It may be futile and silly, but I am remaining more vague than I would like to because we know that the government here is trolling the internet for those who are opposed to them and if things go really south we don’t want to be barred from being able to come into the country when we leave this summer for our regularly scheduled time in the states.
On Wednesday, we saw another beautiful peaceful march of the people of Nicaragua. This is the third National March since April 18th, that has been called to demand justice, real democracy and a new government. Emotionally we have been on a roller coaster ride. Our hopes that change can happen peacefully after a march like that are very high. Surely this administration will bow to the will of the people and do the right thing. However, the silence is really speaking louder than words. The Vice-President, the spokesperson for the government, has belittled the marchers as minuscule vultures. With hopes soaring high, we all wait in anticipation of what the government response will be. And that is not always very hopeful. There have been attacks from the National Police in a few of the marches and we can feel tension of the people as their plea for justice is being ignored. We have to decide when we should take our seven children and leave. Thankfully, we haven’t felt like we are personally in threat of danger but we have come up with a plan with the children, that if things got bad quickly, we could get everything together and leave the country in five hours.
Yesterday, there were 10,000 taxis in Managua that were protesting against the increasing gas prices. Many people here do not have cars and taxis are very common to use. However, the peaceful day ended last night with the students at the UPOLI being attached. The students have barricaded themselves in the University for over 20 days now, and will continue until their demands are met and open dialogue with the government can happen. We know that one more student died last night and there have been many injured. Is the government just waiting the people out, thinking that they will get back to their lives? Or are they poking and prodding to ignite into violence this underlying unhappiness and anger towards the government so that they can declare Marshal Law and really squash this rebellion? Every day is a wait and see.
It is so easy to get caught up in politics, no matter where we are living, and having peaceful marches here in Nicaragua are making a huge statement to the world and seems like the way to make change, much like Gandhi or Martin Luther King. We can get caught up in left wing or right wings, because even here there are people who are very pro-government. Irreconcilable divisions, lack of charity towards the opposition, that is when real change is hindered and keeps us under dishonest rulers.
The apostles and the first disciples dreamed of throwing off the oppression and unjust government of the Romans, but Jesus did not get into politics. He paid His taxes and started a revolution of love. He didn’t crush a bruised reed or a smoldering wick, but called the hypocrite what they were. He built a kingdom of love, touching the leper and other untouchables, he forgave and had compassion. This is what we need to promote wherever we live. The real and lasting changes come when we make a difference for the Kingdom of God.