Wednesday, May 12, 2010

All Good

Carlos Pascual says that there is no tension in Mexico-US relationship, despite the anger over SB 1070. That's what you'd expect a diplomat to say, but it seems true here, too. One thing that's been notable about the Mexican reaction is that it is hyper-specific: there are no broadside attacks on the US, despite the outrage. Instead, virtually every comment I've heard or read (both in the media and among regular people) refers to Arizona specifically, and often as a peculiar state out of the mainstream of the US. This shows a good deal of sophistication, something you almost certainly wouldn't see in the collective US media treatment of any foreign country, nor, for that matter, in the Mexican media treatment of any other nation. I wonder if it would have been different here a generation ago.


Ken said...

Your point about the specificity of the anger here in Mexico about SB 1070 is an excellent one. Ironically, it is probably the result of immigration: it is difficult to find someone here in Mexico who doesn't have at least one close relative who has lived in the US for some time. When people compare notes I'm sure it becomes clear that there are vast differences among the states in the US.

On the other hand, immigration to Mexico from the US is rather less common, and I would wager that even among Americans who've visited Mexico, most couldn't name the state they visited, just the city. If you specify beach destinations, I'd wager that fewer than 1 in 10 know. It would be interesting to do a Daily Show kind of walk around Cancún and ask Americans whether they knew they were in Quintana Roo.

pc said...

That's right, I think it stems from so many Mexicans having personal experience with the US and having good experience that overwhelm whatever's on the news.

I'm guessing the Americans wouldn't do to well on the Mexican geography. A lot of that you can see in the reactions to drug violence. Instead of avoiding Juarez and a couple of other border towns, a lot of people don't distinguish between the sage spots and the dicey ones.