Saturday, July 10, 2010

Feminists in Resistance also caution about FRNP elections

In response to the public position statement about proposed selection of difectors of the Frente de Resistencia this week issued by COPINH, the Feminists in Resistance have come out in solidarity with that statement, calling it a "wake-up call" [literally, sound of knocking at a door] "so that the errors that have been committed can be corrected if we are actually committed, men and women, to the Refounding of Honduras".

In the second point of their ten point statement, the Feminists in Resistance say that
our diversity of expressions confronts us with different forms of oppression, for reasons of class, race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, land tenure and damages to the environment, among others. The FNRP cannot ignore this situation, at the moment of forming its organic structures, because otherwise it will be over-valuing some movements and organized groups with participation and representation that is majority masculine, above others in which we women participate under a different philosophy as is feminism.

They argue that
in all the organisms of direction of the Frente, women in resistance should participate in a joint form together with the men, in this way it will be putting into practice the exercise of a full citizenship, to which all women aspire, that is to say, to participate in the taking of decisions.

As with the statement by COPINH, the Feministas en Resistencia reiterate their stance against neoliberalism, patriarchy, neocolonialism, and related tendencies. They go to state firmly that
we consider that our actions within the FNRP should be totally divorced from old exlusionary practices, set-up and opportunistic, proper to the oligarchic parties that lamentably have permeated some of the social and political organizations that make up the Frente, which obligates us to be permanently vigilant and in particular, in this moment in which processes of election are being carried out of our structures and national conduct, in which we hope will exist parity between men and women and that the principles of equality, liberty and autonomy will be put into effect, understanding this as the possibility to take collective and individual internal decisions without interference, nor external pressures of any nature.

The group Feministas en Resistencia has published regular blog posts since August of 2009 with a focus on the impact of the coup and de facto regime on women's issues, and on actions taken in resistance. Like COPINH, it has participated in all the forums of the FNRP.

According to a description of its birth, Feministas en Resistencia was formed by "a collection of Honduran organizations and activists against the coup". With their tagline of Ni golpe de Estado, ni golpe a las mujeres! (Neither a coup d'etat nor violence toward women") they conjoin these forms of repression and underline the fact that women, as ever, pay a particular price for speaking up.

As the profile of the organization (written during the de facto regime, and thus referencing what then was a key demand, the return of the constitutional president) pointed out, for the Feministas en Resistencia
resistance signifies a fight for a substantive democracy that will transform existing relationships of power and generate a new and egalitarian social pact. This goes far beyond Manuel Zelaya’s return. From their perspective, struggling for the restitution of the constitutional president to his office is a condition for democracy and a point of departure for the process of re-establishing the Honduran State by recognizing diversity, citizen participation, gender equality, and human rights.

Incorporating explicit statements of women's rights in a new Constitution is as much a motivating force for these activists as incorporating guarantees of indigenous rights is for COPINH.

Like COPINH, this means they are not interested in converting into a traditional party or political organization.

And even more explicitly, they are pointing the finger at traditional party operatives now in the Frente who they suspect would like to convert it into something that will not achieve the revolutionary goals they seek as feminists.

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