D.A. Lorenzo in Mexico City
Violent crime in Mexico is no secret. An estimated 24,000 people have been violently murdered so far in 2019. The recent horrific killings of 13 innocent Mexican-American citizens in Sonora state – including 3 women and 6 children – brought the topic of femicide to the forefront. Violence against women in Mexico is widespread and indiscriminate.
Among women over the age of fifteen, 66.1% have experienced some form of emotional and physical abuse, including a sickening 41.3% from sexual assault and a further 34% from physical violence. Women are routinely abused in the so-called sanctuary of their own home. The police turn a blind eye and are rarely interested in acting in defence of women.
The issue has become so widespread that on the metro and rapid buses in Mexico City there are designated sections solely intended for women and children. Entire sections of metro stations are segregated for the safety of women. This is the reality that Mexican women are facing in 2019, but the current government seems unable or unwilling to implement real changes to the judicial system which could help to curb the issue. Women live in fear in Mexico and not a thing is being done about it.
We often talk about male privilege in Canada, but we rarely talk about male privilege in developing countries. There is no easy solution to the issues facing women in Mexico, which stem from a chronic sense of “machismo” among the male population, usually instilled from a young age. The idea that men are better than women is widespread, and while it certainly does not mean that all men in Mexico suffer from this, it does mean that there is a fundamental flaw that needs to be addressed.
There is a growing grassroots movement trying to combat the root cause of toxic masculinity; however, it is a slow and tedious process. There are groups here in Mexico that are working tirelessly to bring gender equality to the masses and bring safety to the millions of women living in darkness and fear. They work in silence and perpetual fear as the risk of violence against them is very real.
The so-called left-wing government in Mexico City needs to be held accountable for their complete and utter lack of empathy. But so too does the government of Canada, which continues to turn a blind eye to the femicide happening in Indigenous communities.
Progressives, socialists and communists in Canada can unite with our Mexican comrades and fight alongside them in defence of women’s rights worldwide. No longer can the violence against women be silenced. Together we can win change for the safety of women everywhere and the betterment of humanity.