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SaturdayAugust 18, 2012

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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Tax Breaks Stimulated Economic Growth in Brazil, More Measures Planned to Spur Growth

Tax Breaks Stimulated Economic Growth in Brazil, More Measures Planned to Spur Growth

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Brazil’s economy expanded by 0.75 percent in June relative to the previous month as tax breaks stimulated growth, the central bank said Friday.

The uptick in the bank’s economic activity index was the biggest since March 2011, when it rose 1.47 percent, the institution said Friday.

The central bank, which has lowered its 2012 growth forecast for the world’s sixth-largest economy from 4.5 percent to 3 percent due to global economic woes, also said it was an auspicious sign that the economy grew 0.99 percent in June relative to same month of 2011.

The bank said the rise in economic activity in June was the result of a series of measures adopted by President Dilma Rousseff’s administration, which has stimulated consumer spending by lowering taxes on automobiles, furniture, home appliances and other products.

In a bid to further spur growth and investment, the government this week unveiled a 133 billion reais ($65.5 billion) plan to improve Brazil’s infrastructure and spur economic growth.

The plan, which will involve awarding private firms concessions for the construction of nearly 7,500 kilometers (4,660 miles) of highways and 10,000 kilometers of railways, is aimed at improving links between productive areas and the country’s seaports and airports.

On Thursday, the Finance Ministry gave 17 of the country’s 27 states more scope for taking on debt. With the decision, states will gain access to an additional 42.2 billion reais ($21.1 billion) in state loans.

Those funds must be allocated for improving infrastructure, sanitation systems, urban transport and the environment and, according to Finance Minister Guido Mantega, “will provide a significant boost to investment.”

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Command of English Necessary to Hold Office in Arizona, Says State Supreme Court

Command of English Necessary to Hold Office in Arizona, Says State Supreme Court

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Someone wanting to run for public office in Arizona can be kept off the ballot if he or she lacks a sufficient command of English, the state’s Supreme Court said Friday.

Elected officials must be able to communicate with constituents and the general public in English without the assistance of an interpreter, Chief Justice Robert Bruntinel wrote.

A public official also needs the ability to read and write English, the court said, providing an explanation of its February decision to uphold a lower court ruling that barred Alejandrina Cabrera from running for city council in the border community of San Luis.

The issue arose last December, when San Luis Mayor Juan Carlos Escamilla asked the Yuma County courts to determine if Cabrera had sufficient command of English to serve as a city councilor.

A court-appointed evaluator said that Cabrera, who graduated from an Arizona high school, was not proficient enough in English to fulfill the responsibilities of a council member.

Cabrera also had trouble responding to some questions put to her in English by the county judge who heard the case.

The Supreme Court said its decision would not stop Cabrera from seeking public office in the future if she improves her command of English.

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OLYMPICS: Brazil Contests Silver Medal, Requests Boxing Review

OLYMPICS: Brazil Contests Silver Medal, Requests Boxing Review

Photo: Esquiva Falcao

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Brazil has requested a review of the men’s middleweight boxing final at the London Olympics, saying a judge’s error may have cost Esquiva Falcao his bout against Japan’s Ryota Murata.

The Brazilian Olympic Committee said in a statement Friday it sent a letter to the International Amateur Boxing Association asking that the fight be reviewed, basing its request on press reports that Polish judge Mariusz Gorn acknowledged penalizing Falcao excessively for an infraction.

The Brazilian, a bronze medalist in the 2011 World Amateur Boxing Championships, lost to Murata on Aug. 11 by a score of 14-13 in a bout that came down to the third and final round.

Falcao, who was down by a point after the first two rounds, outboxed Murata in the third round but had to settle for silver after Gorn deducted him two points for supposedly grabbing his opponent.

In statements to the local media, Brazilian judge Jones Kennedy said his Polish colleague told him after the bout that he did not think his decision would harm Falcao as much as it did.

“All indications are there was an error in interpretation by the judge. That’s why we’ve asked the IABA to review the fight result,” Brazilian Olympic Committee Chairman Carlos Arthur Nuzman was quoted as saying.

The committee “has the obligation to defend the interests of Brazilian athletes,” Nuzman said.

The Brazilian middleweight’s brother, Yamaguchi Falcao, won bronze in London in the light heavyweight division.

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March Held to Remember Chicano Activist Ricardo Falcon 40 Years After Murder

March Held to Remember Chicano Activist Ricardo Falcon 40 Years After Murder

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Chicano leaders and young people will march today to the cemetery at Fort Lupton, north of Denver, to commemorate Ricardo Falcon, a college student and activist slain 40 years ago.

“Falcon was a visionary who dared to denounce racism in the United States and slammed it as something odious, sinful and damaging to the nation,” Stan Perea, executive director of the Association for Hispanic Theological Education, told Efe.

