Words of Indigenous Governing Council Spokeswoman María de Jesús Patricio Martínez in Palenque, October 18, 2017

Words of María de Jesús Patricio Martínez in Palenque, October 18, 2017

We have just heard the voices of our compañera councilwomen.

The reality of what’s happening in the communities is never discussed in the media; it’s never shown. The reality is always hidden, because there’s someone who tells the press what to say and do. It’s part of the capitalist system that’s trying to do destroy our peoples, our children, women, men, lands, territories, trees, plants, everything on earth, on the earth’s surface and beneath the surface; they want to take it all.

Because that’s what would make them rich, that’s what would benefit them, and that’s why they want the indigenous inhabitants of these lands out of the way. That is why the agrarian problems are drug out over years and years; our grandparents die and the land problems continue and are never resolved. That’s why when we organize to stop them from killing our forests, they respond with repression, incarceration, and disappearances. That’s why they show up in our communities with “assistance” programs, deceiving us and telling us that they’re giving us things when they really aren’t; it’s just a trick to make us fall into their trap and make it easier for them to dispossess our communities. They get closer and closer to destroying Mexican territory and the whole world.

That’s why we the indigenous peoples of the National Indigenous Congress and our brothers and sisters of the Zapatista Army for National Liberation have said that we won’t allow this anymore, that we are going to struggle and fight for everyone, not just for the indigenous peoples. We are going to struggle for the whole world and we’re going to travel this whole country, with our steps and our words, to hear what people are experiencing in our communities and in the neighborhoods and towns throughout all of Mexico.

It’s time for that voice to be heard. It’s time for us to walk this path together with our brothers and sisters from the countryside and the city. It’s time, brothers and sisters. It’s time that we rise up with our heads held high with dignity to rescue our Mexico and build something that’s truly from below, because the way the system is designed is totally rotten. It’s good for nothing, absolutely nothing.

Why? Because it was designed by those who want to destroy this Mexico. We have to join together to destroy that corrupt system, the capitalist system, and to build a government that is truly a government of the people, that will obey the people. This is an enormous task, brothers and sisters, because we have already seen all the discrimination against us, the racism, the classism and the disrespect, but it’s time for our voice to be heard. It’s time for us to walk together and begin making our footprint along the path. That’s why we must unite, all the indigenous peoples and other inhabitants of Mexico who also have been struggling and fighting for years. We have to destroy this capitalist system that is trying to destroy us.

Long live the National Indigenous Congress!
Long live the Indigenous Governing Council!
Long live the Zapatista Army for National Liberation!
Long live the indigenous peoples of Mexico and the world!

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