Thursday, August 03, 2006

Subcomandante Marcos on the Importance of Alternative Media

    Just by taking a glance at any mainstream news program or website and it's painfully obvious that we need independent media. Essentially all of CNN.com's pictures today have been of the Israeli forces, many of them taken in a way that makes the soldiers look powerful and brave and with commentary that makes their cause look just and even noble. I wish I would have saved the one that I saw an hour ago in order to show you. But anyway, I came across this video on YouTube today of Subcomandante Marcos discussing the importance of independent media. It's from 1997, but the problem has only gotten worse since the rise of Fox News. Marcos is an interesting person and has done a lot of good work in Mexico in terms of building political awareness amongst the people as well as participating in direct action.

6 comments:

SH said...

The more I read, watch and listen to the independent media the more I realize how valuable it is for survival and advancement of whatever democratic institutions we still have left.

I don't know much about this Marcos person, he seems to be an intelligent and reasonable man, but I have to say that the image of a masked gunman is exactly the image the authorities love to present when it comes to people like him: an evildoer commie terrorist. Again, I don't know the details but it seems like a bad image for marketing of his ideas...

Thank you for the video.

Delta said...

sh,

I have to disagree with you there. I think the image that he portrays is one of the reasons why he is so successful and is able to generate so much media attention, such as being frontpage on the French Le Monde diplomatique.

People know who he is, and he freely travels through the country of Mexico (from what I understand), so the image is not for that purpose. But I think that the image gives him an aura of mystery and maybe even a type of superhero type of feel to the Mexican people. I can't imagine anything much more harmful to their movement than for Marcos to make appearances in a Polo shirt.

If you're interested in learning more about Marcos and his group the EZLN, there's a documentary named A Place Called Chiapas. It's interesting, but at the same time a little slow.

SH said...

Delta,

Yeah, perhaps you are right and his image works well for drawing attention to him and his words. Maybe I am just weary of people with guns in general. I don't know.

I will try to find and watch that movie about Marcos. Whoever he is, he seems to be an interesting character.

Mookie said...

I thought he had some good things to say, but I must admit, I'm tired of dudes with guns, too.

By the way, delta, I followed your advice.

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