Things That Matter

Mexico May Finally Be Turning On Its President AMLO And Here’s Why He Should Be Worried About His Job

Mexico has long battled poverty, corruption, and violence but thanks to the Coronavirus, the situation in the country has gone from bad to worse. Millions of Mexicans are expected to be pushed back into poverty in the coming months as the economic effects of the pandemic continue to be felt – often by those already most vulnerable.

Despite this, AMLO has been moving forward with his cross-country political rallies and is being met by protesters up and down the nation who have had enough government policies that have done little to help them.

Despite the pandemic, Mexico’s President AMLO has resumed his tour across the country – and he’s being met by protesters.

Despite the Coronavirus raging out of control across Mexico, President AMLO has resumed his routine tours across the country. Just this past week, he visited four different states and was greeted by protesters in each one.

Angry and desperate over the disappearance of family members and the lack of action by authorities to find them, demonstrators shouted angrily at the president.

“You care about Chapo’s mom, you asshole, but not us,” yelled one woman, referring to AMLO shaking the hand of the elderly mother of convicted drug trafficker Joaquín Guzmán in Sinaloa earlier this year and telling her that he had received her letter.

While AMLO chose to ignore his own government’s social distancing advice by greeting El Chapo’s mother in late March, he said Tuesday that the pandemic prevented him from speaking with the protesters in Veracruz.

From Merida to Baja, Mexicans are flooding to the streets to let AMLO know how they feel about his presidency.

Across Mexico, protesters have taken to the streets to voice their anger against the president. Many have taken part in protests from the socially-distanced confines of their vehicles.

Honking and shouting, demonstrators passed in front of the Palacio Nacional in Mexico City National Palace, the Monumento a la Patria in Mérida, and many other major landmarks across the nation. However, the message is the same, people are angry at that they call, “the almost “communist” policies of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.

Through social networks, critics identified themselves with the label #AMLOVeteYa. Many are demanding more support from the government amid the coronavirus pandemic, including basic food baskets for struggling families.

For his part, AMLO says that the protests are being instigated by opposing politicians.

As he often does, AMLO attempted to shift the blame for protesters’ anger from his policies to support by the opposition. Speaking at a military base, the president said he wasn’t surprised that protests had been organized against him, saying they were to be expected because his government is implementing sweeping changes.

The president’s supporters also claimed that the National Anti-AMLO Front is funded by the people who have done the most damage to Mexico, namely – in their opinion – members of past governments and opposition parties.

López Obrador himself accused the National Action Party (PAN), currently the main opposition force, of being behind the protests he has faced this week.

The situation in Mexico, between those in favor of López Obrador’s policies and those against them, is becoming more pronounced every day.

Credit: Bret Gundlock / Getty Images

As is becoming more common across the world, both sides of the argument are being less tolerant of one another – which is a social time bomb. Thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic, Mexico is now a country with fewer jobs, more poverty, more violence, more people infected and killed by COVID-19, but above all, a country with a president who has done little to bridge the divide between opposing ideologies.

You have to look no further for the palpable anger then at the protests, as many people engaged in angry, loud arguments with AMLOvers, as passionate supporters of the president are sometimes called, the latter accusing the former of being elitists, conservatives and people who want corruption to go unchecked in Mexico.

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Mexican Politician Accused Of Rape Vows To Block Elections Unless He’s Allowed To Run

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Mexican Politician Accused Of Rape Vows To Block Elections Unless He’s Allowed To Run

FRANCISCO ROBLES/AFP via Getty Images

It’s an election year in Mexico and that means that things are heating up as candidates fight for the top spot. At the same time, Mexico is experiencing a burgeoning fight for women’s rights that demands accountability and justice. Despite all the marches and protests and civil disobedience by hundreds of thousands of Mexicans, it remains to be seen how much change will happen and when. 

Case in point: Félix Salgado, a candidate for governor of Guerrero who has been accused of rape and sexual assault but maintains the support of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO). Now, after being disqualified from the race because of undisclosed campaign finances, the candidate is vowing to block any elections from taking place unless he is allowed to continue his campaign. 

A disqualified candidate is vowing to block elections unless he’s allowed to run.

Félix Salgado was running to be governor of the Mexican state of Guerrero when he was faced with allegations of rape and sexual assault. The commission that selects party candidates allowed him to remain in the race and he continues to maintain the support of President AMLO – who is of the same political party, Morena. 

However, in late March, election regulators ordered that Salgado be taken off the ballot due to a failure to report campaign spending, according to the AP. Mexico’s electoral court ordered the Federal Electoral Institute (FEI) to reconsider their decision last week. Salgado is already threatening to throw the election process into chaos.

“If we are on the ballot, there will be elections,” Salgado told supporters in Guerrero after leading a caravan of protestors to the FEI’s office in Mexico City on Sunday. “If we are not on the ballot, there will not be any elections,” Salgado said.

The AP notes that Salgado is not making an empty threat. Guerrero is an embattled state overrun with violence and drug gangs and many elections have been previously disrupted. Past governors have been forced out of office before finishing their terms. Salgado was previously filmed getting into a confrontation with police in 2000.

It was just weeks ago that the ruling party allowed Salgado’s candidacy to move forward.

In mid-March, Morena confirmed that Félix Salgado would be its candidate for governor in Guerrero after completing a new selection process in which the former senator was reportedly pitted against four women.

Morena polled citizens in Guerrero last weekend to determine levels of support for five different possible candidates, according to media reports. Among the four women who were included in the process were Acapulco Mayor Adela Román and Senator Nestora Salgado.

Félix Salgado was the clear winner of the survey, even coming out on top when those polled were asked to opine on the potential candidates’ respect for the rights of women. He also prevailed in all other categories including honesty and knowledge of the municipality in which the poll respondents lived.

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

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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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