Venezuela Needs Our Help

There has been on going talk and social network posts about the injustice happening in Venezuela at this very moment. If you have not heard of the story, it is about time you get informed. At this moment in time the struggling country of Venezuela is going through something unlike anything they have been through before.

Silent protestors have been occupying the major cities of Venezuela since Feb. 12, the Day of Youth. The protesters are young adults and students who came into action with the intention of being non-violent. According to the Huffington post, given Venezuela’s history and how scarce their daily essentials are, protestors felt that if nothing is done now, nothing will ever be done and things will only get worse. The Venezuelan police and armed forces are responding and brutally attacking these innocent students (without any official warning) with bullets, batons and tear-gas.

 

Photo credit: Rodrigo Abd

 

This is more than dangerous riots. This incident has been described as a “war zone”.

photo credit: Rodrigo Abd

In recent history, Venezuela has been described as the most violent place on Earth. The crime rates have increased so much that the government stopped displaying crime data. Murder rates have quadrupled in the past 15 years. According to Wikipedia, someone dies every 21 minutes in Venezuela. The New York Times explains that there is also so much kidnapping that people hire security experts to teach them how to avoid being kidnapped and killed.

What lead these students to protest were the countless crimes that have gone unpunished. The government has turned the other cheek for decades. So, these persistent students have had enough of these criminals getting away with murder and neither the government nor the police taking action. It was about time that a riot got this big to make such a statement that other countries want to get involved and help Venezuela as much as they can.

 

Photo credit: Rodrigo Abd

President Maduro condemned the incident and attributed to a "Nazi-fascist" uprising seeking a coup. The Venezuelan government still will not see that they are the ones that need to make changes. Instead they point fingers at Leopoldo Lopez, one of the most powerful leaders of the protest. BBC News wrote that he has been charged for “inciting violence after three people were shot and killed in anti-government protests on 12 February.” He was in hiding for some times but then gave a speech in front of all his supporters and turned himself in. Many of his supporters disagree with the charges against him.

It seems that ever since Chavez died, the country has been spiraling down more so than before. Just last week Venezuela president Maduro ordered three U.S. Embassy officials to leave the country as he accused Obama administration of siding with student protesters. Yet, as of Saturday he attempted to resolve issues between Venezuela and the United States. The United States responded with a suggestion of regaining human rights but Maduro would not accept this and he would not accept our propaganda against Venezuela.

What propaganda? The reason why some of you may not have heard of this is because the Venezuelan government is censoring and blocking everything that has to do with social media. The one outlet that these students had has been taken from them. Venezuelan USF student Assad Aboultaif says, “I feel powerless.” The government also blocked the signal of Colombian TV station transmitting live attacks against the Venezuelan students, and banned television and radio from transmitting the demonstrations. Freedom of speech no longer exists because the government is controlling everything. Maduro wants to keep this “war” under the radar and United States is not feeling so good about that.

So far there have been 10 deaths recorded and countless injuries in this country going through a ridiculously difficult time.

Ignorance is not bliss. Get educated, have a voice and pray for these people. USF students are reaching out and so should you. Just a simple picture on the social media to spread this information would do.

 

Photo credit: USF Student Ayla

 

 

 

The Elite Lambdas of Lambda Upsilon Lambda, raising awareness for this tragic event.

 

You can start by following these Instagram accounts:

@imyourvoicevenezuela

@despiertayavenezuela

@venezuelajuntostodos

 

Photo credit: whattalking.com

In other news, Ukraine is going through a very similar situation so please keep them in mind as well.