Things That Matter

Police In Guadalajara Threatened To Make Protesters “Disappear” And Now Days Later 29 Protesters Are Still Missing

Communities around the world are rising up against unchecked police brutality and a system that operates with impunity. Mexico has long been a hotbed of corruption and unchecked police power, but much like in the United States, Mexicans are taking to the streets to voice their outrage.

The recent killing of an unarmed Mexican who was taken into custody after not wearing a face mask on public transport, has provoked unrest in cities across the country. And, also like in the U.S., the police reacted to protests with brutal force that left several injured – and now reports say that 29 protesters are missing or unaccounted for.

Protests in Guadalajara have left 29 protesters missing or unaccounted for – and many fear the worst.

Credit: Francisco Guasco / Getty

Across Mexico, people have taken to the streets to demand justice for Giovanni López – a man who died in police custody after being arrested for not wearing a face mask on public transit. The protests have taken place in cities across the country – also inspired by the #BlackLivesMatter protests taking place across the globe.

At the protests, police reacted with extreme force and left many protesters injured. Many have also come forward with stories of having been abducted by police forces on their way to the march and then being abandoned and robbed in the outskirts of the city.

Protests began popping up across Mexico in response to the killing of a man in police custody after he didn’t use a mask on public transit.

Credit: Francisco Guasco / Getty

Inspired by the #BlackLivesMatter protests in responde to the killing of George Floyd, protests over police abuses have flared up all around the world – including in Mexico.

In Guadalajara, which many call Mexico’s Second City, protests lasted for three days after video surfaced showing city police detaining Giovanni López in the town of Ixtlahuacán de Los Membrillos. Police had detained him for failure to wear a mask on public transit.

When López’s family went looking for him the day after his arrest, they were told he had been taken to a public hospital in Guadalajara. They found him dead there with a bullet wound in his foot and signs of trauma. An autopsy concluded he had died from traumatic brain injury, according to local media.

The news of missing protesters come as many protesters say that police actually threatened to make them disappear.

As protests raged across Guadalajara, some 80 protesters were seized by police officers and held without cause and under extreme measures. So far, 29 of those protesters are still missing.

Victims and human rights activists have described how the Guadalajara protesters were intercepted before they even reached the demonstration. Those were kidnapped said that police stole their money, ID documents and even their cellphones before leaving them in abandoned areas far outside the city. Some even alleged they were shot with stun guns or beaten with clubs.

According to reports, there are still 29 protesters unaccounted for, which has revived difficult memories of the 2014 forced disappearances of 43 students from Ayotzinapa college. Police officers allied to a local drug cartel abducted students as they made their way to a demonstration in Mexico City. The remains of two of the students were later found, but six years on, the fate of the other 41 remains unknown.

For his part, Jalisco’s governor has apologized to protesters for how police responded to the protests.

Although he did try to blame the violence on out-of-state instigators, the state’s governor – Enrique Alfaro – said he was appalled that police had beaten protesters.

“It embarrasses me, it distresses me, it greatly pains me as a man from Jalisco, and as governor,” Alfaro said in a video posted on Twitter.

However, some believe that the federal authorities involved in the protests would not have acted that way without a green-light from the state’s governor.

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Mexico’s AMLO Wants To Launch New Social Media Network For Mexicans After Twitter Banned Trump

Things That Matter

Mexico’s AMLO Wants To Launch New Social Media Network For Mexicans After Twitter Banned Trump

Hector Vivas / Getty Images

Love him or hate him, Mexico’s President Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) has long called himself the voice of the people – and many Mexicans agree with him. That’s why his latest announcement against social media companies has many so worried.

In the wake of Twitter and Facebook’s (along with many other social media platforms) announcement that they would be restricting or banning Donald Trump from their platforms, the Mexican president expressed his contempt for the decisions. And his intention to create a Mexican social network that won’t be held to the standards from Silicon Valley.

Mexico’s AMLO moves to create a social media network for Mexicans outside of Silicon Valley’s control.

A week after his United States counterpart was kicked off Facebook and Twitter, President López Obrador floated the idea of creating a national social media network to avoid the possibility of Mexicans being censored.

