Los Desaparecidos


I’m not particularly good at being serious and solemn. I have a tendency to hum my way out of uncomfortable conversations and joke my way out of the dreariest of moments. But while watching las madres de los desaparecidos march through the government square today, as they have done every single week since the late 1970’s, I was stunned into the most real and haunting silence.

Over 30,000 people were taken from their daily lives by the dictatorship regime in Argentina in the late 1970s. They were tortured, raped, murdered, and disposed of in the most inhumane ways. The Mothers of May Park still have no closure in their lives regarding their missing children – children who were but free thinking intellects, mistaken for ‘dangerous’ communists.

Just days ago, the Plaza de Mayo was so glorified in my mind. The casa rosada stood in all its historical beauty alongside a courtyard of equally important, breathtaking and powerful buildings. Today, though, my heart broke as reality cracked fantasy into pieces of jagged glass. The plaza represents protest. The mothers represent courage, strength, and perseverance, and the pictures they hold, of the children they haven’t seen in forty years, represent reality. The reality of the unknown, of hatred and of deceit.

Every silent tear I shed beneath my sunglasses today was the most warranted one ever to fall from my greenish brown eyes. My heart and my mind cannot wrap themselves around the severity and overwhelming sadness that those mothers, and millions of Argnetines must feel. There isn’t a song in the world that I could hum, or a joke in the world I could tell to avoid the feeling that The Disappeared evoked in me today.

1 Comment

  1. This is completely new to me. As a future Spanish teacher, I’ve got to thank you for sharing this. It’s absolutely shocking, but on the other hand it is not shocking at all for a South American country in the late 20th century. Que pena.

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