writer staresReflections On Concern
The Writers Of the Rio Grande editor asked me to write about the recent Central American Migrants and Sex Trafficking Conference that the University of Texas Brownsville and South Texas Community College sponsored.

I learned little new.

I hope those in northern Mexico and southern Texas had their eyes and ears opened.

I hope they can recall the theme of the conference: The humans who pass through Mexico from Central America to the United States should not be considered a problem; instead they should be an opportunity for us to become more human.

Just how?

Difficult, given official and unofficial corruption in Central America (Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua) and Mexico, and an often-inhumane United States’ government policy.

I thought of some of my recent  pieces: review of the novel Kind Of Kin, a poem, “Spring Blood,” and an essay, “Humanitarianism Thwarted.”

All raised the question of what one does when faced with injustice.

I discussed this with a friend after the Boston terrorist attack.

I said, “Why can we feel when horror is so close? Why can’t we feel when it is afar, like in Pakistan and Afghanistan, earlier in Iraq, caused by American drones?  Why can’t we go beyond our immediate, near, blood?”

He didn’t have an answer.

Others have said, “Worry about your own family, help them; you can’t do much for others.”

This circle-the-wagons thinking bothers me, but I do not do much, write a little, give some money, talk, care ….

How lame!

And when thinking about the conference and Boston, I went to a play in Matamoros: El Grunido del Cerdo (Grunt of the Pig), a play about Mexican corruption in 1947, especially in Tamaulipas, with many references to the present.

I left thinking, “What  attitude will predominate in Mexico and the United States, el grunido del cerdo, or, el grito del gallo (cry of the rooster)?”

That’s where I am this dry Spring, thinking, and hoping for roosters.

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, late-April 2013









Author: Gene Novogrodsky

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, a Brownsville resident for nearly three decades, writes North American border slices, from eastern Canada to central Mexico, and in between. He is one of the founders of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center Writers Forum in San Benito. He sometimes participates with the informal Resaca Writers Group in Brownsville. He prefers, however, to read to two or three attentive listeners – when asked!


One Response to Reflections On Concern

  1. Raven says:

    I appreciate your good natured perspective… Sad to say, Modern humanity has not progressed in that sense.

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