Monday, September 20, 2004

¡Vivan las Mariposas!

Last night was book club, our monthly selection this time around was "In the Time of the Butterflies. " I vaguely remember voting for this tale back in June (one of the primary tenets of our group being the popular vote always wins...unfortunately we all live in Illinois, not Florida).

This novel was a absolute eye-opener, as I embarrassingly knew nothing of the real events and had not heard of the horrifying regime that held the Dominican Republic under its thumb for 30+ years. Not too surprising really, as being a product of the American school system, my history classes consisted exclusively of dead white men's accomplishments until high school. After that there was some choice, and I quickly enrolled in HerStory (history from women's viewpoints), Russian History, and Analysis of Subversive Countercultures (nicknamed "Hippies, Beatniks and Punks" by the student body).....alas, there wasn't a Latino option or I would have taken that under consideration as well.

The recent Iraqi debacle brings this story home even long are we* to repeat mistakes of the past? Saddam was by no means the first dictator, nor necessarily the most brutal, and sadly, probably not the last. How many tyrants ascending to power are we* going to allow? How can they be stopped quickly and peacefully? How can the reluctant sheep of the majority be shown that their apathy, ignorance and fear feed the consequences that bring these despots to power in the first place?

* "we" in the above comments is directed at the world community as a whole, the U.S. being only a small part of the equation.

In America, this should serve as yet another wake up call (stop hitting snooze people!!!) as November is creeping nearer and the vote is way too close to call. Though Bush is certainly not the sadistic masochist Sadam was, nor a machismo power-whore like Trujillo don't be fooled.....

He IS dangerous!!!

Isn't this perhaps how a dictatorship starts? First, minor concessions (ie: the Patriot Act), then
Women's Reproductive Rights
disappear....and it's a scary, slippery slope to being forced to have a picture of GW in every home (an El Jefe tatic to appear the "watching eye" and "benefactor" of every Latino home) and suddenly the rights, freedom and liberty we fought for in 1776 are a faded memory.


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