Protesters occupying Mexico City’s center said they were ready to do whatever it takes to support Lopez Obrador. Fernando Calles, a 26-year-old university professor, said he was ready to fight for the former Mexico City mayor “until the death, until the final consequences.”

“We lived 500 years of repression, and now we represent the new face of Mexico,” he said. ~CNN

Lopez Obrador went out of his way to deny Chavista affinities during the campaign (the world-travelling Chavez himself managed to take Lopez Obrador’s likely victory and turn it into a Mexican farce), but it appears unsurprisingly that his loyal followers have more than a little in common with Evo Morales and his supporters in Bolivia beyond their common policy preferences.  The remark about 500 years of oppression (rather than, say, grievances related to modern Mexican history alone) is telling, because it reflects the conviction of the Indian populations of Latin America–certainly not entirely unfounded–that they have been, on the whole, deprived of power or influence in government all this time, and it also reflects who Lopez Obrador voters understand themselves to be: representatives of the disenfranchised Indians of the last 500 years, just like Morales and the Aymara nationalists down south.  

To the extent that these people are “the new face of Mexico,” it becomes difficult to understand why people go out of their way to claim that this Mexico is part of Western civilisation, when large sections of Mexico seem to view themselves as the oppressed victims of Western colonialism, and why it does not trouble defenders of large-scale Mexican and Latin American immigration that this is the case.