News and Politics

How the U.S. immigration 'crisis' is affecting Mexico

January 24, 2019

Under the Donald Trump presidency, recent years have seen a substantial rise in the attention and emotion invested in the United States’ immigration debate. However, continuous criticisms of the country’s immigration system from both ends of the political spectrum fail to recognize the other countries that are being affected by the same migration patterns. Although all countries in Central America have been affected in some way by the recent waves of migration, Mexico is in the center—geographically and politically—of the movement, and is arguably more the subject of a ‘crisis’ of immigration than the United States.

Bolsonaro triggering gun reform in Brazil

January 23, 2019

In 2003, Brazil’s Senate passed a Disarmament Statute in response to spiking murder rates that is still in place today.  The statute created a number of laws pertaining to gun ownership, including clauses that call for people interested in applying for a gun to be at least 25 years old, to be free of any criminal history, to have proof that they have a steady job and fixed residence, and to pass a psychological test and pass gun training courses.

Small turnout for Maduro's Second Inauguration: What countries still support Venezuela, and Why?

January 22, 2019

On Thursday, January 10 at 10:00 a.m., controversial leftist leader Nicolas Maduro was sworn in for a second 6-year term as President of Venezuela despite deteriorating economic and political conditions throughout the country. Although Maduro’s inauguration crowd was undeniably more sparse than in the past, a few leaders and foreign dignitaries made a point to make an appearance and show their support for the regime in spite of widespread international criticism.

García's denied asylum reflection of growing corruption in Peru

January 21, 2019

Last month, former president of Peru Alan García was denied his plea for asylum at the Uruguayan embassy, which stated that as “the three branches of the state function freely” in Peru, García did not have a case for asylum.  The president, who has been banned from leaving the country since November, will go on trial for accusation that he took bribes from Brazilian construction firm Odebrecht during his second term in office from 2006 to 2011 (BBC News 2018).

A reworking of the Cuban Constitution

January 10, 2019

In the past several months, Cuban citizens have been gathering in government-organized public forums around the country to discuss a reworking of the Cuban Constitution. The current constitution was created during the Cold War when Cuba was undergoing the Communist Revolution and was applicable to the goals of the Communist regime in Cuba. However, now that the political atmosphere is significantly different than during the Soviet-era, Cubans hope to make changes to the constitution that will better reflect Cuban society today.

The Role of Immigration in the Rise of U.S. Private Prisons

January 8, 2019

The past and present roles of immigration policy drive political, economic, and cultural dynamics in the formation of prison privatization. While inaugurated by President Nixon, succeeding administrations have continued to augment “tough on crime” strategies. The Reagan administration’s addition to the strategy was the infamous expansion of the use of private prisons to incarcerate individuals from at-risk communities, such as low-income minority neighborhoods. Often forgotten is that the groundwork for the development of private prisons was laid by immigration.

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