In the past couple weeks there has been more troubling news (and/or reporting) on Honduras than I have time to elaborate on. Just a few lowlights here:
So the internet chatter over the past few days (which I mostly miss because I got off the Facebook) has been about Honduran singer Polache. It appears he was competing in an international singing contest in Viña del Mar, Chile. He performed in the "folklore" category, singing his song "I Speak Spanish" (in Spanish). Young Polache (née Paul Hughes) had his shirt off, his tattoos exposed, and an array of similarly shirtless, tattooed backup dancers. The screen in the back showed images of stereotypical "gang members" as he performed.
What does it mean that my favorite beer is called Imperial?
...because I can't find a way to write about these things in prose.
The cell phone signals in the prisons were blocked two weeks ago, to keep us safe
Since then she hasn't been able to talk to her boyfriend
She is irritable, her brothers tell me
She misses him
And that's why (they say) the broom handle broke when she hit little Juan's back
86 per 100,000
Marvin often screams in his sleep
Sometimes he breaks things and doesn't remember in the morning
Tonight his brother Josué sobs loudly
On January 12th, day six of our solidarity brigade, it rained in the morning.
The students ate breakfast, waited just a bit for the rain to slow down, and then set out on their first day of blood collection for their study on the prevalence of sickle-cell anemia in Ciriboya.
Some of them shared their videos with me. Here, a nursing student and a med student talk about their work, and their excitement to be beginning their study that day:
Click image below to download pdf of the poster and click HERE for the conference website.
Days before the inauguration, La Prensa gushed that the stadium was gleaming in anticipation of the event, featuring a picture photoshopped beyond credulity, trees and field neon green, with the unlit Tigo ad on the hill positively glowing.
Confederación Unitaria de Trabajadores de Honduras CUTH
Comayagüela, MDC Honduras
Honduras workers mobilize protest against the imposition of new president
The United Confederation of Workers of Honduras (CUTH) is calling on all its members to join the demonstration this Monday, January 27th, 2014, to picket the inauguration ceremony in protest of the continuity of the National Party dictatorship. On Monday, Juan Orlando Hernandez will be sworn in as president despite a near-complete lack of investigation of all the claims of fraud in the November 2013 elections.
U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez is slated to attend Honduran president-select Juan Orlando Hernández's swearing-in ceremony tomorrow. Hernández won both his party's primary and the general elections through massive fraud and has overseen the total militarization of Honduran public space through his military police force and related initiatives. In the weeks leading up to the elections, the Honduran Congress has privatized the national energy and telecom companies—with devastating implications for labor—with Hernández's full support.
I have been waiting to get some pictures before posting about the last few days of our brigade to Ciriboya. Those posts are still pending. A huge thanks to everyone who donated money, to the UNAH for donating transportation (including Marco Tulio, our wonderful driver), to the people of Ciriboya who opened their homes (and in some cases their veins) to us and the wonderful mayor of Iriona, Aníbal Duarte, for covering hotel costs for the students.