Multi-American | How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

Posts of the week: Shahs of Sunset, a 'civil detention center,' coming out undocumented, when people of color go missing, more

A student activist's t-shirt, December 2010
A student activist's t-shirt, December 2010
Photo by Leslie Berestein Rojas/KPCC

The past week brought us an ethnic reality TV show that had some readers fuming, a "civil detention center" for immigrants in Texas and a growing movement of undocumented young people going public with their immigration status, among other things.

In case you missed any of the week's highlights, here are a few:


See 'Shahs of Sunset?' Share your thoughts The controversial Bravo reality show that debuted last Sunday has been infuriating many Iranian Americans. The show is the latest of a series of ethnic reality series similar to "Jersey Shore," following six wealthy Iranian Americans in and around Beverly Hills. The cast members' flashy lifestyles depicted on the show have offended viewers who say the show promotes negative stereotypes. Comments posted by several readers - including a few who defended the show - were posted in a follow-up.


Civil immigrant detention: Kinder and gentler, but still a boon for private prisons Immigration officials have unveiled a new immigrant detention center in Texas that is intended to embody the Obama administration's planned reforms to the system. The center has recreational green space and a library, among other things. But like the bulk of the detention centers the government has relied on in the past decade, it will be operated by a private prison company, one of several companies whose contracts come with financial incentives to keep detention centers full.


Coming out undocumented: How much of a political effect has the movement had? Over the last few years, a movement that began as a handful of undocumented college students going public with their immigration status as a political act has snowballed. Has attaching a face to those who would benefit from immigration reforms, a risky but increasingly popular tactic, had an effect on the more lenient deportation policies to recently come out of the White House, or on state legislation benefiting undocumented students?


When people of color go missing A recent report on how law enforcement agencies handled the death of Mitrice Richardson, a young black woman found dead in Malibu in 2010, didn't address the circumstances that led up her disappearance almost a year earlier. But her case is worth revisiting for other reasons. Critics have long contended that race placed a role not only in how her case was handled, but how it was covered by the media. As a rule, there is a wide coverage gap between cases involving white crime victims and crime victims of color.


‘Where’s your green card?’ Mississippi becomes latest immigration battleground state Tensions over immigration are brewing in Mississippi as the state becomes the latest to advance anti-illegal immigration legislation, modeled after Arizona's SB 1070. Hours after the state House approved the bill, which will likely clear the Senate, members of a university band began chanting "Where's your green card?" during a college basketball game at a Puerto Rican-born player from out of state. (And no, Puerto Ricans don't need green cards, they get U.S. citizenship at birth.)