There hasn’t been much new news in search engines about the discovery one year ago of a hundred seventy-seven corpses near San Fernando, Mexico. Occasional reports merely reminded that just eighty miles south of Brownsville, Texas, Mexican authorities ignored a mountain of unclaimed luggage in a bus depot before finally digging holes and discovering mummified Central Americans and Mexicans who’d been heading north to work. Some had been raped and burned before being buried alive.
Few bullet casings littered graves ten feet deep dug by a backhoe since two thirds of the heads had been smashed by a sledgehammer found nearby. Strange that Zeta narcotics traffickers bothered killing non-criminals that way. They must’ve been too excited to stop. It’s encouraging that local Zeta leader Marco Omar Estrada was soon arrested but distressing the local police chief also had to be handcuffed with sixteen of twenty-five cops. The other nine evidently demurred.
Modified Google searches found President Felipe Calderon last October had blasted Uncle Sam for deporting many Mexican criminals, exacerbating problems south of the border. Calderon’s wrong: problem is people feel crime available while good work isn’t, but let’s avoid sociology and keep the sledgehammer handy after sentencing.
Sources: Washington Post, April 25, 2011; Los Angeles Times April 26, 2011; Associated Press, October 25, 2011.
Editorial note: This piece has been rewritten in prose from the poem originally posted January 17, 2012.