Forty years ago, Perea was a student at the University of Colorado, where Falcon was one of the leaders of United Mexican American Students, or UMAS.

“Racism is not as obvious now as it was 40 years ago, but it’s still as harmful ever. Today we need more people like Ricardo Falcon, who was murdered 40 years ago,” he said.

Falcon was very popular in UMAS and in the rural areas of northeastern Colorado, though he campaigned and gave speeches all over the state.

In late August 1972, Falcon and other Chicano leaders in Colorado set out in several cars for El Paso, Texas, to attend a meeting of the La Raza Unida Party.

The radiator of Falcon’s car started overheating while going through New Mexico so they they pulled into a gas station in the town of Orogrande to fill it up with water. The date was Aug. 30, 1972.

Gas station owner Perry Brunson, a member of the segregationist American Independent Party, said he would only sell them the water. They wouldn’t get it unless they paid for it.

Falcon and Brunson argued and the owner fired four shots. Two of them hit the young Chicano leader, who died shortly afterwards.

Brunson was tried for manslaughter but the jury acquitted him.

“Falcon was killed because he looked Mexican. His death shows that racism was and is real,” the Rev. Fidel “Butch” Montoya, director de Confianza - Multicultural Faith Alliance, said.

Montoya worked in the 1990s as Denver’s public safety manager and earlier spent 20 years at KUSA-TV.

“As a young photojournalist, I had to cover his funeral in the cemetery at Platteview. Hundreds of people came to that funeral,” Montoya said.

“He was a man of great charisma, a leader, someone ready to defend his people,” the evangelical pastor said. “And if he had to give his life in the struggle, he would do it. And he did it.”

Falcon was not the only victim of racial violence 40 years ago. Three of the men who accompanied him on that fateful journey - Mike Licon, Martin Serna, and Florencio “Freddy” Granados - would also lose their lives before the end of the 1970s.

“I didn’t know Falcon personally because I came to Colorado in September 1972, a month after he was killed. His family and friends told me of his commitment to La Raza. Falcon reminds us that there are no social changes without a fight,” Ramon Del Castillo, director of the Department of Chicano Studies at Metropolitan State University Denver, said.

“His courage and his determination to defend the oppressed opened many doors that were closed until then. For many people, he was the Chicano Movement’s first martyr,” he said.

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Johnny Canales , legendary Mexican Performer to be Honored at MALDEF Awards Gala (VIDEO)

Johnny Canales , legendary Mexican Performer to be Honored at  MALDEF  Awards  Gala (VIDEO)

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Johnny Canales, 65, legendary Mexican performer, will be honored by the Mexican American Legal Defense Education Fund (MALDEF) organization at their MALDEF 2012 San Antonio Awards Gala Banquet, Friday, Sept. 14, 2012.
The banquet will be held at the Westin Riverwalk, 420 West Market Street, San Antonio, TX 78205. Canales is famous for, “U got it! Take it away!”

MALDEF will also be paying tribute to Amparo H. Ortiz, Community Affairs and Promotion Director, Univision 41/TeleFutura 17 and the Honorable Justice Patricio M. Serna, New Mexico Supreme Court.

The popular “Johnny Canales Show” aired on Televisa in Mexico and Univision in the United States from 1988 until 1996. He showcased emerging bands from Mexico and the United States and credited with one of the first live performances of Selena by her thirteenth birthday. He took Selena y Los Dinos for their first concerts in Mexico. Some of the rising stars on the Johnny show included Nancy, La Mafia, Mazz, Intocable, Grupo Pegasso De Emilio Reyna, Fama, Jaime y Los Chamacos, Jennifer Pena and Los Tigres del Norte.  Canales was the Executive Producer of his show and a former Tejano singer.

Selena - Last Johnny Canales Interview 1994

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IACHR Commends Effort to Identify Child Abducted 34 Years Ago During Dictatorship in Argentina

IACHR Commends Effort to Identify Child Abducted 34 Years Ago During Dictatorship in Argentina

Photo: María Rosa Miranda and Ricardo Gaona Paiva

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The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) salutes the recovery of the identity of Pablo Javier Gaona Miranda, 34 years old, son of Ricardo Gaona Paiva and María Rosa Miranda, who were kidnapped by the military dictatorship in Argentina and continue to be disappeared until this date.

According to the information made public by the organization Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo), on May 14, 1978, Ricardo Gaona Paiva, his wife María Rosa Miranda and their son, Pablo Javier Gaona Miranda, who at the time was one month old, disappeared after leaving the house of Ricardo Gaona’s parents. Nobody had any knowledge of their whereabouts until August 6, 2012, when the recovery of the identity of Pablo Javier Gaona Miranda was announced.

