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10 Powerful Images of Protesters at This Week’s Gay Marriage Hearing

10 Powerful Images of Protesters at This Week's Gay Marriage Hearing

This week the Supreme Court is weighing in on whether same sex couples have a constitutional right to marry.

Supporters of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender couples have been outside of the court to witness what could precipitate historic changes in how LGBT couples are treated under the law. Below you’ll find ten images highlighting some of powerful signs of protest outside the court. 


scotus-hearing-outside-6.jpg A mixed race couple once high school sweethearts now married, Kris White and Lyssa White, from Manassas, Virginia, kiss in front of the US Supreme Court protesting for marriage equality on Capitol Hill Tuesday, March 26, 2013. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)



scotus-hearing-outside-5.jpg John Lewis (L) and Stuart Gaffney demonstrate in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on March 26, 2013. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)



scotus-hearing-outside-4.jpg Eric Breese (L) of Rochester, New York, joins fellow George Washington University students outside Supreme Court. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)



scotus-hearing-outside-2.jpg Married couple Nathan Lents (L) and Oscar Cifuentes kiss in front of Westboro Baptist Church protesters, in front of the U.S. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Number of Asian and Latino Writers for TV Are Up

Number of Asian and Latino Writers for TV Are Up

On Tuesday the Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) released a report that found the number of writers of color writing for television has doubled since the millennium.

The WGAW’s 2013 TV Staffing Brief examined employment patterns for 1,722 writers working on 190 broadcast and cable television shows during the 2011-12 season. The report found the number of writers of color has increased as a group but because the share of people of color continues to grow in the U.S. population little headway has been made toward reaching anything “approximating proportionate representation,” the report found.

“From concept to characters, from plot to narrative, writers play a fundamental role in the fashioning of stories a society circulates about itself,” said Dr. Darnell Hunt, author of the report and director of the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies at UCLA wrote in the report. “But in the Hollywood entertainment industry, unfortunately, there has all too often existed a disconnect between the writers hired to tell the stories and an America that’s increasingly diverse with each passing day.”

Key findings in the 2013 TV Staffing Brief include:

Between the 1999-00 and 2011-12 TV seasons, women writers’ share of TV staff employment increased approximately 5 percentage points, from 25% to 30.5%. At this rate of increase it would be another 42 years before women reach proportionate representation in television staff employment.

Between 1999-00 and 2011-12 seasons, minority writers’ share of TV employment increased from 7.5% to 15.6%. Despite this increase, minorities as a combined group remain underrepresented by a factor of more than 2 to 1 in television staff employment in the 2011-12 season.

Women and people of color continue to be underrepresented among the ranks of Executive Producers in television. In the 2011-12 season, women were underrepresented by a factor of more than 2 to 1 among the writers who run television shows; people of color were underrepresented by a factor of nearly 5 to 1.

10% of shows of TV shows in the 2011-12 season had no female writers on staff; nearly a third had no writers of color on staff.

According to the report, while the number of writers of color increased as a whole, the largest percentage increase was amongst Latino and Asian-American writers.

Meanwhile, the black share of television staff employment the largest share among the minority groups has increased only .7 percentage points since the 1999-2000 season, from 5.8 percent to 6.5 percent (108 writers). African Americans, who constitute slightly more than 12 percent of the U.S. population, are still underrepresented by a factor of nearly 2 to 1 in television staff employment. Separate figures for the relatively small shares of Native writers and other race writers .3 percent (5 writers) and 1.5 percent (25 writers), respectively were included in this brief for the first time.

To help increase the number of writers of color writing for television the Guild developed the Writer Access Project (WAP), “a peer-judging program designed to identify excellent, diverse writers with television experience, and to provide a resource for accessing their work to showrunners, industry executives, agents, and managers.”

Members of WAP include “Grey’s Anatomy” creator Shonda Rhimes and “Modern Family” writer Elaine Ko.

To read the complete report visit WGAW’s website.

