Ixar, a slight, gangling teenager, nervously fidgeted in his chair as Judge Michael Baird stared him down. Babies' cries could be heard echoing through the halls, but it did not break the formal tension within the courtroom. Ixar's eyes flashed between the translator and Baird. He had come a long ... More >>
Why Central American kids are flooding Texas, and what it means in Dallas.
For the last month, Dallas has been buzzing with plans to temporarily shelter thousands of unaccompanied immigrant children. Some 60,000 kids are expected to flow into the United States this year, and Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins' hotly debated plan would have provided temporary relief for stres ... More >>
Local protests have increased in recent weeks against the expected influx of thousands of unaccompanied Central American children, part of an unprecedented surge of kids fleeing poverty and violence in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. As resources are stretched at the border, at Lackland Air For ... More >>
Governor Rick Perry's sending the National Guard to the border may not be the best idea. Sending soldiers to perform law enforcement functions usually doesn't end well. That being said, at least there's a certain logic to it. Perry perceives the influx of undocumented kids crossing the border as a s ... More >>
With Central American kids streaming across Texas' border and nothing but partisan posturing on the horizon, Dallas County, under the leadership of County Judge Clay Jenkins and in partnership with the feds, is preparing to shelter thousands of unaccompanied minors from Honduras, El Salvador and Gua ... More >>
It's an oft-repeated pattern in families of diverse nationalities and cultures: A family member goes to the United States to work and person sends money back to relatives in their home country. Repeat until further notice. This is a way of life that could soon come to a screeching halt, or at lea ... More >>
Houston-area House member Steve Stockman never fails to make Unfair Park grateful it's based in DFW rather than anywhere near the congressman's Bayou City fiefdom. The guy has suggested arming infants , walked out of one State of the Union address and invited Ted Nugent to another. He's also raised ... More >>
In this week's Dallas Observer we profile 20 of the metro area's most interesting characters, with new portraits of each from local photographer Can Turk. See the entire Dallas Observer People Issue here. October 2011. Luis Chamagua woke up, showered, ate cereal and headed for school. Typical morni ... More >>
A few months ago, just south of the Texas-Mexico border, a 17-year-old girl was cautiously making her way to the Rio Grande river and the American desert beyond. In her arms she carried her 1-year-old daughter. The two made it across, but, like most of the South American women and children flooding ... More >>
Pupusas are the unsung heroes of Latin cuisine. Their crisped exteriors may not entice like a taco filled with pork, pineapple, and cilantro, but this humble exterior belies a rich and meaty filling that is nothing short of magical. Corn masa is shaped into a pocket, filled with meats, cheese, and o ... More >>
America's number one source of minor heart palpitations just got a little more expensive. Food manufacturer J.M. Smucker recently announced a 9-percent price increase or Dunkin Donuts and Folgers (the bestselling brand in the U.S.) coffees. Thanks to stockpiles of Arabica, Smucker has been able to ... More >>
To say that Mexican food in Texas is in a period of transformation is a serious understatement. Tex-Mex restaurants that were inspired much more by Tejanos in Texas may have once been more popular than traditional interior Mexican dishes, but chefs like Nico Sanchez at Meso Maya and Abraham Salum of ... More >>
As the Division Director of Immigration and Legal Services for Catholic Charities of Dallas, Vanna Slaughter has long received email updates whenever young migrants arrive alone in the Dallas area. For some time, she says, she's received around 250 of these cases in a given month -- already a large ... More >>
Dallas immigration judge Dietrich Sims was notoriously tough on the most vulnerable immigrants. Then they sent him the kids.
