Video and story by Kaiti Chritz

Immigration is a topic currently being debated around the world, particularly in the United States. Political debates have surged the issue to the forefront and sparked conversation on the matter across the entire country.

But how are we taking in information about immigration in our country? News reports, YouTube videos, movies, newspapers, and social media sites such as Facebook, twitter, and Instagram are fueling the debate and unveiling personal opinions on the topic.

These opinions are typically bold, sometimes uplifting, and sometimes ruthless. Images and conversations have been created and curated by following a search of terms such as immigration, deportation, and migration through social media and news organizations.

The selected images have been chosen to show some of the conversations happening in the country behind the walls of television, phone, and computer screen. 

Faceless Debate: The Media of Immigration is a compilation of recent media communications on the topic of immigration, which seems to be overwhelmingly covered without truly understanding the Faces of Migration.

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Bio: Kaiti Chritz is a senior majoring in biology and photojournalism at Central Michigan University. She is currently photo editor at Central Michigan Life, the student newspaper and has worked with the Alaska National Park Service, Alaska Sea Life Center, CMU college of Science and Technology, and Grand Central Magazine, a student online publication. As a photojournalist, her main goal is to share scientific research and conservation through photography and filmmaking, giving insight to the ecosystems of this land, the creatures who call it home, and the people who dedicate their life to learning about and protecting it. 

Experience: Taking on the challenge of telling a visual story on how immigration is communicated about in our country took a focused and creative mind. Some of these images were created with a single frame with multiple exposures, and some were curated images from social media. I developed a style for the layered images a few days into the project, and just ran with it. The search into this topic wasn’t easy for me. I tend to stray away from social media and controversial conversation so it was eye opening to see the conversations happening in the media and social media. It truly seems that the screen on a television or computer acts as an invisible barrier that makes people feel protected, as if they can say anything they want with no consequence. And honestly, this may or may not be true with the freedom of expression online. I myself cannot imagine saying or typing some of the things that I’ve read the past few weeks. This experience has pushed me way outside of my comfort zone, creatively and mentally. I wasn't following a family or a single human being, but the culture of the online community. I had a week of long days and nights searching for things that I didn’t personally want to read, but things that I know need to be brought to light. I hope the images I created and curated intrigues viewers and has them contemplate what we say on social media, and how the media portrays human issues.