The youth movement that emerged in opposition to the media's campaign coverage of President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto is redefining its message and working to give new life to Mexico's democracy.
When student protestors took to the streets after a government tribunal dismissed charges of fraud and upheld the results of Mexico’s July presidential election last month, they said they mourned “the death of democracy.” But not the end of their movement.
Known for its Twitter hash tag, #YoSoy132 emerged before this summer’s presidential election in opposition to what the students called favoritism by the television media for the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate, Enrique Peña Nieto. Mr. Peña Nieto ultimately won the election with 38 percent of the vote in a field of four.
The election now settled, many are questioning what YoSoy132 will do next. Their No. 1 goal remains fair access to information and the “democratization” of Mexico’s media, according to a message emitted to coincide with President Felipe Calderón’s sixth and final state of the union address earlier this month. But the ad-hoc student movement, criticized early on for its lack of organization and focus, is still struggling to create a unified message, leaving some to question its significance and potential to endure in Mexico today.
“The problem with the movement is not whether it continues to have a voice; it’s that it has too many,” says Carlos Bravo Regidor, professor of political studies at Mexico City’s CIDE research center. “The internal diversity at times appears to overpower [the group’s] capacity to deliver coherent and effective messages.”
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