Tag Archives: Institutional Revolutionary Party

mexican cease-fire on christmas

Javier Sicilia is a Mexican poet that I’ve posted about before. He’s the guy that instigated an activist movement to work towards obtaining and spreading the message of peace (the Movement of Peace with Justice and Dignity) in Mexico ever since the Pacifico Sur cartel shooting and murdering of his son back in March.

Sicilia attended an international book fair this past weekend in Guadalajara and asked that the cartels and the Mexican government pause and have “a cease-fire” moment on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, the 24th and 25th. He requests that these two entities have this break not only for the sake of Christmas and the meaning behind it, but also so they may “reflect on what they are doing, what they are doing to the country.”

He went on to say, “I ask for this truce as a momentary pause, not just in honor of Christmas, but to think about the harm we’re doing to ourselves and what those guilty of murder and corruption are doing to themselves, and the damage done by authorities who do not fulfill their obligations,” Sicilia said.   In the event, he called for all the people there take a minute of silence to commemorate all of those whom have died in the drug war and those who continue to die. Right after that is when he asked for the days of cease-fire.

Sicilia and the many other authors and writers that were with him were crying out about the irresponsibility of the government.   Writer Alejandro Rosas said something that Mexico must be very worried about is “a very incipient, very weak democracy,” and targeted the issue of the 2012 presidential elections in Mexico.   Rosas believes that the end of the world would come if the PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party) came back into power. This comment brought a large applause from the audience.   Along with the applause coming from this political attack, came the cheers from the attacks and criticisms targeted at President Calderon who initiated the entire all out war against the cartels and who as a result, in many people’s opinions, advanced/widened the violence in Mexico.

Writer Paco Ignacio Taibo II demanded that those at fault for the situation and contributing to Mexico’s “falling to pieces” should be identified.   He also requested that the population attempt to unify “the national discontent into a movement that will remove from power those who now hold it.”

I like that this event happened because it’s inspiring. It’s a group of authors and writers proclaiming peace and declaring something be done and have some ideas about what could be done. It’s not a group of politicians making things up or saying what the people want to hear and then do nothing about it, or add to the violence. What these writers want to do is take away from the violence and promote peace. They are fully aware that an all-out war is not going to contribute to the peace they are trying to spread. There are good people out there trying to do good things, if only people would listen. I’m curious to see if Sicilia’s request will be fulfilled…if the violence will stop for those two Christmas days. At this point all one can do about the situation is continue to spread peace, and hope that things will somehow get better. As well as Mexicans taking a good look at the politicians’ issues and figuring out who may have the best plan to end this headstrong battle.

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Days and Days of the Dead

Seattle PI

Guillermo Arias / AP

Today and tomorrow (November 1-2), is what they call in Mexico “El Dia de Los Muertos,” in translation the Day of the Dead. The tradition of this Mexican national holiday includes families taking the favorite foods and drinks of those that have passed on to the cemeteries and “decorat[ing] the graves of departed relatives with marigolds, candles and sugar skulls.”

These days there are many families visiting an abundant amount of graves since “Every day is Day of the Dead now…We have 40,000 days of the dead,” said a man quoted in a Seattle PI online article.

About 40,000 people have died in the Mexican drug war and the amount of graves continue to increase.

The reporter from the previously mentioned Seattle PI article said his last visit in Mexico was the early 90’s. He talks about how there were also cartels back in those days selling cocaine and marijuana to the U.S. and there were also killings of an archbishop and a head PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party) government official but globally Mexico “was not thought to be particularly violent then. There was no running tally of the dead.” Which when I thought about it, it’s absolutely true. I don’t remember hearing anything dramatic or outrageous coming from Mexico since before the drug war. Of course you have your occasional immigration stories, but I can’t recall ever thinking of Mexico as an extremely dangerous place to be.

The reporter said the country has changed dramatically since he was last there. Especially economically. In present day, “Mexican politicians can be openly pro-American at times, and Mexico is truly multinational now, with everything from Costco megastores to Ferrari dealerships.” The economy is much more successful and changing from a poor based community to a more middle class population. But they have to be careful with the whole “pro-American” thing, because if they make any wrong decision, their economy could end up like the United States, which is down in the dumps currently.

Even though there’s a positive transformation of people moving up in classes financially, there are still those young adults “who neither study nor find legitimate jobs, and may seek work or be pressed into service by drug cartels,” which is the scary part. If they could just find jobs for those kids then fewer people will have an encounter with being forced into working for the cartels.

As of now, election time is coming up in Mexico and after 10 years of having Calderon and his party (National Action Party), people seem to be ready to turn the power back to the PRI in hopes that they could pick the country back up and reform it to a violent-free state. As of now the “presumed candidate” has not said anything on his plan of action towards the drug violence.

Since I’m not fully informed on the policies and beliefs of each party, I can’t really say which one I would the think the better choice to govern the country would be, but I do hope that whoever may take the reins will responsibly uphold the importance of the nation’s well-being and take full accountability for decisions made towards this issue, and consistently work on it until it can be mostly and/or fully resolved.

Seattle PI article: http://www.seattlepi.com/news/article/Every-day-is-Day-of-the-Dead-in-Mexico-drug-war-2242631.php#ixzz1cW1U2PVa


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