EL PASO — Arnold Escobar leaves his apartment under the hot sun of Odessa, Texas, a desert region abundant in oil nicknamed the Texas Petroplex, drives past oil derricks and pumpjacks, to a remote well site where heavy machinery whirs loudly. He slowly walks along the plant to get to the two-ton blender he operates and starts his work day, a long shift that can last 48 hours. “I feel like my job is an important one,” said Escobar, 24. Escobar is a Senior Equipment Operator for Archer, an oilfield service company that specializes in drilling and well services. One of those services is the process known as hydraulic fracturing, “fracking” for short.
EL PASO — “There is no racism [on the field], but maybe there is a word or gesture that is not correct. The one affected by this should say this is a game and shake hands.”
That is the answer to racism that Sepp Blatter, the president of FIFA, the international governing body of soccer, proposed when interviewed by CNN back in 2011. Not only did he deny that racism exists, which is not the only time he (or FIFA) has denied racism, he proposed a preposterous solution to battle racism when two high profile cases of racism were going on in England. Barcelona star Daniel Alves, who is Brazilian, along with his teammate and compatriot Neymar Santos have decided to not battle racism with something as simplistic as a handshake. They have taken to social media to spread their message, “Somos todos macacos”, Portuguese for “We are all monkeys.”
It started during a Spanish league game, when Barcelona FC were playing a game in Villarreal and in the 77th minute a fan from Villarreal threw a banana at Alves, who was about to take a corner kick.
EL PASO — In the Capoeira Quinto Sol studio in Central El Paso, dozens of people recently practiced gingas, aús, and escorpião kicks to the beat of an exotic wooden bow-shaped instrument called berimbaus and a drum called atabaque. The dancers were preparing for the worldwide Brazilian batizado celebration. Capoeira is a type of martial art with roots in Brazil and Africa and was developed by the African slaves that were brought to Brazil in the 16th century to work the sugarcane plantations by the Portuguese. Because Capoeira uses elements of dancing in its execution, the African slaves used the ruse of dance to avoid being punished by their Portuguese masters for practicing self-defense methods. Although Capoeira was, at first, developed for self-defense, it can also be practiced for many different reasons.
EL PASO — Aleseems like a typical five-year-old girl talking with her dolls, attending pre-k, and playing with all her classmates, calling each one of them her best friend. As typical as she may seem, there is something about her that no one would discern by looking or even by talking to her. Ale, who shall remain anonymous at the request of her guardian, suffers from pediatric depression. “It’s because sometimes I feel sad and mad. Sometimes I don’t feel happy,”said Ale, in a soft, hushed voice.