Border Film Week Kicks Off At USD
Films that give new insights into the San Diego Mexico border region will be screened this weekend at the University of San Diego. They are part of the annual Porter film Festival. The movies and shorts trace the sometimes tragic history of Latinos in the US. The dreams of migrants trying to come North and people on both sides of the border to fight ruthless drug cartels. Joining me is Ev Meade . Hello, ring. Ask for having me. And Ken Gonzales-Day . Can, welcome to the program. Thank you. What kind of films are you looking for when you look to assemble the lineup of the border film Festival? In part we are looking for films that showcase how the medium of film can teach us about the things that we study at the transborder Institute in unique ways. We are looking for are these films looking at migration that is so contentious? But we want to see in a different way that tells a very human story about it. We wanted to provoke our worst senses and something that provides more democratic space we're talking about it. We are looking for things that culture at -- cultivate literal -- cultural literacy. We can take pictures like never before and send them around the world. That doesn't mean that we use that technology for the betterment of society or that we have a critical awareness of what we are doing with it. We try to pick films and filmmakers to see the possibility of the medium and engage with it. Tell us about the festival itself. When did it start? It has been going for about 10 years now. We have expanded from just showing documentary films to showing films and inviting direct heirs and experts to comment on them now we're actually doing workshops so students from around San Diego can participate in a workshop with one of the directors. We are showing a film produced by students tonight at 6:00 which is a new thing for us. That will be really great. We try to show a mix of films like cartel land that we are showing tomorrow night. We also tried to do newer and smaller projects that these folks might not have a chance to see otherwise. Is a lot of interest within the filmmaking industry to make films about this complex border region of hours? Oyez. I think the border has always been a creative space. It brings together different cultures and different media in a way that almost no other space does. It also brings up the justice issues and the social conflicts in unique and different ways. It's one of those things where we have a legal, cultural, apparatus that sees the border. But when you get into people's lives, their people who lived back-and-forth across the borders in different ways. Can, me go to you. Your short -- film is a short. Tell us about a. Basically it's a recreation of the 1920s lynching of the Latino in Northern California actually. The spread of the continuing project of years concentrating of the history of lynching in the West, which is a subject that is not very well known, is it? That is correct. I basically researched and documented over 354 cases of lynching in the state of California. If you look at the text by Tuskegee Institute, the report about 25 to 50 cases. It is seven times the known number. That your interest in this topic come about? Back initially I was looking to write on portraiture of Latinos in California. I was looking at doing 1850 and 1900 is there had been so few publications on that period. As I was going through that, I keep coming across these images that would be a be a beautiful portrait of the Latino in a three-piece suit, and someone had written on the back last man hanged in Los Angeles. Was that vigilante justice, was that racial violence? What was that? Becca McGowan on the question about how borders and differences between cultures were contentious back then and continue to be now. Did you find that indeed Latinos were often the target of lynching's? That's correct. They are ready 4% of all cases in California. -- 44% of all cases in California. This is identical to the national caseloads. If we believe that race is a factor elsewhere in the United States, then we also have to recognize that that is a factor here in California. One of the feature films to be screening has to do with the story of a group of Mexican immigrant mothers during the late 60s, early 70s in Los Angeles. Tell us about "No Más Bebés" That is a famous story about a lawsuit in LA County brought by 10 Mexican immigrant women who believe they were forcibly sterilized. But it opens the door on a wider set of practices for sterilization in the state of California. 20,000 people were sterilized between 1909 and 1979. This gets into the human side of the story and the ways in which things like public health, environmentalism, things we place a lot of value on have a dark history of racism in the United States. When we talk about what's good for the majority, it's all falling -- often things that enact violence on a minority. It's a very powerful film. I think it will get us going tonight. We have the director coming so people want to come to her and ask her questions about it, she is really well-informed. And we should have a lively discussion after the film. Can you give us an overview of the other films to be shown? Terminates feature is cartel land it's a documentary.[ Indiscernible ] It's an amazing and at times even hard to watch unvarnished portrait of drug violence in Mexico. It's a really good one. It's one of those films I have to say I wouldn't talk about the was like immigration judges, people working policy questions. I recommend it highly. We have another terrific film produced in Mexico on Thursday that tell us about assistance and hot meals served to the migrant children writing of those trains that we talk so much about. It's a small intervention, but if I told you it is but women who give tortillas, it doesn't sound like much. But in the middle of this dangerous journey a group of people trying to figure out something they can do. They were volunteers out of empathy and the goodness of their heart. It's amazing. It gives us a very different view. Also have a film coming up about people who have done deported in the US who find themselves in the US notion -- across the border waiting for comes next. Hotel de Paso Airs on Thursday. The hotel was shot down in the government of Mexicali like the government of Tijuana has cracked down on a lot of the providers for the homeless, many of whom have been deported. This is a great retrospective look by people to come up with the citizens based project for helping people who have been deported. It's one that was shut down by the government. Nothing has replaced it. It's a powerful story that gives us a different view on the immigration issue. 10, in investigating your film "run up", do you think the explanation for that shows why we have racial tensions and violence? Does it continue until today the roots of that? Yes. That is precisely why I wanted to tell the story. Contemporary events when I started were so heated, it was hard to take a stand back. Looking back at history and seeing that it parallel so much of our own history, in this particular case it was off-duty police officers that are responsible for the killings. We call it vigilante isn't because we don't know the proper term. The proper term would be coolies -- police killing. These are two different histories, please violence and border racers came up and allows us to rethink our histories. Recently the big event was the Pope's visit to war as. Do you think the Pope's message can bring any real change to border issues? That question. Many of us hope so, but I am personally pessimistic. He is a great messenger. But the articulation of the message to the lower level hasn't really happened. The upshot of what he has talked about mobilizing a Catholic community has already happened at the level of civil society. We work with it the Trans-Border Institute, we work with local activists, civil servants, and we see a whole movement coming up with different solutions. We hope that maybe this is something that will inspire greater participation. However it's not quite yet materialized. Border. Both against this afternoon and it runs through Thursday. They are fit filmed at the Kroc Institute of peace and justice. I have been speaking with Ken Gonzales-Day , and Ev Meade . Thank you both. Thank you very much Maureen.
10th Annual Border Film Week
When: Feb. 23-25
Where: Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice Theatre
Free and open to the public. RSVP here.
Films about border culture, immigration and drug violence will be featured during the 10th annual Border Film Week at the University of San Diego.
Kicking off the event Tuesday is the short film "Run Up," which tells the story of the lynching of a Latino man in Northern California in 1920.