Mexican gov’s presentación is just show

The Mexican government’s practice of parading alleged criminals in front of the press is a flashy show of strength, but it’s an inhumane and ineffective way of fighting its war on drugs and crime.

As Mexico experiences the highest crime rates they’ve seen since the Mexican Revolution, the government has found new ways to try and convince the people that crime is under control.

Enter the presentación, a daily event in Mexico at which apprehended criminals are paraded in front of the public and press.

The criminals are posed in front of confiscated weapons, police trucks and symbols that signify their crime. The images of these “criminals” are replayed all day long on news channels. The controversy surrounding this issue arises, however, because none of the paraded individuals have been convicted. The opposition argues that the parading of these “criminals” violates their right to be assumed innocent until proven guilty because the spectacle assumes they are guilty.

Now from an extremely Machiavellian aspect, an aspect in which you consider only the usefulness of an action, this is an extremely genius move on the part of the Mexican government. With crime levels so high, this public relation stunt — meant to increase public morale if effective, is a smart move. What better way to show that government is accomplishing a top priority goal than by a physical display of power? Tangible physical examples are often able to impress upon a person’s mind things that a written statement or a public statement cannot.

Contrary to this Machiavellian view, human beings, according to Christians, have intrinsic worth regardless of their actions. The idea that someone is innocent until proven guilty revolves around this intrinsic merit, because people in and of themselves are valuable, others should not presume that they are guilty. From this perspective, despite the fact that the presentación may boost public morale, it ignores the rights that are protected by the government that the individual possesses to be presumed innocent.

It should be taken into consideration that these paraded “criminals” still get a trial in which they are innocent until proven guilty. In addition, even though the spectacle tries to improve public morale, according to different reports from Mexico, the common populace puts little faith in these spectacles because when they go out into public they are still confronted with the harsh realities of the large amount of crime. Thus, although human rights are impinged with these spectacles, the government should stop mostly because from a purely utilitarian stance, the spectacles don’t accomplish their purposed goal to boost public morale.

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