Melissa's Oaxaca Service-Learning Blog

I was enrolled in a summer Service-Learning Program through ACCD. this blog follwed our adventures in San Antonio and in Oaxaca. It now holds some thoughts on life, and fun as well as comments. I will continue to post Oaxaca information as i get it. you will want to continue checking for updates since we are suppose to go back in March 07!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Hello, all!I just spoke to Ana Maria about the situation in Oaxaca. First, a commentary... isn't it interesting how the Express-News didn't cover the story when it first broke--even when you were sending information and fantastic photos to them--but now it has been on the front page Sunday, Monday and Tuesday?Thankfully, Ana Maria is fine and doing well, at least under the circumstances. After going back to work, the Instituto Tecnologico and most other schools have once again suspended classes, at least for the remainder of the week. Banks are closed "until the situation normalizes" and people are lined up at ATMs hoping to get some cash before it runs out. Payday is just a couple of days away and it looks like most people won't have access to their money if this continues a while.Ana Maria reports that she doesn't leave her home, except for brief trips. She isn't afraid of violence against her, but she says that much of the city is blocked and that getting around is difficult. However, no one ventures out at night because of the danger. The military is occupying the Zocalo and helicopters hover around at all hours. Neither side in this standoff is budging. The governor remains indignant and refuses to resign. The protesters refuse to give up, though they've been forced to abandon their encampments.The entire Senate and Chamber of Deputies has called on Gov. Ulises Ruiz to step down. This is significant because elected officials from throughout the Republic of Mexico and from all political parties are pressuring him to leave. His refusal is purely political. If he leaves now--short of completing the first two years of his term--a new election is called and the PRI (his political party) is doomed to losing the governorship. If he leaves after he completes two years, then he can name a successor to fill out the remainder of the six- year term and the PRI remains in power a little while longer. He finishes two years in December, but Ana Maria says not to count on his leaving then.The economy is severely suffering. Many people have lost their jobs. Hotels and restaurants are closed, staff fired. Factories (what few there are) are closed or running only one shift, laying off the other workers. Tourists are mostly limited to journalists, human rights advocates and the curious. On the bright side (if there is one), food is still in adequate supply; however, if money runs out, people will begin to go hungry.In short, the situation is not good, but thankfully Ana Maria is surviving. The State Department has posted a warning on its site specifically about the violence in Oaxaca. We will continue to monitor the situation, but at this point, Ana Maria doesn't think there will be much change until after Jan. 1. She is optimistic, however, that a Spring Break trip is possible and she thinks that hotel rates will be more economical as the locals try to rebuild their city and their livelihood.Please keep Ana Maria and all Oaxaqueños in your prayers.Saludos,mark
posted by Melissa Rodriguez @ 10/31/2006 04:57:00 PM  
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About Me

Name: Melissa Rodriguez
Home: San Antonio, Texas, United States
About Me: New me, not the same one that started out in the begining of the summer. Oaxaca and what I saw here in SA changed me. I use to think I did a lot, volunteer for organizations, chair events. blablabla. But there is sooo much more to do! And i learned not to be afraid. Not that I was scared of things before. But not to be afraid to venture out and ask questions. Or to say NO! And to ask why something can't happen. To be in the middle of all that and not knowing what tomorrow held. Finding out who really loved you when you called home, who was waiting for your call.. maybe my last call, that woke me up to what i want for my life....New me ..braver, more aggressive, and more FOCUS than ever on a GOAL! UPDATE: one goal completed since last updated: i graduating w/ my AA in PR! 2nd goal going to OLLU for my BS. 3rd goal: WE ARE GOING BACK TO OAXACA!!!
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