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LGBTQ museum planned in Motul, new mayor says

Aguilar Arroyo says project has been in demand for many years

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Roger Aguilar Arroyo, mayor of Motul, Yucatan. Photo: Ayuntamiento

Motul — The City Council has announced the creation of a gay-lesbian museum, something so unique in Mexico that it has made national news.

The new PRI mayor of Motul, Roger Aguilar Arroyo, announced on social media that a museum highlighting sexual diversity has been in demand for many years.

Now, as mayor, he said he decided to respond by establishing the Museum of Sexual Diversity.

Aguilar Arroyo said the project will take shape within 30 to 45 days.

Leydi Chan, a former pride parade king, says that signs of inclusion and support from authorities is an important step toward more widespread respect.

Humberto Float Zapata, a Motul resident, said the project will serve as a “seed” for other places to take up this type of project.

“The authority is obliged to govern for all equally and without discriminating against anyone,” he said.

While Merida is known for being a somewhat comfortable space for gay citizens and expats, many openly gay and transgender Yucatecans live in Motul.

A video on the topic contained some skepticism.

“What things will be exhibited in that museum? There is a museum for (slain former governor and famous Motuleño) Felipe Carrillo Puerto, where his government work and his vision of the state are shown, but what can be highlighted about the lesbian-gay community?” asked a contrarian.

The skeptic may not be aware of some historical points.

Homosexuality was deemed a sin by the Spanish conquerors, but the indigenous Maya culture is historically accepting of sexual diversity. A Maya god, Xochipilli, is called the Flower Prince, and is the Maya patron saint of gay men, despite being married to a human female named Mayahuel.

A formative event in the history of the LGBTQ community is the “Dance of the 41.”

In 1901, a police raid on a same-sex ball in Mexico City swept up the son-in-law of the sitting president of Mexico, Porfirio Diaz. He was allowed to go free. The remaining 41 prisoners were forced to sweep the streets dressed as women. Half of them were sent to Yucatan to perform civil service in support of the troops in the Caste War.

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