Thursday, July 20, 2006

Democracy in Diapers

A friend sent me an online petition against Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the vantz who claims the elections in Mexico were tainted and is asking for a recount. According to the email, the undersigned are too busy working for Mexico to demonstrate against AMLO, but apparently not busy enough to avoid writing mostly idiotic comments right next to their signatures.
I think circulating a petition is great. But reading the petition, I was struck by the immaturity of the language. It sounds like it was written by a not particularly bright elementary schoolteacher. Whoever wrote it uses the word "working" like seven hundred times, to imply that the undersigned are working very hard to keep Mexico afloat, as opposed to those lazy asses who just go to marches, I assume. I don't doubt for a second that these are hardworking people, but methinks the lady doth protest too much with all this work nonsense. If you really care about the outcome, get off your cushy ass and do something about it, like demonstrate peacefully for the election results. The picture of the hundreds of thousands of people that marched for AMLO was in the cover of the New York Times and seen around the world. It wouldn't hurt the other side's cause if they did a counterdemonstration, spontaneously organized, peaceful and legal, just to show how many people support the results of the elections. I bet that would make the cover of many international papers as well. But the rich in Mexico think everything can be done by asking the maid to do it for them, or now via the internet.
The petition also claims that Mexico is getting a bad image abroad because of AMLO's kvetching, that he is embarrassing Mexico in front of the rest of the world, like a misbehaved child in front of the houseguests, despite the fact that the international observers "congratulated" Mexico on the "perfect realization" of the elections. Puhleeze.
Number one, Mexico already has a bad image abroad already for a variety of reasons, and don't get me started because the list is endless, but here are some random words: corruption, impunity and utter social injustice. Secondly, attacking the guy personally with epithets like stubborn and paranoid and ridiculous does not lend credibility or gravitas to the petition. Therefore, I did not sign it, despite the fact that I hate the mofo.

In contrast, I also got a very well written piece by Roberto Blancarte, which appeared in Milenio newspaper, which was the opposite of this petition. Blancarte voted for AMLO and regretted it when he saw the kind of spectacle AMLO is bent on unleashing. His is a cogent, serious criticism and an appeal to the Mexican left to grow up and act responsibly, regardless of ideology. That'll be the day.
I think both right and left in Mexico have a long way to go in order to mature. At least, the level of discourse needs to rise if they don't want to look like utter fools in the eyes of the rest of the world.

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