Culture

Kat Von D Is Using Her Immigration Story To Take A Stand Against Trump’s Border Wall

President Trump’s ban on refugees from seven Muslim-majority countries in the Middle East, along with his rumored plans to route American tax dollars to a border wall, are not sitting well with people. Companies like Apple, Google and Microsoft have spoken out against Trump’s executive actions and celebrities have been doing the same. The latest criticism comes from Kat Von D, who shared her own immigration story. Here’s what she had to say.

Kat Von D, tattoo artist and TV personality, shared her immigration story to fans to show the cost of the border wall.

Fun fact: My parents were both born in Argentina, and my brother, sister and I were born in Montemorelos, Mexico, where…

Posted by Kat Von D on Wednesday, February 1, 2017


credit: instagram @thekatvond

“Fun fact: My parents were both born in Argentina, and my brother, sister and I were born in Montemorelos, Mexico, where my Dad was working as a missionary doctor building hospitals and treating people in pueblos that had no access to medical aid,” Kat Von D wrote in a Facebook post.

“This childhood photo of me was taken before my family immigrated to the U.S. from Mexico,” Von D added.

View this post on Instagram

Fun fact: My parents were both born in Argentina, and my brother, sister and I were born in Montemorelos, Mexico, where my Dad was working as a missionary doctor building hospitals and treating people in pueblos that had no access to medical aid. This childhood photo of me was taken before my family immigrated to the US from Mexico. Funny to think I didn't even know one word of English then. And it would be another 10 years before I would finally become a US citizen. The idea of building a wall between the US and Mexico damages us all on so many levels. But the ridiculous/obvious financial damage it would do to our country is insignificant when compared to the underlying message it sends that one race is below another. I AM MEXICAN. I AM ARGENTINIAN. And I AM AMERICAN. We shouldn't forget we are a nation of immigrants. 🖤 *ps. if you support the Muslim ban or wall, do me a favor and UNFOLLOW ME right now. #FUCKYOURWALL

A post shared by 𝐊𝐀𝐓 𝐕𝐎𝐍 𝐃 (@thekatvond) on


“Funny to think I didn’t even know one word of English then,” Von D wrote. “And it would be another 10 years before I would finally become a U.S. citizen.”

Von D then mentions the real impact of the border wall –beyond financial implications.

katvondunlimited / Tumblr
CREDIT: katvondunlimited / Tumblr

“The idea of building a wall between the US and Mexico damages us all on so many levels,” Von D wrote. “But the ridiculous/obvious financial damage it would do to our country is insignificant when compared to the underlying message it sends that one race is below another.”

“I am Mexican. I am Argentinian. And I am American,” Von D proclaimed. “We shouldn’t forget we are a nation of immigrants.”

ionmyway / Tumblr
CREDIT: ionmyway / Tumblr

“*ps. if you are pro-Muslim-ban or pro-wall, do me a favor and UNFOLLOW ME right now,” she ended her post.


READ: From Cat Pics To Eyeliner Selfies, Kat Von D’s Instagram Proves She’s Basically All Of Us

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This New Border Wall Mural Features QR Codes That You Can Scan To Hear Emotional Stories Of Deported Migrants

Things That Matter

This New Border Wall Mural Features QR Codes That You Can Scan To Hear Emotional Stories Of Deported Migrants

pdtmuralproject / Instagram

Deportation is a reality that many people living in the United States face in some way or another. It is an unfortunate consequence of immigration and the policies that are currently in place.

Lizbeth De La Cruz Santana aims to shed light on those who migrate into the United States as children and are deported as Adults.

De La Cruz Santana is a Mellon Public Scholars Fellow and is a UC Davis Ph.D candidate. Her project titled, “Who Are the Real Childhood Arrivals to the United States?” is influenced by her family. Both of her parents immigrated to the United States and were later granted permanent residency.

The mural is located at Playas de Tijuana, where her father crossed in order to enter the United States, and took a total of 9 days to complete. It focuses on the stories of 6 different people who came into the United States as children, some of which were deported later in life or are currently at risk of deportation.

The people represented in the mural are Karla Estrada, Monserrat Godoy, Jairo Lozano, Isaac Rivera, Andy de León, and Tania Mendoza.

CREDIT: Credit: pdtmuralproject / Instagram

Estrada and Lozano are DACA Recipients. Lozano’s first experiences working was in the fields with his family. During the summer, he continued working because he was not eligible for financial aid or loans. He went on to receive his Bachelors in Sociology and his Masters in Marriage and Family therapy.

Godoy and Mendoza are DREAMer Moms. Both Godoy and Mendoza are strong mothers who want to see their children more than anything. After living in the U.S for some time, Godoy was threatened and ordered by her husband to go back to Mexico. She took her 2 daughters with her because she feared for her life, but they struggled in the Mexican education system. The father of the two girls successfully arranged to have them brought to him in the U.S, but he denies Godoy the right to see them. Similarly, Mendoza has not seen her daughter in years after getting deported due to her daughter’s father not wanting to give her custody rights.

