imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Mexican theme park turns border crossing into sport

by Jeremy Schwartz Thursday, Aug. 24, 2006 at 2:55 PM

A place were La Migra are not jackbooted thugs? Hey they are only actors here!

IXMIQUILPAN, Mexico - On a misty, moonless night, the group scurried down the canyon wall, their feet slipping in the ankle-deep mud. The sirens grew louder as their guide, clad in a ski mask and known only as Poncho, urged them to run faster. "Hurry up! The Border Patrol is coming!"

A couple in matching designer tennis outfits loped awkwardly along, the boyfriend clutching a digital video camera and struggling to keep the screen steady.

The 20 or so people fleeing the Border Patrol aren't undocumented immigrants. They're tourists about 700 miles from the border. Most are well-heeled professionals more likely to travel to the United States in an airplane than on foot.

They've each paid 150 pesos, or about , for what is perhaps Mexico's strangest tourist attraction: a night as an undocumented immigrant crossing the Rio Grande.

Advertising for the mock journey, which takes place at a nature park in the central state of Hidalgo, tells the pretend immigrants to "Make fun of the Border Patrol!" and to "Cross the border as an extreme sport!"

The organizers say they are trying to build empathy for migrants by putting people in their shoes.

And the organizers, members of a Hnahnu indigenous community, speak from experience. Leaders estimate as many as 90 percent of the 2,500-person community have made the journey to the United States, most ending up in the boomtown of Las Vegas.

"We do this to show the people what it's like, to make them more conscious," said Hnahnu elder Luis Santiago Hernandez, who has crossed more than five times. Santiago said that although they try to make the experience authentic, "it's not even 10 percent of the real thing."

The trip also seeks to educate participants on Hnahnu culture and represents a source of income for the community, leaders said. The Mexican government helped finance the creation of the Eco Alberto nature park.

Participants said they were lured by the realistic experience promised by the nearly six-hour nocturnal walk.

"It was like being in their flesh and bones," marveled Oswaldo Martinez, 31, of Cuernavaca.

"It was cool. It was very fun," gushed his friend Mauricio Palacios, 30. "I never imagined it would be like that."

Until almost 2 a.m., the group scaled walls, hid in tunnels, jumped on the back of pickup trucks and followed a path through a cornfield. The trip ended with a ride in blindfolds to a Hnahnu holy place where Poncho, whose name is Alfonso Martinez Flores, asked the group to be more honest and sincere in their lives.

Word of the tourist attraction has provoked much head-scratching among immigrant advocates in the United States and real-life immigrants who have made the trek across the border.

Some called the risk-free adrenaline rush insulting. Others said it could improve the often-conflicted attitudes of Mexicans toward their compatriots who migrate.

"Anything that raises awareness in Mexico of the plight of undocumented immigrants is welcome," said Jorge Bustamante, special Mexican representative to the U.N. for human rights of migrants. "But the indifference is very strong, and it's greater as you ascend in social class."

Maria Garcia, a Mexican immigrant who founded the Hispanic Community Support Center in Duluth, Ga., said the mock crossing could be perceived as exploiting the suffering of migrants. "Someone crossing the border knows they could die," she said. "Someone going on this tour knows they will have fun."

Immigrant rights advocate Josefina Castillo, director of the Austin American Friends Service Committee office in Texas, said the adventure should include dialogue about the economic reasons immigrants leave home. "If it's just part of a show, then it would be (insulting)," she said. "It should lead to more education."

Nearly 70 members of the Hnahnu community take part in the experience, playing the various roles.

"It's all the things we've been through," said 21-year-old Juventino Garcia, who made his first journey north at 15. "We're just trying to show the people what it's like."





Report this post as:

LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE
Ixmiquilpan, Hialgo La Migra de Mexico Friday, Aug. 25, 2006 at 6:45 AM

Local News

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 12:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 12:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 4:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J10 11:58PM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M30 10:20PM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 12:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 1:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 2:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 3:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 2:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 1:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 1:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 4:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 1:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A26 10:37PM

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Paraphysique de martyrologie J17 8:00AM

[NEW HOT] World Soccer King Hack Coins and Gems J17 4:32AM

Asian Countries:Cambodia, Vietnam, N. Korea do not permit unlawful immigration J16 8:06PM

Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator J16 11:24AM

Democratic Socialists of America J14 4:57PM

Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's J14 4:18PM

Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento J14 12:54AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Cleanup J13 4:14PM

FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution? J13 3:52PM

Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians J13 2:59PM

The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally! J12 4:36PM

Social Policy as Social Infrastructure J12 3:38AM

Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud J12 1:50AM

Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner.. J11 6:48PM

June 2018 Honduras coup update J11 3:35PM

Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support J11 1:40PM

New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients J11 10:14AM

Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation J11 1:31AM

Please Work For The Defeat Of Brett Kavanaugh And Why J09 8:54PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 1:27PM

Transinhumanisme ( transe inhumanisme ) J09 12:44PM

Google, World's Biggest Censor, Was Founded By The CIA J09 10:25AM

For a World Free of Nuclear Risks J09 8:29AM

Corrupt CDC Ignores Meat Fish Recalls J09 4:55AM

The (Temporary) End of Globalization J09 3:03AM

Aternatives to Abortions such as Plan B the pill, condoms and IUD J08 4:03PM

U.S Congressional Legal Minds Know Better Than Allowing Texas To Murder Hank Skinner J08 3:37PM

ACLU in many US states defends in court KKK and American Nazis Sometimes for Money J07 11:28PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy