Deportee launching Kickstarter Campaign for documentary project “Aquí Estamos! Ya Regresamos!”

I take this opportunity to share a crowdfunding campaign spearheaded by Lalo Aguilar, a US deportee born in Juárez, raised in Utah and currently residing in Mexico. He is working on a documentary (now in pre-production) on the post-deportation and post-return experiences of Mexican undocumented immigrants raised in the U.S.

I only know Lalo from our virtual calls after connecting through social media (we are yet in meet in person), but I can tell Lalo is looking to continue to pursue his life goals despite deportation. This documentary is one of them.

In the past couple of years, there has been emerging coverage generated by various journalists, researchers and film producers on the subject; however, this is the first documentary project I have seen to be designed, developed and produced from a deportee’s perspective. It is one that highlights the fact that deportations have happened in mass prior to the Trump administration but have been invisible on both sides of the US-Mexico border. This project delves into an important inquiry:

There’s no doubting that the post-deportation topic has been on the spotlight in Mexico since Trump began his campaign by targeting Mexicans. But why did it take so long for Mexico to look into the returned migration phenomenon? Why weren’t the repatriated voices being heard until now?

I hope you take a look and support by donating and/or sharing.

From Lalo’s own words, I share his Facebook post (with his permission, posted on July 18, 2017) announcing the documentary project:

Hello Facebook friends, here in Mexico and back home! This is my first post in over 5 years, since I got deported; and it seems like it’s merely to ask you for money.. lol. No but really, I’ve enrolled in Film school in Puebla and I’ve started working on a feature documentary that is growing way too fast for my limited resources, so I launched a Kickstarter campaign. This film focuses on the returned bicultural identity; us that were born in Mexico and raised in the States but are now back in Mexico either because of deportation or “voluntary” return (that is almost always not so voluntary). It also focuses on the structural and cultural changes that are happening in Mexico because of our return.

I have friends from different cultural, economic, and social backgrounds here on FB; so if you are a part of this bicultural Mexican community whether now in Mexico or in the States and you know what’s happening to our community on either side of the border, please check our Kickstarter page. Please share it or donate IF you can. If you are a Trump supporter who doesn’t know or care about what’s happening to our community, it’s cool too, no hard feelings; do what you will with this info. Much love to ALL of you!

As you can see on my page, I’m not much about posting stuff on FB, but I strongly believe in this project and so do the BADASS people that are helping me accomplish it; so y’all be hearing some more from me now. I’m sorry if this causes anyone any inconveniences. Much love! Peace!

Ya Regresamos Kickstarter

For more on the Kickstarter campaign, visit:  Aquí Estamos! Ya Regresamos! (be sure to check-out the campaign video!)

Lalo will receive the funds raised only if he meets the crowdfunding goal (that is how Kickstarter works). To-date, he has raised 10% of the total funds needed. With your help, he will be closer to have the resources he needs to bring this documentary to life. The Kickstarter campaign closes August 22, 2017.

You can connect with Lalo via Twitter.

A friend’s reflection On DAPA: “Pain in our hearts”

I post an email my friend Carlos sent (and requested we share) on the day the U.S. Supreme Court decided to defer justice for over 4 million undocumented immigrants.

I sometimes wish I could just look away from struggle I see north of the border, in the same way our pain post-deportation has been ignored by the movement en el otro lado, on the other side. Not because I lack empathy, but because I feel I should be focusing on addressing a situation in Mexico that is worsening as consequence of a crisis trifecta: (1) failed US immigration and deportation policies, (2) a failed US immigrant movement, and (3) a failed Mexican state. But then, I remind myself that when there is no justice for one person it means there is no justice for all.

Furthermore, our struggles are so intrinsically connected that this situation is a painful reminder for immigrant advocates to look beyond their U.S. bubble, and I was quick to remind them of that in a recent Facebook post:

 

The bottom line: A paradigm shift is required when facing a collective crisis. Carlos, who is a long time immigrant justice organizer, invites you to consider an alternative to harvest, Cosecha(r), a movement. Political negotiation is no longer a viable strategy. It is time to shake the status quo.

Cosecha-MC

“When our political power is not enough, we have to use our economic and labor power” Credit: Movimiento Cosecha – Harvest Movement

 

I am hopeful that this can pave the way for a collective justice fight that can unite our parallel struggles across borders.

 


Hello Friends,

As many of you know today is a day of anger and rage for the undocumented community. The supreme court pretty much stalled our possibilities of legalizing temporarily over 4 million people. Out of those 4 million people, 2 of them were my aunt and uncle that were the first people in my family to come to the US over 20 years ago, they are still undocumented and they would have qualified though my 18 year old us born cousin.

I juts want to share that I’m tired of having dinner with them and telling them that they have to wait longer, that this is another failure for our movement. No more, no más. That is why we are working to really change the political weather for my people in this country and I need your help.

You know what I’m doing, Cosecha, people on the street love hearing about the boycott, the strike, permanent protection for their families and the ability to have dignity and respect through struggle.

Please support us by signing up to our list serve, we are going to be taking a summer of actions(and you have to be engage!) and donate to support a movement not owned by the democratic party but by the people.

But mostly please take tonight to think about those families, have them on your heart with us, pray for them and wish the movement luck, we certainly need it.

Carlos

6 years down…

Today is my ‪#‎postdeportation‬ anniversary. 6 down, 4 more to go.

I want to give a shout-out to my Twinner, Happy Cosmopolite, who understands what a date like today is like:

A guide to belonging everywhere

nancy!

Nancy is my “Twinner”- we were both forced back to Mexico on September, 2009. She was sent back on September 1st, 4 days before I to set foot on Mexican soil.

It’s funny (in a sad kind of way) to think that we weren’t even that far from each other- she was in Tijuana and I arrived in Hermosillo. Our sentences will be up September 2019, and it’s sort of incredible to think that I have made it this long with an amputation as severe and heart breaking as being denied my family and a part of my home.

For all of you who have not had the pleasure of meeting Nancy in person, let me say that Nancy is one of the most passionate, articulate, kind, and fearless people that I know. She has made this burden so much more lighter and shown me that I was not alone…

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