Things That Matter

Terrifying Video Shows A Mexican Teenager Killing Two People In A Pickup Truck

Footage of a teenage assassin asking his driver to film a cold-blooded double homicide has gone viral, putting pressure on local officials in Mexico to make an arrest. Just days before Christmas, at an otherwise normal traffic light in the border city Ciudad Juárez, a teenager turned to his driver and simply said, “Record, Cruz,” before he hopped out the car, approached the driver’s side of a red pickup truck and firing off nearly 20 gunshots. He walked back to the car, hopped in, and the footage ends as we see the driver making a u-turn as they drive away from the scene of the crime. 

Local media in Mexico had widely reported both the identity and news of the arrest of the suspect, but, unfortunately, only one of those pieces of information is true. Officials have redacted the name of the perpetrator believing he might be underage.

The footage of a teen believed to be underage shooting in the pickup truck is shocking.

CREDIT: @LPUEBLO2 / TWITTER

Without hesitation, the teen is seen walking in front of his getaway car toward the driver’s side of the red pickup truck target. Officials suspect that he asked the driver to film him as proof that he got the ‘job’ done for whoever ordered the hit. At around 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 22, 2019, the teen sicario followed through on the hit job and killed two men in just under 30 seconds. 

He is seen mercilessly firing over a dozen rounds into the driver’s side as the driver unsuccessfully tries to drive away.

CREDIT: @LPUEBLO2 / TWITTER

The pickup truck begins to creep forward as the driver likely understands to flee from danger, but was immobilized by the onslaught of bullets. The two victims were confirmed dead, but their identities have yet to be revealed. The shooter is seen briskly walking back to his getaway car when the traffic lights change. Traffic begins to move again but the shooter and his accomplice quickly merge into opposing traffic and escape seamlessly.

The teen has since been confirmed by local media reports as drug cartel hitman, with an already horrific rap sheet. According to La Opinion, the sicario likely belongs to one of the five cartel groups that operate in Chihuahua, Mexico: Neuva Gente, of the Sinaloa cartel (CDS), Los Mexicles, La Línea, of the Tijuana cartel (CAF), Los Aztecas or Los Cristaleros.

The teenager has targeted and killed other people in Ciudad Juárez, which lies just across the border from El Paso, Texas.

CREDIT: @LPUEBLO2 / TWITTER

According to the perpetrator’s existing criminal record, he lives in Colonia Bellavista, and heavily operates in Ciudad Juárez. The teen had already been arrested for assassinating a couple in Ciudad Juárez. Police arrested him, captured the above mug shot, but he wasn’t stopped from killing others. His mugshot began circulating social media and local outlets began to report that he had been arrested for his most recent crime.

As shocking as the crime is to many Americans, Mexicans are quick to comment “Every day in #Mexico.”

CREDIT: @LPUEBLO2 / TWITTER

Murder rates are on the rise in Mexico, with 2019 becoming the third deadliest year for Ciudad Juárez of the 2010s. On average, 4.1 people were murdered every single day in Ciudad Juárez last year, with a total of 1,498 homicides total last year. Still, compared to 2010, the number of homicides in the city are less than half of what they were at the beginning of the decade. “The sad daily reality of Mexico…” one Twitter user comments, adding in Spanish that, “For 1,000 pesos, less than 50 euros, a hitman can eliminate a person with total impunity.”

Still, others are wondering aloud what the victims did to provoke the target of the cartel. “I do not like to criminalize, and even less criminalize the dead, but it is very rare that they arrive and kill you anymore,” commented Indio Rey (@IndioRey30). Others are lamenting that “the laws do not help since he is a minor,” though it’s hard to contest what the video shows so clearly. Somebody opened fire and killed those two men and requested that the murder be recorded.

READ: A Local Police Chief Has Been Arrested In An Alleged Connection To The Murders Of The LeBaron Family In Mexico

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Mexico City Could Soon Change Its Name To Better Embrace Its Indigenous Identity

Things That Matter

Mexico City Could Soon Change Its Name To Better Embrace Its Indigenous Identity

PEDRO PARDO/AFP via Getty Images

Mexico City is the oldest surviving capital city in all of the Americas. It also is one of only two that actually served as capitals of their Indigenous communities – the other being Quito, Ecuador. But much of that incredible history is washed over in history books, tourism advertisements, and the everyday hustle and bustle of a city of 21 million people.

Recently, city residents voted on a non-binding resolution that could see the city’s name changed back to it’s pre-Hispanic origin to help shine a light on its rich Indigenous history.

Mexico City could soon be renamed in honor of its pre-Hispanic identity.

