R. H. and I have never met, but I am absolutely heartbroken after reading about the news of his beautiful baby Rebecca’s passing.

Read his post, Who it’s really about.

I was going to write today about the usual American and Latin American politics, but . . . politics, money, jobs, culture, are all ephemeral.

This is what life is really about,

Many of us spend a large part of our adult lives influencing, or trying to influence, those around us.  We read books, we devise arguments, we make PowerPoint presentations, and we argue on Facebook.  And yet here I had a little girl, not even a year old, who came into my life and changed everyone around her, including people she never met.  Her broken heart was changing those with hardened hearts.

The Lord called beautiful Rebecca to his side, and her short life has affected many of us, even when we haven’t met. That a child so young can help so many is indeed a miracle.

From the Book of Common Prayer, we pray for consolation,

O merciful Father, who hast taught us in thy holy Word that thou dost not willingly afflict or grieve the children of men: Look with pity upon the sorrows of thy servant for whom our prayers are offered. Remember him, O Lord, in mercy, nourish his soul with patience, comfort him with a sense of thy goodness, lift up thy countenance upon him, and give him peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

And, as we go on our daily lives, may we find joy in what really matters.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

Illegal immigration flowing from Mexico into the United States is controlled by the cartels, directly or with the cooperation of coyotes, as InSight Crime reports,

Most coyotes have a clear incentive to have at least some relationship with the drug traffickers, even beyond the need to pay protection fees. Coyotes have intimate knowledge of the terrain and the US authorities on the other side of the border, so they have highly sought-after skills for gangs slipping drugs into US cities. Many specialists in moving drug shipments across the border originally learned their trade working as coyotes.

Typically, however, they do not operate as members of a given gang. Instead, they are independent entrepreneurs who will work with the traffickers opportunistically.

People from other countries who are caught traveling through Mexico illegally are vulnerable to extortion, kidnapping and violence, as a group of 90 Cubans stranded in Mexico held in a detention center allege.

Rather than work towards better conditions, Mexico’s ruling class, which has failed to protect its own citizens from the cartels’ deadly human trafficking business, are offering to backlog U.S. courts,

The order came from above: Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto offered help in defying immigration laws to Mexicans illegally in the U.S. ,

“The 50 Mexican embassies will become authentic legal defense for immigrants,” Peña Nieto added.

The truth is, other democratic countries are far more aggressive than the U.S. about removing illegal aliens.

Indeed,

Mexico has zero tolerance for illegal immigrants who seek to work inside Mexico, happen to break Mexican law or go on public assistance — or any citizens who aid them.

In Mexico, legal immigration is aimed at privileging lawful arrivals with skill sets that aid the Mexican economy and, according to the country’s immigration law, who have the “necessary funds for their sustenance” — while denying entry to those who are not healthy or would upset the “equilibrium of the national demographics.” Translated, that idea of demographic equilibrium apparently means that Mexico tries to withhold citizen status from those who do not look like Mexicans or have little skills to make money.

Where’s the outrage?

When will Mexico’s ruling class extend to their fellow countrymen the basic housing, education or welfare they come to seek in the U.S.?

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

Speaking at the Legatus Conference, Princeton University professor Robert P. George asserted that the days of Christianity being socially acceptable are over:

“It is no longer easy to be a faithful Christian, a good Catholic, an authentic witness to the truths of the Gospel,” said Princeton Professor Robert George to a large crowd at the Legatus Summit in Orlando, Florida last weekend. Professor George added that people can still safely identify as “Catholic” as long as they don’t believe, or will at least be completely silent about, “what the Church teaches on issues such as marriage and sexual morality and the sanctity of human life.”

We have repeatedly seen putative Catholics like Nancy Pelosi who support abortion,

For Ms. Pelosi, the notion of disagreeing with other Catholics about abortion has not weighed on her sense of faith. “I think everyone grants everyone their position,” she said. “The church has their position, and we have ours, which is that a woman has free will given to her by God. My family is very pro-life,” she added, noting that she has lived with the conflict all her life.

Nancy, and many like her, may believe that “The church has their position, and we have ours,” is A-OK for a practicing Catholic. In fact, the Catholic Church is unequivocal on abortion:

2270 Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.

From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.71

In these days of pussyhats, political correctness, and the madness of crowds, conservatism is the new counterculture [language warning at link].

