the people in his photos.

“I knew the profound faces from my 2010’s New Mexico experience would make great art and explain an important POC narrative at the same time,” Blazquez says. “Creating the short YouTube documentary series “Duke City Diaries” was also an offshoot from my portraiture and one that created distinct reception. The hateful and racist comments kept me moving forward to show a larger audience that racism still exists.”

Blazquez is currently working on a new photo series called Mexican Suburbs diving deeper into his themes of Chicanx culture and the opioid crisis.

READ: Photographer Diego Huerta Took An Update Photo Of The Most Beautiful Girl In Mexico

Trump Uses Coronavirus Pandemic To Announce He’s Suspending All Immigration To The U.S. And Here’s What You Need To Know

Things That Matter

Trump Uses Coronavirus Pandemic To Announce He’s Suspending All Immigration To The U.S. And Here’s What You Need To Know

Win McNamee / Getty

Donald Trump ran on a campaign pledge to severely limit the rights of migrants and refugees attempting to reach the United States. In office, he wasted no time restricting authorized and unauthorized immigration, with travel bans for citizens of a number of Muslim-majority nations, cutting the numbers of refugees the U.S. accepts, and pushing ahead with plans to build a wall on the southern border.

Now amid a global health pandemic, the president is looking to scapegoat migrant and refugee communities by banning all applications for immigration to the U.S. The move is largely seen as symbolic, however, since the U.S. has already largely stopped processing immigration applications due to reduced capacity.

The White House on Monday announced that President Trump would be signing an executive order to temporarily ban all immigration to the U.S.

President Trump tweeted on Monday that he will pass an executive order to suspend immigration to the United States, claiming that he is seeking to protect jobs in the midst of the coronavirus crisis. Democrats were quick to criticize it as a “dumb move” and pointed to testing as a safe way to reopen the economy. Not to mention that the U.S. is already home to the largest number of cases around the globe.

Trump tweeted: “In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!”

Obviously, since he made the major announcement over Twitter, there is very little clarity over what immigration programs might be impacted. And the White House still hasn’t offered any guidance on what Trump meant by the tweet.

Trump has taken credit for his restrictions on travel to the U.S. from China and hard-hit European countries, arguing it contributed to slowing the spread of the virus in the U.S. But he has yet to extend those restrictions to other nations now experiencing virus outbreaks.

Although the announcement has left many in shock, the U.S. was already severely limiting immigration due to the pandemic.

Already, much of the immigration flow into the country has been paused during the coronavirus pandemic, as the government has temporarily stopped processing all non-worker visas. And, the executive order in its current form will exempt seasonal foreign farm worker visas, one of the largest sources of immigration at the moment.

The administration has already restricted foreign visitors from China, Europe, Canada and Mexico, and has paused processing for immigrants trying to come into the U.S. on non-worker visas because of office closures.

But given the usual chaotic roll out of Trump Administration directives, we still don’t know how long this suspension will last nor what will happen with the applicants already being processed.

Thomas Homan, Trump’s former acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, told Reuters: “It’s really not about immigration. It’s about the pandemic and keeping our country safer while protecting opportunities for unemployed Americans.”

And it seems the fact that the U.S. already has the largest number of cases on Earth is completely lost on the president.

As of early April, the United States is now home to the largest number of confirmed Covid-19 infections on the planet. There are more than 800,000 cases confirmed by testing and more than 44,000 deaths associated with the virus. In fact, the U.S. now makes up for nearly a third of all Covid-19 infections and a quarter of all deaths.

If Trump wants to make an impact and help flatten the curve in the United States, he should stop promoting the anti-lockdown protests instead of scapegoating immigrant and refugee communities.

Democrats and migrant right’s groups quickly slammed the president’s proposal as xenophobic and counter-productive.

Sen. Kamala Harris of California, also a former 2020 presidential candidate, responded to Trump’s tweet as well, saying the move was “shamelessly politicizing this pandemic to double down on his anti-immigrant agenda.”

“Trump failed to take this crisis seriously from day 1,” she wrote. “His abandonment of his role as president has cost lives. And now, he’s shamelessly politicizing this pandemic to double down on his anti-immigrant agenda. Enough, Mr. President. The American people are fed up.”

Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, a Democrat who ran for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination, said in response, “We don’t need to protect America from immigrants. We need to protect her from you.” Now that’s a pretty legit clapback.