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7 families who lost loved ones that Trump also should have invited to his joint address.

As controversy over Donald Trump's immigration executive order continues to swirl, in his first-ever joint speech to Congress, he addressed his personal guests Jamiel Shaw, Jessica Davis, and Susan Oliver — whose family members were killed by undocumented immigrants.

Photo by Jim Lo Scalzo/Getty Images

"To any in Congress who do not believe we should enforce our laws, I would ask you this one question," the president said. "What would you say to the American family that loses their jobs, their income, or their loved one because America refused to uphold its laws and defend its borders?"


It's impossible not to feel for those who have lost loved ones to senseless acts of violence.

The urge to make meaning and place blame in the wake of a tragedy is powerful. But for the president to exploit these families by grouping them together and focusing on the perpetrators' immigration status sends a dishonest and destructive message: that undocumented immigrants are inherently violent, criminal, and not to be trusted.

We can litigate this until we're blue in the face, but it won't change the fact that the president's message is not just damaging — it's wrong. Studies show that immigrants commit crimes at lower rates than U.S. citizens, and, more anecdotally, that the same goes for undocumented immigrants.

Not only are immigrant families touched by violent crime just as often as the families of those who are born in the U.S. — many are specifically targeted because of their immigrant status.

Srinivas Kuchibholta. Photo by Mahesh Kumar A/AP.

If President Trump truly wanted to use his first speech to Congress to honor families whose loved ones have died senselessly and tragically, he could have also invited...

1. The family of Srinivas Kuchibholta, an engineer from India who was murdered at a bar in Olathe, Kansas, last week.

His assailant allegedly yelled, "Get out of my country" before fatally shooting him.

Srinivas Kuchibholta's wife Sunayana Dumala. Photo by Orlin Wagner/AP.

2. The family of Luis Ramirez, an undocumented immigrant from Mexico who was beaten to death by four high school football players in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, in 2008.

One purportedly told the 25-year-old factory and field worker to, "Tell your Mexican friends to get the fuck out of Shenandoah."

Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. Photo by Rick Smith/AP.

3. The family of Won-Joon Yoon, a Korean graduate student, who was murdered by a white supremacist while pursuing a computer science degree at Indiana University.

Won-Joon Yoon's parents. Photo by Michael Conroy/AP.

4. The family and friends of Hussain Saeed Alnahdi, a Saudi student at the University of Wisconsin-Stout, who died from his injuries after being attacked during a night out in October.

Students at UW-Stout hold a vigil for Hussain Saeed Alnahdi. Photo by Marisa Wojcik/The Eau Claire Leader-Telegram via AP.

5. The family of Marcelo Lucero, an Ecuadorian immigrant killed by teenagers in Patchogue, New York, in 2008, as part of a game called "beaner-hopping," where the group would hunt and beat local Latino men.

Photo by Craig Ruttle/AP.

6. The family of Arlindo Goncalves, a 72-year-old, homeless, Cape Verdean immigrant, who was killed by a self-proclaimed neo-Nazi, in 2009.

Anabela Fernandes, niece of Arlindo Goncalves. Photo by Tim Correira/The Enterprise.

7. The family of Joseph Ileto, a postal worker originally from the Philippines, who was killed by a white supremacist during a shooting spree at a Jewish Community Center.

Photo by Randi Lynn Beach/AP.

For President Trump to highlight the few heinous crimes committed by a vanishingly small number of undocumented immigrants while ignoring the violence committed against the broader immigrant community is shameful.

"As we speak tonight, we are removing gang members, drug dealers, and criminals that threaten our communities and prey on our very innocent citizens," President Trump declared. He went on to propose a new office — Victims of Immigration Crime Enforcement — to serve victims of violent crime committed by undocumented immigrants.

But immigrants, like the rest of us, aren't, for the most part, "gang members, drug dealers, and criminals" — they're just people. And just like U.S.-born citizens, a tiny fraction of them do horrible, unforgivable thingsthough, it bears repeating, at a lower rate than those who were born here.

Most immigrants go shopping, play basketball, go to work, fall in love, get bored, drink whisky, watch TV, hug their kids, and generally behave the way most normal human beings behave.

Relatives of Srinivas Kuchibholta attend his funeral. Photo by Mahesh Kumar A/AP.

Immigrants who commit deadly crimes don't represent the vast majority who just want to live their lives and raise their families in peace and security, and not be hassled — or worse — for it.

It's perfectly reasonable to argue for stronger enforcement of immigration laws — in a humane, fact-based manner.

It's not OK to implicitly label all undocumented immigrants "killers" and "thugs."

If President Trump truly wants to make America great, he can start by acknowledging that whether or not we were born here or came here with the right paperwork in order, we're all human. And we all deserve to feel safe.

Image from Pixabay.

