Things That Matter

Uplifting News: Mexican Man Used His Home to Shelter 300 Dogs From Hurricane Delta

Photo: Tierra de Animales/Facebook

In some uplifting news, a Mexican man has gone viral for housing stray dogs in need of shelter before Hurricane Delta hit the Yucatan peninsula in early October. Ricardo Pimentel of Cancun, Mexico, wrote on Facebook that he had boarded up his home’s windows and was currently housing 300 rescue dogs before the storm hit.

As background, Hurricane Delta touched down in Cozumel and Cancun and was reported to have winds up to 110 mph. The storm caused power outages, fallen trees, and the destruction of buildings and businesses. Luckily, Pimentel decided to get creative when it came to protecting his helpless four-legged friends from the ravages of the outdoors.

Photo: tierradeanimales/Instagram

Pimentel already owns an animal sanctuary called Tierra de Animales, but he decided to open up his home to the homeless dogs. Naturally, he need all the help he could get to take care of the canine creatures. He took to his Facebook page to ask for donations.

“If I lived alone or nothing else with about 10 or 20 dogs, I would not worry much,” wrote Pimentel on his Facebook page. “But here are hundreds of animals and we can not afford to not have enough food stored.” According to Pimentel, he was worried about there being food shortages at the grocery stores in the aftermath of the unpredictable storm.

The post was accompanied by a a jaw-dropping photo of Pimentel surrounded by a sea of dogs packed into his home. The call-to-action quickly took off and Pimentel was soon receiving thousands of dollars in donations.

At first, Pimentel was distracted by the storm and wasn’t initially aware of how deeply he touched people. When he finally saw how people had rallied to support him and his sanctuary, he was humbled.

Photo: Tierra de Animales/Facebook

“Your support at this time has been invaluable, we deeply appreciate all your messages, calls, and shows of affection,” he wrote on Facebook. “Thank you on behalf of all the animals in the sanctuary!”

According to Pimentel, many of the dogs he’s rescued on his sanctuary have been saved from dog-fighting rings and abusive homes where they’ve been badly beaten. He founded Tierra de Animales around 20 years ago as a place where dogs and other animals (including cats, bunnies, and sheep) can be safe and live a good life.

He says that his animals have been adopted by homes in Mexico, Canada and the United States. He hopes that the attention that the rescue dogs got from his viral post will encourage people to adopt them.

“We would like to think that thanks to all this attention, somebody would like to be part of the story and say: ‘I adopted a dog saved from that famous Hurricane Delta,” he told The Associated Press.

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An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

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An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

Guillermo Gutierrez/NurPhoto via Getty Images

For years, Mexicans have been taking to the streets to denounce violence against women and to demand accountability from their leaders. However, much of that messaging doesn’t seem to have reached the very top as President Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) continues to support a candidate for governor facing multiple allegations of sexual assault.

A candidate for governor faces multiple sexual assault allegations and still enjoys widespread support.

Félix Salgado Macedonio, a federal senator (currently on leave) is accused of sexually assaulting five women and yet is still in the running for governor of Guerrero.

Despite the accusations he faces, 64-year-old Salgado, has maintained the support of President AMLO, who has claimed that the allegations are politically motivated, and other high-ranking party officials including national party president Mario Delgado. He was considered the frontrunner in the election for governor.

AMLO came to the candidates defense, calling on people to stop politicking and avoid “media lynchings” and asserting that people should trust the party process that was used to select Salgado as candidate.

“We have to have confidence in the people, it’s the people who decide. If polls are taken and and the people say ‘I agree with this colleague [being candidate],’ I think that must be respected. Politics is a matter for everyone, not just the elites,” López Obrador said.

The MORENA party has committed to reselecting its candidate for governor but Salgado is still in the running.

Officials from the MORENA party announced that they would conduct a new selection process to find a contender for the June 6 election. The party’s honesty and justice commission said its members had voted unanimously to order a repeat of the selection process.

While the honesty and justice commission has ordered a new candidate selection process, Salgado was not precluded from participating in it. He indicated in a social media post on Friday night that he planned to seek the party’s backing for a second time.

“Cheer up colleagues! There is [still fight in the] bull,” Salgado wrote on Facebook.

Activists continue to fight back against his candidacy and the president’s support for an alleged rapist.

Women have protested in Mexico City and Guerrero state capital Chilpancingo and the hashtag #NingúnVioladorSeráGobernador (No Rapist Will be Governor) has been used countless times on Twitter.

Yolitzin Jaimes, a member of the feminist collective Las Revueltas, said the withdrawal of Salgado’s candidacy is a positive first step but urged the authorities to continue investigating the rape allegations.

“… He has to go to jail, … he mustn’t return to the Senate and he mustn’t be nominated [for governor] by any political party because … it’s very probable that he’s seeking to go to the Labor Party [a Morena ally],” she said.

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Americans Are Flocking To Mexico Amid The Pandemic And Being Terrible Tourists In The Process

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Americans Are Flocking To Mexico Amid The Pandemic And Being Terrible Tourists In The Process

ULISES RUIZ/AFP via Getty Images

Despite being one of the world’s hardest hit countries by the Covid-19 pandemic, Mexico never once closed its doors to international tourism. In fact, the country has worked hard to lure travelers from the U.S. as Americans faced increasingly tough restrictions at home. This has had a profound impact on the country’s experience with Covid-19, with so many Mexicans either falling ill themselves or knowing someone who has.

With so many Mexicans having first hand experience with the virus, it makes sense why so many have strong opinions about tourist’s behaviors while visiting the country.

Tourists are still welcomed in Mexico but their bad behavior is not.

Most Mexicans agree with their government’s open borders approach during the pandemic, since the alternative would have meant even worse economic situation for a country already suffering record levels of poverty. But the influx of tourists to the country has brought with it a level of resentment at those who fail to follow local health guidelines while on vacation.

Mexico never closed its airports to tourists and one walk down a block in Mexico City’s popular Condesa or Roma neighborhoods and you’ll spot American tourists within minutes – many failing to wear a mask. The problem is even more severe in popular tourist destinations like Oaxaca.

There, tourists often travel from the bustling city of Oaxaca into remote villages where Indigenous residents have even less access to proper medical care.

Residents fear that tourists feel they are exempt from local Covid-19 guidelines.

Many residents who have had their own personal experience with the coronavirus has made them sensitive to the pandemic situation in their community. As case numbers continued to rise, many noticed more tourists defying widely practiced public-health protocols, like wearing face masks in public.

On Feb. 25, a popular photographer from Oaxaca, Frank Coronado, posted a plea to his 171,000 Instagram followers: “Dear travelers, you are welcome in Oaxaca, but you should ALWAYS wear a mask when you are in public places.”

He wanted to publicly address the issue and encourage visitors to do better — particularly foreigners who travel from Oaxaca City into smaller rural villages, where artisans are even more vulnerable. He told the Washington Post, “I get mad because I already went through [covid-19] and know how bad it feels. I don’t want my people, the people of Oaxaca, to get sick.”

With an economy based on services, many don’t have the freedom to work from home.

Many in Mexico don’t have the luxury of isolating from tourists — such as Aurora Tostado, who owns the downtown coffee shop Marito & Moglie with her husband.

“People in Mexico, we have to get out of our homes to work. It’s not like we can work remotely like most of the people in the U.S.,” Tostado told the Washington Post. Like others in hospitality, Tostado benefits financially from having tourists, and she is happy to welcome them back, she says. She just hopes they will consider the chain reaction of their behavior as they enjoy the culture that makes her city special

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