By Eduardo Galeano.
Translated from Spanish for Axis of Logic by Toni Solo, Tlaxcala* 6/14/06

In a world that prefers security to justice, more and more people applaud the sacrifice of justice on altars of security. The ceremonies take place in city streets. Each time a criminal falls bullet-ridden, society breathes relief from the sickness at its heart. Every evildoer’s death provokes pharmaceutical effects in the righteous. The word pharmacy comes from pharmakos, the name the Greeks gave to human sacrifice offered to the gods in times of crisis.

The industry of fear

Fear is the raw material of thriving industries like private security and social control. Steady demand sustains a busy trade. Demand grows as much or more than the crimes that generate it and the experts make sure things will stay that way. The market flourishes for private police and prisons while all of us, some more so, some less, become prisoners of fear, more and more on guard toward the person beside us.

Cutting and stitch-up classes : how to make enemies made-to-measure

Plenty of big businesses promote crime and live off crime. Never was there such a concentration of economic and technological resources dedicated to the production of death. The top-selling arms countries are the very ones in charge of world peace. Fortunately for them, the threat of peace is fading, its black clouds already moving far away, as the arms market recovers to offer bright prospects of lucrative butchery. As the factories churn out enemies made-to-measure, the arms factories keep pace.

Global fear

Those in work fear losing their job.
Those out of work fear never finding a job.
Those unafraid of hunger are afraid of what to eat.
Motorists fear driving, pedestrians fear being run over.
Democracy fears remembering, language fears to say.
Civilians fear the military, the military fear being weaponless, weapons fear a scarcity of wars.
It is a time for fear.
Women’s fear of the violence of men, men’s fear of the woman without fear. Fear of thieves, fear of the police.
Fear at the lockless door, of time without clocks, of the television-less child, of the night without sleeping pills, of the day without wake-up pills.
Fear of the crowd, fear of solitude, fear of what was and of what might be, fear of death, fear of life.

© Copyright 2006 by (translation copyright)
Original source (in Spanish): La Jornada (Mexico), Sunday June 4th 2006

Translated from Spanish for Axis of Logic by Toni Solo is a member of Tlaxcala (, the network of translators for linguistic diversity.