You Can Find a Lot of Hope in Mexico’s Democracy

The Headlines Are Dire, But the Country’s Citizen-Run Elections Should Remain Trustworthy—And a Model for the Rest of the World

In these times of misinformation and mistrust, where might we find a way to restore trust in our elections and in our democracies?

There are two answers: in Mexico. And in ourselves.

You may be reading international news headlines about a Mexican conflict over democracy. There, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his congressional allies recently passed legislation to strip the country’s independent electoral authorities of some staffing and budget, as well as some of their power to police elections.

That is a troubling development. But the breathless news reports leave out crucial …

Carta de la Ciudad de México: ¿Puede la polarización construir democracia?

Uchas veces, el desacuerdo implica enemistad. La mejor apuesta para nuestro futuro es tender puentes entre los polos extremos

Read in English

No existen democracias sin algún tipo de polarización, lo que no es en sí mismo nocivo ni patológico. En realidad, las instituciones democráticas están diseñadas para …

A member of the Mexican National Guard stands in front of a red moving train in the Mexico City Metro subway.

A Letter from Mexico City: Can Polarization Build Democracy?

Too Often Disagreement Means Enmity. But Bridging Extremes Is the Best Bet for Our Future

What are the obstacles and opportunities facing democracy today? Zócalo is publishing a series of letters to highlight how the world’s democratic ideals are faring in practice. From Mexico: Public …

A New Border Wall Draws from an Old American Playbook

At the Poland-Belarus Borderland, a California-Based Immigration Attorney Finds an Eerily Familiar Scene

At long last, we reached the wall. Its glinting metal and sharp wire stood in stark contrast to the greens and golds of the Polish forest in autumn. And its …

The Whitewashing of Mexico City’s Hand-Painted Signs

A Ban on Colorful Rótulos Is Making for a More Generic Streetscape

This April, the government of Mexico City’s central Cuauhtémoc alcaldía, or borough, mandated that all its rótulos—the hand-painted signs decorating street vendors’ kiosks—be erased. The colorful optical illusions, diverse typographies, …

How Latin America Built L.A.

Excavating the Century of Economic Domination Beneath the 2022 Summit of the Americas

Los Angeles is just the second U.S. city to host the Summit of the Americas, which brings together political leaders, civil society organizations, and business executives from North, South, and …