Things That Matter

Mass Migration Of Central Americans To The U.S. Dissolves, Others Will Continue To Forward

What began as a massive group of an estimated 1,200 Central Americans that were seeking asylum in the United States has now dissipated somewhat. Today, less than a week after the caravan began their journey on foot, Mexican officials are breaking up the massive group and instead giving them humanitarian visas, The Washington Post reports. The visas will also let the migrants to travel within Mexico for up to a month in order to file an immigration claim. Others, however, will venture on and try to get asylum in the U.S.

The caravan is an organized trip that happens annually, however, this year’s journey is reportedly the largest since the organized trips began more than a decade ago. One of the reasons they travel in large numbers is simply to be cautious. There’s a safety issue and if they travel united, there’s a higher chance of remaining safe.

The massive gathering got the attention of the President Donald Trump, which has put a major spotlight on the journey.

Gracias a las comunidad d Matias Romero por su solidaridad con la Caravana Viacrusis Migrantes en la Lucha.

Posted by Pueblo Sin Fronteras on Monday, April 2, 2018

While President Trump’s anti-immigration agenda has targeted Mexicans and Muslims, his aim on Central America in particular with Honduras and El Salvador has been just as tough. Earlier this year, Trump rescinded protection for an estimated 200,000 Salvadorans who were living in the U.S. since 2001 after a devastating earthquake struck El Salvador.

President Trump took to Twitter earlier this week to voice his frustration with what he says are “weak immigration policies.”

It’s reported that about 80 percent of those who are requesting asylum from the U.S. are from Honduras — the turbulent country plagued with violence. The migration trip is organized by Pueblos Sin Fronteras, an organization who’s been accompanying asylum seekers for the past 15 years. Their aim is to facilitate shelter, provide food, and guidance through the group’s 2,000-mile journey. The people — most of them women and children, though also include men — began on foot in Tapachula near the Guatemalan border to America late in March.

Pueblo Sin Fronteras organized the march to help the participants stay safe during their travel.

Posted by Pueblo Sin Fronteras on Friday, March 23, 2018

However, in the past couple of days the continuation of the trip has become uncertain due to the interference of the Mexican government. BuzzFeed reports that the Mexico’s National Institute of Immigration (INM) has announced that they will break up the caravan by offering visas. BuzzFeed also reports that the people who will be given visas will be the most at risk that are traveling in the caravan including “pregnant women, people with disabilities, or people with chronic illnesses like HIV.” The remaining people will have to petition the Mexican government for permanent stay or be ordered to return to their native country.

“We didn’t leave our countries just because we wanted to,” Zelaya Gomez told The Washington Post. “It’s for the safety of our children.”

Trump’s tweets about the caravan have fueled even more threats from the Trump administration about border security. The president said he will place the National Guard at the border, however, according to White House officials, they won’t have “physical contact” with migrants or process any paperwork, NBC News reports.

As for the caravan of migrants, some will continue to the U.S.

Pueblo Sin Fronteras organizer Irineo Mujica told The Washington Post, “We will try to find a better way of doing our caravans’ in coming years. We didn’t anticipate, or want, a caravan of this size.”


READ: President Trump’s Latest DACA Tweet Has Everyone Questioning How Much He Knows About The Program

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The Principal Of A Florida School Was Captured Spanking An Undocumented Six-Year-Old Student With A Paddle

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The Principal Of A Florida School Was Captured Spanking An Undocumented Six-Year-Old Student With A Paddle

Corporal punishment includes all sorts of cruel physical acts. They range from spanking, slapping, force-feeding, and pinching to pulling, twisting, and striking with an object. The act of corporal punishment has long been criticized for its part in causing greater damage than intended.

Though the effects might bring around immediate compliance, researchers have underlined that such changes in behavior are often only short-term and can increase aggressive behavior. Perhaps this is why the act has varying legal statuses across the country.

Elementary school principal Melissa Carter is learning her own lesson from corporal punishment, but not as the receiver.

The elementary school principal from Florida is being investigated by local authorities after her use of corporal punishment on a 6-year-old student was captured on camera.

Principal Melissa Carter and school clerk Cecilia Self used a paddle on the student last month as punishment for damaging a computer screen. According to local CBS affiliate WINK News, corporal punishment was performed on the child in front of their mother. The mother used her cell phone to record the paddling in a clip that has gone viral.

According to WINK News, a female employee from the school contacted the child’s mother on April 13 after her daughter allegedly damaged a computer.

The mother of the child, who speaks Spanish and not fluent English, said that she was confused by the allegations made against her daughter during the phone call. During the conversation the school employee had mentioned “paddling” but the mother didn’t understand what that meant because of her language barrier.

She had been under the impression that she had been brought to the school to pay a $50 fine. Instead, she was taken to Principal Carter’s office where her daughter and the principal were waiting.

Carter soon brought out a wooden paddle and smacked the six-year-old on the backside. The video recorded by the mothers shows the little girl crying in pain during the attack.   

The mother claimed she resisted intervening because she feared having her immigration status brought into question.

“Nobody would have believed me. I sacrificed my daughter, so all parents can realize what’s happening in this school,” told the local news about the incident. “The hatred with which she hit my daughter, I mean it was a hatred that, really I’ve never hit my daughter like she hit her. I had never hit her.”

Bret Provinsky, the mother’s attorney, said the State Attorney’s Office is currently reviewing the case to see whether they will pursue criminal charges against Carter and Cecilia Self.

Self was meant to translate for the mother, but the mother said she did not do so. “That’s aggravated battery. They’re using a weapon that can cause severe physical harm,” said Provinsky. “The child is terrified, she feels vulnerable. There’s nothing she can do in the hands of these adults, who treated her so brutally, savagely, sadistically.”

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At Least 17 Dead And Hundreds Injured Following Massive Protests Across Colombia

Things That Matter

At Least 17 Dead And Hundreds Injured Following Massive Protests Across Colombia

A massive protest movement that swept across Colombia seems to have paid off – at least in the short term – as President Ivan Duque says that he will withdrawal the controversial tax plan that sent angry protesters into the streets. However, the protests claimed at least 17 victims who died during the unrest and hundreds more were injured.

Now that the president has withdrawn the controverial bill, many are wondering what’s next and will they have to take to the streets once again.

Massive protests claimed the lives of at least 17 people and hundreds more were injured across Colombia.

Unions and other groups kicked off marches on Wednesday to demand the government of President Ivan Duque withdraw a controversial tax plan that they say unfairly targets the most vulnerable Colombians.

Isolated vandalism, clashes between police and protesters and road blockades occurred in several cities on Saturday, and riot police were deployed in the capital.

Rights organization Human Rights Watch said it had received reports of possible police abuse in Cali, and local human rights groups alleged up to 17 deaths occurred.

After a week of protests, the government has shelved the controversial plan.

Faced with the unrest, the government of President Ivan Duque on Sunday ordered the proposal be withdrawn from Congress where it was being debated. In a televised statement, he said his government would work to produce new proposals and seek consensus with other parties and organizations.

President Duque, in his statement, acknowledged “it is a moment for the protection of the most vulnerable, an invitation to build and not to hate and destroy”.

“It is a moment for all of us to work together without paltriness,” he added. “A path of consensus, of clear perceptions. And it gives us the opportunity to say clearly that there will be no increase in VAT for goods and services.”

The tax reform had been heavily criticized for punishing the middle classes at a time of economic crisis brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. The government introduced the bill on April 15 as a means of financing public spending. The aim was to generate $6.3 billion between 2022 and 2031 to reignite the fourth largest economy in Latin America.

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