Virginia Passes Stricter Voter ID Law Than Voter ID Law They Passed Last Year

Count Virginia as the newest member of a small pack of states requiring photo identification cards in order to vote. This morning Gov. Bob McDonnell signed into law a new voter ID law that would go into effect in 2014, a crucial election year for congressional seats. The law will have to be approved by the Department of Justice or U.S. District Court since Virginia is a Section 5 state under the Voting Rights Act, due to a history of racial discrimination. The Justice Department approved a voter ID bill law Virginia passed just last year, but on the grounds that the state allowed for a wide range of IDs to vote, not all of them including photos. The law passed this morning restricts acceptable IDs to only drivers licenses, passports or government-issued cards with photos.

Voting rights advocates were highly disappointed, especially given McDonnell’s seemingly progressive stance on automatically restoring civil rights for those previously incarcerated with felonies.

“I understand that there are concerns about protecting the integrity of our elections, but part of maintaining that integrity is ensuring that no qualified voters are deprived of their rights. This bill doesn’t do that,” said Tram Nguyen, Deputy Director of Virginia New Majority. “To change the voter ID law, yet again, within such a short period of time will undoubtedly create unnecessary confusion among voters about which forms of ID are required at the polls. We saw it last November and we may very well see it again this year.”

This law comes on the heels of a Virginia report on the election failures in November 2012, citing a lack of resources and poll workers as the cause for punishingly long lines. According to the Bipartisan Election Process Improvement Commission, a major reason for the problems was that poll workers didn’t anticipate the huge turnouts. Not exactly a revelation, but disappointing that the first legislation out the state on election reform doesn’t solve the resource problem, but instead narrows the path to the ballot.

“Eliminating previously acceptable forms of identification such as a current utility bill, bank statement or social security card instantly places undue burdens eligible citizens, particularly the poor, the elderly and people of color,” said Advancement Project co-director Penda Hair. “Elections must be free, fair and accessible to all eligible voters and these photo ID laws are antithetical to our fundamental democratic ideals. We are working with our partners in Virginia to explore every option available to reverse this terrible piece of legislation.”

Will Smith Says He Turned Down the Role of ‘Django’ Because He ‘Needed to be the Lead’

Will Smith Says He Turned Down the Role of 'Django' Because He 'Needed to be the Lead'

Actor Will Smith tells Entertainment Weekly he turned down the role of Django in Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Django Unchained’ because the slave character was not the lead in the film.

Here’s a snippet of Entertainment Weekly’s interview with Smith:

When Quentin Tarantino’s western revenge-fantasy Django Unchained was first announced, casting rumors pegged Will Smith as the titular slave-turned-vigilante. But Smith, who teams with his son Jaden in this summer’s sci-fi epic After Earth, tells EW that he turned down the part because his character would’ve been second fiddle to the bounty hunter (played by Christoph Waltz) who teaches Django his trade . “Django wasn’t the lead, so it was like, I need to be the lead. The other character was the lead!” says the Men in Black star, whose departure opened the door for Jamie Foxx to play the role.

Smith says that before he left the project, he even pleaded with Tarantino to let Django have a more central role in the story. “I was like, ‘No, Quentin, please, I need to kill the bad guy!’” (Ironically, Waltz was considered a supporting actor during his Oscar-winning award season, while Jamie Foxx was promoted as the movie’s lead.)

Waltz won the Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor earlier this year while Quentin Tarantino won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Foxx was not nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal of Django.

Could You Wait 163 Years to be Reunited With Your Family?

Could You Wait 163 Years to be Reunited With Your Family?

Have you ever heard someone argue that all immigrants should just “get in line” and apply to come to the United States legally?

During his immigration reform speech in Las Vegas earlier this year, President Obama said “[undocumented immigrants have to go] to the back of the line, behind all the folks who are trying to come here legally. That’s only fair, right?”

But is it fair? Check out the infographic below from the Asian Law Caucus.

Obama Tells New U.S. Citizens ‘Immigration Makes Us Stronger’

Obama Tells New U.S. Citizens 'Immigration Makes Us Stronger'

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

At a naturalization ceremony Monday at the White House President Obama personally congratulated twenty-eight new U.S. Citizens. The President also used the platform to challenge congress to “finish the job” of finalizing legislation that would create immigration reform.

