Stingray in Quito, as photographed by me via a webcam at the corner of Amazonas and Alemania Ave, April 13, 2005
I realize that most Americans have never heard of South America, and that even if they had, they wouldnâ€™t give a crap about it, because all their current events needs appear to be met by a constant media drip of insipid platitudes concerning the new misogynist homophobic old white male Aryan pope. But check this out:
My pal Stingray is down in Cuenca, Ecuador, and as she was out sporting around yesterday she happened to notice that there was something of an enormous violent political upheaval in progress. Stingray is too young to regard the idea of her own mortality as anything but a remote figment, so of course she immediately inserted herself into the angry mob. Here is her report:
"Anyway, as of a few hours ago the president was chased out of the capital. The congress unanimously voted him out of office and the protests were very strong. Here in Cuenca I followed the protests from early this morning and got some of the most amazing photos of my life. The government building was taken over and the people were calling for even the local politicians to leave. Amidst tanks, tear gas, and mobs of people, the news came about the president leaving, and the groups who had thrown Molotov cocktails at the police all day approached and they were all shaking hands. It’s still a lot of back and forth with the crowds cheering then rushing military vehicles and government buildings, but it is still to be seen how many politicians are forced to leave with the president.
Pardon my English, it is lacking. I may go back to Quito for a day or two to document some of the aftermath, or if it seems to be settling, I may go on to the coast. I’m a little full of adreneline right now and a bit of a cough from tear gas.â€
I have begged young Stingray for some of the amazing photos to which she alludes, but because she is an artiste, her camera is of an ancient non-digital design, and we will have to wait. I have also begged her to get the fuck out of that goddam war zone, but she would defy me. The borders, evidently, are closed.
I have yet to see anything about this Ecuador stuff in the mainstream media. The New York Times, for example, continues its all-pope-all-the-time coverage, and CNN takes a brief break from Popemania to report that Macaulay Culkin is going to testify in the Michael Jackson trial.
Fortunately, The Agonist is on the job, although,
Â¡hey, Agonist, it’s Quito not Quinto!
Update: American national media have, since I posted the above, begun to carry the story.