commentary | Texas Public Radio

commentary

Commentary: Climate Change On The Texas Ballot

Nov 4, 2019
David Martin Davies / Texas Public Radio

On Tuesday, Nov. 5, Texans are voting on 10 proposed changes to the Texas Constitution. Although climate change doesn't appear to be anywhere on the ballot, Texas Public Radio commentator Yvette Benavides says it's there. 


Commentary: Day Of The Dead And Dead Migrants

Nov 1, 2019

In the United States, the majority of migrant deaths occur in Texas.

In 2017, of all the 294 deaths recorded by the U.S. Border Patrol, 104 happened in the Rio Grande Valley. In recent years, many of those who died were unceremoniously and summarily buried in unmarked graves in places like the Sacred Heart Burial Park in Falfurrias, Texas. If Dia de Los Muertos celebrates the lives of the dead, who will remember these migrants?


Last month, millions tuned in to watch the Democratic presidential debates in Miami. Three of the candidates broke into Spanish during the debates at different times. The country reacted.

When the smoke cleared, it was former HUD Secretary and San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro who had the most to answer for — for a perceived lack of fluency in his attempt. Texas Public Radio commentator Yvette Benavides sees his code-switching, not as deficient, but as part of a far more complex and authentic story. 

This week, we’ve continued to see the disturbing images coming from the detention centers on the southern border. The families keep making the journey from their home countries to the US/Mexico border, risking family separation—and more. 

The immigration debate has prompted a surge in the use of words we didn’t used to hear quite so much. Words like “caravan” or “asylum.” Words matter. Words are loaded with meaning—associations that could denigrate and fail to communicate.  In her commentary, Texas Public Radio contributor Yvette Benavides gives us a lesson in semantics. Benavides is a professor of English and creative writing at Our Lady of the Lake University.

*****

Commentary: A Toxic 2018

Dec 8, 2018
David Martin Davies

 

The end of the year means a look at the word of the year from a variety of dictionaries. 

The top word, presumably, is a metonym for our collective experience of the year’s events.