Thursday, May 31, 2012

Our Neighbors in Mexico: 'Kids Have Had it Up to Here'

Posted By on Thu, May 31, 2012 at 2:00 PM

On May 10, Weekly World Central ran a great column by our Randy Serraglio on Mexican poet Javier Sicilia's visit to Tucson and his battle against the U.S. war on drugs that has left more than 50,000 Mexican citizens missing or dead, including Sicilia's own son, Juan Francisco. If you missed Serraglio's column, you can read it here.

But here's a snippet:

When Mexican poet Javier Sicilia's son, Juan Francisco, was murdered a year ago, his reaction was similar, in some ways. He dedicated a final poem to him and then declared that he had no more words to put into poetry or express his pain.

Instead, he dedicated his life to publicly identifying exactly what it was that his son was caught up in. That work brought him to the University of Arizona last week, where he laid it out in no uncertain terms for a packed room of hundreds of Tucsonans.

Outgoing Mexican President Felipe Calderón would have you believe that Juan Francisco was up to no good, that he got what he deserved. Calderón's five-year offensive against the drug cartels has resulted in more than 50,000 deaths, 10,000 disappearances and a million people displaced from their homes. He insists that 90 percent of the victims in this ongoing bloodbath are guilty of something.

To think Scilia is alone in his efforts to take on the drug war, you'd be wrong. Thousands of Mexicans are involved in the nonviolent movement — the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity. As Serraglio reminds us at the end of his column, Sicilia and others from the movement will be back in Tucson and other state's to remind us of our own culpability in this mess.

But also at the forefront in educating and helping to cover this failed war on drugs is Narco News. Bill Conroy, a regular contributor to the project, recently posted this piece on the news group's website on Mexican president Felipe Calderón's hire of a US PR firm to help out with the G20 Summit (read the post here):

The administration of Felipe Calderón has retained a politically connected US advertising and public relations firm to promote the political and economic agenda of the Mexican president in advance of the upcoming G20 Summit, which will be held in Los Cabos, Mexico, only a few weeks prior to the July 1 Mexican general election.

The move raises serious questions about whether Calderón is skirting, possibly even violating, a Mexican constitutional provision, Article 41, that prohibits the Mexican government from engaging in political promotion and advertising prior to a national election.

The Group of 20 (G20) Summit, a gathering of the leaders from the dominant global economies to be chaired this year by Mexico, will take place in Los Cabos, located on the southern tip of the Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, in mid-June at a plush convention center built for the occasion by the Mexican government at a cost exceeding $100 million. The Mexican government also is kicking in some $47 million to stage and promote the convention itself.

So, when you read these words, don't forget the newest video above. Folks are tired of these miserable policies in the U.S. and Mexico. After all, the 'kids have had it up to here.' Change is coming to Mexico, maybe it will be heading our way, too. We are neighbors. Not that long ago, in Tucson and Pima County, that used to mean something.

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