Danger: Journalists Crossing the Border (VIDEO)

Apr 30, 2015
1:28 PM

The following video comes from our friends at Narco News.

As Narco News tells us:

The idea for the latest NNTV video was born at the 2014 School of Authentic Journalism, a laboratory where new ideas are created at the intersection of journalism and social movements and where participants share experiences from movement leaders and media makers from across the globe. At the school, filmmaker Gregory Berger teaches how to use video as a tool for participation and social change in partnership with communities, and often uses comedy as a medium. A student who had worked with Central American migrants in Mexico began to wonder how someone could possibly make a comedy about such a dire humanitarian and refugee crisis. They both took the challenge as an opportunity and came up with the idea for a movie that would make mainstream media’s portrayal of the situation look ridiculous while highlighting migrants’ capacity to organize a social movement.

It also adds this:

Not long after the 2014 School of Authentic Journalism, a group of nearly 500 Central American migrants left the “La 72” Home-Refuge for Migrants on the Mexico-Guatemala border and began walking north. Human rights defenders, journalists and Friar Tomás González, director of “La 72” accompanied them. González organizes an annual Viacrucis Migrante, a political action that uses a religious tradition – the Stations of the Cross – to draw attention to the structural violence that affecting Central American migration. The 2014 Viacrucis grew larger than ever before, reaching Mexico City with over 1,200 undocumented Central Americans, many of whom continued all the way to the US-Mexico border. Migrant leadership played a key role in decision-making during the Viacrucis, challenging the popular portrayal of migrants as victims and delinquents.

This negative portrayal is one of the key problems hindering change in Mexico, where public perception of Central American migrants is fraught with fearful and patronizing attitudes. Just last month a federal representative from Veracruz, Patricia Peña Recio, said that migrants “are dangerous because in the places where they stop they engage in prostitution, they kill people, and besides, they don’t deserve attention because they don’t vote.” Peña Recio happens to be the secretary of the South Southeast Border Affairs Committee in the Mexican Congress.