“Immigration makes us stronger, keeps us vibrant, hungry, keeps us prosperous,” Obama said. “It is part of what makes this such a dynamic country. If we want to keep attracting the best and brightest the world has to offer, we need to do a better job of welcoming them. We’ve known for years our immigration system is broken, that we’re not doing enough to harness the talent and ingenuity of those that want to work hard and find a place here in america, and after avoiding the problem for years, the time has come to fix it once and for all. The time has come for a comprehensive, sensible immigration reform.”

Twenty-eight new American citizens, including 13 members of the military, were recognized at the ceremony.

The Associated Press reports Obama has called April as the month that will host immigration bill debates.

Labor Attorneys Say Adria Richards’ Firing Will Be Hard to Defend

Labor Attorneys Say Adria Richards' Firing Will Be Hard to Defend

Adria Richards, the developer evangelist who was fired after tweeting an image of two men she heard making sexist jokes, may have a strong case if she decides to take her former employer to court.

Richards recounted on her blog, butyouareagirl.com, that she was seated in a ballroom at a technology conference in Santa Clara, Calif. when the men behind her started talking about “big dongles” in an inappropriate manner. After hearing their remarks, Richards turned around, took a photo of two men and posted it on Twitter with their alleged comments. Here’s how it played out:

The PyCon Conference organizers publicly thanked Richards’ for her tweets but hours later (after pressure from different online communities) her employer fired her.

“We understand that Adria believed the conduct to be inappropriate and support her right to report the incident to PyCon personnel. To be clear, SendGrid supports the right to report inappropriate behavior, whenever and wherever it occurs. What we do not support was how she reported the conduct,” read a statement from SendGrid CEO Jim Franklin.

Rob Pattison, a San Francisco attorney who represents employers for the Jackson Lewis law firm, told the Mercury News defending SendGrid’s decision to fire Richards would be “tough.”

“The law is strong in protecting people who make complaints of harassment, or who participate in an investigation about complaints of harassment,” Pattison told the Mercury News.

Justin Timberlake’s New Album Sells Nearly a Million Copies In Its First Week

Justin Timberlake's New Album Sells Nearly a Million Copies In Its First Week

Love him or hate him, Justin Timberlake knows how to sell pop music. The singer’s third solo album, “The 20/20 Experience”, is on its way to selling nearly a million copies in its first week.

From The Hollywood Reporter:

On Sunday (March 24), industry sources forecast that the pop star’s new The 20/20 Experience could sell between 950,000 and 975,000 by the close of the tracking week — Sunday night. (Nielsen SoundScan’s sales week runs Monday-Sunday each week.)

As I wrote last week for Colorlines.com, there’s something troubling about Timberlake’s appropriation of black music. It’s good, and also embodies the historical mistrust between white performers and black listeners. But however fans feel about it, it looks like they can’t help but listen.

Watch California AG Kamala Harris Make the Case for Marriage Equality

Watch California AG Kamala Harris Make the Case for Marriage Equality

California Attorney General Kamala Harris understands the will of the people. But she also understands the Constitution. And when it comes to California’s ban on same sex marriage, she knows where she stands. The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments for and against same sex marriage this week in a challenge to California’s Proposition 8, that state’s voter approved ban on gay marriage. But California Attorney General Kamala Harris isn’t in favor of the ban, and she made a compelling case against it on the Sunday talk show circuit.

“I am absolutely against a ban on same sex marriages because it is simply unconstitutional,” Harris says. “It is one thing to read the polls…but it is more important to read the Constitution.”

DOJ Files Landmark Agreement to Curb Meridian, Miss.’s School-to-Prison Pipeline

It’s a big day for the small city of Meridian, Mississippi, home to one of the nation’s most notorious school-to-prison pipeline systems. This morning the Department of Justice filed a consent decree with the Meridian Public School District to address its school discipline practices which not only were ushering kids into jail for the lightest of infractions—including wearing the wrong color socks or showing up to school without a belt on—but also singling out black students for the harshest treatment.

“Today, together with the school district and private plaintiffs in the case we are filing a proposed consent decree that addresses claims of racial discrimination in student discipline in Meridian County schools,” said Jocelyn Samuels, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division. “As part of efforts to enforce a longstanding desegregation decree we investigated complaints that the district implemented a harsh and punitive discipline policy that resulted in the disproportionate suspension, expulsion and school-based arrest of black students in Meridian public schools.”

