Mexican weddings loaded with tradition

By Helena Rodriguez: Freedom Newspapers There’s nothing like a wedding dance to remind your family what a bad dancer you are. But when I was with familia at my sister Becky’s recent wedding, I was like, “What the heck?” I just had to dance “La Marcha,” which no Mexican wedding would be complete without. Then […]

Boarding the train game

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A group at the Portales Senior Citizens Center enjoys a game of “Mexican Train” on a recent Thursday afternoon. Players are, clockwise from left, Estelle Jones, Billie Reagan, Earl Busby, Ralph Little and Judy Riddle. (Freedom Newspapers: Karl Terry) By Karl Terry: Freedom Newspapers A version of dominoes fans say has the ability to tighten […]

Momma Matriarch

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Carmelita Salazar worked as a cook for Clovis Municipal Schools and several restaurants. (CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks) By Tonya Fennell: CNJ staff writer Hands wrinkled with age, Carmelita Salazar deftly peels potatoes at her kitchen table. Beside the diminutive great great-grandmother, a small pile of shiny, white vegetables awaits washing. Today, the 95-year-old will […]

Diversity would do world of good

By Helena Rodriguez: Local columnist Shame on our politicians! As we celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month, which begins today and runs through Oct. 15, some politicians are only concerned about being re-elected and are leaving millions of concerned citizens and Mexican immigrants in limbo as they delay immigration reform. They cried “state of emergency” last […]

Cooperation must rule Mexico before democracy can

Mexico’s Federal Electoral Judicial Tribunal has unanimously ruled that Felipe Calderon of the National Action Party (PAN) won the July 2 election as president. In many ways this marks a triumph for democratic procedures and transparency in Mexico. International observers agreed this was perhaps the fairest election in Mexico’s history, a challenge from the losing […]

Award deadline extended

CNJ Staff The deadline for participation in a state initiative to honor New Mexico women has been extended. Those who wish to nominate a deceased woman who influenced New Mexican history have until Sept. 5 to do so. The New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs will honor the accomplishments of New Mexican women through the […]

Immigration solution will take compromise

By Helena Rodriguez: Local columnist To translate the Holy Bible and read or recite it in a language other than Hebrew, Aramaic, Latin or any of its original forms is un-Christian. Does that sound ridiculous to you? The notion that singing the National Anthem in Spanish is un-American is also ridiculous. Some people may not […]

Residents demonstrate for immigrant rights

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A boy rides on a marcher’s shoulders waving an American flag as hundreds of participants in a rally walk north on Mitchell Street Monday morning. The marchers walked in a show of support for immigration reform. (Staff photo: Sharna Johnson) By Tonya Garner: CNJ staff writer The honking car horns could be heard for blocks, […]

U.S. not dumping ground for Mexican woes

By Mona Charen: Syndicated columnist Ross Perot famously predicted that if Congress passed the North American Free Trade Agreement, we’d hear a “giant sucking sound” as American jobs were exported to our southern neighbor. Not only did that not happen, but American exports to Mexico have jumped. According to an analysis by Howard J. Wall […]

Area residents rally for immigrant rights

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Clovis immigrant rights supporters rally Monday morning at the intersection of Main and 14th streets. Demonstrators chanted, “Si se puede” (yes we can), as the march snaked through town. (Staff photo: Sharna Johnson) By Tonya Garner: CNJ staff writer The group of 50 immigration rights supporters rapidly swelled to 400 Monday as they marched through […]

Multiculturalism only sparking divisions

By Mona Charen: Syndicated columnist Concerned that the raging immigration debate would spark violence, officials in at least two schools in Colorado have banned students from bringing flags to school, the AP reports. Predictably, this news and associated rumors have lit up the phone lines at call-in shows around the nation. Conservatives are right to […]

Immigrants looking for chance for living

By Helena Rodriguez: Local columnist Si se puede! “Yes, we can!” “Yes, it can be done!” However you translate these three words, this was the chant that led many Latinos to take to the streets and the fields in the 1960s and 1970s to demand better working conditions for farm workers and civil rights for […]

Mexican wolves may benefit from scaleback

Freedom Newspapers If at first you don’t succeed … change the parameters and ask for more time or money. That often seems the unofficial motto of federal officials, who rather than admit defeat in some quixotic quest, simply redefine the mission and the benchmarks of success. Federal agencies and private advocacy groups backing the reintroduction […]

Mexico: Crossing border into new world

By Helena Rodriguez: Local Columnist As I was walking through the streets of Merida, Yucatan, in Mexico recently, my feet blistered, my stomach churning wildly and aching for the tastes and comforts of home, I recalled the now not-so-funny words of comedian George Lopez. “Chicanos belong in the United States!” Those words rang in my […]

Mexico must give respect to earn it

By Leonard Pitts: Syndicated Columnist What is it with Mexico lately? When did it hire David Duke as an image consultant? I can’t imagine what else might explain that nation’s recent blundering into not just one but two racially charged controversies. The first, of course, was President Vicente Fox’s remark in May that Mexican immigrants […]

Matthews cooked up book in spite of stroke

By Don McAlavy John Matthews’ life suddenly changed in 1984 when suffered his first serious stroke. Then 55, Matthews had been a full-time youth and music minister. Bu the major impact of his stroke was visual impairment. “After that stroke I couldn’t lead music, couldn’t drive; so I started looking around for what I could […]

¡Celebramos el Cinco de Mayo!

By Leslie Radford: CNJ staff writer Cinco de Mayo, Spanish for “The Fifth Of May,” commemorates the victory of the Mexicans over the French army at The Battle Of Puebla in 1862. It has become increasingly popular in the U.S. among those with a Hispanic background. It’s celebrated by family and friends through Mexican culture […]

State doesn’t need help of ‘Minutemen’

By Ned Cantwell: State Columnist Picture this. You are a Mexican fellow wanting to slip into the United States to do work Americans sneer at. Your family is hungry. You want more than anything to improve their lot. So you make your way to the Mexico-Arizona border and prepare to cross. But then you look […]

Latin music going full circle post-Selena

By Helena Rodriguez I’m the black sheep in my family. There’s been an ongoing feud between my sisters, my dad and I, with all of them against lonesome me in a battle of the bands. We argue over what kind of regional Spanish music rules: The Mexican border-based, working-class sound of Norteño music, which is […]

U.S., Mexico need to rethink drug war strategy

CNJ staff The killing continues in Matamoros, Mexico, within bullet range of the Rio Grande. Two people, at least one of them an American missionary, were found dead Friday in Matamoros. Details are sketchy. Two other Americans, Carlos Santiago Ramirez and Yolanda Zamora Rivera, were found shot dead Wednesday morning at their Matamoros home. Police […]