As many of you already know, Pablo Escobar was an infamous drug lord from Colombia who came to fame and power through cocaine trafficking. Leader of the Medellin cartel, Escobar controlled around 80 percent of the cocaine trade in the world, and countless number of police officers, goverment officials, and thousands of others that got in his way lost their lives. United States considers him a criminal harmful to the society. However, even nowdays in Colombia, especially in his hometown of Medellin, Escobar is regarded as a hero.
Escobar was born in 1949 into a poor household. He did not complete his education, and went into the business of crime very young. Later on, when he learned that the demand of cocaine was skyrocketing in United States, he jumped on this opportunity and began manufacturing and smuggling the drug. He operated under a policy called “plato o plomo“ which literally signified take the money or take the bullet. He bribed judes, policemen, juries, and innumberable government officials with money to help him out, and he took the lives of the ones that refused to cooperate with or go against him. In our society, Escobar is described as a cruel and ruthless human being and is not considered a model citizen that deserves respect.
However, there is another side of Pablo Escobar that we often fail to hear about. He was always willing to give back to the people, and he did a lot more to better the lives of the poor and less privileged than the Colombian government ever has. Coming from a background of poverty, he knew how tough life was for the poor and always shared his money and wealth with the community. Escobar made sure everyone in his community was taken care of, and he was able to accomplish the task of providing work and shelter for the ones that were in need of jobs or residence. Even to this day, Escobar is referred to as “The Godfather” or “Robin Hood” by his people because of the invaluabe contributions he has made for the society. For example, he constructed numerous housing projects so that everyone at least had a place to live. He is also responsible for establishing and funding soccer teams and leagues in Colombia and building countless number of churches, hospitals, and schools across the country and advocating education for the children.
There are two completely different sides to the story of Pablo Escobar. Our government tells us that he was a ruthless, atrocious criminal that ruined and took the lives of countless number of innocent victims. On the other hand, by some, especially the working class of his country, he is seen as a very respectable human being who made irreplaceable contributions and gave back freely to the community genuinely out of his good will to better the lives of the poor and less fortunate. Also, Escobar came from nothing and made something out of his life, and although what he did was illegal, he used a large portion of his proceeds towards good causes. Now, Escobar is dead, and Colombia is worse than its ever been. What do you guys think? Should Escobar be named as a hero or a villain?