Monday, December 29, 2008

Criminal World

In a world where the prince of the world is a murderer from the beginning and the great deceiver, the reality of which value system stimulates the most adoration is rarely in doubt; except during those blessed periods, in blessed locales, where the Kingdom of Heaven dwells in enough stout hearts to bless that small part of the larger world.

However, what has happened in Mexico is horrible, as this article from the Los Angeles Times reports, but we can take little comfort from our culture which worships mightily at the fount of riches—regardless of source—and the most popular movies are often criminal world epics, which, in the spirit of full disclosure, I also enjoy.

An excerpt.

“Reporting from Culiacan, Mexico — Yudit del Rincon, a 44-year-old lawmaker, went before the state legislature this year with a proposition: Let's require lawmakers to take drug tests to prove they are clean.

“Her colleagues greeted the idea with applause. Then she sprang a surprise on them: Two lab technicians waited in the audience to administer drug tests to every state lawmaker. We should set the example, she said.

“They nearly trampled one another in the stampede to the door, Del Rincon recalled.

“Del Rincon wasn't all that shocked. She was born and bred here in the Pacific Coast state of Sinaloa, home of the drug racket's top leaders, its most talented impresarios and some of its dirtiest government and police officials.

“Swaths of Sinaloa periodically become no-go zones for outsiders; the central government abdicated control long ago. By one estimate, 32 towns are run by gangsters.

“In Culiacan, the capital, casinos outnumber libraries, and dealerships for yachts and Hummers cater to the inexplicably wealthy.

“This is where narco folklore started, with songs and icons that pay homage to gangsters, and where children want to grow up to be traffickers. How Sinaloa confronts its own divided soul offers insight on where the drug war may be going for Mexico, where more than 5,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence this year.

"The monster has lost all proportion," said Del Rincon, who is a member of the conservative National Action Party.

“A spunky woman with large eyes and hands that seem to be in constant motion, Del Rincon scans other tables at cafes where she meets people, making sure she knows who is within earshot; she lowers her voice when she names names. Her husband and closest confidant keeps tabs on her whereabouts throughout each day.

“Such are the risks of speaking out.

"The narcos have networks meshed into the fabric of business, culture, politics -- every corner of life."