Under the sea...

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The Wilderness Society


You're probably familiar with the literary classic "Moby-Dick."

But in case you're not, here's the gist: Moby Dick is the name of a huge albino sperm whale.

(Get your mind outta the gutter.)

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More parents are taking 'teen-ternity leave' from work to support their teenage kids

Parenting through the teen years takes a lot more time and energy than people expect.

Photo by Eye for Ebony on Unsplash

Raising kids through adolescence is not for the faint of heart.

When you have a baby, it's expected that you'll take some maternity or paternity leave from work. When you have a teen, it's expected that you'll be in the peak of your career, but some parents are finding the need to take a "teen-ternity leave" from work to support their adolescent kids.

It's a flip from what has become the traditional trajectory for modern parents. Despite the fact that the U.S. is the only developed nation in the world to not have mandated paid parental leave, most parents take at least some time off when a baby is born to recover physically from pregnancy and birth and to settle into life with their tiny new human. Many parents then opt to have one parent stay home full-time during their children's younger years, as full-time childcare is often cost prohibitive, and raising babies and toddlers requires an enormous amount of time, attention and energy.

Parents often return to work when their kids are in school full-time, and many feel a bit of a respite from the relentlessness of parenting as their kids become more independent and capable of doing things on their own. It's not that older kids don't need their parents, but their needs are different. Physical parenting gives way to more complex emotional parenting as kids get older, and for a while, those emotional challenges are somewhat simple.

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Tony Trapani discovers a letter his wife hid from him since 1959.

Tony Trapani and his wife were married for 50 years despite the heartache of being unable to have children. "She wanted children,” Trapani told Fox 17. "She couldn't have any. She tried and tried." Even though they endured the pain of infertility, Tony's love for his wife never wavered and he cherished every moment they spent together.

After his wife passed away when Tony was 81 years old, he undertook the heartbreaking task of sorting out all of her belongings. That’s when he stumbled upon a carefully concealed letter in a filing cabinet hidden for over half a century.

The letter was addressed to Tony and dated March 1959, but this was the first time he had seen it. His wife must have opened it, read it and hid it from him. The letter came from Shirley Childress, a woman Tony had once been close with before his marriage. She reached out, reminiscing about their past and revealing a secret that would change Tony's world forever.

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People are debating the merits of a 24-hour daycare and the discussion is eye-opening

There seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about the need for this.

StableDiffusion

Are 24-hour daycares a good idea?

Millions of American parents utilize daycare centers while they work. Since most people work during the day, most daycare center hours fall somewhere between 7:30am and 5:30pm. It's rare to find a daycare that's open after normal working hours.

But one "24-hour" daycare in Houston captured people's attention—and sparked a debate—when a mom posted about it on TikTok.

Adventure Kids Playcare in Houston isn't actually open 24 hours a day but it does offer childcare up to 10:00pm during the week and until midnight on Friday and Saturday nights. In the video, the mom drops her daughter off and we hear the employee tell her they close at midnight. The mom later says she picked her daughter up at 11:55pm.

Reactions to the video rand the gamut from "24-hour daycares are a brilliant idea for parents who work odd shifts" to "Moms shouldn't be leaving their kids at a daycare late at night just so they can go out," sparking a fascinating and eye-opening discussion.

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A dad is looking for a little more respect at home.

The title of dad or father is a sweet and respectful way to acknowledge a child's special bond with their male parent. It signifies love and respect and shows appreciation for his role in their life. But the title works both ways. The term dad reminds fathers of the responsibility to guide and protect their kids.

The importance of the unique role dads play in their kids’ lives is why a father named Steve was upset with his wife for repeatedly using his first name when referring to him with their preteen children.

The father vented about the situation and asked if he was wrong in a Reddit post with over 10,000 responses.

“My wife recently started using my first name when referring to me to our preteen kids, as in ‘Steve's gonna pick you up from school tomorrow,’” the father wrote on Reddit’s AITA forum. “I asked her not to when I first heard it, saying I don't really like when you use my first name to the kids. Can you say ‘your dad’ or ‘dad’?”

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Husband's portrait of wife is so bad that she nearly stops breathing

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder but what if what your eyes behold is objectively...not good? In what appears to be a creative way to spend quality time together for a married couple, things go hilariously wrong. Ted Slaughter, uploaded a video to his TikTok page of an activity he and his wife did together.

Slaughter's wife seems to be holding the phone so you can clearly see what appears to be a painting of Slaughter, who is sitting at the other end of the table in front of an easel. The text overlay on the video says, "husband and wife paint portraits of each other (gone wrong). But what could possibly be wrong, sure his wife's attempt isn't art gallery ready just yet but it's not bad.

Based on the critiques the man had of his wife's painting, surely his looks much closer to professional level work. Right?...Right?

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