The Kremlin announced Monday it would purchase 200 planes and helicopters as well as up to 30 ships and submarines annually to modernize its armed forces, amid high tensions between Ankara and Moscow following a Russian destroyer firing warning shots at a Turkish ship in the Aegean Sea over the weekend. The announcement comes as Russia’s…
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Ever since Nicolás Maduro’s rise to Venezuela’s presidency in 2013, the nation’s already unstable political and social situation has continued to deteriorate.
Insecurity, food shortage, a devastated economy and peaceful protests followed by violent repression are part of Venezuela’s daily life.
And millennials in the country are increasingly caught up in the unrest that threatens to tear apart the nation.
“Everyday, I see something that makes me think that we have to find a way out of this,” 19 year old student Juan Simón Ávila said in an interview with RISE NEWS. “There’s no day in Venezuela in which you’re happy or in which you can say that nothing happened in the country. It’s very hard.”
Ávila is a TRX fitness coach, and a musician.
Everyday, he leaves his house at 7 a.m. to go to work and everyday he see’s something dramatic in the streets of Valencia, the nation’s third largest city and the home of University of Carabobo, where Ávila goes to school.
“I see what’s going on,” Ávila said. “There’s people eating from the garbage and long lines of people outside of gas stations and food markets. People have left their jobs and they seek for any activity that may create more income to survive. In Venezuela we don’t live, we survive.”
In the past few years, Venezuela has suffered from a serious shortage not only in staple foods such as milk, chicken, coffee and rice, but also on staple products such as toilet paper and even medicines.
The Venezuelan economy is heavily reliant on global oil forces, and times have been tough in recent years as the price has been driven low.
This shortage of daily stable items is called by some Venezuelans, “Maduro’s Diet”.
“The amount of food has declined and people eat less,” Ávila said. “Not only that, but we’re also worried about not having enough food to get through the week and about insecurity. I go out and I worry about getting robbed, kidnapped or even killed. I want to walk through the streets without being afraid.”
Venezuela’s streets also witness the abusive and violent way in which the army and the police crush the citizens’ pacific protests.
They throw tear gas and shoot lead balls as well as real bullets to Venezuelans who attend protests with nothing but banners, whistles and tambourines.
As protests become a daily occurrence in Venezuela, the importance of the young generations cannot be overstated.
They are forming the core of protests and are pushing for rebuilding their country while forcing their voices to be heard.
“There are no reasons to stay at home, but there’s too many reasons to go out there and fight to recover our country,” Ávila said. “I want to finish my degree and I want to leave, but I want to come back and rebuild Venezuela. How could I come back if I didn´t fight until the last day I was here?”
Now in his third year as a student in the University of Carabobo, Ávila has seen how the country’s fragile economy and growing instability have taken a toll in the education sector.
“Universities are a mirror of Venezuela’s situation, or at least mine is,” Ávila said. “Everything is abandoned. The university is destroyed and my college is falling apart.”
The University of Carabobo, which runs on federal funds, is one of Venezuela’s five autonomous universities.
However, given the state of the country’s economy, the university has not received any federal aid to support itself for over six months.
With no money to maintain the facilities or pay the professors, university authorities are still deliberating whether to declare bankruptcy and suspend the institution’s activities.
“I wouldn’t go to class anyway,” Ávila said. “Venezuela comes first because if we don’t fight for it now, then we won’t do it ever. And how is it useful to me to go to college and attend classes if I won’t have a country to work in?”
With escalating street violence and a repressive and tyrannical government in charge, Venezuelans see no quick solution to the problem that afflicts their country.
“This government has to stop,” Ávila said. “Maduro has to leave. We’ve called for pacts and elections, but they have shown they don’t care about what anyone says. I don’t see any way of solving this conflict in the near future. Maybe we need a big rebellion or a foreign intervention because Venezuela’s situation will not be solved through democracy.”
Ávila said he looks forward to finishing his degree in Fiscal Science and going to Mexico with his sister Rosa María to play music.
“People out there have to know that there’s people here fighting for Venezuela,” Ávila said. “They have to know that Venezuelans’ human rights are being violated, but that we’re still here facing this government. They have to know that there’s people who believe that this country will get through this. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but we will get through this. People out there have to realize and talk about how there’s something going on in Venezuela.”
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in the world. You can write for us.
Photo Credits: Juan Simón Ávila/ SubmittedPost Views: 757
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Here’s something you already knew: some fraternity guys at the University of Mississippi are total assholes who don’t respect women.
Here’s something you probably didn’t know: they are dumb enough to display their anti-woman feeling in public while thousands look on.
During the annual Ole Miss Derby Days event last week, two Sigma Chi members serving as emcees and who combined have the comedic ability of two damp rags, asked various sorority members competing for Derby Day Queen a series of gross questions.
