Selena Gomez opened up about her family's migration story. "It is a human issue."

In 2017, there were 11.6 immigrants from Mexico living in the United States, 43% of which were undocumented. In that same year, Mexicans were deported 192,334 times. The people who make up the statistic are often reduced to just that, numbers on a piece of paper. Selena Gomez, the grand-daughter of immigrants from Mexico, used her position to draw attention to the people impacted by policy in an op-ed for Time. "In the 1970s, my aunt crossed the border from Mexico to the United States hidden in the back of a truck. My grandparents followed, and my father was born in Texas soon after," she wrote. "I never forget how blessed I am to have been born in this country thanks to my family and the grace of circumstance. But when I read the news headlines or see debates about immigration rage on social media, I feel afraid for those in similar situations. I feel afraid for my country."


The issue has been politicized, which means it's become polarizing. Gomez argued immigration shouldn't be reduced to Right or Left talking points. It should be about people. "[I]mmigration goes beyond politics and headlines. It is a human issue, affecting real people, dismantling real lives. How we deal with it speaks to our humanity, our empathy, our compassion. How we treat our fellow human beings defines who we are," Gomez wrote.

RELATED: Watch Selena Gomez dedicate an award to the friend who saved her life.

Gomez didn't advocate for a specific solution, acknowledging the complexities of the issue. However, she did advocate for one major change – that we listen to those who bear the brunt of the burden. "I understand it's flawed and that we need rules and regulations, but we also have to remember that our country was formed by people who came here from other countries. It's time to listen to the people whose lives are being directly affected by immigration policies. It's time to get to know the individuals whose complex stories have been reduced to basic headlines," she wrote.

Gomez's concerns prompted her to executive produce "Living Undocumented," a docuseries following eight immigrant families who are, as the title suggests, living in this country undocumented. The show, which is available for streaming on Netflix, follows families from different countries with different stories who are all united by the same experience.

RELATED: 19 states are suing over 'cruel, inhumane, and illegal' conditions for detained children

While Gomez acknowledged her fears, she says fear should never hold anyone back. "Fear shouldn't stop us from getting involved and educating ourselves on an issue that affects millions of people in our country. Fear didn't stop my aunt from getting into the back of that truck. And for that, I will always be grateful," she concluded her op-ed.

History is influenced by people, not the other way around. It's about time we start thinking about the actual stories that contribute to our national debates, rather than just the debates themselves. There are faces and names behind the issues.

Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

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Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon