The 50 best phrases of Emiliano Zapata
Jul 15, 2021
Throughout history there have been multiple revolutionary movements led by the most disadvantaged classes, often peasants and workers who decided to present an armed resistance to what they considered unfair treatment by their leaders.
Many Central and South American countries have also starred in multiple of these conflicts, including the Mexican Revolution against the Porfiriato (period in which Mexico was under the military control of Porfirio Diaz). One of the most important figures of this revolution was Emiliano Zapata, who throughout his career made different reflections on different aspects of life. In this article we will see several of them, in 50 phrases by Emiliano Zapata.
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The most memorable phrases of Emiliano Zapata
Emiliano Zapata was one of the best known and iconic leaders of the Mexican Revolution. During this revolution, this important leader left us a lot of reflections regarding aspects such as freedom and law. Here is a small collection of phrases attributed to him.
1. The land is for those who work it
Zapata defended during the Revolution the right of the peasants to claim what was theirs without being exploited for it.
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2. I want to die a slave to principles, not men
Exploitation and mistreatment of the lower classes were common in Mexico at that time. The author of the phrase proposed to free themselves and obey what they considered right and worthy.
3. I forgive the one who steals and the one who kills, but the one who betrays, never.
One of the things that has caused the most pain throughout history is betrayal, the willful and deceitful breaking of trust by those you believe.
4. Whoever wants to be an eagle that flies, whoever wants to be a worm that crawls but does not scream when they step
This phrase reflects that we all have the right to act as we want, but if we settle for what we have without doing anything to change it, we have no right to complain about it.
5. Ignorance and obscurantism at all times have produced nothing but herds of slaves for tyranny
It is the ignorance of alternatives that makes many people not consider the possibility of organizing a change and what allows others to take advantage of it.
6. The bourgeois, not content with possessing great treasures of which no one participates in his insatiable greed, steals the product of his labor from the worker and the laborer
The author expresses and criticizes the exploitation to which the powerful subjected the peasantry at that time.
7.... and still not satisfied, he insults him and hits him, showing off the support that the courts give him, because the judge, the only hope of the weak, is also at the service of the scoundrel
Continuation of the previous sentence, it talks about corruption in the judicial establishment.
8. The Mexican people asked, as the educated people ask, peacefully, in the press and on the platform, the overthrow of the dictatorship, but they were not listened to; He was answered with bullets, rifle butts, and horse mackerel; and only when force repelled with force, was when his complaints were heard, and the tyrant, or even compared to scientific octopuses, were defeated and contemplated the victorious people
Before the Mexican Revolution, the Porfiriato reached the level of dictatorship and became extremely repressive, something that would end up causing the revolution to the dissatisfaction and suffering of the most oppressed.
9. The enemies of the homeland and the freedoms of the peoples have always called bandits who sacrifice themselves for their noble causes.
This phrase speaks to us of the criticism by some sectors of society towards those who they intend to fight to change things.
10. I will tell bitter truths, but I will express nothing to you that is not true, just and honestly said.
Telling the truth honestly can be difficult, harsh, and even have severe repercussions, but it is something worth living consistently with ourselves.
11. If there is no justice for the people, let there be no peace for the government
Phrase that encourages those who hear it to fight to change things.
12. Such a beautiful conquest has cost the Mexican people a terrible sacrifice, and it is a duty, an imperative duty for everyone, to ensure that this sacrifice is not sterile.
Achieving freedom is something that has cost countless tribulations and lives throughout history. That is why we must value it and ensure its maintenance.
13. We want neither the peace of slaves nor the peace of the grave
Few people really want to maintain a conflict, but this does not imply that they should allow themselves to be submitted and accept everything that is predisposed or disappear.
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14. I am resolved to fight against everything and everyone with no other bulwark than the trust and support of my people
Esteem and loyalty are, along with the conviction that we are doing the right thing, elements that give us strength to fight against anything.
15. The peasant was hungry, suffered misery, suffered exploitation and if he took up arms it was to obtain the bread that the greed of the rich denied him. He launched into revolt not to conquer illusory political rights that do not feed, but to seek the piece of land that will provide food and freedom, a happy home and a future of independence.
Phrase that explains some of Zapata's motivations in the Revolution, not as something political but as something that tried to achieve and supply basic rights.
16. Many of them, to please tyrants, for a handful of coins or for bribery or bribery are betraying and shedding the blood of their brothers
Again, Zapata criticizes how self-interest can lead to the abandonment and betrayal of causes that were originally considered just.