Which Sigma Chi would they “go down on?”
What type of sausage would they prefer: “linked or Sigma Chi?”
One of the question sessions was caught on video tape:
“So you’re telling me your nickname’s not BJ?” one of the emcees asks. “I’ll give you an easier question. What’s your fondest memory of the Sigma Chi basement?”
When the woman answers, “Getting rowdy in neon,” the second emcee butts in.
“We’re gonna go ahead and go with her nickname is BJ.”
We think it’s funny to force women to have oral sex with us. HAHAHA.
Not everyone thought it was funny.
Abby Michelle Bruce, an Ole Miss student and current sorority member blasted the event on Facebook in a post that quickly went viral.
“Tonight, my eyes watered up as I watched women be humiliated in the name of “philanthropy,” Bruce wrote in the post. “I attended the event, not out of support for the way Sigma Chi runs their philanthropy event, but to cheer on friends who had put lots of time and effort into the dances (some, not out of choice, but of requirement by their respective sororities) only to be mortified and completely ashamed that I am even remotely associated with such an event.”
“I think the question all Panhellenic women at Ole Miss (and women everywhere, greek or not) should be asking here is “why?,” Bruce wrote in the post. “Why do we pay money to participate in these events to be humiliated? Why have we allowed ourselves to be objectified? Women’s fraternities were started as an empowerment movement – what happened?”
The president of the Ole Miss Sigma Chi chapter Clay Wooley called leaders from each of the sororities involved with Derby Days in order to apologize for what took place.
But in an interview with campus TV station NewsWatch Ole Miss, Wooley didn’t seem to fully grasp the implications of what happened.
When asked whether he thought the incident was emblematic of campus rape culture, Wooley spit up all over himself.
“You know, putting it into the category of rape culture though, that is extreme,” Wooley said. “It’s supposed to be done out of innuendo and fun and it got carried away too far this year and shouldn’t have taken place.”
Hold up a minute frat chief.
So you mean to tell us that the event is “supposed” to be done out of innuendo?
First off, innuendo is tough to pull off. You probably should have your smarter guys do it. If you have any.
And secondly, wasn’t this whole thing meant to raise money for charity or some shit like that? I forgot because of all the sexism and untalented people.
Nah bro, you better keep thinking about all of this.
Ole Miss has launched a Title IX investigation into the matter.
Perhaps most disturbingly, some Ole Miss sororities have cracked down on their members in an effort to limit public damage and save face with the fraternities.
According to NewsWatch Ole Miss, one sorority member was forced out in recent days for posting about the subject on social media. She has refused to speak publicly due to perceived retaliation against her.
Another current sorority member agreed to talk to NewsWatch Ole Miss, but only if her face was blurred and her voice modified.
And the campus TV station also obtained text messages showing that at least five sororities have issued a gag order on their members from talking to media.
“It has been so encouraging to hear and see since the event ended that I am not the only one,” Wooley said in her Facebook post. “So, I am putting this all out here so that other women might see that they are not alone either. We deserve better than to be dehumanized. We have rights, and we have the power and authority to demand they be met. Let’s give ’em hell, rebs.”
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WATCH: NewsWatch Ole Miss report on Derby Days clusterfuck
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. You can write for us.
Cover Photo Credit: NewsWatch Ole Miss/ Youtube (Screengrab)Post Views: 840
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Haitian Radio Host Called A Race Baiter By NoMi Councilman, After Controversial Rant The City May Have Paid For
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–North Miami Councilman Scott Galvin called popular Haitian radio host Rotschill Anderson a race baiter after the media personality went on a controversial on-air racial rant.
-Galvin claims that the city has paid Anderson in the past to allow North Miami staff to promote the city on air. Galvin also said that it was his understanding that the city had paid for a May 1 appearance by Assistant City Manager Arthur H. Sorey III.
-Sorey was on the show to encourage residents to vote for a $120 million bond measure. But he also sat through a rant from Anderson that some found to be racist.
-Anderson strongly supported the bond and asked his listeners to vote for it because he felt it would improve the city’s heavily Haitian western section.
-But it was the language that Anderson used that has gotten attention: “The big white guy, the big jewish guy- they are going to come into your community, says that your community is ugly and its nasty… gentrification will kick in.”
-A quick public records search finds that North Miami has paid Anderson’s radio station at least $1,800 so far in 2018 for “public relations.”
-But city manager Larry Spring told RISE NEWS that Galvin is wrong and that the city did not pay Anderson for the May 1 show.
-The city council has temporally suspended all payments to media outlets until they can craft a new policy to prevent a future incident.
——Here’s Something Completely Different: ——
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