Monday, August 07, 2006

Women Of Oaxaca Take Over TV Station In Coup Against State/Corporate Media

On the morning of August 1st in Oaxaca, Mexico, around 2,000 women got together at the Plaza of the Seven Regions & marched toward the zocalo, about 5 miles distance. They were greeted by supportive onlookers who passed out water & showed signs of support for the social movement that has the goal of the removal of Governer Ulises Ruiz Ortiz.
In the style of the Marcha de las Caserolas (cooking pan march), which was made famous in Argentina, the women of Oaxaca took to the streets, beating on their pots & pans screaming, " Ruiz fuera!". The women were of all ages, some even carrying babies in their arms.
Right before the march dispersed around noon, somebody had announced that, "Women are going to Channel 9!" This is the location of the state television facility, which is across from the Alvaro Carillo Theater.
At approx. 1:30pm, around 350 women marched right in to the Channel 9 state t.v. station, with noone to stop them. Outside, some thousand women & children stood watch just outside the station.
At 3:30 the channel went off the air. Within the hour, the women phoned the radio station at the Benito Juarez Autonomous University of Oaxaca. They said that they had 2 radio stations working from the site, one p.m., one a.m. , but no t.v. The women reported no opposition or struggle, & zero injuries. They sent out a plea for food, water, people who knew how to operate t.v. cameras, & back up guards.
The spokeswoman for the group said, " We are not afraid. Whatever happens, happens. We are fed up with this situation. We are fighting for our children. We women cannot stay home."
Women have played a huge role from the very beginning of the movement, & comprise half of the teacher's union &/or are mothers of students affected. As parents they have expressed their anger against the lack of decent schools & classrooms. The Mexican Constitution guarantees a free education, so the women were pissed off about recently having to pay enrollment fees for public schools, as well.
Since the corporate media has refused to tell the story, the women who are tired of that & their goverment oppressing them, decided to take matters into their own hands. They took over Channel 9, kicked out the staff, & began broadcasting, for the first time, THE TRUTH!
At around 7pm, Channel 9 went back on air. Seated in front of a movement banner that read "When a woman advances there is no man who stays behind", a lawyer who works with the APPO & the civil rights commission CODEP, introduced 6 women. The women then took turns with a microphone to demand that Governer Ulises Ruiz Ortiz resign.
After the women's victory broadcast, Ch. 9 broadcast parts of videos by indigenous members of the community.
At 8:30 pm----all was quiet.