Border Drones: CBP Rejects Negative Audit As Congress Debates Funding Bill

Jan 23, 2015

- The Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general has issued a critical report on border drones. The report says there is “little or no evidence” those drones are worth their expensive price tag. This comes as Congress wrestles with a fast approaching deadline to fund Homeland Security.
- Native Americans in New Mexico are worried about how increased oil drilling is affecting their communities. One person compared the view at night to a "war zone."
- Fronteras Commentator Yvette Benavides talks about the beauty of being bilingual and the complexities that come wiht it in the U.S.
- And we look at the very serious challenges that people with curly hair face in humid Houston.

Cecilia Abbott, Texas' First Hispanic First Lady

Texas now has its first Latina First Lady, Cecilia Abbott. Her husband, Republican Greg Abbott, was sworn in as the 48th governor of Texas this week. Cecilia grew up in San Antonio and is the granddaughter of Mexican immigrants. She has three degrees from the University of St. Thomas in Houston, including a Masters degree in Education.

She went on to be a teacher, a vice principal and then a principal at several Texas schools, according to the governor’s website. Former Gov. Rick Perry appointed First Lady Abbott to the State Board of Educator Certification. She served in that role from 2001 to 2008. Cecilia and Gregg have been married for 33 years. They have a daughter, Audrey.

Border Drones: CBP Rejects Negative Audit As Congress Debates Funding Bill

The Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general has issued a highly critical report on unmanned aircraft, or drones, that patrol the country’s borders, principally with Mexico. The report says there is “little or no evidence” the drones are worth their expensive price tag, $18 million apiece. Lorne Matalon reports this comes as Congress wrestles with a fast approaching deadline to fund Homeland Security.

"... Like A War Zone": Worries About Increased Oil Drilling

The federal government deferred new oil leases near Chaco Canyon in New Mexico in December. But as Laura Paskus reports for Fronteras, many Native Americans are worried about how development outside the park will affect their communities, their landscapes, and their children’s futures.
This story is part of the series, Drilling Deep — exploring the impact of the oil and gas industry in northwestern New Mexico — produced at KUNM in Albuquerque. Funding for Drilling Deep comes from the New Venture Fund.

Commentary: Soul Español, In Support of Bilingualism

This week, Whitehouse.gov promoted on its “Hispanic” page, the many opportunities to listen to the President’s  State of the Union address in Spanish, and invited the community to share in live “bilingual updates on social media.” This prompted Fronteras commentator Yvette Benavides to think about the sometimes difficult relationship the United States has with bilingualism.

Benavides is a South Texas writer whose stories focus on border life. One of those stories was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She teaches composition and literature at Our Lady of the Lake University.

The Challenges of Life with Curly Hair in Humid Houston

We bring you a lighthearted piece from a familiar voice on Fronteras. Life in Houston can be …. trying for some. Houston Matters producer Paige Phelps shares the trials of one mane oppressed Houston community.