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“We complain about Qatar and this is Mexico”

Faitelson criticizedó  violence in Culiacán.  (Capture Youtube/ESPN Deportes/Getty Images)

Faitelson criticized the violence in Culiacán. (Capture Youtube/ESPN Deportes/Getty Images)

David Faitelson tends to have opinions on virtually all issues. And this time he has been no different. The sports communicator gave his point of view on the day of violence that Culiacán, Sinaloa, has suffered in the context of the capture of Ovidio Guzmán, leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, and son of Joaquín Guzmán Loera.

The journalist shared the statement from the Government of Sinaloa, which announced the total suspension of work and issued a recommendation to stay at home, and went straight to the point: “We spend all our time talking about Qatar and its controversial World Cup designation… And this is the country that will host the next World Cup”he wrote in a tweet. Faitelson also made reference, in another tweet, to the suspension of two professional matches (Mazatlán against León and Dorados against Correcaminos) scheduled for the first day of Liga MX and Expansión MX: “Mexican soccer also pays the consequences of a war, our war,” he said.

The reactions were swift. Although his position was highly supported, there were also comments of discrepancy: from those who responded that in the United States, the main host of the next World Cup, there are also gloomy episodes, to someone who pointed out that Sinaloa will not host the World Cup and that in the chosen cities (Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey) there is no violence —which is false.

Faitelson hit the nail on the head. Rivers of ink were wasted and all the words were exhausted to talk about how condemnable it was to hold a World Cup in Qatar, a country that systematically violates human rights. And it was just that it was so: there was no way that such a scandal would happen overnight. But in three and a half years, Mexico will come across a reality that will share certain traits. It will form part of the organization of the World Cup and it does not seem that the problem of insecurity will be fixed in such a short time.

It could be said that other events with high logistical demands have been organized recently: Formula 1, the NFL, the NBA. In each of them, the television public saw the best side of Mexico. Just like what happened in Qatar (or more or less, because they weren’t ashamed to cover a Danish reporter’s camera), where no violation of human rights was ever seen, in the stadiums, in the matches. The same will happen in the next World Championship: Mexico will be ready to show its best version, and in the few games it will host, no one will see blocks, shots or flames at Azteca, Akron or BBVA.

But that does not mean that the reality of everyday Mexico can be hidden. A World Cup, as Russia and Qatar can see, does not necessarily overlap, hide or justify the social hub: rather, it exposes it to the eyes of the World. The news is out and, surely, what happened in Culiacán is already in the eyes of thousands of soccer fans who will wonder, as they did with Qatar, how a country that is like this can organize a World Cup. Because that’s how the images of La Corregidora also went around the world, almost a year ago.

Yes, Sinaloa will not host the World Cup. But Sinaloa is not on Mars: it is in Mexico. And violence is not exclusive to that state or any other. Not from Mexico; there is no perfect country. But you don’t have to blindfold either. Mexico has many problems, but there is one, the most visible, in which all the others converge. Mexico is a country overwhelmed by violence and this is how it will organize a soccer World Cup. There’s nothing wrong with saying it.

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