Mexico, Central America


LGBT rights in Mexico have expanded in recent years, in keeping with worldwide legal trends. Homosexuality has been legal since the adoption of the French Penal Code during occupation during 1862-1867. Until 1998, laws against public immorality or indecency could be used against homosexual acts. The Mexican Constitution was amended in 2001 to prohibit discrimination based, between other factors, on sexual orientation. A federal anti-discrimination law to protect sexual minorities was passed in 2003. The law also created a National Council to enforce the law. Otherwise, political parties tend to ignore LGBT rights issues, and few LGBT Mexicans run for public office. The age of consent is 18. In November 2006, civil unions (Sociedad de Convivencia) were legalized in Mexico City for same-sex and different-sex couples, offering almost the same legal rights as marriage within its city limits, minus adoption rights. The states of Colima, Michoacán, Jalisco, Guerrero, State of Mexico, Puebla and Veracruz are also considering similar laws. Gay life thrives in Mexico in its large cities and resorts. The center of the gay community in Mexico City is the Zona Rosa, near the city center. Puerto Vallarta, Monterrey, Tijuana and Guadalajara are large cosmopolitan cities that have a growing gay scene. However, the situation outside of these centers tends to be more homophobic.

 

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Gay Mexico: a Three-Part Journey 2010

| June 1st, 2010 | Comments Off

From three Mexican cities come three different stories about gay life. Part one reveals a subdued LGBT community in the provincial capital of Morelia in the state of Michoacan, a hundred miles west of Mexico City. Part two derives from the big city itself–Mexico City, an enormous megopolis of twenty million where, expectantly, the LGBT scene is extensive and challenging. Part three is from the renown resort of Cancun on the Yucatan Peninsula, with a LGBT community that’s quite different than one might expect. Also see: Gay Mexico News & Reports 2000 to present Gay Mexica Photo Galleries By Richard Ammon For GlobalGayz.com Updated April 2010 Part One: Morelia Historic Morelia This is an unexpected story from an unexpected place. I had never heard of Morelia Mexico before I arrived to visit a longtime friend who bought a house just outside the historic city center. (photo right: Morelia cathedral) On

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Mexico – Morelia City (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Morelia is the capital of the state of Michoacan, about 100 miles west of Mexico City. It’s a historic city with more than 1000 colonial buildings and churches and became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991. Morelia was officially founded on May 18, 1541 by the first viceroy of New Spain Antonio de Mendoza, as "City of Michoacán". It was inhabited by 50 Spanish noble families and by Purepecha Indians (brought from Patzcuaro and Tiripetio to serve the Spanish). In 1545, the name was changed to "Valladolid".   Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Rio Lagartos (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

On the north coast of Yucatan is Rio Lagartos (alligator river), a small town within a 118,00 acre nature preserve – the Biosphere Special Reserve – that’s home to more than 200 species of native and migratory birds and other wildlike, including flamingos cormorants, gigantic white pelicans, seagulls, herons, egrets, maybe a few spoonbills and an occasional alligator. The village of Rio Lagartos is a small fishing village and offers the same hospitality as in antiquity when the Mayan name for the town meant "Head of the Kitchen". During that time it was a popular stopping point along the ancient trade route and known as a place for sustenance and a tranquil atmosphere, something you can still find there. The area is the home to Mexico’s largest American and Caribbean flamingo population. It estimated that over 8,000 pink flamingos live within the now protected canals and mangroves just up the

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Mexico – Mexico City: Zona Rosa, Alameda Park, Zocalo Square (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Zona Rosa is a business and entertainment district near the center of Mexico City. It is one of the city’s most touristy areas, filled with hotels, dance clubs, restaurants, bars and live bands. Demographically, it boasts a healthy gay population as well as a relatively high concentration of Korean immigrants. Mexico City’s financial heart is also here, with the Mexican Stock Exchange building and the recently built 35-story HSBC building next to the Angel de la Independencia, amongst other banks with offices in this area.   Alameda Park is a public park in downtown Mexico City. It is a green garden with paved paths and decorative fountains and statues, and is frequently the center of civic events. The area used to be an Aztec marketplace and after the Conquest, the Catholic Church used the area for the burning of heretics and witches. The park was created in 1592, when Viceroy

