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'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Letter to the Editor
Monday, July 22, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

As a black man, I am highly offended by the assertions made by Bruce Braden in his letter “Bad laws tyranny” (July 11 and when he compares the struggle of gay marriage to the plight of blacks in this country.

It is not a civil-rights issue or struggle. When I walk into a room, I do not have to tell people I am black; it is announced from the moment I cross the threshold. Unless one is “out of the closet,” no one can or will ever know one's sexuality. People have hidden this from friends and loved ones for years; am I able to do this?

Also, when was the last time a police officer pulled over someone who is gay and in the “wrong neighborhood”? I have been pulled over on more than one occasion for “DWB” (“driving while black”)!

Have gay people ever experienced being told they cannot eat or live somewhere or have to ride in the back of a bus? Have they had dogs and water hoses turned on them, been denied access to equal education, made to drink from a separate water fountain or use a different restroom? All of these answers are a resounding “no!”

All people should be treated with respect and not harassed for any reason; I loathe bullying of any form. But gays and lesbians do not know the pain of what I know as a person of color and what I go through every day for just being black (without having to tell anyone).

Please do not compare my pain with their pain; it is apples and oranges!

Norman F. Hargraves IV


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