1: Mexican Flag | Adopted on September 17, 1968
2: Dear Mom, I just arrived in Mexico and it is absolutely beautiful here! Everyone is very friendly and the environment is just full of the Mexican culture. As soon as I got off of the plane I was politely greeted and offered a drink. At first I did not want anything to drink but my other colleagues told me that it is impolite not to take a drink. Anyway, thank God I am able to speak Spanish because that's the official language of Mexico. I also noticed some parts of Mexico looked run down and very poor. This is why I'm here in Mexico today. I want to help make Mexico a better place. You know clean it up a bit. I'm going to enjoy the rest of my day and take a tour of Mexico. Talk to you soon! Love, Briana
3: Places I would like to help restore
4: Capital: Mexico City Population of Mexico: 113,724, 226
5: Mexico Cathedral during the night in Mexico City
6: Current President Felipe Calderon
7: Quick Current Economy Facts 1. Mexico makes billions of dollars from visitors and tourists. 2. 1/5 of Mexicans are employed in the agriculture field. 3. The economy in Mexico crashed back in 2008 but fortunately started to grow again in 2010. 4. With NAFTA United States investments have been employing Mexicans for work. 5. Jobs provide low wages. 6. Unfortunately, 40% of Mexicans live in poverty.
8: Mexican Drug War and Drug Trafficking | 1. People are killing and fighting for drugs. 2. Drug sales range from $13.6 billion - 47 billion per year. 3. There have been hundreds of thousands of death rates due to the crime and fighting. 4. Smuggled drugs consists of marijuana, crack, cocaine, heroin, and pills. 5. People from America are kidnapped to work in the drug war. 6. Guns play a major role, over 1,100 guns have been found.
9: THE DRUG WAR HAS KILLED OVER 6,300 PEOPLE AND THAT NUMBER IS INCREASING!
10: From 2007 to 2010, Mexico had nearly 15 times more drug-related murders than the United States, according to an El Paso Times analysis. Based on the Times' calculations, the U.S. had 2,049 drug-related homicides during those four years, or 0.66 for each 100,000 of population. During the same period, Mexico had 30,858 drug-related homicides, or 27.4 per 100,000 population. Mexico began reporting drug-related homicides in 2007 during President Felipe Calderón's administration, referring to them as "executions," a term officials used whenever they attributed deaths to the drug-cartel wars. In the United States, the Federal Bureau of Investigation compiles drug-related murder statistics through its Uniform Crime Reporting Program. The FBI defines this category as "murders that occurred specifically during a narcotics felony, such as drug-trafficking or manufacturing." Mexico's drug-related homicides averaged 46 percent of its total 67,053 homicides during 2007-2010. In the U.S., only 3.6 percent of the country's 55,867 homicides were classified as drug-related, according to law enforcement reports. El Paso sociologist Cheryl Howard said there may be significant caveats that make the figures from both countries incomplete. both seem awfully low," Howard said. "One of the problems may be how each country defines and reports its 'drug-related' homicides." | News Paper Clipping Mexico's drug killings soar over US
11: The Uniform Crime Reporting Program relies on local jurisdictions to provide accurate statistics, and the motives for many homicides each year are unknown. In the Mexican government's case, the Instituto Nacional de Estadistica y Geografia, or INEGI, also relies on local jurisdictions to submit complete and accurate information. Mexico's drug-related homicides rose dramatically after Calderón announced the government's crackdown against the cartels in late 2006. There might have been more total homicides (93,505) during President Carlos Salinas' administration of 1988 to 1994, but the government did not indicate how many of those were related to drugs. Unlike Mexico, the United States saw dramatic reductions in its yearly average of drug-related homicides over a 22-year period from 1988 through 2010. Highlights from these years include: 1,243 average yearly drug homicides in 1988-1995. 681 yearly average in 1999-2003. 541 yearly average in 2004-2010.
12: Poverty plays a big role in... | Chiapas
13: Oaxaca | Tiaxcala
15: This is a picture of the one of the poorest cities in Mexico. The city Guerrero does not have piped water, electricity, or drainage. Most of the homes have dirt floors and only have one room. The homes in this city are slowly falling apart. These homes are not safe for children or adults.
