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Tlahuelilpan: Symptoms of a Crisis

In the tragedy of Tlahuelilpan, the characteristic elements of the public crisis we are going through in the country are synthesized; and his name is inscribed in the black list of the names of our recent tragedies: San Fernando, Guardería ABC, Patrocinio, Reynosa, Ciudad Juarez and a long list more.

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In the tragedy of Tlahuelilpan, the characteristic elements of the public crisis we are going through in the country are synthesized; and his name is inscribed in the black list of the names of our recent tragedies: San Fernando, Guardería ABC, Patrocinio, Reynosa, Ciudad Juarez and a long list more.

From this perspective, if something stands out in the message sent by the President of the Republic, Saturday morning, is precisely the question that seeks to investigate the root causes that caused the tragedy, but that are perhaps at the base of the very complex problem of the “huachicoleo” that has literally led to the worst crisis in its history to Pemex and, in general, to the entire energy sector.

The scenes that were captured of the tragedy are Dantesque: the petrol geyser accompanies the “feast of opportunity” of a quick profit, but an instant later, the flames envelop everyone, children, women, men of different ages are trapped by the fire, the ones closest to the shot, die. Everyone runs between screams, pain and confusion.

It is surprising that these were whole families with hundreds of containers in hand; all carrying liters of gasoline, before the eyes of police and military unable to do anything in the face of evident numerical inferiority, but also in the absence of a well-defined protocol on what to do and how to intervene in these cases, within the framework of new strategy of frontal combat to this crime.

“In front of the population, the authorities lack effective authority.”

Perhaps the hardest thing to recognize, but that is urgent, is that in front of the population, the authorities lack effective authority. That is to say, there is a rupture in the internalization of a relationship of “command-obedience” between the authority and the population, based on a solid framework of law and respect for human rights.

In that sense, the ineffectiveness of authority when calling to order is surprising; We are facing a serious situation in which in large territories, the State lacks the legitimacy to represent the authority and the rule of the Law: it is heard in several videos that the military and police invite people to withdraw, and in response they obtain the aggression and an attitude of frank challenge; and in this can be read a rupture of the representation of law and order in the uniform they wear.

But all is not lost, there are answers. The president is in charge of the situation and the institutions respond. Hence, the urgent need to ask ourselves: why be there, if everyone knows the danger of being literally flooded with gasoline; why it happened there, if there was already a history of burning houses; Why can greed, the insult to authority and the desire for easy gain be imposed?

Everyone knows the danger, I insist, and everyone, too, starts from a conviction: it is illegal, but there are no consequences. Years of knowing that it is an unpunished way to obtain profits. That is why it is not an exaggeration to say that something profound is broken in our civic constitution, because there is no notion of crime, there is no social conviction in favor of legality and, in contrast, there is a generalized attitude that “everything goes “If there is an opportunity to do so.

We urgently need to recover the legitimacy of the State and restore the notion shared by all, that the best thing for all is to obey the Law, that is why the fight against corruption must be much more than a personal crusade, and advance in the profound transformation of the institutions, from there to move towards the construction of a new civility, a new configuration of the public as the common space for the realization of personal aspirations, and in which equality, access to justice and well-being, are a palpable possibility. Everything else is nonsense.

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