Investigatory commissions in Latin America

Truth and justice are essential elements for society; their existence ensures moral and harmonious living. The American culture is not free of injustices; there are circumstances where people have been mistreated, and justice was not served[1]. This paper shall compare and contrast the depiction of truth and justice in Nuestra America and Los Olivdados. It will explore how the two works define truth and justice. In addition, it will expound on moments of injustices and where truth did not prevail in society.

The author of neustral America shows disappointment in the governing ways found in America. He discusses how the leaders adhere to the past centuries of ruling instead of creating truthful and just rules. These past rules are oppressive to some people(the non-white population) and promote inequality. He argues that only when the country is led by a person who acknowledges all American elements, that is when America will achieve justice. The author shows how continued patterns of leadership have led to injustices prevailing. Jose is disappointed in the system since it mimicked the previous European rulers’ ways.

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In Los Olivdados, the film shows injustices on the street level, between street boys and beggars. The street boys led by El Jaibo rob weak and disabled people who cannot protect themselves. For instance, they stole from a blind man and a disabled man who was also a beggar. The children could have chosen different victims or gone to work for the money. However, this way was simple, and they got easy money. The film shows that even in low levels of society, the firm takes advantage of the weak. It depicts the dangers of street life and how children are influenced to commit petty crimes and indulge in promoting injustice. The film also shows how society was first unjust to the boys; some children were abandoned by their parents or left to take care of the family. This type of injustice may go ignored, seen street boys are a norm. however, analyzing situations that led them to that position can provide an explanation for their action. This is because the children did not view their actions as unjust, to them it was a means of survival.

Neutral America states the truth can only be seen by educated people. Educated people are able to discern and think logically before acting. While uneducated people fail to acknowledge the truth, leading to incidences like fighting for honour. The truth can only be seen by those who choose to, one has to view society with an open mind. The author says that the truth is there there are no races, just people who are diverse. He says if one understands the truth they would treat others fairly and promote equality[2]. 

Los Olvidados film show how dangerous it is to tell the truth. Pedro does not report eljaibo after he killed Julian. Eljaibo killed Julian because he thought that Julian had reported him, hence he was sent to a reform school. The streets prefer lies or ignorance, blurting out the truth can put you on the wrong side. It shows how those who risked to be exposed by the truth act to maintain lies. Even though the truth is valued, it is dangerous to be honest in the unpredictable streets. The film however shows how in the end keeping the truth hidden has dire consequences. This is because offenders Rome freely increasing the chances of reoffending.

Nuestra America states that bloodshed is a waste even during war. It argues that the current man is more advanced and hence should use diligent ways to resolve problems. This instance can be related with the civil war occurrence in the USA. The civil war was inevitable since some people put self interest in front of equality. these people were not ready to abandon their grasps to wealth; hence the war erupted. The people were educated but choose to ignore the truth and believe serotypes, that the black man was less of a man and a perfect slave. That kind of injustice is what Jose Manti finds unbearable, he believes that an educated man should see beyond race and nationality. 

The two works are similar in their depiction of truth, they both show that at the end the truth will prevail. Jose states that even though something unjust occurs, even if no one corrects it, people are aware that it was wrong. For example he discusses the unfair treatment of Latin America by north America. The north was not satisfied with their land and wanted to take over other lands. He argues that those countries have gone against the white man and do not want them as leaders. The people want to rule their lands, for example Mexico becomes independent through the hands of a few dedicated people. They rule themselves in a more just way than the previous white man. Los Olvidados show how hard eljiabo tried to hide the fact that he killed jullian. He got away with it and most people were scared to report him. However, at the end Pedro exposes him and everyone including the police know the truth. Eljiabo is gunned down and his carefree reign of violence comes to an end.

The two works discuss the themes of truth and injustice. They uncover how society reacts to the truth and effects the truth can have. In the two works, honesty is the best policy, they teach on the importance of being truthful no matter how appealing it is to conform to a lie. Also, they show injustices from powerful people has affected people under them

In conclusion, promoting diversity in our society is one of several approaches to eliminate injustice. Diversity removes the race barrier, removing sterotype and ensuring fair treatment despite the skin colour. Rather than having a color-conscious society, the goal of eradication or treatment of racism is to establish a color-blind society[3]. Modern society should aim to be truthful to their ways and morals. They should embrace honesty and protect those who tell the truth. When choosing leaders, citizens should not focus on the one with influence, rather the one with ideas and accountability. 


[1] Popkin, Margaret, and Naomi Roht-Arriaza. “Truth as justice: Investigatory commissions in Latin America.” Law & social inquiry 20, no. 1 (1995): 79-116.

[2] Lutz, Ellen, and Kathryn Sikkink. “The justice cascade: the evolution and impact of foreign human rights trials in Latin America.” Chi. J. Int’l L. 2 (2001): 1.

[3] Mouchet, Maud A., Sébastien Villéger, Norman WH Mason, and David Mouillot. “Functional diversity measures: an overview of their redundancy and their ability to discriminate community assembly rules.” Functional Ecology 24, no. 4 (2010): 867-876.

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