It starts out like most fotonovelas, Latino comic books with themes often centered on love and betrayal: Teenage "Yaneth" is at a picnic when she spots handsome, raven-haired "David."Our neighbors to the south aren't voracious readers. The average Mexican reads just one book every six months. So the Virginia Department of Health has tried something more appealing--celebrity comic books:
She nabs his number and afterward, playfully sends him a text message.
A few pages later, Yaneth is not smiling. She is in a car alone with David, who turns out to be a man in his late 20s. He is demanding sex and 14-year-old Yaneth is scared.
The Virginia Department of Health hopes readers will want to find out what happens next to Yaneth, and to many real life Latina teens like her.
The department spent two years developing the comic book to combat statutory rape -- the crime of an adult having sex with a minor -- among Hispanic girls.
Authorities believe Latinas are at higher risk of becoming victims because of their limited understanding of American laws and cultural mores condoning May-December relationships.
Popularized in Latin America, fotonovelas use photographs of live actors instead of drawings, and illustrate soap opera-like stories. The books have caught on among health care agencies as a hip alternative to stiff brochures about diabetes risks and other medical issues.Birth-control is not ubiquitous in Latin America. Consequently, the US Hispanic teenage birthrate is higher even than it is for blacks (83.4 and 66.6, respectively, compared to the white teenage birthrate of 28.3), and the pregnancy rate is almost identical to blacks (131.5 and 134.2, respectively, compared to 48.2 for whites--Hispanics are the least likely of the four major racial/ethnic groups to abort). Many of the future citizens in these teenage Latina bellies have a rough road ahead of them:
CDC data shows Mexican and Puerto Rican girls at an especially high risk. ...It is common for the girls to refuse to give information out about the fathers of their children, who are often old enough to be the girls' own fathers. Understandably, they're afraid of doing so. Spilling the beans provides evidence of statutory rape, and may jeopardize the girls' safety.
Health officials say it is hard to figure out who's fathering their children.
Several groups on the American left should be in opposition to increased Hispanic immigration to the US. Labor unions suffer depressed wages and decreased bargaining power, environmentalists face more pollution and an expanding population (both domestically and globally), Jews see anti-Semitism on the rise, and now the feminist see this obstacle to achieving 'gender equality'. Yet all of these groups in favor of or ambivalent towards open borders, even though the causes they support fare much better in the US than in Central and South America.
Then again, when the leader of the country does what Bush does, the self-immolation seems more than curious. It's epidemic:
In remarks as he opened a meeting with Calderon today at a hacienda outside Merida on the Yucatan peninsula, Bush said he would "remind my fellow citizens'' that many of the people who cross the border between the two countries are seeking a better life for their families and U.S. law should give them the opportunity to work in the legally.Nevermind that an amnesty will relegate the GOP to permanent minority-status going forward. Forget the troubling externalities such as greater welfare use and lower average intelligence such a "reform" will bring stateside. Nevermind all the local security that has had to lock down various parts of the cities that Bush has been visiting due to persistent protests. Erstwhile, the popular Venezuelan socialist shouts "Gringo go home!", while Bush promises to transfer even more to an ungrateful, backwards Latin America:
"I will work as hard as I possibly can to pass comprehensive immigration reform,'' Bush said.
US President George W. Bush has announced plans for additional US aid initiatives in Latin America days before a six-day, five-nation tour to boost the US image in the region.Bush is one of the worst Presidents in US history without the massive amnesty that he, Ted Kennedy, and John McCain are trying to push through. If he gets his way, he will wrest the title from others like Wilson and Johnson, and have the nadir all to himself.