All my life, I’ve proudly thumbed my nose at Latinos. How they aren’t up to a proper job, lack tenacity, have no interest in education, etc. and that’s why they are poor and will always remain in that poverty. It was only after recent events that I finally had to admit to myself that it’s a different story.

Latin America has the misfortune of being in the US zone of influence. This means that whatever you produce, invent or grow, the Americans (those from the US) will come and take it away. Whatever is found underground, the same Americans will come again and take it. If you make trouble, they will kill you. That’s all. And then they give long speeches and write thick books about the moral foundations of capitalism and the benefits of the free market. That if you tried harder, you’d be better off. Bullshit! If you tried harder, they’d take more from you. And then there’s the rampage of gangs with all sorts of ideologies who can get away with anything they want just by being in bed with the US Secret Service.

That if you tried harder, you’d be better off. Bullshit! If you tried harder, they’d take more from you.

It’s no wonder that a culture focused on instant gratification and immediate gratification prevails in such conditions. Enjoying a good drink, a fun dance, frivolous behavior… there’s no point in building anything if it’s all taken away. Those who tried to make something happen are dead or have had to leave for another part of the world.

It’s a different wake-up call for everyone. For me, it was the American attack on the pipeline of its ally, Germany, the day before yesterday. Germany has entrusted the Americans with its protection, and the protectors have retaliated with a terrorist attack on a pipeline that means that tens of millions of people are cut off from energy sources at the start of winter, with no alternative solution. This will have a dramatic impact on their lives, and tens of thousands will die of hypothermia or the diseases that result. And all this just so that a few American corporations can boost their profits and a few executives can be paid bonuses! Our lives aren’t even worth as much to them as their pets’ lives. Americans have begun to treat us the same way they treat Latinos.

I look at things differently in Latin America now. And I have some sympathy for someone admiring some murderous nutcase just because he stood up to the oppressors of the US. Because that’s the most important thing. It’s becoming the most important thing for us, too.

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