By Cecilia Farfán Méndez *
•International Women’s Day on March 8 celebrates “the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women”. In recent years, women in Mexico have demonstrated on this day demanding the basic right to a life free of fear. Of the official 36,773 homicides that occurred in Mexico in 2020, 10.76% were committed against women. Unlike homicides for men that slightly decreased compared to 2019, those of women have continued to rise every year.
•Like the rest of the country, women in the US border city of Tijuana wore purple clothing and green bandanas to protest gender-based violence and support safe abortions. While different generations joined the march, young women represented the majority of those in attendance. In Mexico, homicide is the top cause of death for women between the ages of 15 to 24.
•The march in Tijuana featured demands that are more specific to border regions including “We are all migrants. Stronger together” and “Not motherhood out of duty, nor incarcerated for planting [weed], nor dead for having an abortion”.
•On a personal level, the most powerful and striking part of the Tijuana demonstration was the moment of silence with raised fists held in memory of those women who are no longer with us, either because they are missing or were killed. The silence was followed by a loud scream by hundreds of women who rightfully demand a life free of violence. In the state of Baja California, where 72.3% of women feel unsafe on the streets, the demonstration of March 8 reshaped, even if only for an afternoon, the relationship women have with public spaces in Mexico.
•In the state of Baja California, where 72.3% of women feel unsafe on the streets, the Tijuana demonstration of March 8 reshaped, even if only for an afternoon, the relationship women have with public spaces in Mexico.