Children, the other victims of crime

Sadly, cases in which minors have become the victims of crime are neither unusual nor surprising in Mexico

Children, the other victims of crime
Children at school – Photo: Victor Hugo Rojas/EL UNIVERSAL
English 27/05/2018 08:55 Mexico City Newspaper Leader by EL UNIVERSAL Actualizada 08:55

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The criminal violence currently devastating Mexico doesn't spare or “discriminate.” Without consideration, the most vulnerable and defenseless sectors of our population, such as women, senior citizens, and children – perhaps because of their condition – are increasingly falling prey to crime.

As evidence of the above, three children lost their lives in separate incidents last week. A terrible disgrace.

Sadly, cases like these in Mexico are neither unusual nor surprising. According to the number of cases in which minors have been involved in violent crimes, mentioned in this news outlet by Alejandro Hope, 2,163 minors were murdered in Mexico in 2016. That is, an equivalent of 6 murders per day. Of that total, 393 weren't older than 14 years old. This means that every day, a child becomes a murder victim.

These data expose the increasing level of social decay in our country, to such an extent that for criminals, their twisted or non-existent code of conduct considers permissible to murder, kidnap, or enslave the most vulnerable sector of a society: its children.

In any country boasting to be a civilized nation, children are the priority of government institutions, which ensure they are fully protected and that their needs are met while their rights, respected.

And even if in facts Mexico falls short, we do have an extensive law on the matter: the General Law on the Rights of Children and Adolescents. This law states that Mexican legislation has to ensure the protection, respect, and compliance of the rights of this sector; as well as providing the mechanisms necessary for their full and comprehensive growth and development.

Then why are we seeing this level of violence against children? Could it be that Mexican society is becoming more tolerant toward violence? Firstly, and obviously, the high levels of violence we have reached impact all aspects of society. Yet this natural “bleeding” of violence cannot be a justification.

And also because government institutions haven't had a proportional response – an extraordinary one, as it should – to the seriousness of this phenomenon, as if the life of minors or the slightest violation to their rights weren't reason enough to deploy all the resources of the State to condemn these acts and prevent more from happening in the future.

Perhaps we should make our authorities remember that Mexican children – as cliched as it sounds – are the only future of this country and its biggest treasure.

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