Here is a calendar with the upcoming screenings for the film series. The Unity Film Series at George Mason’s Prince William Campus in the Verizon Auditorium is the first in an immigration film series of nine films, with discussions afterward facilitated by GMU students involved in conflict analysis and resolution.

Parking in the Occoquan Lot is free for the film series.

Thanks to Cindy for the reminder, and NGL for the film review of “De Nadie” below.

17 Thoughts to “Review of “Da Nadie,” Opening Night of GMU/UIC Film Series”

  1. elvis

    oooooohhh! i LOVE films!

    are these films by the homosexual wannabe filmmakers?

  2. NotGregLetiecq

    I’m gonna be there! Thanks for reminding me.

    Elvis, aren’t you ashamed to come back and post here after you got exposed, got raked over the coals and even psycho-analyzed on the other thread? You should make up a new fake name. We’ve written you off and you’ve damaged the Anti-immigrant Lobby’s cause more than any poster here.

  3. Be sure to write a review~!

  4. NGL don’t discourage Elvis. He has become our most valuable Hate Bunny. Keep it up Elvis. Show us what you’re really about.

  5. NotGregLetiecq

    After seeing this film, I can understand why people join hate groups. Hear me out.

    Hate is a good way to insulate yourself from the suffering of others. If you are able to dehumanize another person, or a group of people by hating them, then you don’t suffer vicariously when you learn about their suffering.

    The film was about how immigrants and migrants from South and Central America are treated when they cross into Mexico. It was interested to see how immigration is dealt with when race is not the issue. Let me tell you it was much worse than Prince William County. There are these pirates who rob, kill, and rape people soon after they cross the border. The police are often not much better. But we do meet these women in one of the towns the trains go by who prepare food and risk their lives to pass the food to them.

    One of the main characters is this women from Honduras whose home had been destroyed by Hurricane Mitch, leaving her family of six homeless and in poverty. Then when her husband became too ill to work, she decided to go north and try to earn money to feed her children. I can’t even talk about what happened to her next. This is the driving force of the movie but I just can’t talk about it. Later, the filmmakers go to meet her family. Her children miss her so much. Her husband too. The filmmakers show them video of the mother, who asked that her family only see images where she is happy. As far as the filmmakers know, this was the last the children ever see of their mother…..

    This is just one of the tragic stories. There is a boy who was forced to hide quietly in the bushes while bandits murdered his parents. He tells the story to the camera.

    After the screening, two graduate students led a discussion with the audience.

    One audience member was struck by the women in the story who took it upon themselves to prepare food for immigrant stowaways on the trains that go by. He wondered why the women were kind to the immigrants and the men were robbers and rapists.

    Another audience member mentioned the unrest during the civil rights era, how African Americans were treated, and how images on TV helped to transform the way America saw the issue of equality and whether it’s truly part of our values. We all seemed to lament that today, even with a much more powerful and multifaceted media, there is so little shown that humanizes immigrants. Seeing the courage and the struggle in this film reminded me of how much money and how much strategy has gone into DE-humanizing immigrants in mass media here in America. If there was even close to a fair portrayal of immigrants on our news channels, we would be forced to look at the immigration issue in a way that respects basic human rights and human dignity. Perhaps as the power of the Anti-immigrant Lobby dies away, this will be possible.

    The person I came with (just friends) told me afterward that he had no idea that people were being treated this way in Mexico, or that they faced deportation FROM Mexico. He made a good point that Mexico wants their people be treated humanely when they come here, but they don’t ensure the same for people who go there. I said yes but that is no excuse for our citizens and sometimes our government to abandon our Christian values and our founding principles of freedom and equality. As Americans we need to aim higher. Part of the price you pay for living in the land of the free, home of the brave.

  6. Cindy B

    What NGL said! I can’t stop thinking about what I saw in the film. The woman who left her family behind and migrated north said she didn’t have the courage to speak to her children after what the bandits did to her. The hope was in her faith, and in the women who prepared food and drinks and risked their lives to extend it to the migrants on the passing trains.

    I enjoyed the discussion afterwards, and the many different viewpoints.