And even when controlling for other factors, racial disparities persisted, “even when students were at the same school, were of similar ages, and had similar disciplinary histories,” Samuels said. It had the effect of shoving youth out of school and into youth jails, and marking kids indelibly. The decree, pending approval by the court, will address exactly this pattern of practices that the DOJ documented in a multi-year investigation of the school district and the local school.

ColorOfChange Launches Petition Urging Fox to Cancel ‘Cops’

ColorOfChange Launches Petition Urging Fox to Cancel 'Cops'

The online civil rights organization ColorOfChange.org is urging FOX, and corporate advertisers of the television show ‘Cops,’ to make the 25th season of show its last in primetime. The group says since the show premiered in 1989, FOX, ‘Cops’ producers, and corporate advertisers have built a profit model around distorted and dehumanizing portrayals of black Americans and the criminal justice system.

ColorOfChange sent a petition to its more than 850,000 members urging them to sign on to the campaign.

“Research shows that with such a narrow range of black characters and personalities in primetime, the negative perceptions and distorted images presented by shows like COPS, create an atmosphere of suspicion and desensitizes and conditions audiences to view police misconduct and harsher punishments as acceptable,” said Executive Director of ColorOfChange, Rashad Robinson, in a statement.

According to ColorOfChange, content analysis performed in the mid-nineties revealed that “reality” crime programs like ‘Cops’ tend to over-represent whites as police officers and under-represent Blacks and Latinos as authority figures, while also under-representing whites and over-representing people of color as criminals.

In the email sent to members, ColorOfChange said the “stakes couldn’t be higher” considering “the real-world backdrop of an American culture that views young men like Trayvon Martin and Jordan Russell Davis with suspicion.”

View the petition from ColorOfChange to the Fox Network and advertisers at ColorOfChange.org.

Felipe Montes Departs the United States for Mexico, With His Children

Felipe Montes Departs the United States for Mexico, With His Children

Felipe Montes rose this morning well before sunrise and woke his children. His bags packed with their clothes and some toys, he loaded the three young boys into a car that the Mexican consulate sent. They rode two hours to the international airport in Charlotte, North Carolina. At 9AM the father led his boys onto a plane to Mexico City.

It has been 29 months since Montes was detained by immigration authorities for driving violations in the small Appalachian town of Sparta, North Carolina. After his deportation, the county child welfare department removed his three sons, now 5, 3 and 2-years old, from their mother, Marie Montes, and placed them into foster care. The mother struggles with drug addiction and mental illness and was deemed unfit to care for her kids. She and her husband asked that the kids be reunited with their father in Mexico but the child welfare department refused. After a protracted legal fight over his parental rights, a local judge granted Felipe Montes full custody of his kids last month.

With the support of the advocacy group Presente.org, Felipe Montes on Wednesday launched a last minute petition to remain in the United States. He said he wanted to stay in the United States with Marie Montes, who is pregnant. But federal immigration authorities refused to extend Montes’ humanitarian parole, which Immigration and Customs Enforcement granted in August to allow Montes to return the U.S. for his parental rights hearings.

The father will take his children to a small town in Tamaulipas, Mexico, a place the boys have never been.

Bruno Mars Explains Why He Dropped His Puerto Rican Father’s Surname

Bruno Mars Explains Why He Dropped His Puerto Rican Father's Surname

Bruno Mars was born Peter Gene Hernandez on October 8, 1985, in Honolulu, Hawaii. In an interview with GQ the pop star explains he had to change his name to literally sound like he was from another planet so record labels would stop trying to make him the next Enrique Iglesias.

Mars explained his decision to change his name to GQ:

Mars was born Peter Hernandez twenty-seven years ago to a Puerto Rican Jewish percussionist from Brooklyn and a singer and dancer from the Philippines who met in Hawaii, and he landed the nickname Bruno as a toddler, supposedly because as an infant he looked like a famous wrestler, Bruno Sammartino; the surname Mars would only come as an adult. The most famous fact in Bruno Mars’s biography is that by the age of 4 he was appearing onstage in his father and uncle’s Hawaiian variety show impersonating Elvis Presley. “I don’t remember much,” he says. “I probably couldn’t even speak that much.” A grin. “But I was fucking great at it.”

