In a couple of hours Mexico will have the most dangerous elections in the worst political climate ever. A complicated situation that has been amounting for the last 500-plus years. Midterm elections are tomorrow morning in a nation disenchanted by democracy, the worst approval for a president, omnipresent state-sponsored racism, followed by massacres and protests.
The fail state environment is undeniable thanks to social media.
It is the toughest moment of Mexico and yet the government and electoral body are playing it 20th century style, unwilling to recognize people are more knowledgeable thanks to social media and the internet. The monolithic Televisa, ever-present TV network was once responsible for the cover-ups of much of the governments wrongdoings. Most notably the 1968 student massacre, the 1970’s “dirty war” against communist rebels, the 1980’s economic debacle, the 1990’s political assassinations, and the 2000’s drug war. But now, in the 2010’s the fail state environment is undeniable thanks to social media, internet, and foreign media coming into the country by cable or internet. Televisa and the government are still operating as in the 1970’s, having major headlines of troubles in Venezuela, riots in the United States, and the Middle East, but oddly in our facebook and twitter accounts Mexicans are sharing and commenting on news generated by citizens itself.
Democracy is undermined in Mexico.
The key is information. For so long there has been an institutionalized effort to block information from the common Mexican. They have gone from the patriotic extremes, like prohibiting the old movies that recounted the El Alamo battle in Texas, to the annoying “nothing is happening” ideal of a make-believe nation. But now almost anyone who can fairly handle a mobile phone with camera can record video or photographs of things happening in Mexico — from police corruption, politicians sex escapades, and worldwide violence (literally many are battles in the drug wars). If not, we can see it at Fox News, CNN, or other media. This has undermined president Enrique Peña Nieto and his presidency and the belief of democracy.
A few hours ago the military and federal police were deployed to four states awaiting violence.
Now many municipalities and states are tonight in a true state of rebellion. A few hours ago the military and federal police were deployed to entire states like Guerrero, Oaxaca, Chiapas, and Puebla. Teachers, students, natives, and community vigilantes have stormed in the last days into INE (National Electoral Institute) facilities, offices, and warehouses were electoral material is kept. Some political party offices have been burned in Chiapas. INE offices have been bombed in Puebla. Tonight there is no access to many towns in Oaxaca and Guerrero, taken by the people itself to impede elections from happening. In an electoral office in Oaxaca the soldiers fled from the people who were burning ballots. People in Oaxaca still reported in the afternoon many helicopters continually hovering over cities and towns, as if prepared for the worst.
It may not be as fast as the Arab Spring, but the uprise in Mexico is happening.
We don’t know, and I guess no one can know, what will happen. This never happened in Mexico. Something similar, but not so grave actually, started what we all now know as the Mexican Revolution. If you know Pancho Villa, you know something about that uprise that exploded in 1910. 105 years later here we are. Many people are actually surprised there hasn’t been a proper revolution in Mexico. Although after the drug cartels took hold of many places, citizens rose in vigilante groups against them and the government alike. Many towns in Michoacan are self-ruled, and many more in Guerrero state want to be the same. It may not be a revolution that may start as fast as the Arab Spring, but slowly but surely things are becoming more violent in a nation that has endured hardships, violence, and poverty.