Today’s Love Is for Marisol Valles–and Young People Stepping Up

Because somebody has to lead.

By Jorge Rivas Oct 25, 2010

A Juarez, Mexico, newspaper called her "the most courageous of women in Mexico." Twenty-year-old criminal justice major Marisol Valles stepped forward and was the sole applicant to be her town’s new police chief.

Valles is from Guadalupe, an area controlled by major drug cartels in northern Mexico, near the U.S. border. The town’s mayor was murdered in June and police officers and security agents have been killed, some of them beheaded. One Mexican criminology professor told the Arizona Republic that getting elected to public office in Mexico "is like winning a tiger in a raffle." All of that, and Valles has her gender working agaisnt her, too. In fact, Valles fits the description of more than 500 teenagers and young women murdered or "disappeared" since 1993 in neighboring Ciudad Juarez, where she studies criminal justice.

"Afraid? Everyone is afraid and it’s very natural," Valles told a local paper about taking the job (according to Yahoo News’ translation). "What motivates me here is that the project [to make the community safer] is very good and can do a lot for my town. I know that we are going to change and remove this."

Her courage is stunning, and it’s your daily dose of love. In this case, it’s our love for her, and the love Valles has for her community. 

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