While the selective amnesia often practiced by many news organizations and perhaps by assorted individuals has often led people to think of 1968 as some sort of “Summer of Love,” it was actually much more of a year of Living Dangerously with violent confrontations across the world. In this country, the Democratic Convention of that year saw the local Police get way too much in touch with their inner psychotic thug while confronting people being led by those who had no real clue of possible consequences. In any case eyewitnesses have said there were deaths despite official denials. But eruptions were by no means limited to this country. A much more dangerous high stakes game was being played elsewhere. In Czechoslavakia, students dodged Soviet tanks to assert their liberty, in France, a coalition of workers and students brought the country to days of huge confrontations with wide ranging consequences. In Mexico City, in the Plaza of three cultures,Tlatelolco, Police massacred students from helicopters during a three day protest.
This latter protest, taking place shortly before the Olympics, was, as I recall, not fully understood or noted by many in the US, but in Mexico, Tlatelolco was seen as an enormous transformational event in that country’s history. There is a museum dedicated to the event at the Plaza where it happened. I bring all of this up because during this month, at the UACJ cultural center at the corner of Hermanos Escobar and Plutarco Elias Calles there is a huge room devoted to a traveling exhibition from the Museum’s collection. There are photos and videos explaining and analysing what happened during those momentous days forty years ago. It is worth seeing even though it is only a small representation from the museum in Mexico City.
I find it interesting that Mexico, often accused of various governmental crimes, often with good reason, is nevertheless willing to at least acknowledge past horrors, while certain other countries seem to refuse to even accept the possibility that anything untoward may have occurred.-david sokolec