Finding Normal Again in Lima, Peru
2023 in Lima, Peru: A Stark Contrast from San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Austin.
This week, I had the fantastic opportunity to travel to Lima, Peru, to perform with my band, T-4-2. Some things struck me while spending time in this beautiful city.
The US State Department currently has a travel advisory for Peru ranging from “Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution” to “Level 4: Do Not Travel,” depending on the area of the country. Peru is also experiencing their largest outbreak of Dengue Fever in history.
Like most other countries, Peru was devastated during COVID-19 and still hasn’t recovered.
Despite this, one of the first things I noticed in Lima was the vibe. The city is energetic and alive. Parks filled with families, streets packed with cars, crowded public transit, plazas filled with young couples, vibrant nightlife, and no masks to be seen.
Peru is a country with high economic disparities, yet there are no homeless encampments in city parks or public spaces, no Fentanyl zombies passed out in building entryways, no tents lining the streets. Trash or litter on the streets seen at night is cleaned up by morning. Walking through different parts of the city, I noticed I wasn’t forced to step over catatonic drug addicts or avoid the next oncoming random crazy person on the street. I didn’t smell urine and weed. It’s a stark contrast from experiences in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Austin.
Lima actually feels normal to me. It’s been a long time since I could say that about any large city in the United States.
Friends in Peru tell me, “whatever happens in the United States comes here in about five years.” Let’s hope they are able to avoid what has happened to us. Normalizing open drug use, addiction maintenance, enabling people to live on the streets, slackened enforcement of laws, treating criminals as victims, and insane gender ideology are all destructive.
Maybe we can learn something from countries like Peru before it’s too late. Maybe we can find normal again. Good people need to stand up and provide the political will to help make things right. Hopefully common sense will win.
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