    Today at 2:30 pm the film is LETTERS FROM THE OTHER SIDE and here is the synopsis: LETTERS FROM THE OTHER SIDE interweaves video letters carried across the U.S.-Mexico border by the film’s director with the personal stories of women left behind in post-NAFTA Mexico. Director Heather Courtney interacts with her subjects through her unobtrusive camera, providing an intimate look at the lives of the people most affected by today’s failed immigration and trade policies. Her use of video letters provides a way for these women to communicate with both loved ones and strangers on the other side of the border, and illustrates an unjust truth – as an American she can carry these video letters back and forth across a border that these women are not legally allowed to cross.

    Come see the film today at 2:30 pm at GMU’s Prince William Campus in the Verizon Auditorium.

  7. NGL, thank you for that insightful piece. I couldn’t get there, so it helps to know the audience’s reactions. About how many people showed up?

    And yes, it IS hard to take on other people’s pain. That’s what true love (agape) requires in many cases, though. No one said love was ever easy.

  8. NotGregLetiecq

    Katherine, it was about 50 people. They had Dixie Bones BBQ and cookies in the lobby. Don’t know if there’s food at the other screenings.

  9. Elena

    I was not able to make the film, but in my minds eyes I can envision the utter desperation and subsequent aftermath what happened after people left their families behind. “There but for the grace of G-d go I.”

  10. Censored bybvbl

    This is an interesting series. Next week’s picks will include films about immigration from Asia and Pakistan/India.

  11. Guerita

    I attended the viewing of “Da Nadie”.
    I knew of the robberies, and other dangers of migrating thru Mexico from a Salvadoreno friend.
    Hearing a personal testimony from a friend doesn’t prepare you for the reality of the horrifying events many Central Americans encounter on their journeys.
    I saw my friend the next day, and he told me he knew of “La Patona”, and they threw him tortillas while he was on the train.
    With my limited life of privilege, I was grateful for the opportunity to be able to have a real converstation with him about the subject.
    I look forward to seeing many of the other films. I would suggest to those of you looking for an opportunity to think outside you comfort zone, and attend informative discussions –
    come check it out.

  12. Michael

    What causes poverty? I think I have discovered a few fundamental reasons, and from this can offer a few fundamental suggestions to reduce it.

    This woman’s plight, has been caused by poverty. The question is how should her poverty (and the rest of the world’s poverty) be eliminated? No one has ever solved that, or come close to it further than the US. Why is that?

    I’ve been studying some basic causes, to see if I can find some answers that will help prevent it. History provides a lab to study it.

    Barring her particular poverty, caused by a natural disaster and family health failure, what has really caused her to be unable to prevent poverty in her own country? Or to resort to such desperate and dangerous measures such as crossing a border illegally, that no person should subject themselves or their family to.

    Here is my list of the top 5 most critical reasons why people end up in poverty, a description of each and a suggestion to prevent it.

    Top 5 reasons (in priority) for poverty:
    1. Criminalization of the political infrastructure of a society
    2. Warfare between ethnic, racial, gender and religious groups aligned along ethnic, racial, gender and religious group lines of power.
    3. Corporations and businessmen (aristocracy) retain maximum profit, and refuse to pour profit back into innovation, and refuse to pay above poverty wages.
    4. Lack of education, ability, IQ, and skill of people who are in poverty to create their own wealth.
    5. Failure of law enforcement to maintain law, order, stability and protection from extortion and coercion in a society.

    I might add a 6th cause, that no-one can do anything about: weather, environment, climate, geology, lack of natural resources and natural disaster.

    In the next 5 posts, I would like to “debate” why these top 5 are most important to understand historically. There are other reasons for poverty, but my research shows these as the most destructive causes.

    If any of you have open minds, you will see value in this discussion. Feeling sorry for people (and doing films about it) is not enough to help them get out of poverty, unless you are prepared to bring them personally into your own home and raise them just like you raise your own children. Very few people can afford or are willing to do that. What little resource they do provide (contribution, food, medicine, church housing and support FOR A FEW MONTHS), is no where near enough to stop poverty, or the root causes of poverty.