17. The essential thing is that we all leave determined to defend the common interest and to rescue the part of sovereignty that is taken from us
This sentence pushes towards the search for the defense of common interests.
18. The principles were shipwrecked, and the dismal triumph of men was reduced to substituting a despot for another who added to his scepter of tyranny the most scandalous despotism recorded in the stages of the time
Zapata expresses sadness and indignation regarding how ethics and morals that should rule power have been lost to tyranny and personal benefit.
19. Sir, I belong to a traditional race that has never degenerated or been able to betray the convictions of a community, and those of its own conscience; I prefer the death of Spartacus riddled with wounds in the midst of freedom, rather than the life of Pausanias locked alive in a grave by his mother on behalf of the country
The author indicates his conviction regarding the need to fight for freedom.
20. If you move away from that old mold of dictatorships and take inspiration from the purest patriotism, putting aside the traitors of the institutions, listening to the voice of the revolution, which is the voice of the people, then you will have won the esteem and applause of your compatriots
Phrase that seeks to show the need to eliminate dictatorial practices and govern according to what the people really want.
21. I beg you and all your henchmen to turn to the head and not to the feet for peace arrangements
Zapata was considered a simple element in favor of a larger idea, and with this phrase he was referring to the The need for negotiations to be carried out not with the military establishment but with the president and vice president of the republic.
22. I am not speaking to the President of the Republic, whom I do not know, nor to the politician I distrust; I speak to the Mexican, to the man of feeling and reason, whom I believe it is impossible not to ever move (even if he is a instant) the anguish of mothers, the sufferings of orphans, the anxieties and anguish of the homeland.
Phrase that tries to reach those with power to make them see the suffering of those on whom they exercise it.
23. We did not seek the poor satisfaction of personal growth, nor did we long for the sad vanity of honors, nor do we want anything other than the true triumph of honors, nor do we want anything other than the true triumph of the cause, consisting of the implantation of the principles, the realization of ideals and the resolution of problems, the result of which must be the salvation and aggrandizement of our town
This phrase by Emiliano Zapata expresses that the Revolution was not carried out out of simple selfishness but for trying to solve the town's problems.
24. Freedom, Justice and Law!
One of Zapata's insignia, this phrase expresses what he wanted to achieve with the revolution.
25. My personality and that of mine have been villainously slandered by the banal and corrupt press of Mexico City
This phrase reflects how the media have an important role in regard to the prevailing consideration of social movements.
26. Peace can only be reestablished with justice as the base, freedom and law as a lever and support, and reform and social welfare as the dome of that building.
Society must seek the maintenance of order and justice as well as the well-being of all citizens who are part of it.
27. The position of the landowner with respect to the peons is entirely the same as that kept by the feudal lord, the baron or the count of the Middle Ages, with respect to his servants and vassals.
The general shows that the humiliating treatment given to the peasants it was typical of an ancient time and in which feudalism and vassalage prevailed.
28. Do your duty and you will be worthy; defend your right and you will be strong, and sacrifice if necessary, that later the homeland will rise satisfied on an unshakable pedestal and drop on your grave a handful of roses
Phrase that indicates the need to fight for what we consider fair, no matter how much it may cost us, in order to make the world a better place.
29. I have risen not to enrich myself, but to defend and fulfill that sacrosanct duty that the honored Mexican people have, and I am willing to die at any time because I carry the purity of feeling in my heart and the tranquility of conscience
Zapata expresses that he seeks it with the revolution and the armed uprising is not his own benefit but that of the whole of the people.
30. A few hundred large landowners have monopolized all the arable land of the Republic; from year to year they have increased their dominions, for which they have had to deprive the towns of their ejidos or communal fields, and the small owners of their modest estates
Phrase that reflects the poor distribution of wealth in Mexico at that time.
31. We await the decisive hour, the precise moment when the peoples sink or are saved
Phrase that reflects doubt and uncertainty about what is going to happen, about the final results of what they strived to change towards a more equitable world.
32. The land will return to those who work it with their hands
Zapata defends the right to that those who work the land can dispose of it.
33. The landowner, in Mexico, has the person of his "peon" at will; pressure it down if you like; he forbids him to leave the hacienda, on the pretext that he has debts there that he will never be able to pay; and through the judges, who the landowner corrupts with his money, and the prefects or "political bosses", who are always his allies, the great landowner is in reality, without consideration, lord of lives and estates in his vast domains
Expression that lets us see the abuses to which the laborers could be subjected.
34. Together we share the hazards of war, the desolation of our homes, the bloodshed of our brothers and the martial touches of the bugles of victory.
