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Thou Shall Worship One's Politician

Updated: Nov 3, 2022

The cult of personality that is fostered of authoritarian regimes, sometimes reaching the worship and excessive adulation of the charismatic leader. The cult of personality, a practice of which Rafael Lacava is a pathetic example.

by Maibort Petit

Freedom Voice Reporting

Twelve years had to pass since the death of the Liberator, Simón Bolívar, for the first monument in the world in his honor to be erected in 1842. This occurred in connection with the transfer of his mortal remains from Santa Marta, Colombia, to Caracas, on December 17 of that year.

The Column to Bolivar —which is so called— rises in the Plazuela de Mucujún del Mérida, an initiative of the then governor of the aforementioned province, Gabriel Picón González, who on July 25, 1842, scheduled the tribute in accordance with the decree of the National Executive dated April 30, 1842, regarding the celebration of the funeral of the Father of the Homeland.

And meanwhile the Liberator of five nations was paid tribute more than two decades after his death, the ego of the governor of the central state of Carabobo today, Rafael Lacava, imposed on the citizens of that entity to have to worship him in a sports complex in the coastal city of Puerto Cabello, previously ruled by him and of which he is also a native.

It was not a surprise or a tribute planned by a third party, but a mere act of self-centeredness of the regional president himself who, without any explanation having been offered about the origin of the funds that paid for such an exercise of egolatry.

An act cataloged by the leader of the Movement for Democracy, Sergio Sánchez, as a "very serious deviation in a ruler. To believe himself to be a hero, a leader who transcends history and therefore deserving of a statue in life."

Sánchez said that it is an action resulting from the "pathological ego" of the Chavista governor.

The statue is located in the aforementioned sports complex renamed after the Argentine footballer, Diego Maradona, who, likewise, was erected an effigy of 12 meters, an adefesio of the worst taste of which Lacava boasts and promotes as the largest monument to the albiceleste athlete in Latin America.

Cult of personality

One of the characteristics of authoritarian regimes is the cult of personality that is fostered in them, sometimes reaching the worship and excessive adulation of the charismatic leader or leader. Such is the case of the late former president Hugo Chávez, who in life lived by flattery and after death has become an image of worship and idolatry. The Mountain Barracks has been instituted as his center of devotion.

Leaders are elevated to such an extreme that they become quasi-religious or sacred figures. A glaring example of this is the North Korean regime where the now-deceased supreme leaders, Kim Il-sung and his son Kim Jong-il — grandfather and father of current leader Kim Jong-un — are idolized to unimaginable limits.

In that eastern nation recently it went to the extreme of prohibiting for eleven days the laughter of the citizens. Since December 17, the tenth anniversary of Kim Jong-il's death, the regime established a ban on laughing, an emotional mourning in which no one could make jokes, laugh, drink alcohol, party or enjoy comfort and recreation. The veneration, better worship, of the statues and images of these supreme leaders is a common fact.

There are many examples in the world, but the case of Rafael Lacava in the state of Carabobo is pathetic, seeing how he himself promotes his adulation. The statue in his honor does not respond to a tribute from third parties or from any institution or civil movement, but was an initiative of the governor, eager for worship and lambisconería.

The regional president has been criticized for wanting to impose his figure and his criteria at the expense of whatever, an authoritarianism that Lacava hides behind an image of apparent sympathy that resorts to the cheap joke and the parody of cartoonish extremes and that has turned "Dracula" into a political brand that identifies his image and his management. A practice that, according to everything, is very far from disappearing because, the president insists on his self-promotion by all possible means, including the statues that could begin to be replicated throughout the entity under his aegis.