Silenced memories gain a voice in the Memorias del Silencio book series

EL PASO — For longer than we can remember immigration to the United States has come mainly from south of the border and a silent majority of these migrants end up working as farm workers. They usually never regain a voice to share their experiences and thoughts, but in 2005, a book entitled Memorias del Silencio published some of their stories. Since that time, six volumes of their tales have appeared and a seventh is scheduled for publication this fall. Their objective is to develop new educational opportunities for farm workers and to bring awareness of their condition to the United States. Memorias del Silencio is a collaboration between BorderSenses, a non-profit literary organization and the El Paso Community College’s Community Education Program (CEP).

The controversy over El Paso’s scenic Trans Mountain Corridor continues

EL PASO — Driving along Trans Mountain Road it is possible to enjoy beautiful views of the natural scenery that surrounds the area, and a panoramic view of the city of El Paso. According to The Franklin Mountains Wilderness Coalition, this beautiful area could end up looking like the two gateways near Cielo Vista Mall: big signs promoting gas stations, and business along the road blocking the beautiful natural view. Although the El Paso City Council approved a plan to enlarge the road Tuesday, the Franklin Mountains Wilderness Coalition submitted a second petition asking the Council to reconsider the project. Their goal at first was to get 1,000 signatures according to a blog by Coalition member Jim Tolbert. “I know we were close or over 1,900 signatures,” he said.

Cigarette smoking harms your health and the environment

EL PASO, Texas —When people talk about the dangers of smoking, they are usually focused on the health risks, and hardly on the damage that cigarette pollution does on the environment. People walking the streets of El Paso can see the beautiful Franklin mountains that rise from the city and the brilliant red sunsets. As they appreciate the unique environment, they also can see cigarette butts littering the sidewalks. Cigarette butts are all over the UTEP campus, especially on the floor next to the cigarette ashtrays. Dr. Elizabeth Walsh, a biology professor and a member of an environmental advocacy group,  said she usually see smokers outside the biology building flip their cigarette butts right next to ashtray.

The rights of animals in captivity

EL PASO, Texas — According to between 2002 and early 2003, in a lab hired by cat and dog food producers, it was discovered that dogs had gone crazy because of the terrible conditions they were living in. Small steel cages and cement cells, sick dogs and cats did not have any veterinary attention and were left suffering. In this webpage one can see different videos of these animals being tortured. After a complaint by PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) to The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Iams reported that about 70 percent of the animals used for testing now reside with loving families. According to Dr. Elizabeth Walsh, a professor in the UTEP Biological Science Department it is possible to work in biology without using animals.