Things That Matter

After Devastating Earthquake, Mexicans Are Showing Solidarity And Unity As Recovery Efforts Begin

After a magnitude 7.1 earthquake devastated central and parts of southern Mexico yesterday afternoon, the country is coming together to focus on rescue and recovery efforts, and to help those in need. The latest data reported has the death toll at more than 200 people. Deaths have been reported in Mexico City and other areas impacted by the earthquake, such as the states of Morelos, Puebla, Guerrero and Oaxaca.

 The death toll could rise as rescue workers continue to sift through the rubble of several collapsed buildings.

Luis Felipe Puente, the national coordinator for civil protection, tweeted an updated death toll from the earthquake with a breakdown of the areas where people died. According to Puente, Mexico City sustained the highest number of deaths at 86, with 12 other casualties reported in the State of Mexico. It’s also been confirmed that there have been 71 deaths in Morelos, 43 deaths in Puebla, four deaths in Guerrero and one death in Oaxaca.

Sobering footage of the devastating earthquake continues to make its way to social media.

The video above shows the city of Jojutla, Morelos, being shaken violently by the earthquake. Jojutla is located just 70 miles from the earthquake’s epicenter near the city of Puebla.

There is widespread infrastructure damage in the affected areas.

Bridges, metro lines and overpasses have been severely damaged by the quake.

One of the most heartbreaking stories from the catastrophic event is an elementary school in Mexico City that collapsed with children still inside.

Crews were working through the night to save the children still trapped under the rubble. According to The Los Angeles Times, at least 20 children and two adults died when a wing of the school collapsed. The latest report claims that there are still 30 children and eight adults missing from the school. Rescue workers lift their arms –  a sign they use to ask for silence –  to try and hear for voices beneath the rubble.

“Children are often the most vulnerable in emergencies such as this and we are particularly concerned because schools across the region were in session and filled with students,” Jorge Vidal, director of operations at Save the Children in Mexico, told ABC News.

There have been some moments of hope: Mexico City Mayor Miguel Ángel Mancera announced the rescue of 52 people.

The 52 people were saved from one building. As of now, there are reports that 38 buildings collapsed in the densely populated capital city.

In the wake of the earthquake, residents of Mexico City have banded together as they start the long road to recovery.

People have spent time digging through debris to save every person and pet they come across.

A group of teachers sang to keep children calm after the city was shaken.

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And volunteers have flooded every possible site to help remove debris and people from collapsed structures.

The recovery process has just begun in Mexico City but it appears that progress is already being made.

Mexico’s professional fútbol league, Liga MX, canceled all its matches this weekend so its stadiums could be used for relief efforts.

According to ESPN’s Tom Marshall, several stadiums throughout Mexico are being used as collection points for supplies and food that will be distributed to those affected by the earthquake.

If you are interested in helping those who have been affected by the earthquake, there are several ways to help. Here is a short list of organizations you can reach out to:

UNICEF Mexico: UNICEF has long been an organization that helps to protect and support children all over the world, especially in times of crisis and disaster.

Mexico Earthquake Relief Fund by GlobalGiving: GlobalGiving has helped raise more than $270 million since 2002 and vets all donation drives to ensure that they are legitimate and work for the cause they claim.

Red Cross Mexico: The Red Cross helps to provide supplies and shelter to those in need after a natural disaster.

Project Paz: Project Paz has a donation page set up where you can donate to help victims of either the Sept. 7 Oaxaca/Chiapas earthquake or the Sept. 19 Mexico City earthquake.

Los Topos: Los Topos is a rescue brigade that was formed after the 1985 Mexico City earthquake that devastated the city and are willing to step up again anytime a disaster hit’s Mexico’s capital. Donations are accepted via PayPal by sending to donativos@brigada-rescate-topos.org.


READ: Buildings Collapse And More Than 70 Dead After Mexico City Is Hit By Major Earthquake

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Mexico Plans To Reopen Cancun To International Tourists But It’s Not At All Prepared For Visitors

Things That Matter

Mexico Plans To Reopen Cancun To International Tourists But It’s Not At All Prepared For Visitors

Omgitsjustintime/ Instagram

There are millions of people just itching for a vacation right now, and Cancun wants to welcome visitors with open arms. However, there’s a huge problem with their plan. Most of the country is still in a severe phase of the pandemic – with all 32 states reporting daily increases in confirmed Covid-19 cases.

In cities such as Guadalajara and Mexico City, even locals aren’t allowed to venture far from their homes and restrictions on shopping, dining, and exercising are still in full force.

However, the country’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO), has resumed his cross-country travels and is trying to portray a ‘new normal’ – the problem is little has changed to prevent further outbreaks.

Cancun is aiming to open its doors to tourists from June 10 – but it makes zero sense given the actual situation on the ground.

Quintana Roo, home to the famed beaches of Cancun and Tulum, will resume activities next week – according to the governor, Carlos Joaquin Gonzalez. The state, which depends heavily on tourism, has lost over 83,000 jobs in the last few months due to the pandemic, and with reopening the state could see an economic rebound. However, that entirely depends on the success and implementation of safety measures.

In a press conference, the governor said that tourists could start arriving in the Caribbean destination as soon as June 8th. He added that tourism is an essential activity and that there is no other of greater importance in Quintana Roo “and we are going to fight for it to be considered that way.”

