Thursday, March 25, 2010

Venezuelan TV owner and Chavez critic arrested

We learned in class from the presentation on Venezuela that although the U.S. has problems with Chavez's undemocratic rule of law, the president has made great strides in many areas of social development and the people of Venezuela were shown to be some of the happiest people in the world. However, with a socialist leader who essentially rules as a dictator, there can often be human rights violations in the areas of freedom of speech and the press. Adding to the article below about the anti-Chavez website under fire from the government, earlier today the owner of the only TV channel in Venezuela that remains critical of Chavez was arrested by the government. This spurred outcries of violations against the rights and freedoms of all citizens. Are the great strides Chavez has made in social reform and equality worth the loss of freedom? This issue can compare with the U.S. in the recent health care reform. Some people worry that any loss of freedom or state control whose purpose is to promote equality may also hinder the freedom of the citizens. Is it more important to have a society with an equal distribution of wealth or to have a society in which citizens feel completely free? Is it possible to have both at the same time?

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