Let me start with a few verses from “Not Dark Yet” by Bob Dylan:
[…] I’ve been down on the bottom of a World full of lies/ I ain’t looking for nothing in anyone’s eyes/ Sometimes my burden seems more than I can bear/ It’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there […]
We blame this darkness, which has not stopped threatening Mexico and the United States, and which portrays the face of hundreds of thousands of dead, disappeared, persecuted, tortured, butchered, displaced and incarcerated; for all of them, I ask for a minute of silence.
We have reached, as Dylan says, the “bottom of a world full of lies” underneath war, especially when it comes to such an absurd war as the one against drugs. We call such bottom death, humiliation, illegal trade of guns, money laundering, criminalization, corruption, fear, horror, prisons, the strengthening of crime and government violence. For the same reason, we refer to it as the crisis of democracy, the annihilation of freedoms and the contempt for immigrants. This bottom of pain is also, as the song of Dylan says: “a burden that seems more than we can bear”.
The burden we bear upon us contains the weight of our dead, of our missing ones, of those displaced, of our criminalized and humiliated immigrants and, in my case, the weight of the murdering of a good, professional and athletic son, who had never tried drugs; an innocent victim of this imbecilic war just as thousands more. Despite this tragedy, that we have not ceased carrying as a burden for over a year, instead of looking for nothing in anyone’s eyes as Dylan says, we are looking for something, always looking for something in everyone’s eyes: relief, justice and a path to peace. We have done so in Mexico, traveling across the country and holding a dialogue with everyone. We now do it here, traveling across the United States while intending to also hold a dialogue with you, because if Mexico has grave responsibilities for this war that is sinking everything into darkness, the United States also has a part in this. This war began here 40 years ago, when president Nixon decided against all sense of democracy and forgetting what had formerly happened with the prohibition of alcohol in the 30’s, that drugs are not a matter of freedom, of the market and the government’s control, but a matter of national security that had to be fought through violence.
Since then, in order to protect the 23 million drug consumers in the United States, this nation initiated this war that has destroyed Colombia and which now in turn is destroying Mexico, Central America, and is also menacing to destroy in the medium term the United States itself. This is nothing but the imposition of barbarity over civilization, of violence over peace and the triumph of authoritarianism over democracy. [++]