He stressed during the public address that for the opening to happen by June 10th, protocols and hygiene measures must be followed to protect workers and tourists from Covid-19.

And he has good reason to reopen. According to a new survey by Expedia, ‘Cancun flights’ is one of the top 5 searches on the platform. In the same survey, Playa del Carmen, Cancun and Isla Mujeres (all located in Quintana Roo) were announced as three of the most internationally sought after destinations.

Meanwhile, AMLO has launched a cross-country tour touting the lifting of Coronavirus restrictions.

Credit: Rebecca Blackwell / Getty

President AMLO also held his daily press conference from the state of Quintana Roo to mark the beginning of Mexico’s economic reopening and resume his tours across the country.

But this too makes zero sense. Yes, the government has mandated that states can begin lifting restrictions – if they’re no longer declared ‘red zones.’ However, every state in the country is still in the red, with many seeing peak infection numbers.

It’s just the most recent example of confusing messaging from the president.

Credit: thatgaygringo / Instagram

While AMLO is eager to get the country reopened and put Mexicans back to work, Coronavirus cases continue to rise across the country. Mexico has now recorded the seventh-highest number of Covid-19 deaths in the world, according to the Johns Hopkins tracker, with nearly 10,000 virus-related fatalities and almost 100,000 confirmed cases. Testing in the country is low and health officials acknowledge that the numbers are likely much higher.

The federal government unveiled a red-light/green-light system to implement reopening procedures state by state. But currently every state is still in ‘red-light’ phase – meaning stay-at-home orders are still in full effect – making AMLO’s messaging extremely confusing.

Time and time again, the president has downplayed the virus outbreak and has criticized stay-at-home orders for harming the economy.

Keep in mind, however, that non-essential travel between the U.S. and Mexico is still largely banned.

Since March, all non-essential travel has been banned between the U.S. and Mexico. However, that ban is currently set to expire on June 22. It’s possible both sides could extend the travel ban, but given AMLO’s rhetoric it isn’t likely he’ll keep the country closed to tourists for much longer.

However, it’s important to point that out even if you technically can travel – right now you really shouldn’t. In much of Mexico, confirmed Covid-19 cases are on the rise with many cities across the country just now entering it’s worst phase.

Photographer Diego Huerta Took An Update Photo Of The Most Beautiful Girl In Mexico

Culture

Photographer Diego Huerta Took An Update Photo Of The Most Beautiful Girl In Mexico

diegohuertaphoto / Instagram

Diego Huerta is a photographer who has used his talents and time to document indigenous communities to preserve the culture and history. One of Huerta’s most famous photos was one of a young girl that he called the most beautiful girl in Mexico. He recently shared a new photo of the girl as a woman.

Diego Huerta shared an updated photo of the most beautiful girl woman in Mexico.

Huerta first met the girl when he was traveling through Mexico years ago. The first photo, posted in 2016 but taken in 2011, highlighted the young woman that he dubbed the most beautiful girl in Mexico. The latest photo shows the girl grown up and still living in her same pueblo in 2017. She is still a stunning reminder of the beauty that exists in southern Mexico.

The woman lives in Chiapas, the last Mexican state before entering Central America by way of Guatemala. There are multiple indigenous communities in Chiapas. While Huerta does not mention the indigenous community the woman belongs to, the clothing appears to represent the Zoque people.

The woman is still creating wander and interest among Huerta’s fans.

Credit: diegohuertaphoto / Instagram

Her quiet and still composure makes her seem like a Mexican Mona Lisa, tbh. Her stoic face in the photographs has captivated Huerta fans for years. The first photo of the young woman was seen around the world and her beauty was celebrated by everyone who saw the photo.

The young girl’s eyes are what drew in the love and praise from people around the world.

Huerta made it a point to call out the young girl’s eyes in the photo. It isn’t because of the color of her eyes. He was intrigued by her eyes because she is deaf and her eyes are one of the ways she is able to communicate with the world around her.

“In my journey through South Mexico, in a town located in the middle of the Chiapas’ mountains I found the most brilliant eyes that I have ever seen,” Huerta wrote in the original post. “The beauty of this girl was similar to the panoramic views I was able to appreciate every time I turned around. She´s deaf, the way to communicate with her was by signs. It is no mystery that the beauty of the true Mexican woman is way above all beauty contests.”

People are obsessing over her beauty that seems to improve with age.

Credit: diegohuertaphoto / Instagram

Nine years makes a big difference in a young person’s development. It can be the difference between 11 and 20, which is a huge difference. Her silent beauty is proof that indigenous communities hold some of the most beautiful people in the world. There is no reason to praise and adhere to Euro-centric beauty standards.

The Instagram posted is filled with messages of appreciation celebrating the photo and the young woman we saw grow up.

Credit: diegohuertaphoto / Instagram

Huerta currently has a documentary about the Tehuana people in Oaxaca. His photographs and film collection highlighting and exalting the indigenous community of Mexico is beautiful and necessary. He is collecting an important and vibrant part of human history by giving the first people to inhabit the land a chance to shine and show who Mexico truly is.

READ: Photographer Diego Huerta Is Giving Everyone A Look Into The Tehuana Culture In Oaxaca, Mexico