Best Of The Border (1/6-1/11)
At about 80 years old, Brijida Mata Luna only recently applied for a birth certificate. She never finished school and doesn't know how to read or write.
Mónica Ortiz Uribe
January 12, 2013

The week's top stories from Fronteras Desk.

What's it like to not have a birth certificate in the U.S. or Mexico?

Our most popular story this week was "Invisible In Two Countries."

A birth certificate is the first form of identification in most countries around the world. Without it, it's hard to get any other form of ID. In Mexico, people without a birth certificate can't get a school diploma, can't vote or legally marry, among many other things.

When people in that situation immigrate illegally to the United States, what do you think happens? Suddenly they are doubly undocumented, invisible in two countries.

The 230 pounds of cheese uncovered by the CBP

Border Patrol seizes 230 pounds of undocumented cheese

According to the press release “the contraband queso” was packaged in three large ice chests. Referring to the 10-pound amount individuals are allowed to haul over the border, CBP Santa Teresa Port director Joane Thale-Lembo said, “This shipment certainly exceeded that quantity and was therefore seized and destroyed.”

Figurative memo went out to Texas Republicans: Don't introduce bills that will embarrass the party with Latino voters

The Texas legislature convened in Austin on Tuesday. The lawmakers gather once every two years. And in regard to cracking down on illegal immigration, the political pendulum swing is certainly in evidence this time around.

Fast forward two years — there’s the 83rd Texas legislature and Perry has another crack at passing a Texas SB 1070-type bill and … nada. What was an emergency two years ago is off the radar today. It didn’t get a mention in the governor’s opening remarks.

Greyeyes took this photo of his most recent painting, while it was in progress.

A young mixed media artist explores the void between traditional Navajo and American culture

Tom Greyeyes grew up between Flagstaff and the town of Tsegi, on the Navajo reservation. At 23, one of the topics he thinks a lot about is how Native young people of his generation straddle two worlds.

“A lot of us are sort of in this void, between traditional and then what I guess is American culture,” Greyeyes said. “And being in that void is sometimes frustrating. And there are always conflicting views, too, conflicting values.”

How did 2012, the hottest year on record, affect the Southwest?

Record-breaking temperatures and extended warm periods dominated the southwest. The U.S. Drought Monitor shows more of the West -- 77 percent -- is experiencing moderate to exceptional drought. New Mexico and Colorado have been especially hard hit in terms of dryness over the last two years.

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