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Society

Mexican Foreign Minister: U.S. Gun Makers "Financing Violent Video Games"

Mexico has filed a lawsuit against several U.S. video game firms. The legal action is an escalation of cross-border tension between the countries, as Mexico blames U.S. gun laws for fueling crime in the country.

Dark photo of a man sitting cross-legged, holding a video game controller

Do violent video games favor the trafficking and use of firearms?

Alidad Vassigh
MEXICO CITY — Mexico's Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard Casaubon has accused U.S. arms manufacturers of backing violent video games, which he said encourage crime and violence in the United States and Mexico.

He commented in Mexico City on Dec. 21 on the lawsuit Mexico has filed against several U.S. firms, stating that video games were effectively advertising for their products, the daily Heraldo de México reported.

Accusations from both sides of the border

Ebrard said that the weapons used in such games were uncannily similar to those confiscated in Mexico.

The suit, filed with a U.S. court on Aug. 4, claims that up to 90% of criminal weapons found in Mexico come from the United States and will seek some $10 billion in damages.Mexico has been grappling with violent crime for a little under two decades, though the severity of violence picked up after 2006, when the conservative government of the time declared war on the drug cartels.

Insecurity in Mexico has led to intermittent and mutual accusations on both sides of the border. The United States effectively treated Mexicans as criminals under its previous Republican president, and Mexican authorities blame U.S. gun laws for fueling crime in their country.

The Foreign Minister said Mexico's suit alleges that "the firms' manufacturing, distribution, advertising and sales practices favor the trafficking and use of firearms." Also cited in Forbesmagazine, he said such games "even imitate the marble color and similar characteristics of arms" confiscated by police, and firms are "also financing video games, eh? To foment the expanding use of arms among youngsters."


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Green

As Air Quality Worsens, Kampala Citizens Find It Difficult to Breathe

Kampala’s air quality is much worse than globally accepted standards, but several interventions are being instituted to avert its effects.

As Air Quality Worsens, Kampala Citizens Find It Difficult to Breathe

Rush hour traffic in Kampala, Uganda on Sept. 9, 2022. Kampala’s air is nine times more polluted than the World Health Organization’s recommended limit.

Apophia Agiresaasi

KAMPALA, UGANDA — There’s something in Kampala’s air. Philomena Nabweru Rwabukuku’s body could tell even before she went to see a doctor. The retired teacher and her children used to get frequent asthma attacks, especially after they had been up and about in the city where there were many vehicles. It was worse when they lived in Naluvule, a densely populated Kampala suburb where traffic is dense.

“We were in and out of hospital most of the time. [The] attacks would occur like twice a week,” Nabweru says.

Her doctors blamed the air in Kampala, which is nine times more polluted than the World Health Organization’s recommended limit, according to a 2022 WHO report. By comparison, Bangladesh, the country with the world’s worst air pollution, is 13 times the recommended limit.

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