But it comes with a price. Back  to Prof. George,

Are we “prepared to give public witness to the massively politically incorrect truths of the Gospel, truths that the mandarins of an elite culture shaped by the dogmas of expressive individualism and me-generation liberalism do not wish to hear spoken?” he asked.

Prof. George declared in his speech, “One day we will give an account of all we have done and failed to do.” He has been taking the fight to the battlegrounds for decades.

As JD said, “The best friend of leftist indoctrination is a silent right.”

Silent no longer.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

Last week I posted on Our Ladies of Perpetual Outrage™, the Left’s militant wing of women who reduce themselves to their private parts.

We saw them en masse the day after Pres. Trump’s inauguration, not only in cities across the U.S.A., but even in spots as far away as Antartica and Tokyo – especially if there was an American consulate or embassy nearby where expats could congregate.

That march, according to Wikipedia, was one-size-fits-all, just like a pussyhat, as far as purpose,

the goal of promoting women’s rights, immigration reform, and health care reform; to counter Islamophobia, rape culture, and LGBTQ abuse; and to address racial inequities (e.g., Black Lives Matter), workers’ issues, and environmental issues.[1]

It also gave a much-too-revealing look at the pernicious narcissism of those who find it appropriate to parade around in vagina [sic] costumes.

Well, once you’re into weird suits, why not just go topless, too?

Last month three women got busted for going topless at a public beach some three hundred miles south of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Not exactly what  I would consider earth-shattering news.

In the South American summer (where a lot of places do not have air-conditioning), as in summers all other the world, people go to the beach. Most of them keep their clothes on.

The three women didn’t, one thing led to another, and before you know it, twenty cops turned up. It must have been a slow day at the precinct.

Following their release, the three women decided to make a big fuss, and before you know it, Argentinian women decided to demonstrate topless, of course, and yesterday the country witnessed El Tetazo [link NOT SUITABLE FOR WORK].

It’s now winter in the Northern Hemisphere, so the next thing is going to be the Day Without a Woman general strike, to stoke the protesting fires,

Its name reminds me of the 2004 flop, A Day Without a Mexican, especially the “date to be announced” part.

Nobody in freezing weather is going to remove their coats, but, conveniently, A Day Without a Woman can take place indoors.

Just don’t be surprised if, once the temps warm up, the pussyhat-wearing boobs go on parade . . . again.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

The Daily MailNew York Post, U.S. News and World Report, and the International Business Times ran stories alleging that Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch had started a club named “Fascism Forever” while in high school.

This was their only evidence:

Yes, their only evidence was an entry in the Jesuit-run Georgetown Preparatory School 1985 high school yearbook. Patterico has the details.

Of course Gorsuch had not been involved in any such club. The club never even existed. The high school yearbook entry was a prank, like thousands of high school yearbook entries all over the country.

What is astonishing about this is the only undeniable fact: None of the journalists in any of the four newspapers, nor their editors reviewing the story, thought of doing one thing – calling Georgetown Prep (telephone available at their website, see above link) and actually asking any questions on this story.

Not one.

It’s exasperating.

Look, I’ve been blogging for nearly thirteen years. My speciality is Latin America news. I never attended journalism school. My blog’s only revenue comes from the ads. Any of the four newspapers mentioned above have innumerable more resources than I.

I read dozens of articles every day in news websites. Before I post anything on my blog, I make sure the story has at least two different in-country sources in the country’s language (Spanish or Portuguese, sometimes French), preferably adding a local news video of the incident if applicable, plus an English-language article.

If I find information in a book, I verify the footnote(s).

On some stories I have contacted people in the country where the story takes place. I even have talked to eyewitnesses on a few stories.

If the story involves national security concerns, I look up Congressional committee reports and include the link.

Except for the time I invest on a post, the information is available for free. You need to have good research skills, but  you must verify all information.

If you make a mistake (which happens to everybody), it behooves you to post the correction prominently in the original post.

Unless you don’t mind posting rumors and casting unfounded aspersions, that is.

By now, is it unreasonable to assume that the media is operating in bad faith and to not believe what they print? What effect will that have on American civil society?

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

No sooner had Pres. Trump nominated judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court that the women were out protesting with professionally pre-printed signs:

Notice also the all-purpose SEGURO, LEGAL Y ACCESIBLE (SAFE, LEGAL AND ACCESSIBLE) pro-abortion sign, perhaps recycled from another demonstration.