A recent poll shows that 54% of chilangos (as residents of Mexico City are called) are in favor of changing the city’s official name from Ciudad de México to México-Tenochtitlán. In contrast, 42% of respondents said they didn’t support a name change while 4% said they they didn’t know.

Conducted earlier this month as Mexico City gears up to mark the 500th anniversary of the fall of the Aztec empire capital with a series of cultural events, the poll also asked respondents if they identified more as Mexicas, as Aztec people were also known, Spanish or mestizo (mixed indigenous and Spanish blood).

Mestizo was the most popular response, with 55% of respondents saying they identified as such while 37% saw themselves more as Mexicas. Only 4% identified as Spaniards and the same percentage said they didn’t know with whom they identified most.

The poll also touched on the city’s history.

The ancient city of Tenochtitlán.

The same poll also asked people if they thought that the 500th anniversary of the Spanish conquest of Tenochtitlán by Spanish conquistadoresshould be commemorated or forgotten, 80% chose the former option while just 16% opted for the latter.

Three-quarters of respondents said they preferred areas of the the capital where colonial-era architecture predominates, such as the historic center, while 24% said that they favored zones with modern architecture.

There are also numerous examples of pre-Hispanic architecture in Mexico City including the Templo Mayor, Tlatelolco and Cuicuilco archaeological sites.

Tenochtitlán was one of the world’s most advanced cities when the Spanish arrived.

Tenochtitlán, which means “place where prickly pears abound” in Náhuatl, was founded by the Mexica people in 1325 on an island located on Lake Texcoco. The legend goes that they decided to build a city on the island because they saw the omen they were seeking: an eagle devouring a snake while perched on a nopal.

At its peak, it was the largest city in the pre-Columbian Americas. It subsequently became a cabecera of the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Today, the ruins of Tenochtitlán are in the historic center of the Mexican capital. The World Heritage Site of Xochimilco contains what remains of the geography (water, boats, floating gardens) of the Mexica capital.

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Mexico Plunges 23 Places On The World Happiness Report As The Country Struggles To Bounce Back

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Mexico Plunges 23 Places On The World Happiness Report As The Country Struggles To Bounce Back

Hector Vivas/Getty Images

When it comes to international happiness rankings, Mexico has long done well in many measurements. In fact, in 2019, Mexico placed number 23 beating out every other Latin American country except for Costa Rica. But in 2020, things looks a lot different as the country slipped 23 spots on the list. What does this mean for Mexico and its residents? 

Mexico slips 23 spots on the World Happiness Report thanks to a variety of compelling factors.

Mexico plummeted 23 places to the 46th happiest nation in the world, according to the 2020 happiness rankings in the latest edition of the United Nations’ World Happiness Report. The coronavirus pandemic had a significant impact on Mexicans’ happiness in 2020, the new report indicates.

“Covid-19 has shaken, taken, and reshaped lives everywhere,” the report noted, and that is especially true in Mexico, where almost 200,000 people have lost their lives to the disease and millions lost their jobs last year as the economy recorded its worst downturn since the Great Depression.

Based on results of the Gallup World Poll as well as an analysis of data related to the happiness impacts of Covid-19, Mexico’s score on the World Happiness Report index was 5.96, an 8% slump compared to its average score between 2017 and 2019 when its average ranking was 23rd.

The only nations that dropped more than Mexico – the worst country to be in during the pandemic, according to an analysis by the Bloomberg news agency – were El Salvador, the Philippines and Benin.

Mexico has struggled especially hard against the Coronavirus pandemic. 

Since the pandemic started, Mexico has fared far worse than many other countries across Latin America. Today, there are reports that Mexico has been undercounting and underreporting both the number of confirmed cases and the number of deaths. Given this reality, the country is 2nd worst in the world when it comes to number of suspected deaths, with more than 200,000 people dead. 

Could the happiness level have an impact on this year’s elections?

Given that Mexico’s decline in the rankings appears related to the severity of the coronavirus pandemic here, one might assume that the popularity of the federal government – which has been widely condemned for its management of the crisis from both a health and economic perspective – would take a hit.

But a poll published earlier this month found that 55.9% of respondents approved of President López Obrador’s management of the pandemic and 44% indicated that they would vote for the ruling Morena party if the election for federal deputies were held the day they were polled.

Support for Morena, which apparently got a shot in the arm from the national vaccination program even as it proceeded slowly, was more than four times higher than that for the two main opposition parties, the PAN and the PRI.

Still, Mexico’s slide in the happiness rankings could give López Obrador – who has claimed that ordinary Mexicans are happier with him in office – pause for thought.

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