Radio Plantón returns to the air in Oaxaca

by John Anderson, DIYMedia.net

The citizen campaign to reclaim the corrupt state of Oaxaca, Mexico has its voice back.

Radio Plantón became a focal point for a citizens' rebellion in the state last year, when a teacher's encampment blossomed into a movement to dismantle the state government and rebuild it from the ground up. Among the repressive tactics instituted by federal and state officials was the jamming, then destruction of the rebellion's main media outlet, pirate radio station Plantón.

The move backfired, as hundreds of Oaxacans, led by women, took to the streets and briefly occupied more than a dozen radio and TV stations in response. It is one of the few times in living memory when a revolution struck back so hard against its own silencing.

A replacement transmitter put Plantón back on the air until last November, when police conducted a wide-ranging crackdown on citizen-activism more generally and again destroyed its gear and dispersed its volunteers.

The blackout has provided more cover for increased violent repression in Oaxaca, but no more: the station returned to the air earlier this month:

Despite mainstream media reports that everything has gone back to normal in Oaxaca, the opposite is in fact true. The people of Oaxaca are living in a climate of absolute fear, victims of heinous and ongoing human rights violations. ...

In informing you that we are going back on the air, we are letting you know that we want and need your solidarity: more than anything, your moral support and solidarity.

What's going on in Oaxaca, in addition to being an issue of life and death, is sparking national debate over the future of Mexican media.

article originally published at http://diymedia.net/archive/0307.htm#031807.

The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey