Producing poor, then help them.
Julio Hernández López

Superstitions usually increase in crisis moments. For lack of better resources, many of those who are immersed in processes of extreme difficulties explain their misfortunes starting from myths and other imaginative elaborations.

Something similar is happening today in Mexico. In front of a reality loaded with dark tints the voluntary nature as much as the altruism are multiplying.

Both phenomenons seek to substitute (without analysis neither critic) the real cause of the national crisis, and to offer express positive results, apparent, superficial, of easy splendor and quick dissipation.

The voluntary nature and the altruism try to occupy thus the spaces that the Mexican State has abandoned as social justice topics. And since this State scandalously incumple the essential obligations of providing welfare to their national ones, the private initiative and the individuals with economic power assume such functions, changing the concept of justice for that of generosity, the one of public service for that of charity, the one of collective government for that of managerial groups or families or personalities, the one of institutional obligation for that of the good singular consciences.

This perverted irruption of values has shown with more force in recent dates, mainly starting from the worsening of three facts: the floods in Chiapas, the public insecurity and the official inattention of social handicapped or segments.

Will against reality

Today in Chiapas it is demonstrating (like it was plenty, fully proven in Guerrero and in Oaxaca in the case of Paulina hurricane) that the individual wills, even if they are presidential, can make little, really, to improve things in situations of social disasters.

It's no use, certainly, the voluntary nature when the structure with which one works is eaten away by the bureaucracism, islands from which harangues are launched are just that, sand platforms.

The problem of Chiapas, today, is structural, of background, and it results spectacular, attractive, to scorn the desk works in order to privilege for circumstances those of the field because, if those cabinet tasks had been carried out well before it would not be necessary to pose today the official officialist lenses into the presidential boots put in the waters and the mud.

Apart from that, asit has been aimed lines up, the presidential words (that sometimes sound as scoldings, hard, dry, loaded with ironies and humor that don't achieve always the searched success) reflect good will but, unfortunately, they are not translated in real facts. Only the President turns and there is the reality of corporativism, of bias, of corruption, being imposed without palliatives.

Producing poors, then help them

Chiapas tragedy has allowed, apart from this, the stellar reappearance of altruism. Accompanied by an appropriate diffusion strategy, several corporate managerial have made presence with their mites to help our siblings in misfortune. What those companies dedicate to the social charity is good to solve some immediate lacks, certainly, but political and ideologically it is not neither neuter nor innocent.

When forming in the donors line, several of the men or structures that have caused the national economic disaster try to solve (with the forced diffusion of the case that for that one also has a good heart) a tiny part of the problems that they have caused.

The altruism that looks with a hand to heal a tiny piece of the whole that with the other one has made sick, doesn't seek, certainly, to solve the background problems, but only their more scandalous immediate expressions. It doesn't remove the saltpetre of walls, but does restore and repaints for when the visitors peep ou the place.

In that sense, the altruistic exercises give good social image to their practitioners, they conserve the stands of poor receivers and rich donors, they are good for some fiscal accommodations and even they become prosperous family companies whose members live quite well off administering the help to the poor.

And you, have you already put your ribbon?

It is in course a campaign of powerful media in which they invites the Mexicans to be placed in a publicly, on the daily use clothes, a white ribbon, thus, to express rejection to the violence and to look for less public insecurity.

Every day informative courts make advances of campaigns. So that others follow the example, they realize the new recruited proselytes, making emphasis in the most excellent ones.

The afore mentioned campaign considers that with the simple multiplied fact of publibly carrying a distinguishing characteristic something is being made against crime. In fact, something is made, but very little and, in certain sense, counteractive; the fight that should demand with force the authorities the execution of their obligationsis is decreased to a frivolous and faded plane, and this battle is placed in a circumstance in which the media companies become presumed agents or middlemen of the social demand.

The real transformations and social corrections come from the dynamics of organized social fight, not from fashion, associated to marketing strategies, of putting a distinguishing characteristic as s kind of an amulet in order to plot the fact that the State Mexican does not fulfill one of its main obligations that is the one of giving security to their national ones.

Both deviations, voluntary nature and altruism, deform the real sense of things and problems. Nobody can, just with the power of their mind, or of their positive spirit, change a structure of decades that lives today its worst moments. Nobody can, starting from the opportune consultation of the very huge pocket, to solve the problems of the misery largely caused by the abuses and tricks of who then, in a pious way, try to palliate although it is a tiny one (but well advertised) portions of the wrong they have created.

Kindling: Months ago, this column received versions in the sense that they were recruiting in the whole country confidential agents for a government's office. one of the presumed recruited assured to Astillero that it was a political information team that should infiltrate in every political and social environment. That informant showed journalistic cuttings in which they summoned desirous people to work in a project "of information and analysis"' so that they interviewed in a deluxe hotel with those responsible for those tasks. Personal way interviewed , and with the promise of confidentiality, the list of work applicants was purged until they were only those who fulfilled the wanted requirements. Then they were informed: their task would be to follow their work or studyroutines, without variations, but with the obligation of punctualy and appropriately informing to its bosses of all that they were knowing and listening and that they believed that could be federal government's interest. Who commented this matter was an Astillero author's well-known but, as he didn't have irrefutable tests, silence was preferred. Now, the Secretary of Government has informed about the creation of a new corporation of "security nacional specialists '', and the author of this column cannot stop to relate one thing with the other one, and to remember that the obligation of those recruited was to behave as if nothing has happened, to follow daily life, winning some good more pesos to inform of everything it was interesting...

Taken from the mexican newspaper "La Jornada", september 14th, 1998.


Most recent revision: May 19, 2002