16: Poverty Line in Mexico Unfortunately most of Mexico is living in poverty. This is a big issue today. A lot of families require young children to work for extra money. It is very hard to make money in Mexico since the minimum wage is extremely low. Southern Mexico has a very high poverty rate. Most people in Southern Mexico are living on the streets begging for jobs. This is very unfortunate.
17: This is a graph of the poverty in Mexico 2010. Northern Mexico was affected by poverty in 2010 between 0% - 10%. In 2010 Southern Mexico was living in extreme poverty with a staggering 40% poverty rate.
18: Changes in the Poverty Line Poverty in Mexico does not seem to be decreasing. In fact, it is increasing day by day. It is expected that Mexicans will live in poverty because they are not receiving enough money to own a decent home, clothing, and food.
19: Red indicates a significant increase in poverty, green indicates a significant decrease, and yellow indicates no significant changes between 2008-2010.
20: This is a picture of a farmer. Most men in Mexico work in the agriculture field. Most farmers in Mexico only make $20 a day. | Jobs
21: This is a picture of a small child at home. A woman's job is to stay at home and raise children. They want their boys to be strong men and they want their girls to be beautiful young ladies. At home girls usually learn household skills.
22: Jobs | Some women sell clothing as a way to make a little extra money. The clothing is usually made of cloth and is sometimes sold at the Sunday Market.
23: This older gentlemen seems to be stressed out at the Sunday Market. At the Sunday Market customers can purchase fruits, fish, pottery, and household items. This is where Mexicans can make extra money!
24: Jobs | This young boy is working at a repair shop to make extra money. Sometimes children will drop out of school to provide money for their family.
25: This woman is selling Quesadillas and refreshments to make a quick buck. She is also selling fried mushrooms and sausage with potatoes.
26: Jobs | This woman is weaving clothes. Once all the clothes are weaved, they are put up for sale at a local market.
27: This man is selling Chicharron which is fried pork skin, Cecina which is dried beef, Tasajo which is seasoned meat, and Chorizo which is spicy sausage.
28: Dear Grandma, How are you? I'm having a ball in Mexico. At the same time I am working very hard. It is very sad to know that people out here working hard everyday do not make much money. Farmers only make about $25 a day. They barely have enough money for food. What I've been doing lately is going to the Sunday markets and purchasing at much food and clothing that I can to try and help some of the Mexican families. I know that they need the money more than I do. When I come back to the United States I'm going to bring you the article of clothing that I purchased for you. I cannot tell you what it is because it's a surprise! I know for a fact you will love it. I am out here for a purpose and I will do my best to try and make Mexico a better place for the short amount of time that I am here. I know you are proud of me! I love you! Love, Briana
29: I plan to go here for some relaxation soon! Cancun, Mexico!
30: Natural Resources | Great News! Mexico has a lot of natural resources. The natural resources include gold, silver, oil, coal, led, copper, zinc, petroleum, timber, and natural gases!
31: Gold | Silver | Oil | Coal
32: Transportation Most Mexicans use public transportation to get around daily. Some cars are common in urban areas as well. Buses and minibuses are not expensive at all. Mexico all has a train line.
33: This is a picture of a young boy traveling by bus. Buses take passengers from one city to the next.
34: Mexico’s gold output rose 18 percent to 6,616 kilograms (233,372 ounces) in January from a year earlier after Goldcorp Inc. (G) expanded output at its Penasquito mine. Silver output rose 28 percent to 344,085 kilograms in January, the National Statistics Agency said today in a statement on its website. Copper production jumped 26 percent to 33,828 metric tons, the agency said. Vancouver-based Goldcorp is expanding gold production at its Penasquito mine by about 68 percent this year, Salvador Garcia, the company’s chief for the country, said March 15. | Newspaper Clipping Mexico’s Gold Output Rises 18% in January On Penasquito
35: Dear Dad, Hey dad! I'm having a great time in Mexico. The weather here is hot and humid. The people are great and so is the food. I usually eat dinner around 8 pm. That is the Mexican tradition. In Mexico people eat light breakfasts, a snack during the day, and a big dinner. Mexicans also keep both hands on the table while eating. I must follow all the rules. After I depart from a restaurant or a store I hug and kiss everyone on the cheek. That is also a Mexican tradition. I always eat spicy foods for dinner which is called Picante. While eating dinner we always eat a piece of bread or rice with our spicy foods. So far my peace corps groups and I helped rebuild some homes and communities. We provided people with clean drinking water and fresh clean clothes. I feel so good about myself. Tell everyone at home I said hello! Love you daddy! Love, Briana
36: Constitution of Mexico Article 1. Every person in the United Mexican States shall enjoy the guarantees granted by this Constitution, which cannot be restricted or suspended except in such cases and under such conditions as are herein provided Article 2. Slavery is forbidden in the United Mexican States. Slaves who enter national territory from abroad shall, by this act alone, recover their freedom and enjoy the protection afforded by the laws. Article 3.(1) The education imparted by the Federal State shall be designed to develop harmoniously all the faculties of the human being and shall foster in him at the same time a love of country and a consciousness of international solidarity, in independence and justice.