The Inter-American Commission highlights the fundamental importance of the work of Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo in the recovery of the identity of 106 persons, sons and daughters of persons detained during the military dictatorship (1976-1983), most of whom are still disappeared.

The Inter-American Court has said that the States must not only abstain of unduly interfering in the private or family relations of the children, but they must also adopt positive measures to ensure their full exercise and enjoyment. In this regard, the organs of the system have established that the abduction of a child from his or her family and cultural environment, his or her illegal retention, the change of the names and surnames, as well as the consequent growing in a different family and cultural and social settings, constitute a violation of his or her right to a private and family life and his or her right to an identity. This type of facts also activate a State obligation to guarantee these rights, which means the obligation to adopt all necessary measures to achieve the reunification with the biological family and the recovery of the identity.

In this sense, the IACHR values the institutional efforts that have contributed to the process of identity recovery of the children of persons detained and disappeared in Argentina. Among these, the legislative efforts that allowed the creation of a procedure for the obtention of DNA samples, the work of the National Commission for the Right to Identity (Comisión Nacional por el Derecho a la Identidad, CONADI) of the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, and the actions taken by the Judiciary.

The Commission highlights the July 5, 2012, sentence of the Argentine Justice against the former dictators Jorge Videla and Reynaldo Bignone that condemned them to prison for their responsibility in a systematic plan to kidnap babies, which constituted a significant step forward in fighting impunity against the serious violations against human rights perpetrated during the military dictatorship, and, especially, the violations of human rights of children.

Finally, the Commission calls on other States of the region where similar practices of appropriation and/or kidnapping of children by State authorities took place, to adopt all necessary measures to adopt an effective institutional response that allow to guarantee the rights to family and to identity of the victims.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Military’s State of the Art Training Center Boasts Virtual Simulation

Mexican Military’s State of the Art Training Center Boasts Virtual Simulation

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Mexico’s army offered members of the media a tour of its most state-of-the-art training facility, including an up-close look at an exclusive virtual simulation system that soldiers must master prior to live firearms drills.

Situated at the foot of the Iztaccihuatl Volcano in the central state of Mexico, Military Camp 37-B houses one of the country’s best-equipped centers for training special forces troops in incursion techniques, hostage rescue, urban combat and other skills required to combat well-armed organized criminals.

The installations house the Virtual Training Subcenter, which was inaugurated in February and is capable of simulating as many as eight different combat environments, from rural or desert settings to the historic downtown areas of several Mexican cities.

A total of 1,132 soldiers have trained at the center over a period of six months, working with different programs to “reduce collateral damage,” army Lt. Col. Hector Daniel Guzman said.

“Here our boys prepare, train. We don’t have an accident rate, we don’t spend ammunition and we can practice until our personnel achieve total efficiency,” he told Efe Thursday during a tour of the installations organized by Mexico’s defense department to mark Special Forces Day.

The Virtual Training Subcenter, the only facility of its kind in Mexico, is one of the “world’s most modern” simulation systems, Guzman said, adding that it introduces “military personnel to a real-life situation within the safety of the virtual environment,” as well as to combat procedures.

The soldiers, working either individually or in groups and using equipment such as ropes and rescue gear they would need in a real operation, practice marksmanship or use of night vision goggles with the aid of giant video screens.

After working with the combat simulator, the soldiers undergo training at nearby firing ranges such as La Joya, a full-scale model of a town featuring seven buildings, including several simple one-story houses, a multi-story building and several vehicles.

The exercises to be performed in this mock rural community include coping with threats from snipers, rescuing hostages or assisting civilian authorities.

Prior to each exercise, soldiers are reminded of combat procedure and of theoretical concepts such as the “graded use of force,” which consists of four phases: dissuasion, persuasion, use of non-lethal force and, lastly, use of lethal force.

The instructional program imparted at La Joya consists of 16 types of training sessions and includes helicopter rappelling, terrestrial incursion simulations and hostage rescue.

“The special forces routinely tackle all the missions the army is tasked with ... in any type of environment,” the lieutenant colonel said.

Soldiers must undergo two years of training and later pass exams that test their knowledge, physical fitness and resistance and trustworthiness before entering the special forces.

President Felipe Calderon gave the army the lead role in the fight against heavily armed, well-funded drug cartels shortly after taking office in December 2006 for a six-year term.

Since then, between 50,000 and 70,000 people have lost their lives in cartel turf battles and fighting between mobsters and security forces, depending on the source.

Although the military is highly regarded in Mexico, especially by comparison with the country’s notoriously corrupt and underpaid state and local police forces, the recent indictment of four generals on drug-trafficking charges has cast a shadow on its reputation.

Calderon also has come under heavy criticism at home and abroad for using the military to battle drug gangs.

