|Skinheads walk thru Teusaquillo. Notice that the guy in the foreground is dark-skinned.|
Skinheads group up near the Santa Ana church.
One of these guys wore a 'Good night white pride' t-shirt.
They were gangs of skinheads, a weird and disturbing phenomenon in Colombia, facing off against each other.
|The skinheads take off in pursuit after the enemy band.|
|The cops show up, but just a few of them.|
Bystanders and police whom I approached shrugged off the commomotion. These were only 'urban tribes,' they said. In fact, they were gangs of ideologically opposed skinheads: communists vs. anti-communists, some of them probably on their way home from the Primero de Mayo demonstration.
|The skinheads run thru the small nearby park.|
In the confusion, I wasn't sure how many
groups, or 'Urban Tribes,' were here.
|This park has a small police station, |
but the cops understandably felt outnumbered.
I suspect, however, that these kids have little real ideology, but are instead acting out primordial instincts to join a group, adopt a label and lash out against those who are different. Rather than 'communist' vs. 'anti-communist', they might just as well have been fans of rival football teams, whom I have also seen fighting in public.
Even so, I was comforted to see one of the skinheads wearing a t-shirt with the anti-racist song title 'Good Night White Pride,' altho that song, ironically, contains the lines
|One group chased their rivals out of the park and to the north.|
'You pick on the weak...You`re only strong in groups...Can`t do shit on your own'; sentiments which, I suspect, could apply equally well to either side in this fight.
|Caught one! Cops catch a member of one of the gangs.|
After waiting for reinforcements, the police arrived and herded the skinheads away. I don't know how it all ended.
|You're caught, dude. But he's the only one.|
Fortunately, too, these violent extremists are only a tiny group in Colombia, where most people are probably of mixed ethnic heritage.
|Neighbors watch from their windows.|
By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours