La violencia ha robado el alma del pueblo

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NOGALES, Ariz. — I remember what it was like all the days when I was ten, mi mama dijo, “Mijo vete a comprar unas tortillas.” So I walked out the door to the Morley Street garita, crossed the line and went to the tortillería. Regresé con una docena.

One day, in 1973, mi tia Meli decided to get a job at department store right at the line on the American side. She went to the Morley Street garita and told the U.S. migra man, “I’m just going over to Bracker’s to ask for job.” He said, “OK, go ahead, they have all the papers you’ll need.”

In 1976 we walked from Nogales to Nogales from the movie theater at 12 o’clock at night. We had fun and were free and felt safe.

México had a soul then, back in the day when we were kids. A soul of liberty and safety of protecting families especially the kids, a love of life, full of soul.

México’s soul is being robbed by the American demand for drugs and cheap labor and we’re blaming México. I’m a gringo, un fronterizo, viewing Americans jodiendo con México y me enoja. The drug war is for turf, a drug war fought for the lives of the U.S. meth addicts. The United States is killing the soul of México for drugs. México is letting it happen to itself, suicide; and Americans blame México for the violencia mientras asesinamos el país.

The murders are spreading; the evil violence has robbed the border, todo el país de su preciosa alma.

Yesterday… Estaba sentado en línea para cruzar la frontera cuando el vendedor de periódicos pasó y alcancé a leer el encabezado ,“Conocida dama Nogalense torturada y ejecutada” y debajo del encabezado su nombre… No lo podía creer.

I was sitting in my car at the line when I saw the headline, “Well Known Nogales Lady Tortured and Executed” under the header her name… I could not believe it. The Nogales I knew as a child was tortured and executed in the headline. The dead woman and I lived in the same neighborhood. We played hopscotch together, chasing the ice cream truck with 20 cents for nieve.

Al llegar a mi casa todos comentaban el horrendo suceso. En ese momento me desconecté de la conversación y las múltiples especulaciones al respecto. Yo conocí a la Nogalense torturada y ejecutada cuando éramos niños. Vivíamos en el mismo barrio. Jugábamos a la bebeleche juntas, perseguíamos al carrito de las nieves cuando teníamos 20 centavos para un helado. Escuchábamos juntas el programa de radio “ La mano peluda”, lo cual era para nosotros lo más espeluznante del día.

I went back to the time when we could walk the streets free and without fear or immediate danger. What happened? When did everything change? Me transporté a la época esa cuando podíamos correr libres en la calle, sin miedo, sin inminente peligro. No había diferencia de edades ni de clase social. Ni a qué escuela asistíamos. Todos éramos amigos y compañeros de juego , éramos del mismo barrio.

When we were kids, we went to he same schools and played together everyday en el mismo barrio. ¿Qué pasó? ¿En qué momento cambió todo?

When will we appreciate what we lost? How sad our human state of being has become. México is a poor country, without many rules in everyday life, filled with corruption, yet a democracy that is slowly improving.

¿Por qué no apreciamos algo hasta que lo perdemos? Triste condición humana. México es un país pobre, sin muchas reglas, con muchas excepciones, con una democracia todavía mal entendida. La vida fronteriza combines the best of two worlds as well as the worst of both.

Many Mexicans wouldn’t know where their next meal would come from, but they had soul; they had peace in society. Narcotraficantes feeding the U.S.’s demand for an escape from reality with meth and its violence has robbed the peace from the life still, many people still go hungry. We americanos stole the soul of México for meth and we’re getting away with it.

Aquí en la frontera, si así lo quieres, puedes tener acceso a lo mejor de dos mundos, y por supuesto también a lo peor de ambos.

We had peace. Our homes were our sanctuaries; now have even we lost that somehow. Now the best of what little we had was robbed by violence, organized crime by U.S. meth addicts. Today the common citizen suffers from the scourge of the “rule of the drug law,” kidnapping, murder, insecurity. Even your house can be “confused” and then your home may be shot, bombed, destroyed, and you and your family, your children, husband or wife are helpless, vulnerable victims of this new era of violence and it is wrong.

We must get the soul back!

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3 Comments

  1. Well said, George. You captured the essence of the impact of this insanity on people en ambos lados de la frontera. The answers to solve the problems are complex and I fear I will not live to see the ultimate resolution. I pray it does not take too long.

    I miss our trips across the line to our favorite restaurantes and tiendas. Someday, perhaps the madness will get under control and the perpetrators of the violence will cease their destruction. Until the demand for the services they sell on this side of the border is also considerably reduced, the problem will be perpetual.

    Be well, and be safe, mi hermano.

  2. George Thomson

    Thank you Bob. I find my frequent trips into Mexico safe. For the most part those in danger are working for or against the Narcos. The greatest of all crimes in the drug war are the murders of reporters covering the truth about the U.S. War on Drugs in the news. They are my heroes.

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