Phrase that speaks of the feelings of union and community that are forged and that allow us to continue fighting despite difficulties.
35. Willing not to abandon for a moment the great work that we have undertaken, we will arrive resolved until the end, accepting before civilization and before history the responsibilities of this act of supreme vindication
In this sentence we observe the presence of a commitment to achieve the objectives despite the fact that there may be obstacles and assuming responsibility for their own actions and their consequences.
36. They persecute me for the crime of wanting those who have always been hungry to eat
Famine, poverty and inequality are some of the elements that aroused the outrage of the public and that led to the revolution.
37. It is not fair that those of us who have long raised the flag of the Plan de Ayala, which is specified in terms of lands and freedoms, let us leave it in the hands of a few ambitious people who only seek wealth at the expense of the sweat of the working people; that after spilling so much blood the people be mocked and left in the same or worse condition; We must not allow this for any reason and we must ensure the interests of the Republic
Zapata proclaims the need to maintain the principles that guided his actions and to continue trying to benefit the people.
38. And it is that the landowners, from dispossession to dispossession, today with one pretext and tomorrow with another, have been absorbing all the properties that legitimately They belong and from time immemorial have belonged to the indigenous peoples, and from whose cultivation the latter drew their livelihood for themselves and for their families
In this sentence, we observe how families and indigenous peoples were little by little relegated and seeing their lands plundered.
39. But if instead of taking the side of principles, he takes the side of men, dizzy by the censer of tyranny, then pretend that he has wielded the Moses' rod not to dry up the waters of the Red Sea of revolution, but to stir them up and engender the tempest that must drown us in a sea of blood and shame
We are told on this occasion of the need to adjust to what we consider fair, instead of being carried away by political figures and power.
40. Gentlemen who is not afraid to sign, but know that they are going to sign triumph or death
This phrase expresses how the risk involved in joining the revolution was well known, with basically the two outcomes mentioned in the same phrase.
41. The Mexican nation is too rich, but that wealth, that inexhaustible flow of gold, belonging to more than 15 millions of inhabitants, it is in the hands of a few thousand capitalists and, of them, a large part are not Mexicans.
Again we are told about the presence of inequality and justice in wealth and well-being, concentrating power and money in a few people.
42. It is time to retire, it is time to leave the post to more skillful and more honest men.
Reference to the need for political change and for the dictatorship of the time to end.
43. It would be a crime to prolong this situation of undeniable moral, economic and political bankruptcy
Continuation of the previous sentence, tells us the presence of serious difficulties in various areas and sectors.
44. We are adherents of principles and not of men!
What must be sought and pursued are the values that govern our conduct, not limiting ourselves to following authority figures.
45. Call your consciences, meditate for a moment without hatred, without passions, without prejudices, and this truth luminous as the sun will inevitably arise before you: the revolution is the only thing that can save the Republic
Zapata in this sentence calls not to be carried away by prejudices or passions when assessing the course of action to follow.
46. The capitalist, the soldier, and the ruler had lived in peace, undisturbed either in their privileges or in their properties, at the cost of the sacrifice of a slave and illiterate people, without heritage and without a future, that was condemned to work without rest and to die of hunger and exhaustion, since, Spending all of his energies in producing incalculable treasures, it was not possible for him to have even what was necessary to satisfy his needs the most. peremptory
The prevailing social inequality at the time generated a great difference between the lives of the people of low social class and with few resources and those of those with a higher socioeconomic level high.
47. The stream of peoples who have witnessed our efforts will answer with voices of an anathematized clarion to the legion of "scientific traitors" that still in The terrifying shadows of their defeat forge new chains for the people or try to crush the demands of slaves, outcasts, automatons and lackeys
In this sentence Zapata indicates that those who try to slander the objectives of his initiative will be contradicted by those who have truly seen and lived the progress made.
48. The 1910 revolution broke out as an immense cry for justice that will always live in the soul of nations as freedom lives in the world. heart of the peoples to vivify them, to redeem them, to raise them from the abjection to which the species cannot be condemned human
Emiliano Zapata speaks in this phrase of the revolution as a movement aimed at recovering justice and freedom.
49. Land and Freedom!
Another of the proclamations that has traditionally been associated with Zapata, although it is believed that the first to mention it was Ricardo Flores.
50. Better to die on your feet than to live a lifetime on your knees
This phrase has generally been attributed to Emiliano Zapata, although there are doubts as to whether it originated from him or from Dolores Ibárruri, also known as La Pasionaria.