  13. Michael

    Top cause of poverty:
    1. Criminalization of the political infrastructure of a society

    Every nation in history has a history of the poverty created by gang warfare, criminal mafias, and basic political maneuvering for the sole purpose of creating wealth for a few on the backs of the impoverished who are extorted and robbed.

    How you execute politcal rise to power determines whether wealth or poverty is created in the process.

    Look at the rise to power of political leaders, and the financial engine that propels them. How they distribute that wealth, determines prosperity or poverty.

    The basic engine of political power, is building a network (relationship) with people you like (or don’t like), but who will see your “political gift” to help them with a problem, as a politcal mark for a later returned favor. The people who are the best at building networks of favors, are usually the most likely in a position to grant favors to others who provide them with loyalty, and access to accomplish anything they need done to increase their wealth, political capital, or envy by others. These are the people who will keep all others not part of this political network in POVERTY.

    These people “leaders” have two choices, they can be “saints” by image management and partially ethical about the trading of favors, or they can be criminals about the trading of favors. THE VAST MAJORITY OF PEOPLE TRADING POLITICAL FAVORS, WEALTH and POWER, WERE and are CRIMINALS in their POLITICAL SYSTEMS. Some were and are more ruthless, cruel, sadistic, phychotic and dangerous to society than others.

    Aristocracy is created by expecting the help you gave someone else to be returned later at the needed time, and as soon as you are in a position to pass wealth (a bribe) to another, you do it, by either appointing them to a position of wealth and power, where you control the appointment, or giving them a contract where you or someone in your network of friends has the power to decide who receives the contract. This is illegal in a modern society, but is the most common “lawlessness” practiced and hidden from those outside of the “political power circle of friends and associates”. This is what the FBI looks for, as it is the first form of criminalized politcal infrastructure that leads to far worse and far more oppressive forms of POVERTY and CRUELTY to the masses later.

    An example of this is a Baker’s Guild, where the “friends” and the most agressive and threatening leader of these friends, agree to set the price of bread. They trade favors and contracts with each other, and extort a larger profit from others not in their political network (the poverty of the masses), and if a new Baker sets a lower competitive price, to get more Volume of sales (a free market), the guild will threaten first verbally, then physically the owner of the bakery, then attempt to put him out of business with fire, police bribes, political bribes, laws that are targeting him, gang violence, death threats, and in extreme cases, open political or religious execution in public, all made possible by the friends they had who would return the needed favor.

    In a mafia, this is a HUGE network, in a Gang, a smaller network, in a politcal appointed position, a secret network, that can be both as large as a leader can control (through intimidation, bribery, politcal threat, or physical threat), or as small as necessary to remain under the legal radar, while profiting from it, and transferring wealth to their friends in return for future politcal favors.

    Poverty is created when these people, extort the masses, and share their wealth only within a small circle of friends or “FAMILYS”.

    A very few of these powerful “families” created saint images, and religious images around them, by patrinozing the “arts”. This image of wealth and glamor was itself politcal capital created by being free with their money and proving personal “favors” to working class artists and crafstmen, scientists and engineers, who would build even more image capital for them, that could be traded for even more wealth (glamor) and power to longer distances and greater spheres of influence. The rise of the “medici” family who supported the great italian renaissance, and wealth that rose from it, did so on the backs of the extorted, the poor, and the defenseless, who were often killed, murdered, or bribed to remain silent about the truth of the families criminal banking deals. They eventually put two Popes into power, and ruled over one of the most corrupt political regimes in history, next to Stalin and Hitler. The difference, was their realization that by supporting and patronizing “arts” you could fool the masses into accepting their poverty with national patriotism. This is true of “oil companies” today, in countries like, IRAQ, IRAN, SAUDI ARABIA, KUWAIT, QUATAR, VENEZUELA, RUSSIA, and the US.

    This lady in the GMU film’s “real” poverty is a result of the criminalization of the political infrastructure in Honduras, El Salvadore, Columbia, Equador, and Mexico, which is far worse than here in the US, but the US is starting to adopt the same political corruption model as these countries, as a result of the actions of people like the “medici” families, and other mafia families, operating in the US political infrastructure. This has given rise to visible evidence of gangs (Bloods, Crips, SUR-13, M-13, etc,) supported by these criminalized political elements.

