I Don’t Know What I Would Do Without Narco News
Why I Support the Authentic Journalists…
By RJ Maccani
The Ricardo Flores Magón Brigade
May 17, 2006
For years now, I’ve turned to Narco News not just for information on the Zapatistas and other social movements in Latin America but for stories. Narco News is journalism… Authentic Journalism written by people on our side of the barricades. No one gets a salary; Narco News isn’t a “gig” (as we say here in New York City). I know that when I donate money to Narco News, it’s going straight into the work…every cent keeps this rare creature called “authentic journalism” alive, healthy, constantly growing, expanding and changing to meet the challenge of the work at hand.
Last October and November, Narco News held a consulta of its readers. An opportunity for readers to touch base, give feedback and criticism, and become a little bit more of an active participant in this experiment in Authentic Journalism. Taking advantage of relatively new and free internet-based phone technology, Al Giordano was calling any reader who wanted to chat. I think I responded on the last day possible… I sent an e-mail off with a few story ideas about things going on here in New York City and offhandedly mentioned that I would be in Mexico at the end of the year. I figured I wouldn’t hear back and I don’t remember if I even left my phone number. Less than a month later, I was extending my stay in Mexico and pulling together the Ricardo Flores Magón Brigade to report for Narco News with “The Other Journalism With The Other Campaign” from Oaxaca.
What a job it was working for Narco News…I finally came back home to New York City $1,500 in debt! I’ve been working three “gigs” to get my finances back in order. On top of the paid work, I’m keeping up with ongoing local organizing and doing some more writing to get the word out about what’s going on with the Zapatistas and the Other Campaign — trying to make the links to work we’re doing here in “the brain of the beast.” Like a lot of other people like me, I’m a bit burnt out right now. I read Narco News every day and it’s a big part of what keeps me going. I’ve donated $350 since getting back… debt and all. More than almost anything else, this immaterial thing called inspiration provides the primary fuel for any movement coming, as the Zapatistas say, “from below and to the left.” For this inspiration, I’ll be paying off my debt to Narco News for a long time to come.
You can make a donation online, via The Fund for Authentic Journalism:
Or send a check, made out to “The Fund for Authentic Journalism,” to:
The Fund for Authentic Journalism
P.O. Box 241
Natick, Massachusetts 01760
I hope you’ll join me in keeping this multi-lingual, authentic and, well, beautiful project known as Narco News rolling… if we don’t, who will?
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