Mexiko: Macedonia Blas

Everything can be achieved, bit by bit, little by little.

— Macedonia Blas

Macedonia Blas is a Ñañhú (Mexican indigenous ethnic group) woman whose first child died when she was only 18 years old. She did not know how to take care of a little baby and, in her community, there were no doctors and there was no money. Later on, she had 11 more children. Nowadays, she is not only a mother; she is an organizer, a trainer and a defender of Mexican indigenous women.

To fight against the indigenous practices and customs that subjugate women, especially the customs related to sexuality, is a difficult task. That is one of the missions of Macedonia Blas, a Ñañhú (Mexican indigenous ethnic group; the Spanish name is Otomí; they live mainly in the states of Hidalgo and Querétaro) woman who pursues her struggle in her own community, in Mexico and in many other parts of the world. “I would have liked to begin to learn when I was young, but I could not. Now, no one can stop me. Little by little, things change.” Macedonia's community was reforested by the women who formed her group. They have different projects like farming mushrooms or holding workshops on human rights. “We have to learn about the rights of women. Only in this way can we achieve peace in our world. Today, we indigenous women live with a lot of violence, but our grandmothers suffered even more. People do not look on us in the way they should because we are indigenous. And for that reason we have to know our rights and learn.” This racism is very alive in Mexico. It expresses itself in the lack of response when women make official denunciations of their violent husbands. It is evident in the migrations up to the North (the USA). It is evident in their customs and traditions. “We owe it to the girls to talk to them about their bodies, to explain about menstruation, and the bodily changes that take place as they mature. We also need jobs for our young girls. More and more of them jump to ‘the other side’–where they find even more suffering. This is very bad.” Of all the things she has learned, the thing she likes best is to speak in front of an audience. “I felt so ashamed that I thought I was not capable of it, that I thought people would mock me. Now I talk about everything I know and even about what I do not know.”

Fot'zi Ñañhö A.C.