New York-based Human Rights Watch, for example, said in a report last year that “instead of reducing violence, Mexico’s ‘war on drugs’ has resulted in a dramatic increase in killings, torture, and other appalling abuses by security forces, which only make the climate of lawlessness and fear worse in many parts of the country.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Bolivian Border Town Receives Extra Security After Mob Kills Brazilians Accused of Murder

Bolivian Border Town Receives Extra Security After Mob Kills Brazilians Accused of Murder

Photo: The murder suspects being burned by the mob

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Soldiers and additional police have been deployed in the border town where two Brazilians accused of murdering three local residents were lynched earlier this week, the Bolivian government said Friday.

Defense Minister Ruben Saavedra said 27 troops were dispatched to San Matias, while the size of the town’s police detachment was doubled to 20 officers.

The soldiers will patrol the border and more troops may be sent, as the government is concerned about the entry of Brazilians with “criminal records,” the minister said.

Brazilian citizens Rafael Max Diez, 27, and Jefferson Castro da Lima, 22, were arrested Monday in San Matias on suspicion of murdering three local men.

The preliminary investigation indicated that Diez shot Pablo Paraba, Wanderley Costa and Edgar Suarez during an argument over the price of some motorcycles the Brazilians were trying to sell, San Matias police chief Edwin Rojas said Monday.

Once news of the arrests spread, hundreds of residents filled the streets to demand vengeance.

Police deployed tear gas to break up the protest, but a mob of some 400 people overwhelmed the officers and occupied the station, where the vigilantes dragged the two suspects from their cell, doused them with gasoline and set them on fire.

Brazilian police and medical examiners came to San Matias on Thursday to exhume and repatriate the victims’ bodies.

Brazil’s government has asked Bolivian authorities to identify and punish those who carried out the lynchings.

Bolivia’s 2009 constitution explicitly recognizes “community justice,” but officials have insisted repeatedly that the charter does not legalize lynching or vigilantism.

Police in San Matias say they have been threatened with death if they try to investigate the lynching, while the town prosecutor was so upset he resigned, according to his superior, Isabelino Gomez.

Gomez, the chief prosecutor of Santa Cruz province, has asked the central government to declare martial law in San Matias, a town of some 12,000 people, including more than 3,000 Brazilians, most of them undocumented.

Drug smugglers, car thieves and other criminals are active in spots along the Bolivia-Brazil border, which extends more than 3,000 kilometers (1,900 miles).

Read more by HS News Staff →

North Carolina Credit Union Offers “Dreamer Loan” to Alleviate $465 Deferred Action Fee

North Carolina Credit Union Offers “Dreamer Loan” to Alleviate $465 Deferred Action Fee

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The Latino Community Credit Union of North Carolina has created a “Dreamer Loan” to keep students who qualify for Deferred Action from being left out because they don’t have the money to pay the $465 application fee.

The LCCU has started informing its 54,000 members about the new finance program for young undocumented immigrants eligible for Deferred Action, a program aimed at delaying deportation of the kind of people who would benefit from the long-stalled DREAM Act.

“Dreamers” under 18 can apply for loans with the aid of their parents.

Some 50,000 young people in North Carolina could apply for Deferred Action, according to Immigration Policy Center estimates.

“Nobody should be left out because of money problems,” Luis Pastor, director general of the LCCU, told Efe. “The funds we have here belong to the community and will be invested so our young people can achieve their education dreams.”

Pastor stressed that to get a Dreamer Loan, the applicant has to be or become an LCCU member, but does not need a credit history.

“This (Deferred Action) is a unique chance to increase educational and job possibilities while improving the quality of life for the young people and their families,” he said.

To become a member of the LCCU, the applicant must have a currently valid photo ID from any country or a student identity card, a valid tax identification number and proof of residence in the form of a utility bill.

After hearing about the Dreamer Loan, Carlos Quiñonez went Wednesday to the LCCU branch on South Boulevard in Charlotte with his 18-year-old son Alonso, who has just graduated from high school.

“We had tickets to go back to Peru in June until the Obama Administration announced the immigration program and we decided to stay, because my son has been here since the age of 12 and wants to join the Air Force, Quiñonez told Efe.

With eight years as LCCU members, the Quiñonez family did not hesitate to apply for a loan for Carlos and at the same time get him started building his credit history.

Meanwhile, organizations like the Latin American Coalition in Charlotte have begun to give talks on the subject, and the more than 250 families that turned up for the session on Thursday were brought up to date on the immigration program.

What worries mothers like the Mexican Silvia Ibarra is not having the cash to pay for the application.

“There’s not much work available and to come up with almost $500 right now is hard. If they offer me a loan that we can pay off later it would be the perfect way for my son to apply,” Ibarra told Efe.

In the case of Nerida Ramos from Peru, she has to find the money to pay for two of her children who qualify for Deferred Action.

