Columnist Laments Mexico's Double Standard

By Jerry Kammer and Jerry Kammer on March 10, 2011

An opinion column in today's El Universal, the Mexico City daily, criticizes Mexican judicial authorities and Mexican society in general for failing to respond to the rampant kidnapping of migrants passing through on their way to the U.S. border.

Columnist Miguel Carbonell cites a report by the National Human Rights Commission that over a six-month period last year, 11,000 migrants – mostly from Central America – were kidnapped.

Frequently they are held for ransom. Often they are physically or sexually abused. Sometimes they are murdered.

Carbonell notes that despite "this massive and resounding criminal activity," authorities have initiated just a handful of criminal cases," demonstrating that "absolute impunity appears to be the rule, as frequently happens in Mexico."

"The worst part of all this, perhaps, is the lack of response from Mexican society," he continues. He notes that if the victims had been Mexicans there certainly would have been public outcry and a demand for action.

"But because those involved are foreigners and poor, no one seems to be concerned," he writes. "The same respect that the Mexican government wants from the United States in order to protect our countrymen in North American territory cannot be guaranteed in our own country"

Topics: Mexico