adBlockCheck

Migrant Worker Family Thrilled To See Selves On Cover Of The Economist

Top Headlines

Local

Mom On Vacation Marveling At Time Difference Compared To Home

SAN DIEGO—Having already pointed out when everyone back home was getting off work and when the local nightly news was starting, area mother Pam Westin spent much of the first day of her family’s week-long California vacation marveling at the time difference compared to where they lived, sources confirmed Tuesday.

Relaxing Tea Better Fucking Work

SMYRNA, DE—Saying he needed to be transported to a tranquil, untroubled state of calmness pronto, local man Pete McCartin, 29, told reporters Thursday that a fresh-brewed mug of purportedly relaxation-promoting tea had better fucking work.

Parents Into New Snack Now

BALLSTON, NY—Noticing they had both a Lightly Salted and a Tomato Basil version of the previously unknown product in their cupboard upon arriving for a visit home this past weekend, Jared Randall, 26, confirmed Wednesday that his parents are into a new snack now.

Mom Declares Garage Her Next Big Project

DES MOINES, IA—Announcing to family members it was getting “just about impossible” to find anything out there, local mother Pam Westin, 53, declared Friday that the garage is her next big project, sources confirmed.

Emergency Crew Rushes To Pull Child Out Of Football Huddle

CHESAPEAKE, VA—Saying they immediately feared the worst when they saw the child in such a treacherous, life-threatening situation, onlookers confirmed that an emergency crew rushed onto a local sports field Wednesday afternoon and moved quickly to pull a young boy out of a football huddle.

Office Manager Unveils New Rule

WARREN, MI—Stipulating that the regulation would take effect immediately, Summit Industries office manager Angela Werner reportedly unveiled a new rule Tuesday in a company-wide email.

Aunt On Facebook Casually Advocates War Crime

WILLIAMSPORT, PA—Arguing that it was time to deal decisively with the threat of terrorism, local aunt Deborah Massey casually advocated a war crime Monday in a brief Facebook post, sources confirmed. “Any city that has ISIS people hiding out in it needs to be bombed to the ground.

Mom Learns About New Vegetable

MERRILVILLE, IN—Excitedly sharing the news with her husband and two teenage children, local mother Karen Tyson, 49, learned about a new vegetable Wednesday, sources confirmed.

Cover Letter Specifically Tailored To Company Even Sadder Than Generic Ones

BEDMINSTER, NJ—Wincing noticeably as they read the applicant’s claim that he has “always wanted to work for the leading midsize pharmaceutical advertising and brand strategy group in the tri-state area,” sources at Percepta Healthcare Communications confirmed Tuesday that a cover letter specifically tailored to their company was much sadder than any of the generic ones they had received for a recently posted job opening.
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next

Migrant Worker Family Thrilled To See Selves On Cover Of The Economist

SAN CARLOS, TX—A family of Mexican migrant workers was thrilled to find its picture on the cover of the Jan. 25 issue of The Economist, vegetable farmhand, factory laborer, and fruit picker Luis Moreno reported Monday.

The issue that made the Morenos famous.

"Imagine my surprise when I walked past the newsstand and saw my own face on the cover of a magazine—a very respected international publication, no less," said Moreno, 34, speaking with the aid of a translator. "I couldn't believe it. I opened the magazine and there we were again, right there under the headline, 'Hard Harvest: The Enduring Plight Of Migrant Workers In America.' I ran to my wife with a copy of the issue as fast as I could and said, 'Hey, Rosa, we're famous!"

Ever since losing his job as a mechanic's assistant in Mexico City four years ago, Moreno, his wife Rosa, and their three young sons have roamed the American South and Midwest in search of seasonal labor.

"Judging by the scenery and the size of little Esteban, I am guessing the photo was taken in north Texas, shortly after the October harvest," Moreno said. "We were relocating from the lower Rio Grande valley to Iowa, where I can usually find winter work in the slaughterhouses or the pork-processing plants. How lucky we were to be on that particular road that day!"

Continued Moreno: "I do not specifically remember anyone taking my picture, but that is not surprising if we were in the middle of traveling. It gets very tiring, of course, and sometimes you do not pay attention to distractions."

Moreno praised The Economist's photo editor for choosing the cover image.

"The clothes we were wearing created a very interesting pastiche of colors, which is probably why he chose that particular shot," Moreno said. "Also, the photographer caught us at a moment when our expressions powerfully conveyed the great weariness we were feeling."

The seven-page cover story, which featured a second photo of the Moreno family inside the magazine, focused on George W. Bush and Mexican president Vicente Fox's long-running dispute over migrant workers and the legalization of undocumented Mexicans in the U.S.

"I was so excited," Moreno said. "I had a little money saved, enough for three copies. I sent one home to Mexico to my grandmother, I put one away to keep nice, and the other I used to show all of my friends."

Within hours of the issue hitting newsstands, Moreno said he began hearing from friends, coworkers, and relatives.

Guillermo Nunez (left), Luis Moreno's best friend, shows off the issue.

"I call home to my mother in Oaxaca whenever I can, just to make sure everyone is okay, especially our little Juanita, who is too young to travel," Moreno said. "The first thing she says to me is, 'Your cousin Carlos called to say he saw you in The Economist. He says to call him right away. My son, the celebrity!'"

Rosa said the cover story has made her and the rest of the Moreno clan the talk of the migrant-worker community.

"It's amazing how many people have seen it," Rosa said. "We were passing through Sebastian on the way to Progreso, and we stopped to visit some old friends from Mexico City who found work in a tannery. The first thing out of everyone's mouth was, 'Here comes the cover girl!' You should have seen me blush."

"Our friend Miguel and his wife were teasing us, calling us 'undocumented migrants' like they did in the story," Rosa added, "but it was all in good fun."

Moreno, who read the article with the help of a translator, said he felt The Economist's assessment of migrant workers and their plight was "evenhanded and intelligent."

"Basically, the author of the article said migrant workers are net contributors to the economy of a country because they are disproportionately of working age, and the receiving country has not had to pay for their education," Moreno said. "And they pointed out that migration does not seem to increase unemployment among the native-born."

"To be fair, it did say it may reduce their pay," Rosa said. "But I agree with Luis that it certainly was a fairer look at the subject than I have come to expect."

"I've been treated badly by many people throughout my life," added Rosa, lowering her eyes to the floor.

Though he does not expect to appear on another magazine cover any time soon, Moreno expressed hope that one day his family will have the luck to be interviewed by a Ph.D candidate conducting research in one of the seasonal worker camps.

"It's amazing what a complex system of social ties we itinerant workers maintain, considering that we are always in motion and have only limited access to modern communications," Moreno said. "Don't you think that would make a fascinating subject for a dissertation?"

Sign up For The Onion's Newsletter

Give your spam filter something to do.

X Close