The image of a businessman holding a cord tied around a homeless man's neck outside a bar in Ensenada's tourist district while his friends laugh was published on Wednesday, July 22. A clear abuse of human rights, the homeless man wearing rags seems unaware of his humiliation as he looks down seemingly counting petty change. The picture was sent anonymously to the web portal Plex and has gone viral in Mexico.
The man holding the cord has been recognized as Francisco Argüelles, also known as Paco Taco, the owner of Los Carbones, a popular restaurant in Ensenada active since 1989. The place was famous for serving baked potatoes filled with carnitas and other goodies, but since the image went viral the restaurant lost all its clientele faster than the Chinese restaurants that were caught serving dog meat. According to local sources, Argüelles was also detained on April 13 for attacking a cop and then threatening to fire everyone, claiming he has “influence and money.”
The Facebook page for the restaurant was deleted after negative reviews unrelated to the food, but to the incident, flooded the website. I actually went to this particular establishment on my first visit to Ensenada three years ago; the food was great, but the service was terrible and slow.
The man laughing next to the woman wearing a red dress has been recognized as Pedro Quezada Vázquez, the academic director of the Universidad Xochicalco Campus Ensenada, a private university that ironically offers bachelor degrees in Human Rights Studies. The university has kept quiet on the matter, but citizens demand the immediate termination of Quezada. A letter of resignation presumably signed by Vázquez appeared online the following day, but the authenticity is yet to be confirmed.
The woman in the red dress happens to be Verónica Casillas Romero, a public defender for the state of Baja. It has been announced that Verónica has voluntarily quit her position, citing personal reasons. The man smiling ear to ear wearing the tacky silver suit on the right of the photo, has been recognized as Carlos Alberto Crúz Lugo, the business manager for Chared del Mar. The other two women have been identified as Minerva Borja and Mila Rodríguez.
The mayor of Ensenada, Gilberto Hirata Chico, reproached the actions shown in the picture and said in a press conference that this reflects upon the urgency for a cultural change in regards for respect of human rights among the population, as this should not happen.
This is not the first time rich people in Mexico act like they are above the law and other humans. “Los Gentlemen” or “Las Ladies” is a term that has been used since 2011 for the entitled high society in Mexico that do whatever they like and believe they can get away with anything.