    The solution to this type of poverty? Strengthen your law enforcement to suppress gangs, mafia organizations, and local political corruption (bribery, coercion, extortion, theft, fraud, contract fraud, nepitism and cronyism,) in your local, state, and federal party (democrat, and republican), shut down political favor trading networks (by strong law and law enforcement, with increased surveillance, and law-enforcement resources, and political crime task forces.

    Teach people how to recognize it and report it to police and the FBI, and other watch-dog organizations.

  14. Michael

    2. Warfare between ethnic, racial, gender and religious groups aligned along ethnic, racial, gender and religious group lines of power.

    Ethnic, gender, racial and religious hatred can be used as politcal capital, to create a network of friends and political associates, who will extort, bribe, oppress and politically execute all political opposition, until they can obtain control over an army of militant followers.

    Ethnic, gender, racial and religious love for only your own gender, race, religion or ethnic group, CAN ALSO be used as politcal capital, to create a network of friends and political associates, who will extort, bribe, oppress and politically execute all political opposition, until they can obtain control over an army of militant followers and VOTERS that belong just to that race, gender, religious or ethnic group.

    They can use this influence to gain political position in governments or the military, surround themselves (an appoint to political power underneath them, or vote into political power those above them, loyal lovers of their own political group and haters of all other political groups, until they have the ability and political clout to transfer wealth from the masses (individuals) to only members of their own gender, race, religion or ethnic group. This is how White Power, became White Power in the past, and how Black, Brown, Yellow, and Gender power is dominating the wealth and legal landscape today. This transfer of political wealth, hurts “INDIVIDUALS”, destroys democracies and causes POVERTY among any “group” of indiviuduals (the underclass and the MAJORITY), not belonging to these political groups. This is the situation in Saudia Arabia, Afganistan, Iraq, Iran, India, Pakistan, Isreal, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Darfur, Somolia, Chad, Niger, Bosnia, Serbia, and emerging in the US today.

    These politcal groups create a new class of rich and poor, based on the race, gender, religion or ethnic group you belong to, and extend that poverty to business relationships, trade deals and making of LAW that is not equitable FOR ALL INDIVIDUALS.

    The Solution? Stop race, gender, religious and ethnic group class liberalism and political seperation into “Caste” politcal groups. Stop diversity and multiculturalism concepts, and promote social “integration” into a single common class called a “nation”, where no group has any more politcal power or wealth over another, by creating DEMOCRACY and Equality under the law for EVERYONE, which has power and wealth only in the hands of the “individual”, and not the aristocratic (gender, race, relgion, or ethnic) elite. This is NOT Socialism, as solicism creates its own poverty, by destroying free markets and competition, and creating a different type of political cronyism (such as STALIN created and rose to power with).

  15. Michael

    3. Corporations and businessmen (aristocracy) retain maximum profit, and refuse to pour profit back into innovation, and refuse to pay above poverty wages.

    This is the free market concept that leads to national wealth in every case in history, but the distribution of that wealth if not put back into the “people” will create communities that live side-by-side, as pockets of extreme wealth and pockets of extreme poverty.

    Maximizing profit is a good thing if done with free competition. If done with corruption and bribery, and a refusal to return profit into future growth (so that CEOs, CFOs, Board of Directors, and Senior VPs can maximize personal wealth), at the expense of the wages and salaries of the workers and lower managers, this form of corporate greed and corruption will lead to forms of poverty that exist in coal mining towns, oil towns, factory towns and single-market economies, where financial markets are not diverse enough and small businesses not profitable enough to keep the majority of people rich, well off, living in decent and clean neighborhoods and minimizing the number of poor in a community.