“We have an account in one of the country’s big banks but I don’t think they’ll loan us any money for this,” she said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Christian Vision Radio Stops Shortwave Transmissions to Latin America

Christian Vision officially stopped its short wave service to Latin America on August 17th, 2012, due to declining listenership.

Christian Vision purchased the property and transmissions equipment located in Calera de Tango, Chile, in August of 1996. In February of 1998, it received its license to transmit from Chilean regulator Subtel and on November 1st of the same year, Voz Cristiana was officially launched and began transmitting four radio services to Latin America.

The programming of Voz Cristiana, now known as CVCLAVOZ, has continued to grow through Spanish-language Christian radio affiliates throughout Latin America and Spain. With over 413 affiliates in 23 countries, CVCLAVOZ has made its resources more accessible to the ever-changing 18 to 35 year demographic that has exponentially grown in its use of the internet, mobile phones, and social media platforms such as Facebook.

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Lucha Libre: Tales of Masked Men to Open New Season of “VOCES” ON Friday September 28, 2012

Lucha Libre: Tales of  Masked Men to Open New Season of “VOCES” ON Friday September 28, 2012

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Tales of Masked Men, a new documentary about the colorful, fascinating and mysterious world of lucha libre — Mexican wrestling — will be the season opener for VOCES, Latino Public Broadcasting’s arts and culture series on PBS. Shot in Mexico and the United States and filled with the passion and excitement that defines its subject, the film explores the history of lucha libre and what has made this eighty-year-old phenomenon endure. Directed by Carlos Avila, Tales of Masked Men premieres on VOCES on Friday, September 28, 2012 from 10:00–11:00 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings) in conjunction with Hispanic Heritage Month.

Described by cultural anthropologist Heather Levi as “a sport in the key of melodrama,” lucha libre springs from the same root as American professional wrestling (i.e. Olympic and Greco-Roman style competitive wrestling), but has taken on the unique characteristics of Mexico and the country’s long-standing fascination with masks. Masks conceal faces but not feelings, allowing luchadors to transform themselves into either the character of a rudo, the rule-breaking villain, or a técnico, the fair and square, technically-proficient hero. Practiced in large and small arenas throughout Mexico and the U.S. as well as other countries, this “working class” sport is truly interactive, with multigenerational fans passionately involved in the high drama of the ring.

Tales of Masked Men introduces three wrestlers, each of whom embodies different aspects of the sport and its traditions. The most revered and famous masked Mexican wrestler of all time is El Santo, once a journeyman wrestler who struggled to find a place in the lucha libre world. El Santo rose to prominence in the ring, eventually becoming an international film and television star whose persona and humanity deeply resonated with Mexicans. Originally a rudo, El Santo ultimately transformed into an icon signifying the triumph of good over evil, a national hero in Mexico whose presence is still felt today.

Standing just 4’ 5” tall, Mascarita Sagrada is one of the most dynamic and acrobatic wrestlers working in lucha libre today. The film examines the evolution of this personcita (little person) from his early life as the sheltered child of protective parents to becoming a masked wrestler. We hear the stories of how other mini-luchadores helped Mascarita develop into the wrestling great he is today.

Finally, we meet the classic wrestler Solar. Solar is in his fourth decade as a luchador and continues to wrestle throughout the world, regularly travelling to Japan, England, the United States and other parts of Europe. Rising out of a childhood of rural poverty, Solar found an identity and a livelihood in lucha libre. Sensing that the end of his career is near, Solar trains and prepares his son, Solar Jr., to step into the ring. Ultimately he may pass the Solar persona and mask on to his son, a lucha libre tradition that ensures immortality for the character.

Featuring interviews with cultural commentators, wrestlers, and observers of the sport as well as archival footage and clips from the “masked wrestler” adventure films, Tales of Masked Men is the vibrant story of how lucha libre has taken root in Mexican and Latino culture and become an integral part of its very identify.
Tales of Masked Men is available on DVD from PBS Distribution at pbs.org/shop. The film was funded by Latino Public Broadcasting and ITVS.

*  *  *

Produced by Latino Public Broadcasting, VOCES is the only national television series devoted to exploring and celebrating the rich diversity of the Latino cultural experience.
The series will air on four consecutive Friday nights at 10:00 p.m. ET, beginning on September 28, 2012. Other films in the series include Escaramuza (October 5), Unfinished Spaces (October 12), and Lemon (October 19). Funding for VOCES was provided by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. In addition to its national broadcast, VOCES will also be available for free viewing online via the VOCES website. For complete information, visit www.pbs.org/voces.


