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Dear Editor:

October 2016. In view was a 14-year-old gringa with a war-torn copy of Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar held tightly underneath her arm. Birds flocked around her as the sound of street performers buzzed through cobblestone streets. The innocence of the scene heightened the ever-present naïvete of the subject, her face beaming at the presence of a new city that was all too familiar at heart. In sight was La Biblioteca, the Mecca that represented the divinity of literature and the sanctity of its followers, and among the huddles of the tourist-infested Jardín, holy serenity was calling.

In my mere 17 years of life, I have grown to accept that life is best represented in a series of collected moments–memories that are often skewed, scratched, and rewritten to represent the times that were once simpler and remind us of our innate innocence. Thus, my previous tale of valor and nirvana wrapped into 90 measly words was merely just the retelling of a portion of my first time in San Miguel de Allende–skewed, scratched, and rewritten.

In reality, I walked among the grand historical presence of such a beautiful city just as any tourist with inquisitive eyes and a lust for meaning would. Any of San Miguel’s millions of travelers would agree that this little town, hidden among vast mountain ranges and with a history that is beyond my small perspective, is truly unparalleled. San Miguel is something of a muse to everyone who visits it, even for its youth. Its history begs to be shared, its story urges to be told, and it holds an example for those who will listen to it.

As the next generation, the world’s youth must rejoice in its past in order to create a better future. With the tense political stature of the world today, especially between that of America and México regarding border control, in such a period of torn beliefs, the only way the youth will be able to repair it is through revelations of the past. We cannot skew, scratch, and rewrite the past to make it fit within our ideals; we can only use it to allow national growth.

In my short time of knowing San Miguel, it has become apparent to me that this city is able to look past all forms of prejudice because of its deep-rooted history in defiance. The message that San Miguel urges to be spread tells a tale of equality and standing without bias. That is truly what makes San Miguel magical: its acceptance–which is something so simple that some people no longer recognize it as necessary. It will always be necessary.

If tales of the past and retellings of one’s memories seem trivial, is fighting against equality and human rights not? Or does that transcend human nature’s morality entirely? San Miguel is a beacon of light within a political standoff and should be the youth’s guide in moving forward into a foreboding society…but what does a kid know anyway?

Hallie Brannick

January 15, 2019


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