Mexico, officially the United Mexican States (Spanish: Estados Unidos Mexicanos), is a country in North America made up of 31 states and a federal district, where its capital and largest city, Mexico City, is based. It has a population of over 113 million and the largest Spanish-speaking community in the world. There is no official language but the de facto national language is Spanish.
Before Christopher Columbus set foot on the Americas in the 15th century, Mexico was populated by various ancient civilizations, including the Maya and the Aztec. The territory of modern Mexico was conquered and colonized by Spain in 1521, and Mexico became an independent nation in 1821. After its independence, Mexico faced economic instability and various armed conflicts (including one with the United States) before the Mexican Revolution of 1910 led to the birth of the current Mexican political system.
Mexico is governed by a federal constitutional republic, with the President serving as both the head of state and the head of government. It has one of the largest economies in the world and is considered a regional power and middle power. It ranks sixth in the world by number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites at 31, and is the 10th most visited country in the world. However, crime rates in Mexico are high, and the country has been in the midst of a war fought between the government and local drug cartels which has led to over 60,000 deaths.
 Spanking in Mexico
The Aztecs had various methods of corporal punishment, some which were quite different from those in the rest of the world, such as the "smoke punishment" (see image to the right).
The Spanish invaded Mexico in the 16th century and made the country a part of the Spanish Empire. They introduced European corporal punishment methods. Today's Mexican culture is a blend of pre-Hispanic and Spanish culture.
Mexican parents can be tough on their kids; they believe children should be well-behaved, and in general they believe in corporal punishment. Spanking is widespread and often given bare bottom (a nalga pelona). Mexican immigrants to the United States often complain that American laws do not permit them to discipline their kids as sternly as they did in Mexico..