Austin: Support Committee Commemorates Ayotzinapa with Day of the Dead Ofrenda

By Nélida Tello

On Sunday October 10, the Tribune of the People Support Committee in Austin held a cultural event commemorating the sixth anniversary of the disappearance of the 43 Ayotzinapa normalistas (students training to be teachers) and other instances of reactionary violence of the Mexican state against the people.

An ofrenda (memorial altar) was set up at the pulga (flea market) in the Montopolis neighborhood with the help of community members and dedicated to those Ayotzinapa students who have been confirmed as deceased, to the 1968 massacre of Tlatelolco, and to comrade Luis Armando Fuentes Aquino, known as Comandante Gato, a revolutionary assassinated by a reactionary paramilitary in 2019. All of these crimes against the people were carried out by the Mexican state and its agents.

Making an ofrenda is a tradition that is part of Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead) on November 1-2, with preparations taking place throughout the month of October. Music was played during the event, and coffee and pan dulce was given to people as they passed by and spoke to members. The support committee also received donations from those in attendance.

Tribune articles were distributed and members expressed the importance of supporting the struggle to find the students.

Those present at the event expressed their anger and frustration towards the Mexican government and the role it’s played, not only in the disappearance of the 43 Ayotiznapa students, but of the hundreds of thousands forcefully disappeared. Some mothers who stopped by the ofrenda expressed their grief and support to the parents of the missing students.

At the event, Tribune met the godfather of Christian Tomas Colón Garnica, one of the 43 disappeared students, who shared that Colón Garnica had left Oaxaca to study at Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers’ College with the aspiration of becoming a teacher in his hometown of Tlacolola, Oaxaca. He was only 18 years old when he was disappeared by state forces in Iguala, Guerrero in 2014.

He told Tribune, “the people are fed up, and when they are fed up they take justice into their own hands […] taking justice into our own hands is the only path for us Mexicans, for the peasants, for the uneducated because those who are educated, like the politicians, ignore our struggles.”

Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has reopened the investigation of the 43 disappeared normalistas as a distraction to stop the people from rebelling in pursuit of justice. The people are the only ones who will bring about justice for the disappeared, murdered, and exploited, not the bureaucrat capitalists who mislead and exploit the people.

The people will bring about justice, the ruling class only cares about profits!

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