In addition to extorting money from business owners, the gangs may also demand that you sell their drugs. If you refuse, it can be deadly. One woman held an imaginary pistol to her temple to emphasize this point.
By now I knew the answer, but I asked why someone didn't inform the police about these demands and threats. My question provoked much amusement. I guess it is like calling an arsonist when your house is on fire.
I asked if the United States sending money to Honduras was of any value. They assured me that it was useless unless the money was sent directly to the community or marked for a particular purpose such as education or health.
In Honduras, impunity is the name of the game. Some 98 percent of crimes go unsolved. Talking with people in Honduras is to reveal a dystopia where the bad people have won.
Early this morning I had the honor of meeting some of the poorest people I have ever met. Against all reason, I remember them as very joyful and hopeful.
"I will not tire of declaring that if we really want an effective end to violence we must remove the violence that lies at the root of all violence: structural violence, social injustice, exclusion of citizens from the management of the country, repression. All this is what constitutes the primal cause, from which the rest flows naturally."
~St. Oscar Romero