What's it like to go to school and worry about being deported? An Ivy Leaguer explains.

"Administration! Come out!" chanted Camila, her voice echoing across the quad outside Brown's University Hall.

Camila was just one of hundreds in a fervent chorus of students, staff, and faculty who walked out of class at Brown University on Nov. 16, 2016, joining a nationwide protest.

Camila, a junior political science major, carried a makeshift sign on a piece of brown cardboard that read, "Yo grito lo que mi familia calla," or "I shout out what my family keeps silent." Together with the gathered crowd, she marched through the crisp autumn air to deliver a list of demands to the university administration.


What did Camila, and the other students around her, want? Among other demands, they wanted a formal declaration that would establish the campus as a sanctuary for undocumented immigrant students.

All photos by Danielle Perelman, used with permission.

Camila took part in the walkout in support of her undocumented peers. But she also participated because she knows new immigration laws could affect her life too.

Camila grew up in Mexico City and has a temporary student visa. Now, at Brown, she's heavily involved in activism and advocacy for marginalized communities. She's especially focused on helping victims of her home country's ongoing drug war. (We're withholding her last name because of the sensitivity of the situation.)

But now, things feel different for her. Donald Trump's election has engendered a new wave of hate and xenophobia across the country, inspired in part by the president-elect's own anti-immigrant stances.

Now Camila says she feels scared to walk home from the library at night. She's afraid of the angry, harassing voices that swarm her every time she logs online. She's worried about what Trump's presidency means for her future, and her friends' futures, especially if the federal government keeps their promise to crack down on immigration.

Brown University isn't the only place where this sanctuary movement has come to a head.

In fact, more than 100 other colleges reportedly held their own walkouts at the same time as this one in cooperation with an immigrant activist organization called Movimiento Cosecha.

By formally declaring itself as a sanctuary, Brown University and other universities like it could protect undocumented students from harsh or unfair targeting by federal authorities. If they lived on a sanctuary campus, undocumented students could continue to pursue their educations with less fear of being turned in for arrest or deportation.

"The university should understand that you cannot study in peace if you're worried about your health or about your legal status in the country, or if you're worried about whether to wear your hijab or not," Camila says.

This kind of sanctuary policy could be meaningful for about 150 people at Brown, including students, faculty, staff, and families who are affiliated with the university in some way.

That's still a fairly small undocumented population in the grand scheme of things, but it'd be a particularly powerful statement to have an Ivy League school with a reputation for academic progress and bright alumni leaders spearheading this kind of movement.

Which brings us to another good question: Why wouldn't the school agree to these measures? Well, sanctuary cities are already reportedly being threatened with a loss of federal funding, and campuses that declare themselves as immigrant sanctuaries might be placing themselves at a similar risk. One spokesperson for Brown has also indicated that some aspects of the sanctuary request would fall outside the school's legal jurisdiction.

This march is just one small part of a bigger movement all over the country to build safe places following Trump's election.

For an immigrant student like Camila, this matters both personally and professionally. While she is fortunate enough to be attending Brown on scholarship with the assistance of a student visa, that paperwork only offers her temporary protection. But a sanctuary title would allow her to chase her ambitious dreams with less fear.

"[I want to be] someone who can connect with marginalized communities but also kind of have the human capital to talk to government people as well, and just creating those bridges," she said.

To do this, she'll need to build that network of connections and secure a work visa to stay in the United States after college. With current rules in place, it'll be hard, but not impossible, to achieve these goals. But she worries that in Trump's America, her ambitions will be impossible.

"Honestly one of the reasons I came here was just to feel safe," she said, referring to the work she's already done as an advocate against the drug war that has left her targeted in her home country.

"I could go back but it's really hard to find a community. Once I did here, it was the right place, and I want to stay now. And I think it's legitimate."

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