Lourdes Grobet, Photographer
Solar, Luchador / Wrestler
Heather Levi, Cultural Anthropologist
Dan Madigan, Author / Screenwriter
Rubén Hernández-León, Sociologist
Christian Cymet, Lucha Libre archivist
Ulises Jimenez (DJ Spectro), Blogger / Journalist
Marta Turok, Folk Art Specialist
William Nericcio, Film Theorist
Xavier Garza, Author / Artist
Angel Mondragon “Gulliver,” Luchador / Wrestler
Rosa, Sister of Mascarita Sagrada
Mascarita Sagrada, Luchador / Wrestler
Negro Navarro, Luchador / Wrestler
Antonia, Solar’s wife
Solar Jr., Luchador / Wrestler

About the Filmmakers

CARLOS AVILA (Director / Producer) is an award-winning director for film and television. He grew up in the Echo Park neighborhood of Los Angeles to Mexican and Peruvian parents. Carlos received his film training at Loyola Marymount University and UCLA’s Graduate School of Theatre, Film and Television. Carlos made his feature film directing debut with New Line Cinema’s 2000 release, Price of Glory starring Jimmy Smits, Clifton Collins, Jr. and Ron Perlman. This family drama set against the world of amateur and professional boxing was developed at the Sundance Institute’s Director and Writer Labs. Carlos also served as Executive Producer on the film’s groundbreaking soundtrack album that helped introduce Latin rock and hip-hop to a wide audience. In 2001, he was awarded the ALMA (American Latino Media Arts) award for Best Director for his work on this film. Carlos is the creator of Foto-Novelas, a Humanitas Prize-nominated PBS television series comprised of half-hour dramas in the spirit of The Twilight Zone. Foto-Novelas was recently added to the permanent collection of New York’s Museum of Television and Radio. His award-winning short films, Distant Water and La Carpa have screened at numerous film festivals in the United States and worldwide. Carlos directed the pilot to the Sony Television / Telemundo detective series, Reyes y Rey and directed the “Street Money” episode of the long-running CBS series, Cold Case. Tales of Masked Men is Carlos’s first long form documentary. He is a member of the Directors Guild of America.

THOM CALDERON (Co-Producer / Editor) Credited on dozens of films over twenty years, Thom has worked extensively in Hollywood feature film post-production on projects ranging from comedies and action to dramas. Besides a long association with Carlos Avila, he has worked with such directors as John Singleton, Michael Apted, Taylor Hackford, Gregory Nava, and Billy Crystal. As First Assistant Editor, Thom has contributed to big budget Hollywood releases including Captain America, First Avenger, Dragonball: Evolution, Enough and My Family. Most recently, Thom edited Fox International’s Spanish/Argentine co-production, Todos Tenemos un Plan starring Viggo Mortensen.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Take a Virtual Tour of Archaeological Sites via Google Mexico’s Street View

Take a Virtual Tour of Archaeological Sites via Google Mexico’s Street View

Photo: Google's Special Collections Street View

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Cybernauts will be able to take virtual strolls through 30 Mexican archaeological sites using Google Mexico’s Street View platform, Mexican cultural authorities said.

The 360-degree virtual view of these archaeological sites, which include Teotihuacan, Xochicalco, Monte Alban, Chichen Itza, Tulum, Palenque, Tula and Paquime, allows them to be explored down to the last corner.

This is the first time a gallery featuring such sites has been uploaded onto Street View, and the purpose of the project is to encourage cultural tourism, Mexico’s National Anthropology and History Institute, or INAH, said in a communique.

The project, dubbed Special Collections Street View, was presented Thursday in Mexico City with the explanation that in the first stage 30 sites will be on view, but by the end of the year Google Mexico hopes to have 81 sites online.

The app will allow cybernauts to make virtual tours on the Internet thanks to the panoramic photographs of each archaeological site.

By means of the Google Earth and Maps platforms, users can travel inside pre-Columbian cities and their surrounding areas.

In 2011 an alliance was established between INAH and Google Mexico for the international display of the nation’s cultural riches.

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Twin White Lion Cubs Born at Loro Zoo in Puebla, Mexico (VIDEO)

Twin White Lion Cubs Born at Loro Zoo in Puebla, Mexico (VIDEO)

Photo: White lion cubs born in Mexico

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Their chances of survival in the wild are slim. So these white lion cubs are a very welcome arrival at the Loro Zoo in Puebla, Mexico

Vet student Andrea Sumohano says one cub is an introvert while her sister is gregarious.

Andrea Sumohano, vet student, “She wants to climb, wants to be on top, biting, licking. She is very active and eats a lot. The other is more sleepy and calm and gets angry when her sister disturbs her.”

The cubs were removed from their mother, Numbi, who failed to immediately feed them. And they will be hand-reared until they are three months old.

The zoo’s white lions hail from South Africa, where their pale color makes them vulnerable in the wild, says zoo vet, Carlos Gomez Medina. “Remember that the animals depend on their color as a camouflage in the wild to evade being hunted. The white lions can be easily seen and rarely survive in the natural environment.”

