In a small gymnasium in Kingsport, Tennessee, more than 100 Mexican nationals stand in line or sit patiently in chairs, waiting to be ushered to a long bank of cameras, printers and office equipment near the back of the room.
There, employees of the Mexican consulate in Atlanta wait behind a long line of tables, taking photos of and speaking to the visitors who need a passport, consular ID — matricula — or other documents.
As a parent, do you think about obesity? Do you worry about your children developing this condition? If so, you and your children can participate in a study to learn more about obesity and metabolic syndrome and how to prevent these conditions.
Obesity, or being overweight, is an epidemic in the U.S., says Dr. Arsham Alamian, a professor of epidemiology at East Tennnessee State University. But this problem is more serious among the Hispanic population.
His smile was inviting, and the red apples José Vázquez’s daughter placed on the table were starting to turn the color of his warm, brown complexion. Vázquez, 77, laughed as he tried to remember the when he had crossed the border to America to work in the hot sun. “A long time ago” is finally what was settled on.
The worst thing he could remember about his time in the Bracero Program was the food — especially the oatmeal. Oatmeal was nothing like Vázquez was used to eating in Mexico. He said he would look down at it and wonder what this mush was the Americans were trying to feed him.
“Mom, I don’t want to go back to my dad because he wants to have control of our lives,” a daughter tells her mother.
“I know, but I love him, and you know he loves us,” she replies.
“Then why does he hurt us?” her daughter asks. “I know you’re scared, I am too. We don’t have to be.”
This mother was a victim of domestic violence and didn’t feel she could leave her husband. Her eldest daughter took action, moving herself and her mother to a shelter so they could have a better life.
In cases of domestic violence, victims often feel they have no other option than to endure the cruelties inflicted on them by their spouse or family. Sometimes, they fear for their life or the lives of their children and sometimes they fear deportment.
On the third Friday of each month, several Latino men living in Johnson City and Kingsport, Tennessee, get together to cook meals that remind them of their past.
Although the group has no official name, the men have called themselves “The Machos” and have dubbed their meetings “Cena de Machos.” Antonio Rusiñol, one of the members, says it is not a serious title, since the term “macho” has negative connotations in the United States as well as in his home country of Argentina.
“We just jokingly called it ‘Cena de Machos,’” Rusiñol said. “[It means] more like ‘dinner with the guys.’”