Some friends have seen the news of the civil unrest in Mexico and wondering how we are doing; we are fine. What’s going on?
In December, the government announced a 20% increase in the price of gasoline and new taxes, effective January 2017. People are angry and openly talking about boycotting the government, not paying taxes or license fees, etc. In various places around the country, there have been mobs who have looted Walmarts, Sam’s and other similar stores. Strange logic to loot these stores as they don’t sell gasoline. Government buildings have also been left untouched.
Some blame the government and with good cause. According to my sources, these incidents have occurred mostly in very poor areas. In Veracruz, I’m told, the state governor appeared at one or more of these incidents escorted by police and the news media. He ordered people to stop it. Later, he sent in the military to put down the riots. The non-rioting citizens praised him saying what Mexico needs is such strong leadership to restore order. Sound like a familiar tactic of the political elite? Occupy Wall Street?
Meanwhile, the president announced that the people have to pay the increases or the government would not be able to function. What this means to most people is that the politicians won’t be able to live high on the hog at the taxpayers’ expense. He threatened to close the public schools. Made me think of Br’er Rabbit, “Please, Br'er Fox, don't fling me in that brier-patch,”
A friend observed that Mexico is an unarmed people. “What are we going to do with broomsticks against an armed police force?” he said. Exactly. He observed that people still think the problem is the political party in charge of the presidency, not the government itself. Smart fellow. He is embarrassed that Mexico is showing itself to be a larcenous people.
The Oliver’s have not been affected by this so far and don’t expect to be. Most people go about their business as usual trying peacefully to earn a living. It’s mostly sound and fury and a minority acting up in front of the cameras. Most Mexicans are just descent, hard working people. They are fed up but thy are not looting the Walmarts. The good thing is that all this signals a people who are waking up to the tyranny under which they live. May the church here wake up and cry to God for mercy. Mexico certainly needs it.
“Poor Mexico, so close to the United States and so far from God.” former President of Mexico, Porfirio Diaz.
- Roger Oliver
Roger Oliver serves as a missionary in Puebla, Mexico. He and his wife, Marcy spend most of their time at the Pierre Viret Learning Center, a Christian academy, preschool through high school. Their local church meets in the Learning Center. They sponsor a web page www.visionamericalatina.com to promote Christian reconstruction in Latin America. Roger is a partner in a furniture manufacturing company. The business exists to provide employment to the families in the community, to help the community become independent, to generate capital for other family businesses and as a venue for vocational discipleship. He retired from the US Army in 1992. He earned his MBA at Syracuse University for the Army and completed a ThM in Bible Exposition at Dallas Theological Seminary.