A Letter from Trevor Top
"Reporting Unfolding Events Better than Any Other News Source…"
By Trevor Top
Narco News Copublisher
March 12, 2004
Dear Fellow Latin Americanists, Drug Policy Reformers, Humanists, Environmentalists, Democracy Defenders and, most especially, citizens of the USA,
There are alarming anti-democratic tendencies oozing from the banner of the stars and stripes these days. Haiti has just entered its bicentennial in a most ignominious way. The more I learn about its poignant history, the more deplorable I find the current situation. Narco News has covered the history, origins of conflict and unfolding events better than any news source. Venezuela may very well be next and this site will most assuredly inform you thoroughly. These countries and stories cannot be overlooked at this moment if you are a supporter of democracy in the Américas.
In The Narcosphere, bloggers hash out the news in this hemisphere from several sources, perspectives and angles. The cream rises to the top with an easy-to-use rating system. News unfolds and sometimes some of us are right (some more than others), but it is a true “vox populi” where people contribute in a streaming seam of unbeatable coverage with hemispheric consciousness.
Now is the time to take care of our continent, North and South. One of my great concerns as an ecologist and Latin Americanist has been the effects of the drug war. That is what brought me here. With the stories that Narconews provides, one can also learn of the issues of social justice that this “war” has created. The implications are huge. In Bolivia and Peru, popular outcry has prevented widespread spraying of coca plants. However, as Al points out about Plan Colombia using a recent U.S. government report, “close to 120,000 hectares of Colombian land – that’s 463 SQUARE MILES - were sprayed over the past year… There is more, so much more, to be said and to be done about this ecological disaster underway.” I agree wholeheartedly.
Whether it be the drug war, Haiti, Venezuela or corrupt government officials (North and South), Narco News is the best place to inform ourselves about these issues. With enough “critical mass” this may, one day, even be the best place for organizing action to raise consciousness of other people. As the old slogan goes, El pueblo unido jamas será vencido.
Being back in school for the first time in over ten years, I am alarmed at the excuse of “lack of time” that people use in keeping themselves ignorant of the issues. Academic colleagues have told me that I should drop the Haiti issue and focus on class materials, methodology and theory…
Good people of the Américas, unite behind the ideals of a transparent democracy, the freedoms we hold dear will bear fruits of social justice if we care enough about learning the truth. When the CIA has become the beacon of light in American government (see “CIA expected Plan Colombia to fail and said Saddam Hussein posed no threat unless attacked”), then we have somehow let leaders fail us. When leaders fail, people must lead.
Therefore, I ask you to join me in considering what contribution we each can make to keep the voices of truth and justice in the Américas heard, by donating online via this link.
Or you can send your contribution by mail, making your check out to “The Fund For Authentic Journalism,” and by sending it to:
The Fund for Authentic Journalism
P.O. Box 71051
Madison Heights, MI 48071 USA
Although this is a plea for monetary contributions, I would like to see as many thoughts about the developments of events in the Américas as possible, even if you don’t feel like you know enough about the story. I want to be able to express my opinions and hear others voice there own. I want to make Narco News one of the first places we all check when we log onto the Web.
I applied for my Narco News Co-publisher’s account through this link.
And, ever since, I’ve been able to comment freely, ask questions, and get questions answered, on all the news reports and Reporter’s Notebook entries that spring up daily from the widely respected Authentic Journalists on the Narco News Team. The “Narcosphere” makes Narco News like no other newspaper in the world in that it involves us, the readers, as active participants in the reporting, refining, improving, and making of the news.
Look through your expenses (I found my useless AOL automatic charge to be the perfect conversion to my monthly pledge to The Fund for Authentic Journalism) and ask yourself “Do I really need this?” If you don’t, please consider diverting those funds here.
New Orleans, Louisiana
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