Things That Matter

Mexico Vows To Defend Its Citizens, Plans Legal Action Against The US For El Paso Massacre

It’s not just the US that is mourning this weekend’s tragic fight with gun violence. Mexico, too, is suffering alongside as six of its citizens were killed and many more injured in the El Paso shooting on Saturday.

And now that it’s becoming clearer that the alleged shooter targeted Latinos, Mexico is speaking up and taking action on behalf of both Mexican-Americans and Mexicans in the US, making it possible the massacre could quickly become an international incident.

According to Mexican officials on Sunday, the attack would prompt their country to take “forceful legal actions” to protect its citizens in the U.S.

Mexico on Sunday threatened to take legal action against the United States for failing to protect its citizens after this weekend’s mass shooting in the border city of El Paso.

Of the 20 people gunned down at a Walmart at the Cielo Vista Mall, at least six were Mexican citizens, and Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard promised Mexico City will act.

Ebrard called Saturday’s shooting an “act of barbarism.”

Mexico’s Foreign Minister also said that the massacre was a direct attack against Mexicans.

In a video the minister tweeted on Sunday, he said “We consider this an act of terrorism against the Mexican-American community and Mexican nationals in the United States,” Ebrard told reporters. “Mexico is outraged. But we aren’t proposing to meet hate with hate. We will act with reason and according to the law and with firmness.”

The El Paso shootout prompted rare terse words on the US situation from Mexico’s foreign policy officials.

“The intentionality of the attack against the Mexicans and the Latino community in El Paso is frightening. NO to hate speech. NO to xenophobic discourse,” tweeted Martha Bárcena, Mexico’s ambassador in Washington

The Foreign Minister posted the following video to his Twitter:

In a video posted to his official Twitter page, Ebrard said what happened in El Paso was “unacceptable” and that “the first judicial actions” the government will take will be in accordance with international law.

“Mexico would like to express its utmost profound condemnation and rejection of this barbaric act where innocent Mexican men and women were killed,” Ebrard said. “We are outraged. We do not support the culture of hate.” 

Ebrard also said Mexico President Andrés Manuel López Obrador instructed him to take swift legal action in order to first protect the families who were affected and then “so that Mexico can demand that the United States protect the Mexican community in the United States.”

The Mexican government also announced that they may file an extradition request to try the shooter in the Mexican judicial system.

The Mexican government of president Andrés Manuel López Obrador plans to charge Crusius for committing terrorist acts against Mexicans in the United States. It also wants to extradite Crusius to Mexico. It is also “asking respectfully but firmly that they [the Trump administration] take a clear, strong position against hate crimes.”

“We reaffirm our conviction that no one should confront social problems with the use of force or by inciting others to violence,” said López Obrador

They also plan to take legal action against the manufacturer of the weapon used.

He said his country also plans legal action against the manufacturer of the weapon used in Saturday’s killing and also urged the U.S. to tighten its gun-control laws.

“It’s urgent that we take corresponding actions against weapons,” said Mr. Ebrard, who has frequently blamed permissive American gun laws for Mexico’s high crime rate.

Many people on social media appeared to support Mexico’s approach, glad the country was seeking justice for the victims.

Within 24 hours of the massacre, Mexico was already devising plans to seek justice for victims and hold those responsible accountable. That’s a lot more than the US government has done since the shooting took place.

A few though thought that Mexico should stick to policing crime and issues in its own country.

Mexico is currently facing a record breaking year for homicides are crime in the city’s capital, long thought immune to cartel activity has seen a dramatic increase in violence.

Despite the issues Mexicans face in their own country, Mexico has a right to ensure that its citizens are protected when traveling abroad.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

Armed Police In Tulum Arrested A Gay Couple For Allegedly Kissing On The Beach

Things That Matter

Armed Police In Tulum Arrested A Gay Couple For Allegedly Kissing On The Beach

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Mexico has remained a popular tourist destination as people seek out places with fewer restrictions. However, Mexico’s popular beach destination of Tulum apparently still has some restrictions – for LGBTQ folks – that the police are quick to enforce.

A Canadian couple was briefly detained by police for allegedly kissing on the beach.

Police in the popular resort town of Tulum, about 90-minutes south of Cancun, briefly arrested a gay couple for kissing in public on a beach, alleging that the couple was not allowed to kiss in public because children were present.