Against that, school paled. “And then you’re going to school and learning about fucking Christopher Columbus and stuff…” says Mars. It was hard to care. All day he would be thinking how he couldn’t wait to go and perform that night. “It was like turning into Batman. I’d go to school and kids are calling me Peter and we’re playing baseball and kickball and shit, and then—‘All right, guys, I’ve got to go!’—you put on a sequined jumpsuit, and all of a sudden you’re Bruno, the world’s youngest Elvis impersonator!”

Whatever wisdom he assimilated back then, his talent still took time to congeal. After Mars moved to Los Angeles at 17, there were various misfires—a contract with Motown, a spell with Will.i.am’s management—and a few years in the wilderness. One problem was his name. He parodies the kind of response he would get: “Your last name’s Hernandez, maybe you should do this Latin music, this Spanish music…. Enrique’s so hot right now.” He shakes his head. Eventually he sidestepped the issue by adopting the name Mars, perhaps figuring that the best way to avoid being stereotyped by race is to sound as though you come from a different planet altogether.

Mars adopted the name “Bruno” because he says that was his nickname growing up.

“My dad was a fan of the wrestler Bruno Sammartino, who was heavyset. When I was a kid I was a little pudgy. I reminded him of a wrestler,” Mars told the NY Daily News in 2010.

Mars was born to Peter Hernandez and Bernadette “Bernie” San Pedro Bayot. His father is of half Puerto Rican and half Jewish (from Hungary and Ukraine) descent, and is originally from Brooklyn, New York. Mars’ mother immigrated to Hawaii from the Philippines as a child.

Obama Twitter Account Re-Tweets Picture Of John Lennon’s Blood-Stained Glasses

On Thursday President Obama’s Twitter account re-tweeted a picture of John Lennon’s bloody glasses that was originally posted by Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono.

Chicago to Close 61 Public School Facilities to Address $1 Billion Deficit

Chicago to Close 61 Public School Facilities to Address $1 Billion Deficit

On Thursday, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials proposed a plan close 54 schools in an effort to address a $1 billion budget shortfall. Student advocates say the schools closures will disproportionately affect students of color and endanger the lives of those who may have to cross gang boundaries to attend school.

The Associated Press reported there are 54 schools slated to close but the Chicago Tribune reports 61 facilities could be shut down—that comes to nearly 13 percent of all elementary and middle schools in the district.

The Chicago Tribune breaks down the numbers:

Officials said the shutdowns would affect 30,000 students, almost all in kindergarten through eighth grade and most now attending poorly performing schools in African-American neighborhoods on the South and West sides where enrollment has sagged in recent years.

CPS officials argue that by redirecting resources from closing “underutilized facilities,” students will have access to better performing options close to their current schools.

A press release sent out by CPS Thursday included promises of air conditioning in every classroom, libraries in every schools, iPads for all students in grades 3-8 and that “all students with disabilities, students in temporary living situations, and English Language Learners will continue to receive required services to support their learning.”

But while CPS officials refer to the facilities slated to absorb students as “welcoming schools,” they’re also preparing for enhanced security measures to address “anticipated frictions” as students from differing neighborhoods are forced to mix.

Since 2008, more than 530 youth have been killed in Chicago with nearly 80 percent of the homicides occurring in 22 African-American or Latino community areas on the city’s South, Southwest and West sides, according to the Chicago Reporter.

The AP reports many of the schools identified for closure are in high-crime areas of Chicago where gang violence contributed to a marked increase in the city’s homicide rate last year. The district plans to have community groups help students travel to their new locations safely.

Charter Schools are expected to profit from the move to merge schools, the Chicago Tribune reports. “Altogether, six charters will be allowed to expand or open new campuses in underenrolled neighborhood schools, including some high schools.”

Watch This Interview With Nigerian Author Chinua Achebe

Watch This Interview With Nigerian Author Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe, considered by many to be the grandfather of African literature, has died. The author of the classic “Things Fall Apart” was 82 years old. Watch this relatively recent interview with CNN where the Achebe talks about the importance of storytelling both in his native Nigeria and in his teaching career in the United States.

