What had to happen happened. The alliance between a lout and a deluded man could not go well. The candidate who won almost six million votes did not accept that the candidate with less than 900,000 would change the rules of the game. But let’s turn the page and look ahead. Subtracting and attacking are stingy verbs that take up time we don’t have, unless we are trying to re-found the Patria Boba.
At this moment, we must add instinct for self-preservation, generosity and good sense. Corruption dressed in sheep’s clothing relishes our mistakes, lurks behind and in front of the door, and does its best to plunge us into the caves. Mr Hernández believes he has the right to govern us and many of us propose to exercise a thinking democracy so that this does not happen. He has earned a surprising place in the elections by insults, quasi-excuses and unfulfilled promises; and Colombia does not seem to care that he behaves like an atarbán. See, out of curiosity, Vicky Dávila’s interview with Hernández’s mother, who laughingly recounts how she (the engineer’s mother) used to scare off cow thieves with bullets, beat up lazy workers with cannon shots, and even today is fascinated by the sound of gunshots.
One of the most odious aspects of Mr Hernández is his difficulty in understanding and valuing the intellectual capacity of women. That is why today I want to write to girls and old women, to workers and teachers; to abused women, executives and journalists; feminists, marginalised women, entrepreneurs and peasant women; to women artists, women who cling to the conquests achieved after centuries of marginalisation, violence and demands. I want to write to women who defend their acquired rights and do not give up their “womanhood”. Whatever decision you make at the ballot box deserves respect, but remember that, generally speaking, one does not weave one’s own noose or give one’s vote of confidence to someone who does not trust who one is.
How many decades of regression can Rodolfo Hernández’s statements on the role of women in society fit in?
Candidate engineer, perhaps you consider me weak because I do not know how to shoot and my vision of human relations does not include five swear words per cubic millimetre, nor do I have a patent of social ignorance to insult and beat up anyone who does not like me. I inform you: the women of Colombia are strong in spirit and knowledge; we are weavers of life and capable of enriching society intellectually, emotionally and occupationally.
As a citizen who is not very fond of genuflection, I call on the 20 million women who will be able to participate at the polls on Sunday 19 June to vote with their heads held high and their consciences informed. I call on you so that your decision will save us from spending the next four years in ungovernability, contempt and thuggery. I call on women to vote for the Colombia Humana that Gustavo Petro and Francia Márquez want to build. I have many differences of substance and form with them, but I support their project, because it takes Colombia inside, it seeks to eradicate hunger and violence, and to build equity while respecting the Constitution. France symbolises social leadership, resilience in the face of discrimination and strength in the face of adversity. It is a critical and defiant voice; it is also a whisper in mother’s tenderness; it is a song of courage and protest. It is memory and resistance, yes, in a volcano, in this country, ours, the one that will never again be silent.