I write from the back porch of my casa in Aragon, Mexico City, about one hour away from the heart of the city amidst the sound of barking dogs and building traffic noises on this morning of the celebrated anniversary of the Mexican Revolution.
Mexico’s Revolution Day (Dia de la Revolución) is a national public holiday that celebrates a 10-year revolution that began in 1910 to end the struggle against dictator José de la Cruz Porfirio Díaz Mori.
Outdoor events such as bazaars, festivals and parades are part of the celebrations, where shouts of “Viva la Revolución!” and “Viva Mexico!” are heard. Stories are told or sung about the revolutionary heroes who ended the struggle and helped to reform Mexico. Festive foods include enchiladas, tostadas, tacos, and fajitas. The Mexican flag – a tricolor of green, white and red with the national coat of arms in the center of the white stripe – is flown on Revolution Day."
This is particularly poignant to my current project that highlights the efforts of all of the women involved during that 10 year battle that were crucial in the revolutions success, Las Soldaderas. To this day those women still largely go unrecognised and for the most part have been labelled 'Adelitas'. The 'ita' part of that name references them as small and 'small' they were most definitely not.
Author Elena Poniatowska celebrated the soldaderas' courage and fortitude. Poniatowska wrote, "Without the soldaderas, there is no Mexican Revolution—they kept it alive and fertile, like the earth."
"Vulnerable to abduction and rape at home, Mexican women chose to go to war to fight, care for the wounded, and keep the fires burning. Valued by Emiliano Zapata but reviled by Pancho Villa, who massacred 90 soldaderos one dark day in December 1916, Mexico's revolutionary women soldiers have been all but excised from history. " - www.cincopuntos.com
Poniatowska succeeded in preserving the soldaderas' dignity, strength, and beauty to reclaim them as women of valour with grace and precision. My wish is to draw similar attention to these amazing women within this fictional album I am creating right now with Twin Tones.
But today has taken a different turn.
For the first time in Mexico's history Dia de la Revolución is cancelled. Perhaps some of you in other countries may be unaware of the Ayotzinapa incident last September but it would appear as if a new revolution is afoot and for very, very good reason; A mass strike!
"Protests surrounding the disappearance of 43 students from a rural teaching college in Mexico have raged on for weeks with no signs of slowing. Originally centered in Mexico's southern state of Guerrero, the demonstrations have now expanded nationwide, including a march last week in which thousands of protesters stormed the main square in Mexico City and set fire to the door of the National Palace. A national strike is planned for Thursday, Nov. 20, Mexico's Revolution Day. Thousands are expected to participate." - http://mashable.com/2014/11/20/ayotzinapa-timeline-mexico-disappearance/
My heart bleeds for the people here and although I am tempted to attend the main protest I have been squarely advised to not go. My friend Gabriel's amigo was jailed for 7 months last year for attending a protest and it is not uncommon for plain-clothed police to be planted in order to incite violence (not to mention tourists getting deported!). A sad truth I am bitterly aware of. Instead I have chosen to stay indoors and write to you in the hope my words can help in some small way.
My pledge music crowd-funding for the new album is 10 days away from reaching the 100% goal. Perhaps this album highlighting the common peoples success overcoming Government oppression is more relevant now than ever before.
If you wish to join the protests in the different cities of Mexico and safer ones around the world for this November 20 global day of action please see the list below.
1. Zocalo, Mexico City, Zocalo reach 3 Caravans National Brigade normalistas parents and students who are touring the country
2. Kansas, USA, Consulate of Mexico 10:00 a.m.
3. Dallas, USA, Consulate of Mexico, 5pm
4. Los Angeles, USA, from Olvera Street to the Consulate of Mexico, 4 pm
5. Minnesota, USA, Murphy Square Park, 4 pm
6. Washington, USA, 2132 3rd Avenue Seattle, 10 am
7. Toulouse, November 20 at 12h45 appointment output Palais de Justice, dressed in black "Une photo pour une prize de prize de conscience"
8. San Antonio, Tx on November 20 At 11 am.
9. Madrid, 18:30. Metro Callao
10. Monterrey N.L. 5 pm in the Plaza de la Purisima, located between Hidalgo and Father Mier corner Serafin Peña TERMINATION POINT: Missing Square, located in Washington and Zaragoza, where an act of artistic expression will also perform.
11. Toronto, 7:30 pm, Consulate of Mexico,
12. Orlando, Florida, 2:30 pm, Consulate
13. November 19 12:30 Kings College Students' Union (KCLSU) in London, United Kingdom
14. Guadalajara, 18:00 Red / Revolution Park in Guadalajara
15. BARCELONA, 18.30, 1400 boulevard René-Lévesque Est, Montreal H2L 2M2
16. TIJUANA, 5:30 pm, Cuauhtemoc Monument
17. Guayaquil, Ecuador 4:30 p, Plaza San Francisco
18. Santa Ana, CA USA, 4 pm, Mexican Consulate
19. Barkeley CA 11:30 a.m. Pacific Time at UC Barkeley city hall.
20. SAN FRANCISCO CA 11:30 a.m. Pacific Time Ferry Building at Powell station .....
21. ROME: 18:00 HOURS IN PIAZZA DELLE CINQUE LUNE IN ROME
(A 70 meters from Piazza Navona)
22. HOUSTON, USA, 11 a.m. 4539 SAN JACINTO ST
23. CANCUN, 18 hrs Malecon Tamajar
24. Segelstorg STOCKHOLM in Stockholm at 16:00
25. MUNICH, GERMANY 13:00 tentative starting point is Odeonsplatz and then march together to reach Stachus.
26. San Salvador, El Salvador, 8 am, Divine Savior of the world
27.-LAS VEGAS; EU 16:00 S.6th 823 st. Mexican Consulate in Las Vegas, Nevada
28. NY, November 20, 3pm, Mexican Consulate
29. Durango, Durango. 10 am, We aglomeramos in the garden of San Antonio, and from there begin the march down to the Plaza de Armas
30. San Luis Potosi, Main Square, 1pm
31. Red GUADALAJARA 18 hrs at Federal Palace Park
32. Tlaxcala, 16 HRS Stairways
33. Santiago, 8: 00 hours versus USACH. Bernardo O'Higgins and Av Matucana
34. Valencia, November 21, 19 hours. Consulate of Mexico in Valencia, Spain
MARCHES ON REGIONAL Chiapas, 9:00 a.m.
35. Tuxtla Gutierrez
36. San Cristobal de las Casas
46. Seattle Wa. Thursday, November 20 24:30
47.- 17:00 Celaya Celaya Home Garden
48. Torreón., Will be a march, citing the crow city square that is in revolution boulevard club at 12 noon
49. Poza Rica, 4 om, clock 20
50. Irapuato 2pm flagpole
51. PITTSBURGH PA Center for American Studies 20 and November 21
52. Tower .20 November 2014 ... 12am departure crown plaza in front of the hotel (where the horse was estuatua)
53. DALLAS 5 pm MEXICAN CONSULATE
54. CHICAGO 6pm 18th and Blue Island to the Arch in Little Village
55. PARIS Place de la République à Paris à partir de 18h
56. Sweden on November 20 in 4 cities:
Uppsala: Stora Torget, 17:00
Umeå: Rådhustorget 1 at 17:00
Stockholm: Sergels Torg, at 16:00 to 18:00
Gothenburg Humanisten, University of Gothenburg, 12:00
After only 30 minutes of posting this I have received some bad news. (Trying HARD to not write expletives here) but the military are already in position here dressed in PLAIN CLOTHES!!!!!!!