5 important points from the Spanish-language response to Trump's address.

Astrid Silva's own future hangs in the balance.

In President Donald Trump's first address to a joint session of Congress, he doubled down on many of his hard-line promises on immigration.

In the hourlong address, the president discussed the creation of a southern border wall and boasted about his administration's revved-up approach to deporting undocumented immigrants. He unveiled plans for a new Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE) office and brought with him as guests people who lost family members to violence committed by undocumented immigrants.

Though many have praised Trump's more presidential tone of voice, the policies laid out in his speech are the same ones he's touted since the start of his campaign. As Bloomberg's Joshua Green reported, a senior White House official described Trump's speech as "nationalism with an indoor voice."


Trump delivering his first address to a joint session of Congress. Photo by Jim Lo Scalzo/AFP/Getty Images.

It's Trump's harsh and demonizing stance on immigration that made Astrid Silva's Spanish-language response to Trump's address — delivered on behalf of the Democratic party — so important.

Silva was brought to the United States at age 4. A beneficiary of President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) executive order that allows undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age to stay as long as they meet certain criteria, Silva's own immigration status remains up in the air under Trump. She, like more than 750,000 other DACA recipients, faces an uncertain future that includes the possibility of being deported back to a country she's never known.

Silva speaking at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Photo by Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images.

On Tuesday night, Silva pushed back on Trump's rhetoric, making the case for immigrants like herself:

1. We can't let Trump divide us with incendiary language.

"The United States is not a country guided by hatred, fear and division as [Trump] makes it look like," Silva argued in a version of her speech translated to English by the The Washington Post. "Our country is guided by respect, hard work, sacrifice, opportunities and hope. In this country, there is no place for discrimination, racial prejudice or persecution."

Silva speaks at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images.

Silva called Trump's speech "divisive," saying, "its goal is to cause fear and terror in communities across the country," and she argues that those goals are at odds with American values.

2. Nor should we be spending billions of dollars building walls and funding deportation forces.

"He is spending resources to transform working families into targets for deportation," said Silva. "He wants to spend thousands of millions of dollars to build an unnecessary wall. And he is seeking ways to deny entry to our Muslim brothers and sisters."

Silva introduces Obama during a November 2014 speech on immigration. Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images.

In February, Reuters reported that Trump's border wall will cost an estimated $21.6 billion. Trump also promised to hire 10,000 additional Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers and 5,000 Border Patrol agents. The fact remains, however, that the number of people trying to cross the U.S. border illegally is at a near-40-year low. Putting resources into ICE, Border Patrol, and an expensive wall seems unwarranted.

3. The answer to undocumented immigration — which is an issue that needs to be addressed — is comprehensive immigration reform, not mass deportations.

"Instead of separating families, President Trump should pass a sweeping reform that would honor this country’s tradition of welcoming immigrants," said Silva. "Instead of closing the door on Muslims and insulting countries around the world, President Trump should work with our allies to fight and defeat ISIS and other terrorist groups and seek peace."

Silva speaks at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Photo by Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images.

4. We need to take action on climate change for the sake of the world.

"We Latinos suffer from asthma more than other groups. The condition of the environment is key for our well-being. Instead of repealing the health care law, which gave health insurance to millions of Latinos, Trump and the Republicans should improve it so that the program can cover more people and be less expensive."

Obama hugs Silva after mentioning her by name in a November 2014 speech. Photo by Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images.

Whether you're in the U.S. or anywhere else on Earth, climate change will affect us all. That's why no matter Trump's action on immigration, it's important that he does something about climate change, something he's previously called a "hoax."

5. And finally, Silva reiterated, we need to stand up for each other, even when issues don't directly affect us.

"We are living in times of uncertainty, completely outside of the ordinary, in which the administration is constantly questioning the news media and actively tries to destroy its credibility," said Silva. "We can’t allow those actions to become normal. It demands that those of us who understand the risk for women, for the LGBT community, for our environment, for the workers, immigrants, young people and refugees, work together to protect our communities from deportations, violence and discrimination."

Silva speaks at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images.

It's on all of us to side with undocumented immigrants to push for a path to citizenship, to support LGBTQ rights, to combat racism, to fight Islamophobia and anti-Semitism, to ensure access to health care, and to protect our social safety nets. We need to show up for one another.

Immigrants make America great. Silva is living proof of that.

"We immigrants and refugees are the soul and the promise of this country and we are not alone," she said.

You can watch her response below in Spanish or read the English translation here.

More
Youtube

Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

Cities

The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

Most Shared
via EarthFix / Flickr

What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

Planet

The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

Keep Reading Show less
Family