Before his annual state of the union address on September 2, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and his administration were already sliding in popularity, with 47 percent in a Pew Research Center survey giving a negative rating of the president's influence (up from 38 percent a year earlier). Energy, education, telecommunications reforms and permanent insecurity were all targets of criticism from the public.
Three recent cases of high-profile violence have only intensified the anger and frustration that Mexicans are feeling towards their government, especially towards the head of state: the Tlatlaya execution, which occurred on June 30 and resulted in 22 gangsters were killed at the hands of the army. Then came the deadly ambush and forced disappearances of dozens of student teachers from Ayotzinapa on September 26, as reported by Global Voices. Finally, the discovery of the illegal mass graves in Iguala some days later on October 6.
It's still not known if the mass graves in Iguala are related to the student teachers. The authorities claim the first mass graves discovered were not related to the students, but at least 19 have been found to date. Investigators are still working on them.
The hashtag #DemandoTuRenunciaEPN (I demand your resignation Enrique Peña Nieto – EPN) became a worldwide trending topic and is still topping lists in Mexico after several days. Under this hashtag, Mexicans have expressed their reasons why they want their president to leave office. Here we share some of them:
— Javy (@cagando_el_palo) October 18, 2014
[The poster in the photo reads: “Today we aren't all here. We're missing 43, but they aren't just statistics. They are young people like us.”]
I demand your resignation EPN. They took them alive, we want them alive!
“They took them alive, we want them alive!” is a popular chant in protests asking for the safe return of the Ayotzinapa students.
Porque el pueblo no te eligio,por la pobreza,desempleo y desapariciones que has permitido #DemandoTuRenunciaEPN
— GABY TRUJANO (@GABYTRUJANO) October 19, 2014
Because the people didn't elect you for the poverty, unemployment and disappearances that you have allowed.
#DemandoTuRenunciaEPN porque no eres capaz de detener la violencia ni te importa
— Nora (@Noralacel) October 19, 2014
I demand your resignation EPN because you are incapable of stopping the violence and you don't even care.
— Ale‘ el Ingeniebrio (@iAle_chuk) October 18, 2014
[The poster in the photo reads: “I demand your resignation EPN because there's another person missing in Mexico who's dead and will only revive if the PEOPLE want it (said in reference to the figure of justice)]
Por el bien de México, para dignificar la política y reivindicar a la comunidad humana: #DemandoTuRenunciaEPN
— filosdie (@filosdie) octubre 18, 2014
For the sake of Mexico, to dignify politics and vindicate the human community. I demand your resignation EPN.
— HeraclitoKarel☭ (@HeracliKarel) October 18, 2014
“People from Guerrero will decide Aguirre's ousting: Peña” And all of Mexico will decide yours EPN. I demand your resignation EPN
Angel Aguirre Rivero is the current governor of Guerrero, the southern state, where the convoy of students were attacked.
[The image reads: Traitor to the nation for buying five million votes with money stolen from state budgets; for handing over national resources to private parties; for serving multinational companies; for harm done to the environment and national heritage; for condemning millions of Mexicans to misery and slavery.]
I demand your resignation EPN for TREASON TO THE NATION!!!
Some remembered the controversial Time cover from February 24, 2014 where Peña Nieto appeared under the headline “Saving Mexico”.
— Ricardo Hernandez (@Ricardohdzmx) October 18, 2014
There were some who spoke about the rotten political class in general.
México es un gran país, sin embargo apatía/sumisión ciudadana es aberrante. La clase política nos ha despojado de todo #DemandoTuRenunciaEPN
— Enrique D (@kikesma) October 18, 2014
Mexico is a great country, nonetheless citizens’ apathy/submission is outrageous. The political class has stripped us from everything. I demand your resignation EPN.
#DemandoTuRenunciaEPN Pero ¿quien sería presidente? Todos son igual de corruptos e incompetentes. Necesitamos políticos preparados
— Benji Carrace (@benji_carrace) October 18, 2014
I demand your resignation EPN. But, who would be the president? Every politician is equally corrupt and incompetent. We need well-prepared politicians.
— Juan Yves Palomar (@JuanYvesPalomar) October 18, 2014
We said on the 8th with #AyotzinapaSomosTodos (We are all Ayotzinapa), today we stand by it with “I demand your resignation EPN”. See you on the 22nd on the streets.
And it was discussed how to turn virtual protests into concrete legal actions against the president, making references to the country's constitution.
— Luchemos x México .. (@Transfiron) October 17, 2014
I demand your resignation EPN under article 39 of the Mexican political constitution.
Yo también #DemandoTuRenunciaEPN, recuerda que no eres mi jefe, eres representante nuestro y la constitución permite demandarte esto.
— Enrique Castillo (@ecastillo) October 18, 2014
I also demand your resignation EPN. Remember that you are not my boss, you are our representative and the constitution allows me to demand this.
OK… #DemandoTuRenunciaEPN ya es TT no. 1. Ahora: ¿cuáles son las ACCIONES LEGALES VERDADERAS para demandar su RENUNCIA? ¿EXISTEN ACASO?
— Jorge Cervantes (@jorcervan) October 18, 2014
OK… I demand your resignation EPN is already the no. 1 TT. Now, what are the REAL LEGAL ACTIONS to demand his RESIGNATION? DO THEY EVEN EXIST?