Lacking pre-printed signs, some showed up to a Mad-Lib protest:

This constituency most likely include people who think Meryl Streep was brave for wasting a lifetime achievement speech by ranting about Donald Trump; who approve of women who reduce themselves to their private parts and wear ridiculous hats and costumes while littering and vandalizing the Mall and the largest building complex privately built, owned, operated and maintained entirely by women in the world; who think obstructing airports over an executive order they haven’t even read is a good idea; who see nothing wrong over an entertainer vowing to “punch people [he doesn’t agree with] in the face” with “soul, heart and joy“; and who don’t realize that parroting talking points convinces  no one.

So last night, I jokingly tweeted, “The DNC ought to start its own religious order: Our Ladies of Perpetual Outrage.”

Well, surprise, surprise, it already has: United by post-inauguration marches, Democratic women plan to step up activism

The poll finds 40 percent of Democratic women say they will become more involved in political causes this year, compared with 25 percent of Americans more broadly and 27 percent of Democratic men. Nearly half of liberal Democrats also say they will become more politically active, as do 43 percent of Democrats under age 50. Interest in boosting activism is far lower — 21 percent — among independents and Republicans alike.

What remains to be seen is whether Our Ladies of Perpetual Outrage™ will be as effective as the Tea Party (which was not as well-funded or publicized by the media), or whether, as Victor Davis Hanson phrased it, they will continue to remain “clueless that their present rabid frenzy is doing as much political damage to their cause as is the object of their outrage.”

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

At marchforlife.org/

The March for Life is a peaceful demonstration to share the truth concerning the greatest human rights violation of our time, legalized abortion on demand.

There’s also a security warning,

March for Life 2017 – January 27, 2017
Participants should be aware that due to heightened security concerns, all will be required to go through airport-type screening to reach the rally site. The screening stations will be on the Washington Monument grounds directly north of the Monument near 16th Street. Screening will begin at 9:00 AM. Please allow extra time to get to the rally site.
Click Here for More Info

Because “love trumps hate”, and the March For Life won’t embrace a rape-torturer psychopath, the way the Saturday march did.

There are local events planned across the country.

Can’t Make It to the March for Life? Here’s How You Can Participate

The Washington March is scheduled to start at 11:45am Eastern, but Will mainstream media pay attention to March for Life now that Mike Pence is speaking? I agree with J.D.; odds are that the networks and most cable TV stations will not. C-Span coverage starts at 12noon, ending at 2pm. As I type this, One America News announced they will be covering the Washington rally.

As of the writing of this post (10:10AM), #MarchForLife is Twitter’s top trend.

Here’s a brief roundup of this morning’s articles:

AOL: Trump shames media coverage of March for Life, Pence to become first VP to attend

NBC: DC’s ‘March for Life’ to highlight gains by abortion opponents

USA Today: March for Life participants optimistic about Trump, Pence

Newsbusters: Networks Cover Women’s March 129x More Than March for Life

Eurasia Review: March For Life Scares Death Industry – OpEd

Newsday: March for Life: Ride along with Long Island marchers

If you would like your post added to the roundup, please leave a link in the comments section.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

at Saturday’s Women’s March.

I watched, and still cannot figure out why the vagina costumes [sic – the correct name for the particular body part the costumes depict is vulva], and why the p***y hats: If you are so incensed about a man reducing women to her body parts, why are you reducing all women, including Our Lady of Guadalupe, to their body parts?

The Austin marchers interviewed couldn’t even tell Steven Crowder why they marched:

I’m cynical enough to think the Soros-funded marches were originally intended as a celebration of Hillary’s ascent to the throne Presidency, and became a public hissy fit when that didn’t work out.

All the same, the speakers and the attendees abundantly indulged in foul language while unhinged.

As a sideshow, the Washington, D.C., marchers desecrated the Daughters of the American Revolution Memorial (emphasis added),

Ironically, the largest building complex privately built, owned, operated and maintained entirely by women in the world.

After the march, someone posted on Facebook “I am not a “disgrace to women” because I don’t support the women’s march.” Sure as rain, a condescending marcher had to inform us that You Are Not Equal. I’m Sorry, because “You did nothing to earn your rights.”

