Sourav “Teddy” Biswas
It was 1810 when Hidalgo gave the famous Grito de Dolores/Cry of Dolores, and initiated the Mexican War of Independence against the Spanish. In 1821, Spanish Viceory, Juan de O’Donojú, signed the Treaty of Córdoba, granting Mexico its independence from Spain. After centuries of struggle and development; Mexico has reached a point whereas, the better side of its economic growth is an estimated $9000 per person, which surpasses China’s $7000 per person. Unfortunately, nearly half of Mexico’s population lives below the poverty line. There lies a burning question as to why this huge economic and monetary growth has not proliferated among its people.
Between 1950 and 1980, rural residents migrated to cities and towns where they found more productive work. When countries like Spain and Italy opened their economy to trade and investment, the escalation of this similar growth was halted in Mexico. This stoppage was due to the region’s closed and regulated economy, burdened by disincentives against innovation and investment. Simply put, the growth of Mexico stalled after this. Eventually, when this country decided to walk the road of development; wealthy businessmen hoarded profits from the country’s telecommunication monopoly for themselves.
More disappointment comes in the form of water wastage. Being a dry state, Mexico cannot afford to waste water, but nearly 40 percent of Mexico’s city water is lost to faulty pipes. Then, there’s a negligible investment in education and skills. According to raking of nations by Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development, Mexico has almost the lowest enrollment in secondary education among the 35 nations under this organization.
To date, Mexico is a country of rulers and ruled haves and have-nots. When this country fights a gruesome war against poverty, crime and education, its representatives and the wealthy, have no concerns of their suffering countrymen. The best example is when President Enrique Peña Nieto’s wife has enjoyed the use of houses owned government contractors priced at $7 million at a post Mexican suburb.
We cannot exclude the corruption and drug related crime that is prevalent within the society which has aggravated the the country’s development. Reports state that approximately 122 million people of Mexico die from homicide more than 320 million people of the United States. In a 2013 survey by Transparency International, 60 percent of Mexicans admitted that a member of their family had bribed a police officer, and more than 50 percent said that a family member had paid a bribe to a court official.
Every year on September 15 at 11 pm, Mexico’s president ring’s the National Palace bell and re-enacts Hidalgo’s famous Grito de Dolores which is ended with three shouts of “Viva Mexico!”, marking a successful year in the country’s independence. This country has tasted only the concept of independence because the majority of the population merely enjoys an authority and government which thinks in favor of them. The question remains… what should Mexico celebrate? Should they raise a toast that they have managed to end 300 years of Spanish rule? Or would it be more relevant for modern Mexico to learn from it’s mistakes, and end the vague leadership qualities of its governing bodies?
- Transparency International
- Organization of Economic Cooperation & Development
- Wikipedia/Cry of Delores
- Wikipedia/Mexican War Of Independence
- Latin Times
- IB Times