Things That Matter

Naked Cyclists Took To The Streets Of Mexico City To Protest And OMG My Eyes

The World Naked Bike Ride is a growing movement of naked cyclists taking to the streets in cities across the world.

They ride naked to bring attention to climate change, toxic car culture, bike safety, and so much more, leaving tias and abuelas in shock everywhere.

And this past weekend, the World Naked Bike Ride came to Mexico City for the 13th time and it was the city’s largest one yet.

The crowds came out to protest the city’s heavy reliance on cars and the toxic car culture that makes it downright dangerous to ride a bike.

Each and every day some 8 million cars take to the streets and contribute to the city’s notorious traffic. But they also form a huge part of the city’s problem with record-breaking pollution that often reaches crisis levels.

The route took riders through the city’s most popular neighborhoods and along its busiest streets.

Credit: @RodadaCDMX / Twitter

From the famed Palacio de Bellas Artes along Paseo Reforma – the city’s main boulevard – to the Monumento de la Revolucion, this year’s WNBR didn’t go unnoticed.

Being noticed was exactly their point.

Credit: @Erch_A / Twitter

In a city where accidents with bicycles happen all too often, these riders wanted to grab the attention of motorists. Many are hoping events like this will create greater awareness of bike safety.

Mexico City already has hundreds of miles of dedicated bike lanes, but even these can be dangerous for cyclists. They’re often blocked by cars or used by motorcycle drivers.

Biking wasn’t the only option as the route was joined by rollerbladers and skateboarders.

Credit: @PepillusColi / Twitter

It’s estimated that some 3,000 people joined this year’s WNBR in Mexico City, making it the largest the city has seen in its 13 years of hosting the event.

And some riders used the event to call attention to other issues.

Credit: @atarashinamae / Twitter

When you’re naked and riding through the city’s most popular districts, you’re going to get people’s attention. So it’s a good time to give a shout out to issues like women’s rights, environmental justice, and LGBT equality.

Twitter was full of reactions including a few jokes here and there…

Credit: @nowthisnews / Twitter

I mean if anybody’s private parts are hanging down to the chain, I think they already have bigger problems.

Others wish they could unsee what they had just seen.

But in their defence, sometimes you have to be a little controversial if you want to get noticed. So good for them for doing what they have to do to draw attention to the very real issues of violence against women, climate change, toxic car culture, and bike safety.

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Mexico City Celebrates Its 500th Birthday Amid A Pandemic And Mounting Violence

Culture

Mexico City Celebrates Its 500th Birthday Amid A Pandemic And Mounting Violence

Most of us are looking to 2021 with optimism, but for Mexico, this upcoming year won’t just be about saying goodbye to 2020. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) says 2021 will be the “year of independence and greatness” for Mexico, celebrating not only 500 years since the founding of Mexico City, but also 200 years since Mexico achieved its independence from Spain.

As Mexico City turns 500, the city faces many challenges and reasons to celebrate.

Pretty much the entire world was waiting for 2021 to arrive, so that we could all say adiós to 2020. But few places were as eager to welcome 2021 as Mexico was.

You see, it was in 1321 that the ancient city of Tenochtitlan (modern day Mexico City) was founded by the Aztecas, in 1521 the city was conquered and rebuilt by Spanish conquistadors, and in 1821 the nation gained independence from Spain. So you can see why 2021 is such a major year for Mexico.

President AMLO presented a plan to commemorate two centuries of Mexico’s Independence, the 700th anniversary of the founding of Mexico-Tenochtitlan and the 500th anniversary of the fall of the city that became the country’s capital city.

“Next year is the year of the Independence and the greatness of Mexico,” the president said, joined by Mexico City Head of Government Claudia Sheinbaum. In a detailed report on the year’s celebrations, IMSS head Zoé Robledo pointed out that the whole program includes 12 national events including tributes to national heroes, commemoration of relevant dates, exhibitions, parades and the traditional Independence celebration known as El Grito. Other events and celebrations are also expected in 65 cities across 32 states, starting on Feb. 14 in Oaxaca and ending on Sept. 30 in Michoacán.

The nation’s capital has been hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic and faces other serious challenges.

