I pulled this video as I was having a conversation about whether or not to visit Mexico with my significant other. Needless to say she found this sort of thing is less than encouraging. On another personal note, watching this comes off the heels of hearing about someone close to me that was extorted by police last month for not paying a bribe to an officer, who stopped him as he walked home one evening. The officer mentioned his daughter had a quinceañera that was approaching, and my friend should give him some money, otherwise he would be taken to jail for loitering. My friend refused and he was beaten up pretty bad.
This sort of extortion is an epidemic and really gives tourists and visitors doubts about making any travel plans there. I don't want to sound sensationalist, that isn't were I'm coming from, but it really draws my ire to see this sort of behavior from police officers. It is such an obvious shakedown and its so frustrating to see this guy getting treated like this; he is there to spend his hard earned dollars in this country that so desperately needs commerce and relies on its image as a tourist Mecca.
Petty crooks like these are not worthy of calling themselves police officers, they do more damage than they realize. Each time a foreign citizen comes home with a horror story to tell his neighbors, it makes it harder to bring in tourist or investment dollars into the region. This video is just as damaging to the Mexican economy as the photos from the latest cartel beheading.
The local police in these towns need to be reviewed on a consistent basis; the days of cuotas and mordidas must end if Mexico is to achieve a truly civil society.
This was posted 11/7/10