Journalists in Mexico are fed up.
The Committee to Protect Journalists considers Mexico to be one of the most dangerous countries in the world to practice journalism. By the organization’s count, nine journalists were murdered in 2021. Of those nine, CPJ has confirmed that three of those journalists were killed in direct reprisal for their work.
“You feel like an easy target”
Somehow, in recent weeks, the situation has managed to become even more dire, CPJ Latin America and Caribbean program coordinator Natalie Southwick told me on Wednesday. Southwick said that journalists in the country, especially those who cover corruption or organized crime, are currently “thinking furiously” about “whether what they’re doing is worth the risk to their families.”
Anxiety and anger
CNN Mexico City producer Karol Suarez writes: “Here in Mexico, a sense of anxiety and anger has gripped the journalism community. The lack of concrete actions from authorities has created an atmosphere of impunity and bitterness among all. Imagine telling the president of your country that you fear for your life, and a few years later, you get killed while arriving home; it’s awful, right? Something failed, and it has been failing for more than two decades. Journalists in Mexico are seen as the enemies of politicians and other powerful people. But even with the fear and dangerous circumstances, journalists will continue doing their jobs…”
What can be done?
Southwick told me that they’ve heard from journalists on the ground who feel that authorities are dismissive of the threats they face or are slow to respond. “The ongoing brutality against the journalists in this country is a direct consequence of the authorities’ unwillingness and inability to combat the festering impunity that fuels these killings,” Jan-Albert Hootsen, CPJ’s Mexico Representative, said in a statement. The group is calling on the government to do more…