After my presentation, I received various questions, such as:
-Is it true about the water?
Yes, don't drink the water. Locals don't either -- at least not in Mexico City. It's all bottled water.
-What is the health care system like?
IMSS (Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social) is the Social Security and provides health/medical assistance to "workers and their families"-- so I'm not sure who exactly is covered v. ignored. ISSSTE (Instituto de Seguridad y Servicios Sociales de Trabajadores del Estado) is available for government employees. There are private hospitals and clinics. There are also clinics attached to the generic medicine pharmacies, where visits cost 25-35 pesos (or what my family likes to call the two-dollar doctor.
-Does the government provide services/support for the poor?
In all honesty, I don't know. I've heard someone mention a soup kitchen, but it was privately operated. IMSS might have other services, but I don't have the impression it includes the general population -- especially those that might need it most.
-What is Mexico's biggest concern with the US?
From what I've seen and hear, it really depends on what group or individual we're talking about. There are people that love the US. There are also people that hate the US and therefore everything associated with the US must be bad/evil/hurtful/ etc. And lots more people in between. Some of the biggest concerns I've seen/heard are: arms trafficking from the US to Mexico; the US' role in the drug trade; capitalistic practices that hurt local economies; racism and discrimination against migrants and using undocumented migrants as a form of "modern day slavery."
|Posing with Columbia Patuxent Club President,|
Pete Kunz, and his new Mexico/US Rotary pin