To the Maya and campesino communities of the Yucatan Peninsula:
To the peoples of Mexico and the world
“(…) They enjoy, however, everything that the land, sea and wind produce in these places. Now we must understand, how and at what time we must free ourselves of this evil”
CANEK, ERMILO ABREU GÓMEZ
Waves of promises of change flow in the paths of our towns, in our assemblies and our families; stories that talk about a bright future, of the arrival of development and the benefits for our communities with the “Maya” Train. The land of the Maya peoples on the Yucatan Peninsula is being, more than ever, offered and auctioned to the highest bidder, the one who cheats our people, and violates and dismembers our territories with the zeal to grow their capital. Agroindustry, mass tourism, wind and solar megaprojects, and real estate developments grow enormously, causing dispossession and insatiably devouring life, our life. In this way, the project of “integral reordering” of our Mother Earth is conducted through the hands of others, who seek to change the face of the Yucatan Peninsula and its Maya inhabitants, still the legitimate and legal owners of the land that was recognized as ours thanks to the struggle of our ancestors.
Given these events that cross before our eyes, it is essential that we value what we have, what we are, what we have constructed and cared for. That we value and rescue that which continues identifying us as Maya people and that allows the flowering of our culture; that which exists thanks to the knowledge of our grandmothers and grandfathers, to a kind and challenging language, and to the tenacity and rebellion of men and women who have allowed the maintenance of a culture around the Maya milpa, a generating and unifying space for our thinking and wisdom, food and reproduction of life; universal referent of coexistence with the land and the source of family nutrition.
We still have vast extensions of jungle, cradle and nest of the water where the animals drink and the seeds germinate, a tribute to the great aquifer and its waterholes and cenotes. We still have our bees and our honey, sacred nectar offered to mortals around the world. We have our ancient knowledge about the plants that heal and the wood for making our houses. We have our culinary dishes for sharing food, words and work. We have our rituals and ceremonies that each day pact our life with Mother Earth and our coexistence with the jungle animals. We have our own ways or organizing, of communicating with each other, of taking care of ourselves and of thinking collectively. We have a social fabric that continues resisting dispossession and mistreatment. We have sacred sites that are the indelible mark of our origin. We have our music and our dances, our ancient weavings and dignified dress.
We still have ways of seeing life that connect us with the dream of an autonomous flowering, exercising our right of self-determination. We have hundreds of thousands of Maya boys and girls wanting to grow up in freedom and with justice.
And we will continue having all that. If we achieve drinking from that fountain called memory, from these ties called identity, we will recognize ourselves as part of that ancestral force. It will be more necessary than ever to strengthen and maintain the struggle for the defense of what is ours: our territory and our culture. Let’s remember it because we are not willing to lose them, they are not exchange currencies.
We want to construct from inside to delineate forms that will invite life, we want to live with our eyes and our voice raised high, erecting and constructing egalitarian relationships between men and women, where health, food and la education are intimately linked to the land and the milpa. We want to improve our ways of life and coexistence as a people, strengthening values that highlight and enlarge our knowledge and wisdom, and trusting in our own capacity for dialogue and consensus, we want to define the direction of our life and the sense of where to walk.
We want to continue producing the Maya milpa and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the mono-crops that poison our land.
We want to generate and distribute our own electric energy and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the private energy megaprojects that dispossess us of our territory.
We want to breed our own animals and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the mega-pig farms that pollute our water.
We want to maintain and enrich our culture and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the colonizing project of a train that displaces us and crushes us.
We want to strengthen coexistence and friendship with all the peoples of the world, and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the predatory tourism model that trivializes and commodifies our indigenous dignity.
We want security for our peoples and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the official forces of the State and other criminal forces in our territories.
We want to preserve unity inside the communities, fully exercising our autonomy and self-determination, and WE DEMAND THE SUSPENSION of the external intervention that divides and hurts the community fabric.
The land belongs to the community; we don’t sell it or rent it
No to the division that the political parties and religions generate in our peoples
Yes to the Mayan language and culture
Yes to the defense of our right to self-determination
Asamblea de Defensores del Territorio Maya Múuch’ Xíinbal
Apicultores mayas de Dzonot Carretero afectados por las fumigaciones, Tizimin, Yucatán
Centro Comunitario U kúuchil k ch’i’ibalo’on, Felipe Carrillo Puerto, Q. Roo
Colectiva Ajal Yaakun, José María Morelos, Q. Roo
Colectivo de Atención Comunitaria “U yutzil Kaj”
Colectivo de Comunidades Mayas de los Chenes, Hopelchén, Campeche
Colectivo de Semillas Much’ Kanan I’inaj, Bacalar, Q. Roo
Colectivo K-luumil x’ko’olelo’ob, Bacalar, Q. Roo
Colectivo Xok K’iin, Yucatán
Concejo Indigena U yóol lu’um, José Ma. Morelos, Q. Roo
Consejo Maya del Poniente de Yucatán Chikín-há
Ejido Dziuche, José Ma. Morelos, Q. Roo
Guardianes de las Semillas Kanan Inajoob, Sur de Yucatán
Ka Kuxtal Much Meyaj, Hopelchén, Campeche
Red Mayense de Guardianes de Semillas
U Lool Che Sociedad Cooperativa, José Ma. Morelos, Q. Roo
USAEC Apicultores Sociedad Cooperativa, Calakmul, Campeche
U Yich Lu’um, Sanahcat, Yucatán
Published in Spanish by Biodiversidadla
Re-Published with English interpretation by the Chiapas Support Committee