37: I. Freedom of religious beliefs being guaranteed by Article 24, the standard which shall guide such education shall be maintained entirely apart from any religious doctrine and, based on the results of scientific progress, shall strive against ignorance and its effects, servitudes, fanaticism, and prejudices. Moreover: a. It shall be democratic, considering democracy not only as a legal structure and a political regimen, but as a system of life founded on a constant economic, social, and cultural betterment of the people; b. It shall be national insofar as -- without hostility or exclusiveness -it shall achieve the understanding of our problems, the utilization of our resources, the defense of our political independence, the assurance of our economic independence, and the continuity and growth of our culture; and c. It shall contribute to better human relationships, not only with the elements which it contributes toward strengthening and at the same time inculcating, together with respect for the dignity of the person and the integrity of the family, the conviction of the general interest of society, but also by the care which it devotes to the ideals of brotherhood and equality of rights of all men, avoiding privileges of race, creed, class, sex, or persons.
38: Constitution of Mexico II. Private persons may engage in education of all kinds and grades. But as regards elementary, secondary, and normal education (and that of any kind or grade designed for laborers and farm workers) they must previously obtain, in every case, the express authorization of the public power. Such authorization may be refused or revoked by decisions against which there can be no judicial proceedings or recourse. III. Private institutions devoted to education of the kinds and grades specified in the preceding section must be without exception in conformity with the provisions of sections I and II of the first paragraph of this article and must also be in harmony with official plans and programs. IV. Religious corporations, ministers of religion, stock companies which exclusively or predominantly engage in educational activities, and associations or companies devoted to propagation of any religious creed shall not in any way participate in institutions giving elementary, secondary and normal education and education for laborers or field workers. V. The State may in its discretion withdraw at any time the recognition of official validity of studies conducted in private institutions. VI. Elementary education shall be compulsory. VII. All education given by the State shall be free.
39: VIII. The Congress of the Union, with a view to unifying and coordinating education throughout the Republic, shall issue the necessary laws for dividing the social function of education among the Federation, the States and the Municipalities, for fixing the appropriate financial allocations for this public service and for establishing the penalties applicable to officials who do not comply with or enforce the pertinent provisions, as well as the penalties applicable to all those who infringe such provisions. Article 4. No person can be prevented from engaging in the profession, industrial or commercial pursuit, or occupation of his choice, provided it is lawful. The exercise of this liberty shall only be forbidden by judicial order when the rights of third parties are infringed, or by administrative order, issued in the manner provided by law, when the rights of society are violated. No one may be deprived of the fruits of his labor except by judicial decision. The law in each state shall determine the professions which may be practiced only with a degree, and set forth the requirements for obtaining it and the authorities empowered to issue it.
40: Newspaper Clipping Detectives: Homicide suspect may have fled to Mexico A man suspected of killing an Immokalee man earlier this week may have fled the country, Collier County sheriff detectives say. Lemuel Meza Cruz, 33, is wanted on a second-degree murder charge for the killing of Juan Flores Monroy, 24, 321 Wells St., Immokalee. Monroy’s body was found Tuesday morning on the side of a dirt road, near the 200 block of Wells Street, by a motorists. Meza Cruz hopped on a flight Tuesday night in Atlanta to Mexico City, detectives believe.
