The here and now... and what and why

Complacency is a trap. At least that’s what I was thinking when I up and left the comfort of a Yankee prep school gig, where I taught music, amongst other things, for 28 years. There was also that life long career as a composer, musician and artist.

First, it was a year in St. Thomas, USVI, working as a reporter and shooting photography and then, a year in San Agustin Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico.
Time passed.
More time passed and a year back in the Athens of America followed by a hasty return to Oaxaca where it is all happening.
This time in San Sebastian Etla just down the road from San Agustin.

Click on an image to see it larger.
For additional photography please visit my flickr page.
You can find my music on Jango (World & latin - Worldbeat) and at iTunes and most online stores.
¡Soy consciente de todas las tradiciones del Internet!
If you are coming to Oaxaca, please contact me for tours or advice.

Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo
The view from Corazon del Pueblo

The hereafter re me

My Photo
Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Musician, photographer, videographer, reporter, ex-officio teacher, now attempting to be a world traveler

Sunday, March 11, 2012

from a story on Noticiasnetmx

From January 1st through March 10th of this year, there have been 96 blockades, marches and sit-ins, as many as three per day. Of course, these cause chaos in the city, business is lost, people get upset, traffic is impossible.  Still, many of the concerns are real and legit.  The protesters included social organizations, farmers and inhabitants of municipalities well away from the city who demand solutions to a diverse set of problems.  Then, of course, there are the teachers, Section 22, and the students from  the Independent University “ Benito Juárez ” of Oaxaca (UABJO).

Blockades are effective because there are so few major roads in and out of the city.  There are 500,000 inhabitants in the city and surrounding areas.  There are lots of cars, trucks and buses.  Motos and taxis and burros, oh my.   If you want to shut down the road to Mexico City or the Isthmo or the coast, it is relatively easy.  Plus, the right to protest is a time honored privilege here and people take full advantage of it.

The city of Oaxaca supplies 60% of the state's economy and the protests have a far-reaching impact on all aspects of business and life in general.  Everyone is affected.  It ripples through the various sectors of the economy.  Kids don't get educated.  People can't work.  Ambulances can't get through.  You get the picture.  You notice I have not mentioned all the construction projects that are adding to the fun.

Some of the issues are long standing.  Some are legit and others, not so much, more political than anything else.  It does seem sometimes that as soon as one issue is addressed, another pops up.

Still, the place continues to function pretty well given the circumstances.  I drove into the city this morning and was confronted with buses blocking entrance to the city center.  Ah well, it is normal.  I slapped the car in reverse and backed down several one-way streets to get to where I need to be.  There has to be a better way.  Anyone have the answer?  Anyone?  Bueller?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The right to protest is, as you say, a time honored privilege.
This does not include the right to block pedestrian or vehicular traffic or access to public buildings.
The laws are on the books but the police have neither the will nor the ability to enforce them.
There may be an answer or a better way but nothing will change until there is enforcement.