Like many major cities, Mexico City has been severely impacted by the pandemic. It’s the epicenter of the health crisis in Mexico with more than 500,000 confirmed cases and nearly 25,000 deaths. In recent weeks, hospital occupancy has surpassed 90% meaning there’s little to no room for people to be treated. Meanwhile, the government has come under fire for a lack of any economic security to those who have been forced to go without work as the city of more than 20 million people was placed under lockdown. 

In addition to the health crisis, a growing issue of cartel violence has plagued parts of the capitol – a city once thought immune to the cartel wars that rage in other corners of the country. In 2020, violence in the capital broke records with brazen attacks on elected officials and bloody turf wars between long standing gangs and the Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación.

But the city also has many reasons to be optimistic in 2021.

Mexico City remains the epicenter of progressivism in the country and that can be seen in the many policies put forward in recent months. With a focus on protecting women’s safety and health and empowering the LGBTQ community, Mexico City is emerging as a safe space for some of the country’s most maligned citizens. 

The city is also undergoing a rapid transformation to a greener society with bans on single-use plastics and a move towards greener policies. From the city’s southern districts to its historical center, the city is also seeing major beautification works to help increase its draw to international tourists – of whom the city has come to rely on for the much needed tourist dollar.

“2021 will be a remarkable year for the city — a city that welcomes all and provides a home for people of all ages and nationalities, which has resulted in a unique cultural hybrid,” says Paulina Feltrin, director of marketing and communications at The St. Regis Mexico City. “I hope this becomes another reason for international and domestic travelers to come celebrate with us.”

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There Are Literally No Tampons Available In Mexico City Since They Were Banned For Environmental Reasons

Fierce

There Are Literally No Tampons Available In Mexico City Since They Were Banned For Environmental Reasons

Few people would argue against the fact that tampons are 100% absolutely an essential item. In fact, many governments are trying to make tampons (among other feminine care products) more accessible to women by offering them for free or low-cost.

However, Mexico’s capital city has taken a different approach by outright banning the sale of tampons. The move comes as a second part to Mexico City’s recent ban on single use products for environmental reasons. And although many are applauding the city for taking drastic action to curb the use of wasteful products, many critics point out that the government should of provided alternatives for women.

Mexico City has banned tampons as part of its ban on single use products.

As of this week, it has become impossible to find tampons in any part of Mexico City’s bustling metropolis. The city that’s home to more than 20 million people no longer sales the single-use plastic tampons that so many women have come to rely on.

The ban comes as a result of the ban on single-use plastics that took effect January 1. The newspaper Milenio reported that it was unable to locate the feminine care products anywhere in the capital but noted that they are widely available in neighboring México state, where disposable plastics remain legal.

Mexico City Environment Minister Mariana Robles asserted in January that single-use plastics, among which are disposable cutlery, cups and straws – and tampons with plastic applicators – are “not really essential.”

Alessandra Rojo de la Vega, a Mexico City lawmaker with the Green Party, said that menstrual cups are an “excellent alternative” to tampons, adding that they are environmentally friendly.

“Let’s incentivize their use to reduce contamination,” she said, asserting that the government should distribute them to women free of charge. But those on Twitter had no patience for lawmakers telling women what menstrual products they should and shouldn’t use.

The city’s environmental minister has argued that single-use plastic tampons aren’t really essential.

Despite officials saying that single-use tampons aren’t really essential, many women across the capital clearly disagreed with the “nonessential” classification and have taken to social media to voice their opposition to their prohibition.

“Stop legislating with privilege, tampons are essential products,” one Twitter user said in a post directed to Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum.

“Suggesting the use of a menstrual cup is not the solution,” Twitter user Miss Maple said in a post directed to Mayor Sheinbaum and the Mexico City government.

“I can’t believe how idiotic we are in Mexico,” tweeted Daniela García, a journalist in Nuevo León, above a link to a news report on the absence of tampons on the shelves of Mexico City stores.

“As if women didn’t [already] confront all kinds of problems, now the government imposes a new one on them – no tampons,” tweeted Carlos Elizondo, an academic at the Tec de Monterrey university.

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