Liz and Gianna are two of a dying breed--traveling sales reps for book publishers--who sell books in Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, and the Deep South. Since we're constantly on the road hawking books, we must find ways to amuse ourselves. So here we've decided to share our anecdotes, adventures, favorite books, and efforts in making the world (or at least these few states) a more literate place to inhabit.
I moved to Texas thirteen years ago and knew
immediately that it would be an education. For example, you can’t just walk in
and talk shit about George Bush. Neither one. Can’t do it. Plus, it’s rude. I
also learned by trial and error that El Paso is too far to drive to just to see
two accounts, and you don’t cross the border to check out Mexico. Texas has
about twenty-five border crossings, and you shouldn’t cross in El Paso. You
Ciudad Juarez has a dark history; the first
thing I read about it after my trip to El Paso was the unsolved murders of over
300 women since 1993 (that figure is now up over 400 according to a new book by
Rodríguez called The Femicide Machine which
I haven’t read yet but I just ordered from MIT Press). These murders, oddly enough, aren’t what Juarez is known for. A devastating fact is that 400
murders gets lost when they occur over twenty years, or even ten.
It was only a
handful of years ago that Juarez had a murder rate similar to any large city; it was comparable to Houston with an average of around two hundred per year. In 2008, the
murder rate was up over 1,500, and the following year reached its all time high
of over 2,000. In short, the drug war has claimed 60,000 lives in Mexico since
2007. Twenty percent of drug executions take
place in Juarez, therefore what happens in Juarez will have lasting
repercussions for the United States and the rest of Mexico.
Ricardo Ainslie author of Fight to Save Juarez and Long Dark Road
The Fight to Save Juarez by Ricardo Ainslie delves into the
complicated and heartbreaking world that is the drug war in Mexico, Juarez
being ground zero. That’s where the book is focused. Ainslie interviewed families
of victims, Narcos, Mexican government strategists, (including former President
Calderon’s security team), plus individuals in U.S law enforcement. The book is
as riveting as it is important.
Here was my
take-a-way from The Fight to Save Juarez: While we like to bitch and moan about
the problem that is Mexico, the drugs are being consumed here by Americans, and
the murders are being committed with assault weapons from this side of the border. The drugs go out and the guns go in, and
thousands of innocent people die every single year.