Ayotzinapa: Learn in order to teach

[ Débora Poo Soto ]

[Spanish original]
May 15, 2015
By Débora Poo Soto
Translated by Scott Campbell

Ayotzinapa is…

For some; everything, their only option, their best chance, a house, a family, is learning:

They give you, what, food, a bedroom – that’s the room to rest in – the three meals, so for me it means: this Normal [teaching college] is everything. Here there is everything, I have everything […]

They teach you to be humble, here they teach you what is…more than anything the humility to talk with the people, to be sensitive, to respect them, since in this normal they teach you what values are, they teach us to live together with the people and also here they really instill in us to work with the people, with poor people, peasants […].*

Means sharing: the sleepless nights, the tears and happiness, the dreams. It brings with it responsibility, a lot of work and effort in order to get here, in order to enter and to stay.

Well, the reality is one lives here, one suffers here, one feels here, one works here, one studies here. That’s the reality of the Ayotzinapa Normal, as they say here it is the cradle of social consciousness.


And here it’s different, one lives through things here, one suffers here, one cries here, everything. There are times when one suffers from hunger, missteps, sleepless nights, this is Ayotzinapa and this is the reality we are living. And thanks to this we get a conscience, it makes us simpler, more humble and makes us…that we learn to listen to and understand the people.*

You learn to love the school.***

Is to believe in education:

We believe that education is the foundation for social change in the country.**

We also know what it is to be the children of poor people, what it is to be a peasant, just as people treat us well, we also carry this idea of sharing our knowledge with them, to speak in a friendly way, to listen to them, to know to listen, to learn how to listen is something very important also this is what also makes you win people over.*

Is struggle and solidarity, is to be different, is to think anti-systemically:

Ayotzinapa thinks differently, from a point of view of the social reality, of the economic situation and this makes those above, the powerful, not the people, uncomfortable.**

Is to be aware of the class struggle, is not being afraid:

[…] we want to transform the country, we want for there to be opportunities for all, we want the social and economic conditions to be much more equitable […] we want to the extremes to be erased […].**

And in the end they are human beings like you and me, but special and ready to struggle:

The student is like any other student, we are ordinary, we have dreams, goals, we think, discuss among ourselves, we fight, we drink, we have girlfriends, we have boyfriends, we are any other person, only with a, a kind of specialness, a kind of difference – no? – we think anti-systemically, we do not agree with the way things function, we know that something is wrong in the country, we have always known it, we just didn’t have a way of saying it, we knew before arriving at Ayotzinapa.**

*Salvador Castro, Ayotzinapa student.

**Omar García, Ayotzinapa student.

***El Gigante, Ayotzinapa student.

****Thought up through the sharing of many Ayotzi turtles.