White lions are technically extinct outside captivity - the last one spotted in the wild was in South Africa in 1994.

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Rafael Nadal’s Concern is His Health, Not His Rankings

Rafael Nadal’s Concern is His Health, Not His Rankings

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Spain’s Rafael Nadal said he is suffering from a knee ailment known as Hoffa’s syndrome but that he hopes to make a full recovery and is not worried about a further ranking drop after pulling out of the U.S. Open.

The 26-year-old tennis star unveiled the diagnosis in remarks to Efe from his hometown on the island of Mallorca, saying that his current knee injury - which is also known as fat pad impingement and involves pain and swelling around the bottom and under the kneecap - is different from his previous tendon ailments.

The injury forced the world No. 3 to pull out of four tournaments in succession: the London Olympics, two ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events in Toronto and Cincinnati and the U.S. Open.

Because he reached the final of the year’s last Grand Slam event in 2011 and will be replacing those points with nothing, his ranking will almost certainly fall further in September.

But Nadal, whose ranking had already fallen from No. 2 to No. 3 because of an early exit from Wimbledon in late June, said his health is his top priority.

“At this point of my career (the ranking) is not the most important thing,” Nadal, who held the No. 1 spot for just over a 100 weeks in two stints between 2008 and 2011, told Efe.

“Now the most important thing is to make a good recovery and right now my knee is not ready to compete in a Grand Slam; I’m going to try to recover as soon as possible to come back feeling strong, sure that I can compete and train the best that I know how,” the Spaniard said.

The 11-time Grand Slam champion said what he most likes is to be able to push himself to the limit physically and “right now I’m not prepared for that.”

Referring to the Davis Cup semifinals in September, when Spain will host the United States on clay in the northwestern city of Gijon, Nadal said he does not know yet if he will be able to compete and help his country continue its quest for a sixth title in that international team competition.

This week, his uncle and coach, Toni Nadal, said he was optimistic his nephew would be healthy in time for that competition.

The tennis star has not competed since his shock second-round exit from Wimbledon at the hands of unheralded Czech Lukas Rosol, considered one of the biggest upsets in the history of that prestigious tournament.

Nadal said his current injury is not the same as the rotulian tendon ailment he has suffered from in the past. “It’s something different and I think this is good because the tendons are very well recovered compared to how they were three years ago.”

The Spaniard began the summer on a high note by capturing a record seventh French Open title with a victory over then-world No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia in the final.

Nadal, known for his physically demanding style of play and incredible defensive skills, has struggled to stay healthy during his career, having been forced to withdraw from each of the four Grand Slam events due to various injuries.

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Arizona Mayors: Undocumented Students Should Get In-State Tuition Rates

Arizona Mayors: Undocumented Students Should Get In-State Tuition Rates

Photo: Arizona Mayors: Undocumented Students Should Get In-State Tuition Rates

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The mayors of Tucson and Phoenix said Friday that they want young undocumented students who apply for Deferred Action to pay in-state tuition at Arizona community colleges.

The Deferred Action program offers protection against deportation for young people who would benefit from the DREAM Act, which remains stalled in the U.S. Congress.

“I support in-state tuition at our Maricopa Community Colleges for students who have successfully applied for deferred action. It is in economic imperative for our city,” Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton said in a statement.

“Our economic future is dependent on increasing the college attainment rate for our young people. We must invest in our city’s future, and when it comes to education, we need all hands on deck, including community colleges,” he said.

For his part, Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild spoke out against any effort to “displace the young and the promising in our cities.”

“Arizona benefits as a whole if we can find a common-sense solution for DREAMers in legal limbo through no fault of their own,” he said in a joint statement with Stanton.

Current Arizona law obliges undocumented students to pay their tuition at the much higher foreign-student rate in community colleges and public universities, no matter how many years they have been living in the state.

On Wednesday, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer issued an order barring DREAMers who apply for Deferred Action from obtaining driver’s licenses, public benefits or official state IDs.

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JLo, Enrique Iglesias’s Tour Offer Fans 2 Distinct Styles

JLo, Enrique Iglesias’s Tour Offer Fans 2 Distinct Styles

Photo: JLo in L.A.

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Enrique Iglesias and Jennifer Lopez had thousands dancing to their repertoire of hits at a packed Staples Center in Los Angeles, one of the last cities on their summer concert tour.

More natural, more intimate and faithful to his improvised style, the Spanish singer brought several of his fans onstage and even kissed one girl on the mouth as the music of “Hero” was playing, before stepping aside to let the New York-born JLo take the spotlight.

Lopez put on a choreographed show full of visual effects, muscular male dancers and countless costume changes in which she went from less to more, finally bringing everyone to their feet with a festive finale together with the reggaeton duo Wisin & Yandel singing “Follow the Leader.”

