The current political crisis in Latin America promises to be one of the most interesting events that the continent has ever experienced.
Whether it’s poverty, corruption, crippling debt,racism,misogyny, or violence, Latin America is a region that has been defined more by its intense problems than by what it has achieved in the years since the removal of colonial leaders.
I say interesting because I really don’t think any of this could have real impact on the livelihood of people unless there’s a true commitment to whatever reforms or revolutions result from the unrest.
The intense pressure exerted by foreign powers like the United States, Russia, and China, together with a globalized economic system, and a complete disorganization by protesting groups makes change so much harder.
If anything, the Arab Spring a few years ago has also taught us that modern uprisings need to be changed in order to succeed; the organization, objectives, and execution of protests and government reform during the Arab Spring had mixed results at best.
At least from the perspective of someone in Mexico, a country that was promised a democratic socialist leader after decades of authoritarian conservative policy, I just wonder what will change. Lopez Obrador has had all the tools to change the country for the better and he hasn’t been able. By all the tools I literally mean all the tools, his party has an intense majority in Congress, he still has the support of the majority of the population, and given the weakness of Mexican institutions, he’s got practically free reign over the nation.
Meanwhile, the coalition of activists that pushed the established parties out of office is in shambles. Being united against an oppressive system apparently didn’t mean they were united on how to tackle the problems this country faces.
I know I can’t compare other Latin American countries to the situation here, each country is different, and they live through different crises. But it just looks like the same political facade with extra steps.
Because it’s easy to believe shit can change without actually getting your hands dirty; without going to communities and facing local leaders, local bullies, and confronting the toxic culture that might exist there. It is something harder than protesting in the capital, or making the president escape on a private jet.
decades, or even centuries, of forming toxic structures and ideas can’t go away without true commitment... it is something my particular nation hasn’t been able to do in its entire history, despite three very promising revolutions.
So, yeah, it’s going to be interesting, and if any of you like politics watching this closely might be very educational. But I’m not holding my breath.