This was recently published online, and although I don’t agree with his conclusion, I do agree with the main point of his article.
Mexico is grabbing more headlines than a pantiless starlet at a fashionable nightclub these days. Drugs, murders, guns and swine flu have been the stories coming out of Mexico in 2009. American media outlets can’t help but run it all. After all, their audience loves it. But what does it do to Mexico?
He even manages to quote Vallarta Lifestyles:
To bolster their argument they plopped a very glossy magazine down in front of me called Vallarta Lifestyle. It resembles El Paso Media Group’s El Paso Magazine greatly. In fact, their mission seems to be the exact same – promotion of local activity, culture and people through positive portrayal of the city. The letter from the editor, Paco Ojeda, eerily breaks from that tradition when he explains:
“Have you been watching CNN lately? So have we, and we’re not amused by the media’s portrayal of our country. So, despite our best effort to always accentuate the positive in our publications, we couldn’t help but throw in our own two cents by way of Cynthia Beare’s excellent article on page 142.”
Ms. Beare’s article skewers the American media on their portrayal of a problem that she claims is a Mexico-U.S. border problem. She correctly asserts that the American media threw all of Mexico under the bus, which hurt tourism everywhere in the country. She attributed the media frenzy north of the border to an attempt to distract the American people from their economic crisis.
His conclusion may be stretching it a little. Yes, times are bad, but they will get better! Its going to be a hard summer for many, but there’s a big investment in Vallarta by Americans in hotels, timeshare, condos and villas; they and their friends and family will be coming back in the fall. Life will get back to normal. Its just hard, and very unfortunate, how this all has played out.
The bottom line as related to me by the crowd that night was that Puerto Vallarta is on the brink. The careless reporting of isolated problems hundreds of miles away from Puerto Vallarta threaten to make it into the city it was wrongly labeled as. The mass hysteria was unwarranted before, but has had its effect on the future of Puerto Vallarta.
They weren’t a sick, drug addicted slum in the past, but they may be in the future and it all can be tracked to a case of mistaken identity.
Its worth reading the whole article, which you’ll find here.