FOX Developing OJ Simpson Drama

FOX Developing OJ Simpson Drama

Fox is working on a project currently titled “The Run Of His Life: The People Vs. O.J. Simpson” from Nina Jacobson (The Hunger Games franchise) and Brad Simpson (World War Z) and based on legal journalist Jeffrey Toobin’s best-selling book of the same name about the Simpson trial.

“Everybody remembers where they were when O.J. Simpson, riding in a white Bronco, led the police on a low-speed chase all over Los Angeles,” Fox noted in its announcement, crediting the event with the emergence of the 24-hour news cycle and “the birth of reality television.”

The Hollywood Reporter has more details:

Both projects hail from FX Productions, which recently hired former HBO exec Gina Balian to oversee the newly launched division as it supplies content to FX, the Fox Movie Channel and broadcast cousin Fox. Fox topper Kevin Reilly at the time said the network was hungry for longform content — which FX has found success with in American Horror Story — that will start as 10- to 12-part events that can either stand alone or evolve into franchises. 

[…] 

For its part, the Simpson project recounts the “Trial of the Century,” starting with the former football star fleeing police in his white Bronco through his murder trial for the 1994 slayings of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman and the news cycle that followed. Golden Globe winners Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (The People vs. Larry Flint) will pen the project.

Deadline Hollywood points out this is not Fox’s first crack at Simpson: In 2006, network was set to air an interview with Simpson based on his proposed book If I Did It, which was going to be published by ReganBooks, an imprint owned by Fox owner News Corp.

TAGS: OJ Simpson TV

Meet Bryant Johnson, Justice Ginsburg’s Personal Trainer

Meet Bryant Johnson, Justice Ginsburg's Personal Trainer

Earlier this week The Washington Post profiled Bryant Johnson, a records manager by day and personal trainer to two very powerful women in the evenings. The Virginia native trains Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and her colleague Justice Elena Kagan in the Supreme Court’s ground-floor gym.

Johnson grew up on his grandparents’ farm on the Northern Neck of Virginia. He was raised largely by his mother, a deaf grandmother and many aunts. Growing up closely with the strong women in his life is perhaps what helps him feel comfortable pushing the justices to do just one more push up.

The State of HIV in Black America: A Visual Breakdown (Infographic)

Whether you are male or female, gay or straight, live in an urban area or a rural area, if you are a person of color — especially an African-American — you are disproportionately at risk for contracting HIV.

The folks at TheBody.com created the infographic below because “knowing exactly what the numbers are behind the HIV epidemic among African Americans is the first empowered step in joining the fight against HIV.”

(Click on the infographic if you’d like to see a larger image.)

Deported Father Who Returned To U.S. Makes Final Plea To Remain

Deported Father Who Returned To U.S. Makes Final Plea To Remain

With just two days left before he is scheduled to board a plane to Mexico, Felipe Montes, who was deported two years ago and returned to the U.S. in August to reclaim his children, is making a last ditch effort to remain in the country. Yesterday, the Latino advocacy group Presente.org launched a petition calling on federal immigration authorities to allow the father to stay in the United States.

“I want to stay here with my kids. They are born here and they are U.S. citizens,” Montes said by phone today. “I will take them to a place they don’t know, they know nothing about and they’ve never been there.”

Montes was deported in December 2010 and his three U.S.-citizen children were placed in foster care in Sparta, N.C., where he’d lived for nearly a decade. After Colorlines.com broke his story in February of last year, Presente launched a petition calling on Alleghany Country to reunite the boys with their father in Mexico. The petition garnered more than 20,000 signatures, but the county still refused to send the boys to Mexico. They remained in the care of local foster families.

In August, under pressure from the Mexican consulate, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials granted Montes a rare humanitarian parole that allowed him to return to the U.S. so that he could attend hearings on his parental rights, which he ultimately won. That parole expires on Saturday and Montes and his boys are expected to return to Mexico. But Montes has long said that outcome is a distant second best to being allowed to stay in the U.S. with his kids and his wife, Marie Montes, who was deemed unfit to care for the children alone because of drug abuse.

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