We are living in terrible times. I don't remember when was the last time I read a happy headline anywhere, especially in social media...injustice...terrorism... racism...pollution...plastics taking over the oceans...but you know what really sucks?
People killing their own people, being in the middle of silent genocide and the WORLD not KNOWING about it. This is what is happening in my country, la tierra que me vio nacer: #NICARAGUA. I guess we all have our "own" special cause. My heart is heavy with sadness and anger, because my people, my family, my childhood friends are fighting for their lives and the world is SILENT. I switch the channels, browse through newspapers and this war that started on April 18th is making NO headlines. Every day there is BLOODSHED. To date, deaths amount to over 200 people from all ages, many shot point blank, in public, seen by other civilians and witnesses. This war doesn't pardon anyone. It doesn't matter the day of the week, the time of the day. On Mother's Day, close to 20 people including children, were killed while participating in a peaceful protest. Just this weekend a family with young kids (and an unborn child) was burnt alive for refusing to open their door to snipers and paramilitares. This is #DanielOrtega. Have you ever heard of the Sandinistas? Yes, he is a very special one, nowadays a capitalist dictator and tyrant. This is the worst of them all (and by that I mean, the worst of the caudillos). Ortega and his wife (our Vice-President), Chayo Murillo, also known as a new age witch, along with his family are breaking my country to pieces.
It's a sad story…does anyone out there care?!?
Thanks to social media and the few vocal representatives who include the brave youth, versatile university students and key Catholic clergy, local news and happenings are spread and the civil voices and the cry for democracy is heard. Technology has played a commanding role in making sure that we, Nicaraguans, and especially those abroad, are kept a breath of the latest atrocities. WhatsApp has been crucial in this journey. We seem to have received some attention recently, when (finally!), a high ranking diplomatic observer, was sent representing OAS to witness the supposed unrest that is happening daily. That same organization just days ago had made statements that avoided directly incriminating Ortega for his actions. There are a lot of headlines about the US getting kicked out of world committees and bureaucratic entities. Big deal. Let me tell you, these committees are useless.
I have lived in the US for 25 years, yet Nicaragua and my country pride are always alive. It saddens me that an online petition to sanction Ortega has half the number of signatures than a petition to sanction United Airlines. Ok, I get it. We are a small, minuscule developing country.
When you are ready to complain where you live, what you eat or the lack of customer service, think that someone else out there has it so much worse than you. Someone out there is fighting for his/her life. There are other worst places to live than the United States. We often take for granted that we all here have freedom of speech, we live in a civilized society, a first world country, a country built by immigrants and visionaries. Whatever any President decides to do in this country, the system was created in such a way that power is sheltered, and you are free to voice your opinions and actions. Stop complaining, four years happen fast (btw, I didn’t not vote for Trump). We’ve had 11 years of dictatorship and that’s not even counting the first decade in the 80’s. Go buy a macchiato or do yoga.
I am upset at the media. I am upset at the world, and because I want to pitch in and do my part, please I invite you to read up on what's really going on in Nicaragua. BBC, The Guardian, El Pais and major European outlets have done a fair share of news on the topic. I am sure that Bianca Jagger, who is Nicaraguan and is a human rights activist had something to do with it. YouTube seems to be the only real way to see and witness the real stuff, so real that videos are now being reported and taken down.
Last week there was a summary of the Nicaraguan struggle by Margarita Herdocia, who saved Time Magazine and its reporters time and resources by writing a great opinion piece. The Washington Post pops up as one of the few outlets in mainstream media reporting frequently about the situation.
Until 65 days ago, my country was one of the safest in the Americas. These are my people.
This is a cry for help.
Por Maria Valeria Arana