    This kind of WEALTH can only survive and maximize in a DEMOCRACY, and FREE MARKET of FAIR COMPETITION and FAIR WAGES. IT can ALSO only survive by producing cheap “oil”, converting “essentially free energy” of 160 and 90 million year epochs of Global Warming, to MAXIMUM profit and greed, at the expense of our future survival, by creating an un-sustainable population growth to 6 Billion people, and a realistic inability to support only 1.2 billion people in current wealth, while keeping 5 billion people (who do not burn oil, or put carbon into the atmosphere), in total and complete poverty. We will run out of this oil (and the price or remaing oil will get too high to afford) in 2025, when Saudia Arabia as the only oil nation who has not peaked in total oil reserves available for production (2-6 million barrels per day), peaks at a maximum of 12 million barrels per day, when 50 million barrels per day will be needed by 7 million people to remain out of poverty. Look at the abject poverty and decline in “per capita” wealth of the “oil boom” nations who ran out of “peak oil” and are now on the declining side of oil production (Venezuela (maripoo), Russia (baku), and Britain (North Sea)

    Corporate corruption (such as the schemes exposed on wall street, regarding bribery, extortion, lawlessness, market control, stock price control, stock trading fraud, inside trading, political favoritism for econimic power, contract fraud, government program fraud) will increase the poverty of the nation as it has for the last 30 years in the collapse of ethics and growth of cronyism in the US Government and companies (like ENRON, and polical capital relationships, such as Carlyle Group, Haliburton, and Political Action Committees supported by corporate donations), has destroyed DEMOCRACY in America, since PACS and political bribes in the form of government contract fraud and favors became legal.

    The solution? Company CEOs must be appointed that are ethical entreprenuers, that will pour profits back into technical innovation, pay all their employees, non-poverty wages (minmum wage is a poverty wage), AND most importantly, remove the power of companies to buy favors from politicians in the making of LAWS and budget deals, by removing their access to PAC and similar politcal group funds. Remove corrupt business leaders that break laws, and hire only “illegal” immigrants, while undermining the wealth of legal residents. Get off of oil and onto “solar” (steam and electrical) energy.

    Corporate caused poverty, is the only type of poverty that exists today in the US, but other more powerful forms once existed in the US prior to WWII and post-depression era, where other forms of “criminal corruption of the political infrastructure” were far more common prior to FDR. FDR, was the first of many “ethical” national leaders, that brought us to the wealth of post WWII we have today. We are now returning in the modern US society to pre-WWII “criminal corruption of the political infrastructure”, and our current degree of poverty will continue to decline to the levels it was at the beginning of the 1800s, where political crime was rampant. (Study the history of the US presidents and the cronies they put into politcal power that corrupted the government, and over 100 years of slavery and politcal corruption, fueled later aristocratic wealth of Mellon, Rockefeller, Carnegie, etc. Review the Teapot Dome Scandals, and Crime Leaders of the New York Customs and Port Authority, to see parallels in our current politcal bribery system and corruption of our politicians, congressmen and senators today, compared to the corrupted of the past. They are very similar in politcal methods. Not guite as corrupt as the “medici” family, but getting there.

  16. Michael

    4. Lack of education, ability, IQ, and skill of people who are in poverty to create their own wealth.
    5. Failure of law enforcement to maintain law, order, stability and protection from extortion and coercion in a society.

    I think I’ll stop here as the last two are self explanitory to any level of “iltelligent thinking”.

    The Solution? Get an education, stop asking for special privilege not based on skill, IQ, ability and performance, suppress multi-culturalism, discrimnatory diversity, and promote “integration”, support lawfulness and Democracy, over Anarchy and lawlessness. If you continue to support “illegal” immigration, in the hopes that “illegal” people will somehow contribute to the reduction of “poverty” you are an intellectual fool.

    “Illegal” immigrants contribute to poverty by increasing the likelihood of the first 3 issues that cause poverty I discussed previously and will get far worse, far faster, and at the same rate the number of “illegal” immigrants take over and criminalize the political infrastructure of your society, just like they have in the countries they came from.

    Your wish for “Poverty sympathy as the solution” will increase accordingly, but with no solution in sight as you don’t understand how “illegal” immigration or “illegal” behavior of any kind eventually destroys you and your peaceful community through political and corporate corruption. You have only to look at the criminal politics of the rest of the world’s political animals, to know this is true.

  17. Michael

    The above are the “issues” Eric Byler and Annabel should be filming. They are tilting windmills, by supporting “illegal” immigrants, and ignoring the needs of the majority of legal residents, and the impact on Democracy of lawlessness and anarchy, and criminalization of the political infrastructure.

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