According to local media reports, police said they were reacting to a report by someone else on the beach who had claimed that the men were “committing immoral acts.”

The couple were handcuffed together and ordered in to the back of a patrol vehicle until a crowd of onlookers formed and began to shout disapprovingly at police after one of the men explained to the crowd why they were being detained.

Outraged bystanders gathered around the couple and urged the police to let the men go.

The crowd began shouting in support of the couple, calling the actions homophobic and demanding the couple’s release.

The pressure from the crowd apparently prompted officers to release the men after a few minutes of dialogue. The presence of Escalante herself might also have been a factor.

In response to the arrest, Quintana Roo Tulum Police said: ‘We are an inclusive and impartial police both for residents and tourists who visit the state of Quintana Roo. So no abuse of authority will be tolerated.’

Video of the incident quickly went viral on social media with outrage being the common reaction.

Video and photos of the arrest went viral after on social media accounts, including that of local politician Maritza Escalante Morales, who denounced the actions of the officers. Escalante happened to be at the beach with her family when she noticed the officers approach the couple, she said, and joined the crowd to advocate for the couple’s release.

“I want to file a PUBLIC COMPLAINT, because the treatment and type of authorities we have in our municipality is inexcusable. Yesterday while I was on the beach with my family, we noticed around 4:30 that 2 police squads in their ATVs approached a group of young foreigners. After about 20 minutes, a patrol arrived and proceeded to arrest them with handcuffs,” she explained on TikTok.

“The policemen were VIOLENT,” Morales added, “and gave arguments such as ‘there are families and children and they cannot be seeing this. I am FURIOUS because it is not possible that in the XXI century this type of oppression against the LGBT+ community continues. We all deserve the same treatment, and appropriate sanctions must be applied to these authorities.”

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

This Teacher Received A Nissan Pickup Truck Decked Out As A Mobile Classroom

Things That Matter

This Teacher Received A Nissan Pickup Truck Decked Out As A Mobile Classroom

Like students around the world, kids in Mexico have been forced to take school online or tune into programming on public TV in order to learn. But that’s just the kids who are lucky enough to have access to Internet or a TV. Many students live in rural areas and lack the adequate resources to continue their studies amid the global pandemic.

But thankfully, there are many good samaritans out there (aka compassionate teachers) who have invented their own ways to bring the classroom to kids wherever they are.

A Mexican teacher was gifted a decked out pickup truck by Nissan.

Since schools were forced to close last year in April, Aguascalientes special education teacher Nallely Esparza Flores, has been driving four hours a day to educate students one-on-one at their homes from her truck bed, outfitted with a small table and chairs.

News of her project spread across social media, eventually reaching the corporate offices of Nissan México. This week, the company surprised Esparza with the gift of a new pickup truck specially outfitted with a small open-air mobile classroom built into the truck’s bed.

“Today I feel like my labors and the help that we give each day to children and their families is unstoppable,” she said on Twitter Wednesday, sharing photos of her new vehicle. “My students no longer have to take classes in the full heat of the sun,” she said.

Nissan representatives said they decided to give Esparza the adapted NP300 model, 4-cylinder truck after hearing her story because she was “an example of perseverance and empathy.”

“When we learned about the incredible work of this teacher, we got together to discuss in what way we could contribute to this noble work,” said Armando Ávila, a vice president of manufacturing.

The mobile classroom is pretty legit and will allow Esparza to continue her good deed.

Esparza inside her new classroom.

The decked out Nissan pickup truck has three walls (the other is a retractable sheeting) and a ceiling made with translucent panels to protect teacher and student from the elements while letting in natural light.

It also has retractable steps for easy access to the classroom, electrical connections, a whiteboard and an easily disinfected acrylic table and benches that are foldable into the wall to provide space. The table also has a built-in plexiglass barrier to allow social distancing.

Access to education in Mexico is highly inequitable.

Esparza, like many teachers across the country, found that not all distance learning was equal. Many of her students in Cavillo were from poor families without internet access. So she used social media networks to keep in touch with such students via cell phones, but even that was not necessarily an available option for all — and not ideal. Finally, she decided to solve the problem by hitting the road in her pickup truck.

According to the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), only 58% of students in Mexico had a home computer – the lowest percentage among all OECD countries. And only about one third (32%) of the school computers in rural schools in Mexico were connected to
the Internet, compared to more than 90% for schools located in urban areas.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com