We had our spirits and minds thoroughly moved, confused, focused, questioning, etc., by the sharing of the Mam community in San Miguel Ixhatuacán about the issues surrounding gold and silver mining in this area. Water pollution of rivers via cyanide poisoning (part of production process), the “killing of the earth” through fracking, mass removal of mountains, and the ways in which labor, cultural, and community relations are being changed by outsiders from North America (in this case Goldcorp in Canada). One comment made by our group looking down the enormous bowl in the land was that “this looks like a mass grave, a holocaust of the earth”. In this part of the trip, students are clearly sending the realities of structural violence within these Mam communities.
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