That picture symbolizes what is going on in Venezuala right now. That is a protest. That is a movement. THAT is change.
Sadly, a lot of people care more about what new drink a coffee shop is carrying or which celebrity is pregnant than what is actually going on in the world. That shouldn’t stop you from educating yourself. Right now, some of the biggest protests of economic conditions are underway in Venezuela. It’s truly remarkable to see and sad that there are places in the world where people have to fight for basic rights that we take for granted every day.
The current government is under Nicolás Maduro, but the problems began way back in 1998 when Hugo Chavez was elected President. He served for 14 years before his death in 2013. There are plenty of great reads online where you can educate yourself on Chavez, and how he set Venezuela on this course, but it’s a lot to get into here. All you need to know is that people are not happy and they have taken to the streets to stand up for their rights.
Here are a few of the things happening in the country that have led to this uproar by the population:
- People are starving to death. The average Venezuelan lost 19 pounds last year. Stray animals are being killed in the streets for food.
- The government has been rationing basic goods, and it has turned into a complete disaster. Can you imagine having to wait in line for hours for basic necessities like toilet paper, bread and water?
- We worry about our wages and prices around us and if they are rising with inflation, but in Venezuela inflation is expected to rise 1660% this year and 2880% in 2018 according to the International Monetary Fund
- Caracas is the most violent city in the world, with the highest homicide rate on the planet.
- Basic medicine that people need is unavailable. People are dying because they do not have access to things like insulin. Yes, Venezuela has universal healthcare, but that clearly doesn’t mean anything
- Power blackouts and water shortages are increasing weekly
- 76% of the Venezuelan population are now below the poverty line. Almost 50% of people do not have access to three 3 meals a day
You’d think that would be enough to make the president think twice about the way things were going. But, of course, you would be wrong. It was revealed earlier today that, through state owned companies, he donated $500,000 to Donald Trump’s inauguration fund. That’s more than Verizon, Wal-Mart, and Pepsi. Combined.
You can read more at these links: