News, issues and viewpoints from the U.S.-Mexico border
Friday, June 24, 2011
Mexico President Calderon pranked in California; U.S. media mum
While 30,000 students watched President Felipe Calderon deliver Stanford's commencement address on Sunday, June 12, an airplane flew over the Stanford Stadium with a massive banner reading "40,000 DEAD! HOW MANY MORE?"
According to the Mexico Solidarity Network, San Francisco-based Global Exchange may have had a hand in the incident. However, if anyone claimed responsibility for the protest, I did not hear it. There's an excellent reason for that!
US mainstream media by and large ignored the incident. I understand that this is part of their "good manners" policy toward visiting heads of state. Unless, of course, those heads of state come from countries at odds with the US State Department. Rules are made to be broken, as the saying goes.
The valiant Mexican press, who pay for publishing the truth with their lives [3 more assassinated this week], did immediately cover the incident. As a political statement, this is a major news story in Mexico. Their population is traumatized and decimated by Calderon's war.
Just yesterday Calderon was publicly asked to apologize for his war and its affects on the Mexican people. But he did not.
Calderon's speech at Stanford was described by the Mexico Solidarity Committee as "forgettable"..."full of platitudes encouraging youth to 'never stop defending your ideals and dreams.'"
It certainly is nice that U.S. youth have the opportunity to pursue an education. Masses of Mexican youth, most of whom are lucky to graduate sixth grade, cannot. Indeed, about half of Mexican youth between 15 and 19 are both unemployed and out-of-school. Many struggle to read and write. They are ripe for the picking for syndicated crime groups because they have no other options.
Banner behind airplane clearly visible over Stanford stadium during Calderon's commencement.
If you have 5 minutes to invest, you can watch a YouTube video of the event here. You'll hear a lengthy introduction that extols Calderon's accomplishments. Just as that is drawing to a conclusion, the airplane begins to circle above the stadium.