Rivera is a Repatriated Childhood arrival who came into the United States at the age of 6. He was then deported after being stopped at a border checkpoint in Temecula, California.

De León is a U.S Veteran and a Repatriated Permanent Resident. He lived in the United States for more than 50 years until he was deported after his green card was revoked. He is a senior citizen who has lived in United States his whole life and struggles to live in Tijuana.

Each face that is painted is accompanied by a QR Code to engage the viewer and allow for them to interact with the mural.

CREDIT: Credit: pdtmuralproject / Instagram

It’s easy to passively watch art, but the QR codes allows these murals to come to life and tell their story without being interrupted or  without fear. Viewers can learn more about the stories behind the faces first-hand and admire the mural at the same time.

The goal of the mural is to create awareness for undocumented folks living in the United States and to obtain legal help for the individuals showcased.

The project was personal for most of the people who worked on the mural with De La Cruz Santana. For instance, Mauro Carrera and Robert Vivar.

CREDIT: Credit: pdtmuralproject / Instagram

Carrera is the muralist who brought the De La Cruz Santana’s idea to life. For him, the project has been filled with emotions because he was just a child when he came to live in the United States. He was born in Veracruz, Mexico and migrated with his family when he was 4 years old.

Vivar, who has born in 1956, immigrated with his family from Tijuana, Mexico to Riverside, CA in 1962. He grew up in the United States, his experiences shaping his childhood and adolescence. He held a variety of jobs in California, got married, and started a family. However, he eventually got deported after ICE came to his home. Vivar has lived away from his family and the country he has ever known since 2011. In a video that is part of the Humanizing Deportation project , Vivar recounts his life and says, “[I am] Proud to have been born in Mexico, but I am also a proud American because the United States is where I grew. It is my home and no deportation and no government will take that from my heart.”

The mural emphasizes the fact that the stories we hear about immigrants are not all the same. Every immigrant has a story that deserves to be told and shared.

If you would like to visit the mural, it is located in Playas De Tijuana

New Border Wall Is Being Constructed In California But It Is Not The Same Border Wall Trump Promised His Voters

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New Border Wall Is Being Constructed In California But It Is Not The Same Border Wall Trump Promised His Voters

U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

Images of a new border being constructed on the southern border in California are circulating. The images show tall border barriers being constructed to replace an existing border barrier on California’s southern border.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has shared photos of construction along the Calexico border in San Diego.

Credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

According to a press release by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), construction on the secondary wall along the border in California began in February 2019. The 30-foot steel barrier is replacing an older secondary barrier just north of the San Diego barrier.

President Trump promised his voters that he would be building a border wall on the southern border, yet, this specific length of the wall is not part of his promise.

Credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

This is one of those examples where words matter. The current construction happening in California is not part of Trump’s promise for a new border wall. What is happening is the construction to replace 50 miles worth of old border barriers. Right-leaning publication the Washington Examiner lamented the lack of new border walls 30 months into his presidency.

Trump continues to make the border wall a central part of his 2020 reelection campaign despite the lack of new wall being constructed.

Credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

CBP states in their press release that they continue “to implement President Trump’s Executive Order 13767 – also known as Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements – and continues to take steps to expeditiously  plan, design, and construct a physical wall along the southern border, using appropriate materials and technology to most effectively achieve operational control of the southern border.” While that sounds good to advocates for the border wall, the wall that has been built to date is not part of Trump’s promise in Executive Order 13767.

Trump’s executive order on the border wall is clear that wall he is pushing is a new wall.

Section 2 (a) states that the order wants to “secure the southern border of the United States through the immediate construction of a physical wall on the southern border, monitored and supported by adequate personnel so as to prevent illegal immigration, drug and human trafficking, and acts of terrorism.”

Officials within the Trump administration blame Democratic lawmakers for blocking the construction of the wall.

Credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

However, for the first two years of his presidency, Republicans had a majority in the House of Representatives and the Senate. During those two years, however, there was not enough of a crisis along the southern border for them to push through legislation to allocate funds to the border wall. The crisis at the border became one that Trump had to speak about and push for legislation after Democrats won the majority in the House of Representatives.

The Supreme Court recently ruled that Trump could use military funds to build his border wall and it seems like that might be the only way he can start delivering on a promise he made during the 2016 election.

Credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

As of now, the construction of a new border wall where there was never a barrier has not happened. Trump can say the wall is being built but the fact remains that the border wall is not being built.

READ: The Supreme Court Just Let Trump’s Border Wall Move Forward Using Billions In Military Funds To Pay For It

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