politics

Here’s Every Ballot Measure That Will Affect You As A Latina Directly

If you’re not completely unplugged from all forms of communication, then you know that the mid-terms are coming up this November. And these ones are important, to put it lightly. It’s no secret that a lot is at stake this upcoming election. After the surprising results of the 2016 election, so many prominent personalities have made it their personal mission to spread the word that voting is the most powerful way that we as citizens can make a difference. But with all this talk of politicians and campaigns, it’s easy to forget that many of us not only vote for representation to enact legislation, but some of us must decide on the legislation itself.

What we’re talking about here are Ballot Measures–155 proposals that voters in 37 states will decide upon in November.

It can be hard to keep up with all the complicated jargon in current affairs, so to put it simply, ballot measures are pieces of proposed legislation that we, as voters, have the power to approve or reject. The coolest thing about ballot measures is that Americans can practice direct democracy when voting for or against these proposals–there’s no “middle man”, so to speak. If you believe in something on the ballot, all it takes is a check mark for you to make your voice heard.

In the past, Americans have used the power of their vote to legalize marijuana, same-sex marriage, and expand abortion access. That is why it is so important to educate yourself, not just on the representatives you’ll vote for, but the ballot measures that will show up on your ticket.

Take a look below to find out more about this year’s ballot initiatives and their corresponding states so you can be completely confident when you check that box!

Women’s Health

If you’re fed up with paying taxes on feminine products when other male-centric products related to sexual health (like condoms and Viagra) are un-taxed, then pay attention to Question 2 on Nevada’s 2018 ballot measures. This proposal will exempt tampons and pads from state and local sales taxes. This is an issue that many Latinas are very passionate about.

On a more controversial note, three states will also be prime battleground for advocates and opponents of reproductive rights. In both West Virginia and Alabama, legislators have introduced ballot measures that, if approved, will completely criminalize abortion in the event that Roe vs. Wade is overturned. Criminalization of abortion to this extent could send women who have done the procedure to jail.

Additionally, Oregon has proposed legislation to prohibit public funds from being spent on abortions, except when “medically necessary or required by federal law”.

All of these measures have the potential to affect Latinas directly, especially those of low-income households and those too young to access reliable methods of birth control.

Marijuana

Like the nine other states before them, North Dakota and Michigan have introduced ballot measures proposing the full legalization of recreational marijuana. Additionally, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Utah have introduced proposals for the legalization of medical marijuana, which, if approved, will have them joining the 30 other states where medical marijuana is already legal.

Considering how Latinos and other people of color are disproportionately affected by drug-related arrests, marijuana legalization is an issue that may be near and dear to the hearts of many Latinas.

Immigration and Immigrants’ Rights

If you’re a Latina living in Florida, educating yourself on the ins and outs of 2018’s Amendment 11 is a necessity before you cast your vote. According to Ballotpedia, the passage of Amendment 11 would delete the language in Florida’s constitution that prevents non-citizens from owning property. However, wrapped up in the proposal is the repeal of the requirement for a high-speed rail and reduce penalties for crimes committed before a law has been changed via legislation. This is one of the more complicated measures and if you’re a Florida resident, it would be in your best interest to do some research of your own and draw your own conclusions!

In Oregon, Measure 105, or the “Repeal Sanctuary State Law Initiative”, hopes to repeal the current law (the Sanctuary State Law) that forbids state resources from aiding in the apprehension of undocumented immigrants. A “yes” vote on this measure would support the repeal of Oregon’s sanctuary state law. A “no” vote would keep the status of Oregon as a sanctuary state status as is.

Victims’ Rights

Although you may have never heard of it, Marsy’s Law (aka the “Victims’ Rights Amendment”) will be a ballot measure in six states this November–Florida, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, and Kentucky. Named after Marsy Nichols, who was murdered in 1983 by her ex-boyfriend, the law aims to provide guaranteed constitutional rights to crime victims. Some of these rights include the right to be notified about and present at proceedings, the right to be heard at proceedings and the right to be notified about the release or escape of the accused.

If you feel better-informed now, then we’ve done our jobs! Go out and vote on November 6th and make your voz heard!


Read: Cholas x Chulas, A First Generation Latinx Beauty Brand That’s Smashing Stereotypes One Eyeliner Kit At A Time

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The Spanish ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ Is Being Shared To Honor Hispanic Workers Fighting COVID-19

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The Spanish ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ Is Being Shared To Honor Hispanic Workers Fighting COVID-19

There’s no denying that the world looks a lot different now than it did in 1947. And while the list of all of the positive changes that the decades stretching between now and then have done for the world and minorities, a recent campaign is also highlighting the ways in which our current president could take some notes on certain values the United States held dear during this time. Particularly ones that had been pressed for by one of our former presidents.