Two very different styles which, Iglesias believes, “is what makes the tour so interesting,” as he told a small group of reporters before the concert.

“When you mix things in an unexpected way is when you create this magic,” the Spaniard said, who kissed one of his admirers twice on the mouth, who crazy with emotion hugged him nervously.

This was Enrique Iglesias’ third trip to Los Angeles with his disc “Euphoria” and he sang such numbers as “Tonight”, “I Like How It Feels”, “I Like It” and “Bailamos” (We Dance), while Jennifer Lopez did a review of her all-time hits, from her first album with “If You Have My Love” to the greatest of her latest like “On the Floor.”

Lopez exuded energy and at one point even hurt her knee, not badly though it did bleed a little, but nothing could stop her from going on with the show with songs ranging from “Jenny From The Block” to “Let’s Get Loud,” the latter in a mock-up of a Caribbean cabaret called Babalu.

The almost three-hour concert had the Mexican Frankie J. as supporting artist while in the audience was Colombia’s Juanes, who shared a few minutes with Iglesias backstage after the curtain came down.

The tour hit the road in Montreal on July 14 and will have its final concert on Sept. 2 in Orlando, Florida.

On Friday, Iglesias and Lopez will give their second performance to an Angeleno audience before moving on to Las Vegas for a concert on Saturday.

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Guatemalan Police Officer Arrested For Holding Teen as Sex Slave

Guatemalan Police Officer Arrested For Holding Teen as Sex Slave

Photo: Officer Florian was arrested

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A Guatemalan police officer was arrested on charges of holding a 14-year-old girl as a sex slave for months, authorities said Friday.

Marvin Florian, 40, was taken into custody on Thursday by personnel from the internal affairs unit, the national police said in a statement.

The officer, who is accused of rape and torture, paid off the girl’s mother to keep quiet about the arrangement, according to the statement.

Florian was detained at a police precinct in a poor Guatemala City neighborhood, near the residence where he kept the girl prisoner for a year.

Authorities should investigate the possibility that Florian has been involved in other instances of “sexual slavery,” Alba Trejo, presidential commissioner for crimes against women, told the press.

Minors were the victims in nearly two-thirds of the 318 reports of sexual violence filed with police so far this year, the Guatemalan human rights office said.

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Bus Crash on “The Devil’s Spine” Kills 11, Injures 25 in Mexico

Bus Crash on “The Devil’s Spine” Kills 11, Injures 25 in Mexico

Photo: Scene of the accident

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Eleven people were killed and 25 others injured Friday when a bus ran off the road and fell more than 100 meters (328 feet) in the northwestern Mexican state of Durango, authorities said.

The crash occurred at a spot known as The Devil’s Spine on the highway linking Durango city with the Pacific resort of Mazatlan, the mayor of that municipality, Alejandro Higuera Osuna, told the media.

The Red Cross and the military joined fire rescue personnel at the site of the accident. The injured were taken to several different hospitals in Durango state.

Mexico averages around 24,000 traffic fatalities a year.

Sixteen people were killed and four others injured Aug. 6 in a collision between a van and a tractor-trailer in the northern state of Sonora, while an April 20 bus-truck crash in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz left 43 people dead and 27 injured.

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Economic Uncertainty Halts Brazilian Mining Firm’s $3 Billion Project in Canada

Brazilian mining giant Vale has halted a $3 billion potash project in Canada due to global economic uncertainty, the daily O Estado de S. Paulo reported Friday.

“Certainly it won’t be implemented now,” CEO Murilo Ferreira told the newspaper, noting that the company was considering postponing other projects in Argentina and Guinea if the current global conditions persists.

The potash project in the Canadian prairie province of Saskatchewan, known as Kronau, was to have produced 2.9 million tons of that mineral annually.

O Estado de S. Paulo said Vale also is “reviewing” a similar potash project in the Argentine region of Rio Colorado, where the company is mulling a $5.9 billion investment, an iron-ore project in the West African nation of Guinea that would require an investment outlay of $2.5 billion.

The newspaper noted, however, that the Canadian project is the only one thus far that has been truly “frozen.”

Ferreira, meanwhile, guaranteed that Vale’s massive Serra Sul iron-ore project in the northern Brazilian state of Para remains on course. That project will require investment of $19.5 billion to expand output at the mine, part of the Carajas complex, to 90 million tons annually.

“Serra Sul is an absolute priority. It’s the largest project in the company’s history,” he said.

Vale has consolidated its position this year as Brazil’s leading net exporter, with sales to foreign markets totaling $14.3 billion between January and June.

Vale is the world’s biggest iron-ore exporter and also a large producer of other metals and minerals such as aluminum, manganese, coal, potash, bauxite and phosphate.

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SaturdayAugust 18, 2012