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Fronteras-A Changing America
Fri July 29, 2011
Show 5: Interview-UTEP Doctoral Student and Art Historian Miguel Juarez
By Vanessa Dabovich
Las Cruces, NM – On the program, a look at the man behind some of Arizona's most aggressive immigration bills, Senator Steve Smith.
Also, Young undocumented immigrant activists know there isn't much hope for immigration reform in the current Congress. But rather than give up, they are become more visible, and more vulnerable.
The sculpture "Los Lagartos" or "The Alligators" has been one of downtown El Paso's most popular landmarks for nearly twenty years. However, its home at the center of San Jacinto Plaza could be in jeopardy.
The fiberglass sculpture of intertwined Alligators was created by Luis Jimenez, a nationally known Chicano artist born in El Paso, and has stood at the center of the plaza since 1995. Jimenez created the artwork specifically for the downtown plaza to commemorate the past which consisted of live alligators in the area that were later removed. Jimenez passed away in 2006.
Current city plans to renovate the plaza area are threatening the future of the artwork. Proposed design changes donated by Mills Plaza Properties may remove the sculpture and replace it with shrubbery. City officials have not yet decided whether to move the piece, but they are concerned about its condition.
Jimenez supporters fear the city will use the artworks condition as a reason to remove it.
Our guest today on Fronteras is Miguel Juarez, a University of Texas El Paso Doctoral student and Chicano Art Historian who is spearheading a movement to keep the statue in its current location.