Web users stand against violence in Ciudad Juarez

News of violence in the city of Ciudad Juarez spreads on the Mexican web, while in the US, the blogosphere discusses the Roy Ashburn scandal.


Fight against violence in Ciudad Juarez

The drug cartel war is intensifying in Ciudad Juarez, a Mexican city close to the US border. Over 100 people have been killed over the past few days. Among these victims: an American consulate employee and her husband, murdered last Saturday.

The web bears witness to this daily violence. In fact, net users are posting videos nearly every day, videos reflecting the climate in this city which last year was labeled the most dangerous city in the world. These images for example, were filmed after the assassination in January of 15 students at a birthday party.

And the presence of thousands of soldiers deployed in the city since 2008 has made no difference. And according to residents of Ciudad Juarez, their presence has actually made the situation worse. So when President Felipe Calderon came to visit last month, they used social networks to organize a demonstration denouncing the authorities’ inefficiency.

Because they felt abandoned by the government, many citizens, notably the younger generation turned to the Internet to express their exasperation. This Facebook group has around 10 000 members who discuss this violence which pollutes their lives and try to find ways to overcome the problem. They hope by raising public awareness they can put pressure on the authorities.

The Roy Ashburn scandal

In the US, the Republican California State senator, Roy Ashburn, is at the center of a scandal which has been the talk of the town for the past ten days. He was arrested for drink-driving after leaving a gay bar and was obliged to publicly confirm his homosexuality. These revelations are all the more surprising given that Roy Ashburn has always declared himself a fierce opponent of gay rights. Reactions from outraged citizens are multiplying on the web.

This blogger condemns Ashburn’s hypocrisy, as the senator always campaigned against gay and lesbian movements in the state of California. He reminds us that on over 40 occasions, Ashburn voted against bills aimed at protecting homosexuals from discrimination.

Others, like this video blogger, condemn other politicians and the media for keeping quiet over Ashburn’s sexuality whilst he publicly declared his conservative positions. This American does not understand this contradictory situation and thinks the senator should have been questioned earlier.

A similar sentiment is expressed by the writer of this post who says that voters have the right to know the truth. He says the fact that Ashburn is gay is not important; it’s the deliberate lying to Californians that is the problem. He thinks the senator has now lost all credibility.

Meanwhile, some have decided to see the funny side of the Ashburn affair. This blogger laughs at the numerous “coming outs” over recent years of Republicans caught in sex scandals, and has drawn up a list of crazy excuses that conservative party members could use if a similar situation arises.

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