Oppression is a cruel and unjust exercise of power. Several countries throughout the world have experienced oppression in some for, whether it is of minorities or rebels in the country. Human beings are flawed, greedy creatures, and when one power hungry ruler feels threatened the end results will be less than desirable. People have and do suffer immensely under oppression, so it is not unexpected that there would be rebellions consisting of people who desire freedom. In the novel In The Time of The Butterflies rebellion due to oppression is more than evident in the events that transpire.
Power is like the smoke of a fire, the fire being the dictator, or rather their ego. The more wood placed on a fire the more the smoke manifests, thereby making it more difficult to breath. Smoke constricts the lungs the same way power constricts the people of the country, eventually to the point of suffocation. The more a dictator is idealized the bigger their ego grows, just like the fire grows. Many times a dictator will start out as a simple ruler with good intentions, but as time passes they become accustom to being told yes. A child who is always told yes will pitch a fit when told no. It works the same way when someone goes against a dictator; the dictator will assume that it is because they are a part of a rebellion. In Egypt the Pharaoh had all of the male children of the Israelites murdered because he feared they were growing too strong in numbers and would rise up against him. This historical event insinuates that fear is the true origin of oppression.
History provides many cases of oppression. In The Time of The Butterflies Trujillo, a malicious dictator of the Dominican Republic, put Minerva Mirabal’s father in jail as a futile attempt to get her to sleep with him. Trujillo’s abuse of power on such a selfish act made the county that more unstable. It instilled a sense of fear in the people. The fear that dictators create to maintain and gain power sits on one side of a very fine line, and on the other side is anger. Humans can only suffer so much until they reach a breaking point. The manipulation of Minerva Mirabal’s family is what drove her and her sisters to fight harder for their freedom.
In an oppressive government rebellion starts with a spark. The Maribal sisters attempts against the government, and refusal to be manipulated made them well known as the Butterflies. They became a symbol of freedom to the Dominican Republic. No matter how many times Trujillo threatened them, they never stopped fighting. Their actions inspired people to stand up for themselves. Trujillo eventually had the Maribal sisters murdered because of their heavy influence. He covered up his actions by making it look like a car accident, but the people knew better. The sisters’ deaths were the last straw in the eyes of the people of the Dominican Republic. Rebellion in an oppressive government is inevitable.
Oppression may be a terrible thing to endure, but it can only continue to a certain point, and for so long. Oppressive governments strip people of their humanity, leaving behind an object to be used to the governments benefit. People will only stand for such treatment for so long; eventually they will rise up and fight for their rights. One greedy man cannot push down thousands of individuals and not have a problem. That is why Oppression will never last; people are too strong willed to let that happen. Humans will always fight for what they believe to be right.