Benjamin Medrano is Mexico's first openly gay mayor

Sat. July 20, 2013 6:35 AM by

Fresnillo, Mexico - Voters in the city of Fresnillo have elected Benjamin Medrano as mayor, making him Mexico's first openly gay mayor.

Medrano, who was elected on July 7, takes office in September.

Fresnillo is a township in the state of Zacatecas, a rural state known largely for cowboy boots and drug gang shootouts.

"Somewhat? Very machisto, I would say," Medrano told the AP of his region. "I am going to be mayor of a township (roughly equivalent of a U.S county) where there are 258 villages full of tough country people, who don't necessarily have much information on what's happening elsewhere and have even less of an automatic sympathy with their gay mayor."

"But it's not like I'm going to paint city hall pink, either," he added.

The 47-year-old Medrano is a singer and the owner of gay bar. He said that his background and the fact that he doesn't campaign on gay rights helped him win his election.

"I'm not in favor of gay marriage," said Medrano, a Roman Catholic, "I don't share that view, because we are still very small town short, we're not prepared, in my view. Not yet, anyway, because we have strong roots in our region, and in our customs."

Article provided in partnership with On Top Magazine