The recent events in Ferguson, Missouri, in which a police officer shot an unarmed black man and the subsequent police response to protests, have created discussions about the militarization of the police force, not only domestically, but internationally as well.
In Mexico, where most families have relatives who live in the United States, the appearance of institutional racism shown by American police forces has them fearing for their loved ones. The Mexican experience with militarized police has been even more commonplace than in America.
The United States’ laws do not allow the military to get directly involved in police matters. In Mexico, that law does not apply. In some situations, Mexican security will simply change the color of their uniform to denote what their responsibility is at the time.
Now, the Mexican government is conducting a new experiment with a military unit that will be used as a police force, despite the fact that this has been shown to lead to more violence.
Laura Carlsen answers questions about all sides of this issue from Mexico City.