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Mexico – Patzcuaro and Rural Area (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Pátzcuaro is a charming colonial city high in the Sierra Madre mountains (altitude 7200 feet) about fifty miles west of Morelia. It’s filled with historical architecture and shops with local colorful handicrafts . Around the two town squares are classic arched facades. The Pátzcuaro area is well known for it’s rustic, carved wooden furniture and it’s colorful woven textiles, among many other crafts. On Day of the Dead, Nov.1 and 2, and All Saints’ Day during Easter Week, Pátzcuaro is host to particularly notable festivals involving colorful rituals and celebrations. Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Mexico City Gay Marriage Rally (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

On Valentines’ Day 2005 a public pro-gay marriage rally was held in central Mexico City at Alameda Park. Hundreds of LGBT couples showed up amid speeches, music and dancing to sign their names on a "Registro de Sociedades de Convivencia" form. The ‘officials’, dressed in academic caps and gowns were members of PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays). The energy was very much like a wedding, with tears, confetti, rice, hugging and passionate kissing.   Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Mexico City: Chapultepec Castle (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Chapultepec Castle has been used for numerous functions over the last three hundred years. It was on this hill that the Aztecs made a temporary home after arriving from northern Mexico in the 1200s. In the early 20th century it was home to Emperor Maximilian of Habsburg until he was executed. For a while it was an army barrack and later the President’s official residence. Nowadays the castle is the Mexican History Museum and also houses an art museum as well. Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Playa del Carmen and Tulum (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Playa del Carmen and Tulum Playa del Carmen is a busy coastal city popular with tourists. It is the center of the Riviera Maya concept, which runs from south of Cancún to Tulum and the Sian Ka’an biosphere reserve. Playa is a stop for several cruise ships which dock at the nearby Calica quarry docks, about six miles south of the city. A Mexican themed "eco-archaeological park", Xcaret is a popular tourist destination just south of the town. The ruins at Tulum date from about 1200-1500 AD and have a spectacular location on the seafront. The final six photos were taken at El Paraiso Tulum, a little nine-room hotel on the beach in Tulum.. Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Coba Village and Coba Mayan Ruins (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Coba is a tiny village adjacent to the vast Coba Mayan Ruins. Life in the village is very quiet and slow. I stayed in the little six-room hotelito ‘Sac-be’ for $16 a night (vs $78 at the near-by Club Med, shown in the final four photos below). My towel was arranged like a flower and the toilet paper was folded like a fan. A young girl, Mariana, about 7 years old checked me in and and showed me to my room, assisted by her 3 year old sister Sena. Then they ran off to play. The ruins here date from about 500-800 AD and are spread across many kilometers. The site contains several large temple pyramids, the tallest, known as Nohoch Mul, being 42 meters in height. The bulk of Coba’s major construction seems to have been made in the middle and late Classic period, about 500 to 900, with

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Mexico – Chichen Itza (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Chichen Itza Ruins The ruins at Chichen Itza date from about 600-900 AD and are a mix of Mayan and Toltec styles. Chichen Itza is a large pre-Columbian archaeological site built by the Maya civilization located in the northern center of the Yucatán Peninsula, in the Yucatán state, present-day Mexico. Archaeological data, such as evidence of burning at a number of important structures and architectural complexes, suggest that Chichen Itza’s collapse was violent. Following the decline of Chichen Itza’s hegemony, regional power in the Yucatán shifted to a new center at Mayapan. Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Ek Balam Ruins (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Ek’ Balam is a pre-Columbian archaeological site in Yucatán built by the Maya civilization. There are 45 structures, including the Acropolis, the largest structure at Ek’ Balam. It contains the tomb of Ukit Kan Le’k Tok’. It measures 146 meters across, 55 meters wide and 29 meters tall. Read the story about gay Mexico

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Mexico – Cancun (photos)

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Cancun is divided into two distinct areas: the upscale grand hotels along the beach for foreign tourists, and the working class downtown Centro district, (2 miles from the beach – final 15 photos below) where the hotel workers live and shop (at Sears and Wal-Mart, etc.). In the Centro are Cancun’s three gay bars (and possibly a mixed bar that sported a ‘bi’ night). Gay life is quiet and subdued in Cancun (except for the loud dance music in the three disco-bars). There is an annual ‘Gay Festival’ that is touted as a big event by the promoters but it is hardly city-wide and is usually confined to the one or two hotels booked by the organizers. See Passport Magazine story about the beachfront hotels and gay life. Read the story about gay Mexico

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