41: By checking flight manifests, detectives found Meza Cruz was listed as a passenger on a flight out of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta bound for Mexico City, Mexico, around 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. The Sheriff’s Office is now asking federal authorities for assistance in apprehending Meza Cruz, whose last known address was 610 Booker Blvd. in Immokalee. Detectives revealed Friday that Monroy was stabbed to death. Witnesses told detectives that Meza Cruz and Flores Monroy got into an argument in an open field near the 200 block of Wells Street around 9 p.m. Monday. The argument led to a physical altercation in which Meza Cruz stabbed Flores Monroy with a knife. Flores Monroy staggered along a footpath to the side of the road, where a worker with Immokalee Water & Sewer found his body. The Collier County Medical Examiner’s Office determined the manner of death to be homicide.. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Collier County Sheriff’s Office at 239.252.9300, or if you wish to remain anonymous call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477).
42: Newspaper Clipping 5 Mexico police officers killed at party JUAREZ, Mexico — Five Juárez police officers, including a police commander, were shot and killed at a party Wednesday night — the deadliest attack on police officers so far this year. Officials said gunmen burst into a party and gunned down the officers about 8:15, said Juárez police spokesman Adrian Sanchez Contreras.Two other officers were wounded and were listed in serious condition, officials said late Wednesday. Trouble viewing the video? Download Flash player here "They are working right now in an operation in the entire city to find those responsible," Sanchez Contreras said. None of the victims were identified Wednesday night. A police spokesman said that about 18 police officers have been killed in Juárez this year. The incident on Wednesday night was believed to be the single deadliest attack on law enforcement in Juárez since a car bomb exploded in downtown in 2010. Eight officers were killed in various street shootings before police took shelter in heavily guarded hotels. Authorities also began allowing officers to take their firearms home with them off-duty. Some police had claimed they were sitting ducks because they had not been allowed to take their weapons home with them.
43: Newspaper Clipping Drug War Shifts in Latin America Their battles for market control have a high cost: According to the United Nations, eight of the world’s 10 most violent countries are in Latin America or the Caribbean. Drugs are not the only business of organized crime but they account for the bulk of the gangs’ income and thus their firepower. Honduras, a strategic spot on the trafficking route, has the world’s highest murder rate, about 80 times that of Western Europe. All this is despite three decades of what has become known as the "war" on drugs in the region, inspired by the United States, and prosecuted with varying degrees of enthusiasm by Latin American governments. Hitherto, criticism of drug prohibition has tended to come only from retired political leaders. In a 2009 report, three respected former presidents (Fernando Henrique Cardoso of Brazil, Cesar Gaviria of Colombia and Mexico’s Ernesto Zedillo) declared the drug war a failure, and demanded alternative approaches. Cardoso has called for the legalization of some drugs. Recently, sitting presidents have begun to speak up, too. Felipe Calderon of Mexico called for a "national debate" about legalization, though he then seemed to forget about it. Those calling for an end to the war cannot all be brushed off as liberal namby-pambies. Otto Perez Molina, Guatemala’s new president, is a former general who when campaigning promised an "iron fist" against crime. Last month, he called for the decriminalization of drug trafficking, saying: "You would get rid of money laundering, smuggling, arms trafficking and corruption."
44: Health People in Mexico can get medical services for free. Natural Herbs are used for cures. Air pollution is a problem!
45: Education Free up to the age of 6 Not forced to attend school because there is a fee for school Students participate in hands on learning. Students are usually very close with their teachers. | This boy is on his way to school!
46: $ Currency $ | PESO
47: Food | Beans | Tortillas | Ice Cream | Fruit
48: Cinco De Mayo - May 5th Spanish people honor the fallen soldiers and victories of wars! | Holidays
49: Soccer is popular in Mexico. Players get very competitive. Every young boy wants to learn how to play! | Bullfighting is also popular. People just watch for the entertainment!
50: Dear Diary, This was the best experience in my whole entire life. Coming to Mexico to help make it a better place was a wonderful idea. I rebuilt homes and provided towns with cleans clothes and water. I'm so proud of myself. In another 2 years I plan to return to Mexico to see how the country is doing. I made a big difference and I will do it again! Briana
51: Works Cited At Home. N.d. Culturegrams. Culturegrams, n.d. Web. 8 Mar. 2012.
52: Works Cited “Constitution of Mexico.” oas. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Mar. 2012.
53: Works Cited Futbol. N.d. Yucatan Living. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Mar. 2012.
54: Works Cited Selling Clothing. Aug. 2006. Culturegrams. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Mar. 2012.