This article is an interesting and striking encapsulation of two sad facts of life in Mexico. Beyond the commentaries on social media and government social policy, it raises the important question of whether Mexico’s relative indifference to endemic poverty on an individual, daily level is bound up the deeply-engrained racism that most would not confess to:

The image in the photo could fit thousands of impoverished Mexican children who sell gum or beg for money in the streets, but for one thing: The girl in this picture is blond.

The flurry of internet attention to the photo, and the quick way officials reacted, has renewed a debate about racism in Mexico, a nation that is proud of its mestizo heritage but where millions of indigenous people live in poverty and passers-by often barely notice the dark-skinned children begging in the street.