Setting aside a discussion on unalienable rights, odds are that this person in younger than I. I am pretty sure we have never met. So what does she(?) know about what I have earned, or not, in my long life? The condescension piles on:

“You still make less than a man for doing the same work.”

Then start your own business, or work entirely on commission.

“You still have to justify your behavior when a man forces himself on you.”

Get training on firearms, get your license. Carry.

“You are still objectified”

Then stop wearing pussy hats, vagina [sic] costumes, and using sexual and profane words. Cover your breasts – nobody wants to see them. But back to more condescension,

“Estonia allows parents to take up to three years of leave, fully paid for the first 435 days.”

Move to Estonia.

The article ends with an offer:

“I will walk for you.”

No thank you. I walk for and whenever I please. Which, by the way, this answer is related to my resolutions after watching the shameful displays on Saturday: I’ve resolved to never use foul language, strive to behave with some dignity, and to continue to associate with people of decency and drop any others. Otherwise I would have told them not to let the door hit them on their p***yhats on the way out.

I clearly need to work some more on my resolutions.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

As I write this post, I’m totally entranced with the TV coverage of the Trump inauguration.

My favorite so far is Varney & Co. on Fox Business Network (you can watch live at the link).

Mr. Varney was born in England and became a U.S. citizen, and peppers his commentary with notes on the stock market: He checked the price of GM stock when the motorcades headed to the Capitol building. He wondered if Tiffany stock would go up while Melania handed Michelle the signature Tiffany-blue box:

What is more entrancing is the crowd waiting outside. Thousands of Trump supporters wearing Make America Great Again hats peacefully gathering in an organized manner, which also makes me admire the massive security effort this occasion requires. In other parts of town, anarchists are breaking windows.

The importance of a peaceful and amicable transition from one administration to the next is part of what defines a true democracy. As the day enfolds, I invite you to pray for our great country and for the President. From the Book of Common Prayer:

Prayers for National Life

18. For our Country

Almighty God, who hast given us this good land for our heritage: We humbly beseech thee that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of thy favor and glad to do thy will. Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion; from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes brought hither out of many kindreds and tongues. Endue with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in thy Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that, through obedience to thy law, we may show forth thy praise among the nations of the earth. In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in thee to fail; all which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

19. For the President of the United States and all in Civil Authority

O Lord our Governor, whose glory is in all the world: We commend this nation to thy merciful care, that, being guided by thy Providence, we may dwell secure in thy peace. Grant to the President of the United States, the Governor of this State (or Commonwealth), and to all in authority, wisdom and strength to know and to do thy will. Fill them with the love of truth and righteousness, and make them ever mindful
of their calling to serve this people in thy fear; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.

We’re in the midst of crazy season:

James O’Keefe finds anarchists planning to commit felonies in order to disrupt the Trump inauguration on Friday, including

an actual plot to release acid at events, chain up DC subways, and assault people at the inauguration

Because that’s how anarchists show their respect for Americans.

There’s the Washington Post covering Marla Maples’s hairdresser, instead  of covering O’Keefe’s investigation. Because that’s how you show journalism worthy of a national newspaper.

Then there are the Code Pink women doing a flashmob dance at Union Station while wearing “pussy hats.” Because flashmobs and silly hats are how you show you are a serious woman of substantive standing on the issues.

And let’s not forget the Congresspeople saying they’ll boycott the inauguration. Because that’s how you show your standing on partisanship, an issue you decry only when you accuse Republicans.

In the midst of all this, at least we get some comic relief. Last night Tucker Carlson opened his show with this, which was actually funny, especially the Peyton Manning line:

A man using the alias “Dominic Tullipso” said Tuesday on Fox News Channel — well, it was hard to figure out what he was trying to say, but it was also clear that he wasn’t running a business that involved spending thousands on hiring activists.

“It’s pretty darn easy these days to just say whatever the heck you want on national TV and have it pass off as truth,” he told host Tucker Carlson. “I don’t know, it’s pretty incredible to me how easy it was to get the coverage we got.”

The unidentified prankster then added, “By the way, I’m not saying that anything of this a hoax and any of this isn’t true.”

At least the Washington Times realized they had been had.

With all this circus going on, is anyone surprised that Ringling Brothers is shutting down?

Why go to the circus when the circus comes to you?

UPDATE
This one promises to be a humdinger: Anthropologists and other scholars plan read-in of Michel Foucault to mark inauguration of Donald Trump

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz posts on U.S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.