As part of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Good Neighbor Policy” effort, he worked to promote positive and healthy relations between the United States in Latin American countries.

At the time Rooseveltaimed to ensure that the North, Central and South American countries avoided breaking under the influence of Axis countries during World War II. As part of this campaign, Roosevelt comissioned a Spanish and a Portuguese version of the U.S. national anthem. According to Time Magazine he also “recruited Hollywood to participate in this Good Neighbor Policy; Walt Disney went on goodwill tour of South America, hoping to find a new market for his films, and ended up producing two movies inspired by the trip: Saludos Amigos (1942) and The Three Caballeros (1944). The Brazilian star Carmen Miranda also got a boost, and her role in The Gang’s All Here made her even more famous in the U.S. And alongside these cross-cultural exchanges, the U.S. government decided it needed an anthem that could reach Spanish speakers.”

According to NPR, Clotilde Arias, wrote wrote the translation at the end of World War II, was born in the small Peruvian city, Iquitos in 1901 and moved to New York City to become a composer when she was 22-years-old. Her version of the anthem is now part of an exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

Now in an effort to support Latino communities affected by the coronavirus, the non-profit We Are All Human Foundation’s Hispanic Star campaign commissioned the a remake of the song.

Hoping to raise awareness of its Hispanic Recovery Plan and efforts to help to connect Hispanic small businesses and workers with resources during the pandemic, the campaign brought the old recording from obscurity.

For the song, the 2019 winner of the singing competition La Voz,  Jeidimar Rijos, performed “El Pendón Estrellado.” Or, “The Star-Spangled Banner.” 

The song has already received quite a bit of comments and support on Youtube.

Hang in there, fam. We can only get through this together.

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A 9-Year-Old Girl Was Detained By Border Patrol On Her Way To School

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A 9-Year-Old Girl Was Detained By Border Patrol On Her Way To School

A 9-year-old U.S. citizen was separated from her mother for 36 hours after agents at the border accused her of lying about her citizenship.

Like thousands of students in our country, Julia Isabel Amparo Medina’s daily commute requires her to cross the U.S. border.

The fourth-grade student attends Nicoloff Elementary School in San Ysidro, California and was in a carpool to school from her home in Tijuana when she ran into traffic. Medina, was commuting to school in a car driven by her mother’s friend Michelle Cardena, Cardena’s two children and her own older 14-year-old brother, Oscar. When the long line to get into the U.S. seemed to be jampacked upon their 4 a.m arrival, Cardenas instructed the kids in her car to walk to the border. She assured them that when they reached it, she would call them an Uber to get them the rest of the way to their school.

But Medina and her never made it across the border or to school that day.

According to the New York Times who talked to a Customs and Border Protection spokesman, two Amparo and her brother arrived at one of the San Ysidro port of entry facilities for pedestrians at 10:15 a.m. last Monday.

Upon their arrival, Amparo and her brother presented their U.S. passports to a CBP officer who soon accused her of being someone else. Note: Amparo’s passport image which was taken years before so she did not look exactly like herself. They also accused her brother of smuggling.

A CBP spokesperson has said that Amparo “provided inconsistent information during her inspection, and CBP officers took the 9-year-old into custody to perform due diligence in confirming her identity and citizenship.”

After CBP officers the confirmed that her brother was a U.S. citizen, he was permitted to enter the U.S while his sister stayed behind. It wasn’t until 6:30 pm on Tuesday, that Amparo was confirmed to be a U.S. citizen as well and was released and admitted to the U.S. to her mother.

Speaking to NBC7, Amparo said she was “scared” of her detention and that she was “sad because I didn’t have my mom or my brother. I was completely by myself.”

According to Amparo’s mother Thelma Galaxia, her daughter claims that she was told by an officer that she and her brother would be released if she admitted to being her cousin. Galaxia claims that officers also convinced her son Oscar to sign a document that Amparo was his cousin and not his sister.

When Galaxia was alerted that her children had been detained she contacted the Mexican consulate.

After being notified by the consulate that her daughter would be released at the San Ysidro Port of Entry. While the family felt relieved to be grateful to be reunited with their daughter, Galaxia says the separation should never have happened.

Over the weekend, Twitter was swift to express their outrage over the incident.

Some even expressed their dismay of having a similar situation happen to them.

Many are using the incident as an example of the racial issues plaguing so many U.S. citizens like Amparo.

So many of the comments included outside opinions from those who have yet to experience the direct targetting of ICE.

Over all, nearly everyone was quick to point out the saddest aspect of Amparo’s experience.

Read: Preschool Students Are Doing Active Shooter Drills And I Guess This Is The New Normal Now

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