Archive | July, 2009

Feminist Voices from Honduras

7 Jul

This is a video made by CATTRACHAS, a feminist group in Honduras denouncing the military coup take-over of June 28th, 2009. Since the mid- 20th century, dozens of military coups and dictatorships have installed themselves violently in democratic countries through out Latin America. Personally, one of the most tragic stories is of Chile’s Salvador Allende, who was killed in the presidential palace that Pinochet forcibly stepped into. Allende was a doctor, turned socialist after learning of the great health disparities between privileged and impoverished. He was the first democratically elected  socialist president in Latin America. However, the United States being in the middle of their Cold War would not allow this in their “own backyard”. Pinochet was trained at the School of the Americas, and the coup received financial backing from U.S. mining corporations along with political maneuvering from Henry Kissinger within Nixon’s presidency.

Chile’s September 11, 1973 coup is exemplary of U.S. military intervention throughout Latin America, whose patterns continue to surface. In Honduras, Roberto Micheletti, is also a former student of the School of the Americas. Honduras also served as a base for counter-insurgency operations during the 1980’s. On Sunday, Zelaya, the ousted Honduran president, circled his country’s airport but could not land due to military vehicles blocking the run-way.

Military dictatorships and violence just doesnt rub off well on me. Mainly because it is women who have to carry the burden of violence when we are raped, our partners disappear, and our children are tortured and thrown in ditches.

Woman in Honduras stands up to military.

Woman in Honduras stands up to military.

This is not happening in Honduras, but there is still a highly tensioned level of state-violence in effect. On Sunday, shots were fired from inside the airport towards the demonstrators who gathered outside in support of Zelaya. One person died.

Obviously men have military and political power in the world, and it is obvious that most everything they have to show for is violence, oppression, and exploitation. It is not ok. If women came into power, would we even have nuclear bombs? Would women train soldiers and send them into foreign countries to kill and be killed? Would women dehumanize men, women and children? Any form of extremity is dangerous and I am not advocating for complete domination by women. It might be nice. But living in balance and in harmony would be much nicer. Men are not the villains, patriarchal culture simply needs to end. Is dialogue and negotiation still an option for Honduras, or will men’s violent territorial aggressiveness be the story re-told for generations to come?

For more independent news information on Honduras go to Telesur and to the School of the Americas Watch.

Mi Corazon Quiere Escribir

6 Jul

Love-Gun by Malcolm WatsonMi Corazon quiere escribir
Quiere contar secretos
Quiere que reconoscan su lujo y brillo
Porque ya no aguante el silencio

Mi Corazon se siente rebelde
Quiere correr
Quiere subir montanas
Porque ya no aguanta estar encerrada

Mi Corazon cree en romance
Le gusta las mariposas aventureras
Le gusta las flores dulces
Porque los sentimientos necesitan expresarse

Mi Corazon le gusta lo intellectual
Le gusta el arte de manana
Le gusta la poesia de ayer
Porque ahorra quierre leer tus libros de amor

Alex Sanchez Bail Hearing Update

1 Jul

FREE ALEX SANCHEZI am sad to say that Alex Sanchez was not released yesterday by the courts. This comes to show that a fair process has already been denied in this case. A case where over 100 character letters of support was scuffed off by the courts, Over 1 million dollars in bail was raised by community in less than a week and the court still stood by their words, “he’s a risk to the community”.

I was unable to attend the court hearing myself, but I am adding a link to a piece written for The Nation by Senator Tom Hayden, here. This is a really well written article with insight given from Father Boyle of Homeboy Industries on MS members refuting the information that the FBI is putting out there about Alex, in fact they laugh at the idea of Alex being a “shot caller”. Tom Hayden was at the bail hearing and was questioned as to why he did not put up his house as a bail asset if he believed in Alex’s innocence, at which point he did offer the title to his home as bail. The court said they would not take his home as an asset either way.

Also, below is an informal report by Sandra, who was inside the court hearing and by Sonji, outside on the streets for the community press conference. After all of this, Juan Gabriel’s song, “Pero que Necesidad”, is the only thing making me feel better, watch the whole video, you’ll understand why…

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“i just got back…sandra and i totally needed a beer after that one…

so bail was denied..apparently because he is a “flight risk” and he has contacts in El Salvador…totally ignoring the fact that alex is here due to political assylum..he can’t go back…this is just another way of keeping him locked up..in a matter of days..alex defense was able to raise 1.1 million dollars to bail him out..just goes to show the power of people, right? and tom hayden actually offered to put his house up as callateral and the judge said NO..Alex stays in jail..

These are some notes that  sandra took because she was inside the hearing…im putting everything as bullet points.
* it was mentioned that alex can loose his political asylum
* he has no respect for US law.
* he’s a danger to the community
* his defense attorney had not been provided any discovery (evidence documents) before the hearing so he couldn’t provide a good defense for this hearing

* What they have as evidence:
– about two dozen phone calls where intercepted by wire taps 2000-2001-2006
– a 1999 photo taken of alex coming out of a anti-gang conference..they said he is posing with gang members throwing gang signs
– although alex has taken most of his gang tattoos off he still has one around his neck they said that shows that he’s still in the gang and that the tattoo removal program is a sham..the defense response was that
tattoo removals are very expensive he did take most of them off and the only one left is around his collarbone..the most painful place to remove a tat from

* charges: extortion, narcotics trafficking, swaying witness testimony, raqueteering, murder and conspiracy to murder
* they said alex has been living a double life and that Homies was created as a MS front and that they have proof of him being a shot caller for MS13, normandie clique.

i was outside and took notes of the press conference…bear with me..

Monica one of the board members addressed:
* alex is not a flight risk and a part of the community
* over 100 letters were written from people around the country and given to the judge.
* the Board of Directors and Homies Unidos stand by Alex.

Tony Mohammed repin’ the Nation of Islam:
* Nation of Islam stands by Alex and Homies Unidos
* this is an injustice being committed
*
Alex has broker more peace deals and saved more lives then any lapd or sherriff officers
*we are not pleading for quilt or innocence but his honor as someone who has put himself in the front lines and bringing peace between the black and brown community.

Deacon Douglas Johnson on behalf of Greg Boyle of HOmeboy Industries:
* Father Boyle is out of town
* Homeboy Industries stands by Alex and Homies Unidos
* Alex stands by the demonized and placed him self on the margins; true prophets of justice often pay a price.
* we wait with alex and stand by him as he stands by those disfranchised and readly left out.

Oscar sanchez – Alex’s brother:
* was confident due to bail amount raised and his history with community work. is disappointed. thanks for all the support…

Senator Tom Hayden:
*the judge said alex had no community support, that he leads a double life and we are all being fooled.  (he kind of went over what happened in the hearing)
* he said that in his experience this case is weak

Cecil B. Murray FAME Pastor, was not present but fame stands by alex and homies.
Luis Rodriguez the author is Always Running was also present…
so was a bunch of folks from homies, yjc, i don’t know who else but it was a decent size crowd and it was very diverse too…

for more info go to – www.wearealex.org

that’s it..i got to go throw up now.. peace…”