Favian LaTorre wasn't too keen on paying child support, so the Dallas ISD police sergeant made his former lover an offer. Instead of forking over a specified portion of his $46,000 salary every month, he would hire a full-time, live-in nanny to help raise their young child. The child's mother, Glor ... More >>
Recently in town performing with The Monkees, Michael Nesmith is much, much more than just the guitarist for a '60s pop band. Over his lengthy career, Nesmith has worked as a producer, novelist, and actor and is often cited as the person responsible for creating music video. Via email and in antici ... More >>
Former barista Liz Goulding drinks coffee around Dallas so her head doesn't hurt and so she can help keep yours from hurting, too. Got a place to suggest? Leave it in the comments. I have a confession: I've been pretending that Ascension doesn't exist. When I decide it's time to put on real pants a ... More >>
It's not easy being gay in El Salvador, which, in addition to being the second most violent place on earth, is not particularly hospitable to LGBT citizens. A 2010 report presented to the United Nations by several human rights groups described a number of grisly murders. In one case, the bodies of t ... More >>
Pearl Cup Coffee in Richardson at II Creeks shopping center is now open (2701 Custer Parkway, Ste. 917). This is the third spot for one of Dallas' favorite locally owned coffee shops; other locations are the original at 1900 Henderson Ave. and 750 N. Paul Street downtown. Tuesday was their first d ... More >>
David Horowitz has made taunting college students a spectator sport. Sometimes he's actually right.
In March, with the U.S. playing El Salvador for a spot in the London Olympics, Brek Shea coughed up the ball late in the game, setting up a game-tying goal that cost his team a trip to London. He wasn't called back up to the national team, marking, as Greg detailed, the nadir of his young career. T ... More >>
*If there's even such a thing.
In October we noted a report from Pittsburgh-based Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights that said the Dallas Cowboys are having team-branded clothing made in "gross sweatshop conditions at the Style Avenue factory in El Salvador" -- which Cowboys Merchandise Ltd. chief operating officer Bill ... More >>
Jonah Hill charms as a self-aware loafer.
On Wednesday, the Pittsburgh-based Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights issued a report titled Dressing Babies in Sweatshop Clothing: Dallas Cowboys, Ohio State and a Creepy Business, in which it alleged that the Cowboys are having team-branded clothing made in "gross sweatshop conditions ... More >>
Photo by Leslie MinoraAfter 26 years as a mechanic at Pilgrim's Pride, today is the last day of work for Victor Recindos and his 1,000 coworkers.Victor Recindos has aged 26 years by the calendar's count since first becoming a mechanic at Pilgrim's Pride chicken processing plant just south of ... More >>
Open wide and say yum. No, really -- it's good.For three months, I have leaned on (read: annoyed) the owners of Taqueria Pedrito, a family run taqueria in East Dallas, to purchase cow heads from the packaging plant in Weatherford that supplies their beef. So you can understand my excitement w ... More >>
Michoacan PupusaJust over a mile from the airport outside San Salvador you will find a tiny village ripe with what many would call the national snack of the Central American country, El Salvador--the pupusa. In the village of Olocuilta little shops sell these masa harina cakes, which are filled ... More >>
This just in from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement: The agency, along with the Office of Homeland Security Investigations National Gang Unit and an alphabet's soup worth of local law enforcement agencies, spent the last five days sweeping Dallas-Fort Worth for gang members and their a ... More >>
Sara KerensOnce known as a haven for large-chain dining, Carrollton is slowly changing, as more and more immigrants move there from Asia, and Central and South America. Drive down East Belt Line Road or Josey Lane and you will see taquerias aplenty, plus homey establishments that draw culinary i ... More >>
On The Range is a weekly exploration of the history and lore of Texas menu items.If Cole Porter, world-famous composer, musical philosopher and inspiration for the Jonas Brothers...yeah, right...were alive today and writing about food instead of music, he might term El Salvador's love affair with p ... More >>
North Texas' booming Guatemalan population struggles without a consulate
So Mayor Laura was right, and she was wrong. Last September, as Hurricane Katrina evacuees were streaming into Dallas by the tens of thousands, the mayor fretted even before their arrival about the crimewave she expected to accompany our new citizens. So too did police chief David Kunkel, who used t ... More >>
Our critics weigh in on local theater
At WaterTower Theatre, Living Out shines; The Nerd's life of leisure suits the Pocket
Cameron Park, Texas, is the poorest town in the U.S.A. But its residents say life has never been better.
Three shows use the power of language to explore love, death and difference
Missing Molly, Discordant Sound, A Sorry Man
Is the Clash still the only band that matters?
Hurricane Mitch left thousands homeless, jobless, and alone, forcing them to cross the border in search for new lives in America. And those were just the kids.
Dallas' Undermain Theatre flies its production of Sarajevo to a Balkan state