Speaking at his daily news conference, AMLO instructed the National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt) and other government departments to look at the possibility of creating a state-owned social media site that would guarantee freedom of speech in Mexico.

“We care about freedom a lot, it’s an issue that’s going to be addressed by us,” he told reporters. He also added that Facebook and Twitter have become “global institutions of censorship,” sounding a lot like the alt-right terrorists that stormed the U.S. Capitol.

“To guarantee freedom, for freedom, so there’s no censorship in Mexico. We want a country without censorship. Mexico must be a country of freedom. This is a commitment we have,” he told reporters.

AMLO deeply criticized the moves by Twitter and Facebook to ban Trump from their platforms.

Credit: Hector Vivas / Getty Images

AMLO – like Trump – is an avid user of social media to connect with his constituents. He’s also been known to spread falsehoods and boast about his achievements on the platforms – sound familiar?

So, it came as little surprise when he tore into social media companies for ‘censoring’ Donald Trump, saying that they have turned into “global institutions of censorship” and are carrying out a “holy inquisition.”

Nobody has the right to silence citizens even if their views are unpopular, López Obrador said. Even if the words used by Trump provoked a violent attack against his own government.

“Since they took these decisions [to suspend Trump], the Statue of Liberty has been turning green with anger because it doesn’t want to become an empty symbol,” he quipped.

So what could a Mexican social media network be called?

The president’s proposal to create a national social media network triggered chatter about what such a site would or should be called. One Twitter user suggested Facemex or Twitmex, apparently taking his inspiration from the state oil company Pemex.

The newspaper Milenio came up with three alternative names and logos for uniquely Mexican sites, suggesting that a Mexican version of Facebook could be called Facebookóatl (inspired by the Aztec feathered-serpent god Quetzalcóatl), Twitter could become Twitterlopochtli (a riff on the name of Aztec war, sun and human deity Huitzilopochtli) and Instagram could become Instagratlán (tlán, which in the Náhuatl language means place near an abundance of something – deer, for example, in the case of Mazatlán – is a common suffix in Mexican place names.)

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Carlos Villagrán Is Running To Be Governor Of Querétaro

Entertainment

Carlos Villagrán Is Running To Be Governor Of Querétaro

Paul Archuleta / FilmMagic

We all remember Carlos Villagrán as Quico from “El Chavo del Ocho.” The actor and Mexican icon is now entering the world of politics. Villagrán is entering the race for governor of Querétaro.

Actor and comedian Carlos Villagrán wants to be governor of Querétaro.

Affectionately known as Quico from “El Chavo del Ocho,” Villagrán is someone we grew up with. Now, decades after his famous role ended, Villagrán is hoping to open a brand new chapter in his life: politics.

“After 50 years of making people laugh, I find myself on another platform, which does me a tremendous honor,” Villagrán said during a press conference after filing paperwork.

Villagrán has been thinking about entering Mexican politics for a while.

It is never easy to decide if you want to become a politician. Your private life is no longer private and everything you do is suddenly under intense scrutiny. Villagrán did take time mulling over the idea before filing his paperwork to be a candidate for governor of Querétaro. He registered under the local Querétaro Independiente Party.

“I can’t say anything, because I still don’t know anyone and I have to talk to people to find out what it is about. So, I could not say anything at this moment,” Villagrán told El Universal when still debating the idea.

Villagrán created a Twitter account after announcing his candidacy and is hitting the talking points hard.

Villagrán’s official Twitter account has only pushed tweets highlighting QiBook. The social media platform is specific to Querétaro and is hoping to foster some economic and commercial success in the state.

Fans around the world are wishing him so much success.

Villagrán character Quico is one of the most celebrated characters in Latin America. The wild success of “El Chavo del Ocho” has made Villagrán a face that people throughout Latin America know and love.

However, some people are not excited to see another entertainer enter politics.

We have seen entertainers become politicians and it isn’t always a good thing. The current governor of Morales is Cuauhtémoc Blanco, a former soccer player, and people are not loving him and his leadership. We will no better about his chances of running on Feb. 8 when things are finalized.

READ: FIFA21 Releasing ‘El Chavo Del Ocho’ Uniforms To Honor The Icon For Limited Time

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