“You say you want a revolution. Well, you know…”

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We witnessed a mini-revolution here in Illinois this week. You’ve heard of the Republican wave that took the House and Senate this week. Our candidates, Rep. Tammy Duckworth and Senator Richard Durbin, survived but it came as a shock to many of us that businessman, Bruce Rauner, will be our new governor. There’ve been low spirits and griping among many in the northern part of the state. How will we survive these next six years with Scott Walker 2.0 at the head of our government?

Outside of the “population center” people are happy about the news, as long as we have some change to the old, corrupt system… Time to see how that hopey changey stuff works out for all of them. Only time will tell how this all plays out but we’re the one’s that have to struggle though it. Woe is us, right?

Violence in Mexico has lost the power to capture headlines in the past decade but that doesn’t mean it’s gone. The fact that the PRI, a politcal party that ruled the country for decades before losing control at about the same time that the violence was ramped up, is now back at the helm of the government could be one of the reasons that we hear less about this problem. I’m too far outside the bubble to fully understand what’s happening down there but the disappearance of 43 student protesters was a story that nagged at me like a toothache that I’m afraid to have checked out.

The way I’ve heard the story is that some students were handed over to the cartels because they were at risk of disrupting a party that was being held by a Mayor’s wife. The charred remains of the young protesters were found and the cartel has admitted to the killing. This cooperation between the drug trade and government to shut down dissenting voices doesn’t come as a surprise but it does echo throughout Mexican history. The story of the Niños Heroes de Chapultepec isn’t exactly the same but the loss of engaged young people that stand proudly in defense of their country is. For them to die at the hands of their own government doesn’t sit well.

Last night, the bubble that I felt outside of burst when the Attorney General of Mexico ended a press conference by saying “Ya me canse/I’m tired” and walking of out the room. This appears to have set the country on fire. I’ve seen a few images here and there, of the National Palace on fire and police huddled together in riot gear about to be over taken. The hashtag  has overtaken . The people finally agree with the government about something, they’re tired too and they’re not going to take it anymore. This is both inspiring and terrifying. My feelings about it are tied in a knot.

That’s all I can get out at the moment but I’ll say that I’ve checked my privilege. Any loses I’ve chalked up in the last few weeks pale in comparison to what’s happening in Mexico City right now. An old friend had a saying that applies to my problems here at home “Cry two tears in a bucket.”

*This isn’t reporting. It’s an unresearched account of my reactions to something that’s happening right now, in a city far, far away but close to my heart.

PS. As I proofread this post, a story came out saying the fire was either staged or the work of a single “anarchist” who was protected by the men in riot gear… We’re going to have lots of conflicting narratives on this one.


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