From Honduras: Open Letter to the Virtuous People of the United States of America

(Photo via Grassroots Global Justice Alliance)

The government of the United States can declare from every mountaintop its development, its economic success, its reputation as a land of opportunities, and its high levels of democracy.  But the government of the United States should always understand that these things are not their greatest successes. Instead, it seems to me, their greatest success lies in their people, in the people who make the societies, and in you, my brothers and sisters. Like us —in Honduras— we are made of a people who put work, responsibility, and human dignity above all. It is you, our virtuous friends in the USA, you men and women who fight for these traits, that I address with special attention in this letter. I do this because you, I am sure, must know the truth of what is happening to us in Honduras. You must also know how much the politicians you have chosen to represent you are implicated in Honduras, including how they administer your taxes.

In Honduras we have learned to be a grateful people, and because of this, I want to thank you for your solidarity, including those contributions that from your taxes that invest in our education, in health care, in roofs and floors, and in other types of development in Honduras. However, there is another reality behind these wonderful collaborations I mention above. I want to ask you a favor so that other inhumane actions that happen in Honduras with the money that you, honestly and punctually, pay to the treasury of your country, do not continue.

I would like to ask for your collaboration so that —from your status as sovereign and specific contributors to the US national treasury— help us demand a halt to the military support that your US government makes to my country of Honduras. That military support in Honduras involves violations of Human Rights, control of the media, excessive use of force, torture, cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment, detentions and illegal raids on more than 800 Hondurans, and the sad sum of 24 murders in the name of democracy that your US embassy in Honduras endorses. This aid and monetary support from your country is used to repress the Honduran people who refuse to accept the corrupt and inhuman policy that is promoted by the government of Juan Orlando Hernández and the Honduran Armed Forces —they only are able to continue in power because their training is paid out of your taxes in the US. It is the weapons that your US government supplies to my country of Honduras – the same money which you pay through taxes with good intentions— that are fired against my people, the Honduran people, whose only desire is to live in peace and with dignity.

Believe me, my sisters and brothers, what my people ask of you is that you allow us to seek our own freedom, autonomy, independence. You can help us achieve this if you talk to your US government officials – that is, the people you employ to distribute your taxes—to stop meddling in our Honduran affairs. Let them know that your money is the least important for us, and we do not need it anymore in Honduras. We live in a country with enough resources —both human and material— to be able to become the state of rights and social welfare that any other nation would envy. However, your administrators —the government of the United States— insists on imposing ways of life that are not ours. They insist on imposing government methods that are not ours. They insist on ways of solving conflicts that we do not want to be ours.

Lift up your voice for Hondurans in the USA, and demand that your public administrators dedicate themselves to listening to you. Ask them to leave Hondurans, even at our lowest point we ourselves know how to get out of it. Just as the condor flies, we will sail to the highest skies of human dignity in our homeland of Honduras.

Tell your president and tell all your representatives that we do not need them, including the Charge d’Affaires officer of your embassy in Honduras —Ms. Heide B. Fulton— whose role as legitimizer and accomplice of the current Honduran dictatorial regime bleeds us to death in Honduras. Tell them we do not need them, tell them that we have never needed them, and tell them that if they want to know what Hondurans really want, they should leave us once and for all, to be free, sovereign, and independent.

We are and will always be responsible for what our own governments do to the extent that we let them do things without questioning what they do. I know this because I’ve seen it up close, how interested you are as a people, interested in knowing what your government does outside your borders. Well, I tell you here, that they are an accomplice to everything happening in Honduras described above. A word from you to your public servants, as a people who love peace and who condemn the interference of the international policy of your government, could put an end to the ambitions that the financial contributions of your government generate in my territory of Honduras.

You in the USA and we in Honduras, beyond politics, are people of peace, brothers and sisters, and we know that life is made from good relationships, from the recognition of the dignity of the other, and from the respect for the rights of others and autonomy that assures us true freedom. Thank you sincerely for your time and attention to this letter.With an affectionate hug,I sign off.

Chaco de la Pitoreta

(Hector Efrén Flores)

Poet and Cultural Representative in Honduras

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