Mexico is facing its presidential elections this Sunday. The 1st of July will be an important day to all Mexicans, including those abroad like myself and my mates in New Zealand. We decided to take a shot from here and follow the political campaigns, research the candidates, read about what our countrymen were posting on the different social media tools available. Out of the sudden, like never before, Mexicans connected in so many levels and satisfied their curiosity not only using the internet but taking their demands to the streets. The “Mexican Spring” tasted different after the social media movement became a real social movement, thousands went on the streets demanding a better coverage of the elections.
As a Mexican abroad, I’ve studied Mexico’s history and social movements for the last 10 years and let me tell you, it makes me proud to witness what is going on at my homeland. Mexico is a country full of contradictions, but home of many people who work hard every day to ensure a better future for their children. We are framed as individuals living an easy life, enjoying poverty and willing to celebrate every single day of the year. Mexicans aren’t this way, we don’t enjoy our context, we make the best out of it, expecting that it will change somehow, for the best. This presidential election has awaken many people, in terms that the options presented by the political parties aren’t really ‘the best’. Mexico has to choose from four candidates that aren’t really la creme de la creme of Mexican politics. As a joke, many refer to this election as a gamble for the least bad individual.
Sunday the 1st of July will determine the future of the country for the next 6 years, and might see the return of the party that ruled Mexico for 70 years. Or, will Mexicans decide that it is time to take the left lane of social democracy and follow the successful examples of Chile, Brazil and other left wing governed countries? Regardless of the polls that put Enrique Peña at the top of the preferences, there’s hope from Lopez Obrador (Left wing party candidate) and Josefina Vazquez Mota (Right wing party candidate) that these polls don’t reflect what is going to happen tomorrow.
As one of my favourite authors, John Irving, wrote once in ‘The Cider House Rules’, we’ll just have to ‘wait and see’.