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On Fronteras: Welcoming All, Mexico Weighs Options On NAFTA, Making Holiday Tamales

Katie Schoolov
A sign posted at San Diego restaurants in support of the inclusive campaign

This week on Fronteras:   

  • A campaign to let everyone know they are welcome, regardless of race, creed, ethnicity, or immigration status.
  • Mexico considers its options in response to president-elect Trump’s threats to pull out of NAFTA.
  • The struggles immigrant artists face in a new country with a different language.
  • What would a Mexican Christmas be without tamales?  Jesse Moreno, the owner of La Popular Tamale House in Dallas, has been making tamales for over 30 years. 
  • A match.com match that turned out to be more important than love.
  •  A big bundle of help arrives for the families of the five Dallas police officers gunned down last summer, just in time for Christmas


San Diego Restaurants Promote Welcome Campaign For All
‘Tis the season of giving, the season of love.  But ever since the presidential race revealed a deep division in America, incidents of hate and harassment over a person’s race, ethnicity, religion, immigration status and sexual orientation have made headlines across the country.
Several San Diego restaurant owners in three neighborhoods are countering that disturbing trend. In a sign of unity with people from all backgrounds, they are encouraging businesses to post a sign that identifies their establishments as a welcoming place for immigrants, Muslims and refugees.  Taryn Mento of KPBS has more.
The Story

Allison St. John of KPBS talked with restaurant owner Juan Pablo Santos to further explore the passion he has for this campaign.
The Story

Mexico Considers Retaliation Should U.S. Withdraw From NAFTA
Mexico is considering its options should President-elect Trump make good on his threat to withdraw from the North American Free Trade Act, NAFTA. Mr Trump called NAFTA "the worst trade deal ever" in the first presidential debate. President Enrique Peña Nieto says Mexico is willing to "modernize" NAFTA, not renegotiate from scratch. Marfa Public Radio's Lorne Matalon reports from Mexico City.
The Story

Immigrant Artists Struggle To Make A Living In New Country
When you’re a refugee in a new country, there are many barriers to overcome with language being the main one.  And if you’re a refugee who is an artist by profession, it may be difficult to get your work shown and sold to make a living.  Houston Public Media’s Laura Isensee talked with two artists about their situations who got a chance recently to display their work.
The Story

Making Mexican Holiday Tamales  With Tradition And Love
Whether you buy them at a store or make them in the kitchen with family, tamales are popular during the holiday season.  Recipes are passed down from generation to generation. Lots of people skip the cooking and just flock to La Popular Tamale House in East Dallas to buy the corn-husked goodies.  KERA’s Gus Contreras caught up with the Tamale House owner in the kitchen as he made a batch. His recipe?  It’s part family tradition, part art form – and a lot of love.
The Story

Match.com Love Search Finds A Kidney Match
More than 11,000 Texans are waiting on an organ transplant. One San Antonio man found the organ he desperately needed in a very unusual way.  He was looking for a love connection, but as Texas Public Radio’s Wendy Rigby reports another, even more vital connection was made.
The Story

Slain Dallas Officers Mortgages Paid Off
Families of the five officers killed in the July shootings in downtown Dallas are getting help with housing expenses.  A New York-based charity, the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation this week presented three of the officers’ families with proof that their mortgages have been paid in full.
Families of the three officers -- Michael Smith, Patrick Zamarippa and Brent Thompson -- were at the presentation.  Dallas police association vice president Frederick Frazier says the donation helps right a wrong.  
Frederick Frazier:  “We had people here, this place was a mad house. The department was a mad house, the country was a mess, the country is still a mess with law enforcement. It’s in constant rotation of chaos, but that’s our job, right? It’s like a big chaos. Well, this is something that kind of fixes that chaos.”
The Tunnel to Towers Foundation is also giving financial assistance to two other officers’ families who did not have housing needs.  John Hodge is in charge of the Tunnel to Towers Foundation.
John Hodge: “When we’re in a situation where a police officer or police officers have been killed and our priority is to try and take care of housing needs whenever possible. That’s our first goal. We also recognize this as the largest single attack on law enforcement since 9/11 so we knew we had to be here.” 
The foundation started raising money for the fallen officers soon after the shootings. Donations came from every state across the U.S., as well as Australia, the United Kingdom, and Italy.
Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, the Dallas Foundation and the Assist the Officer Foundation announced that the money raised to benefit officers and families affected by the July shootings adds up very nicely to $10-million dollars.  

Joey Palacios can be reached atJoey@TPR.org and on Twitter at @Joeycules