Journalist talks at Dawson about current social and political issues
by Elise Favis
Kiraz Janicke, a Venezuelan journalist, spoke about the current political development and social class issues taking place in the country last Thursday in 5D.1.
The event was hosted by the Dawson Socialist Club to spread awareness of the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela from a socialistic perspective.
Janicke discussed a 21st century socialism that is transforming Venezuela.
Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s president since 1998, supports “a socialism that puts humanity before the interest of the state,” explained Janicke. Free education, free healthcare and many other benefits could bring Venezuela out of severe poverty.
Hugo Chavez is leading a socialist movement known as the Bolivarian Revolution, which may drastically change the country’s future. Many Venezuelans believe that socialism can lead them towards equality and solidarity.
“I’m here as part of an international solidarity tour for Venezuela and I’ve been invited by a whole range of different organizations around Canada, including the Socialist Club here at Dawson,” Janicke said.
“The event provided people with an eyewitness or an inside account of what’s actually happening in Venezuela, because I think the coverage in mainstream media of what’s occurring there is extremely distorted,” Janicke added.
The presentation was collaborated with Hands Off Venezuela, an international broad-based solidarity campaign. Other supporters include La Société Bolivarienne du Québec, and the Dawson Teacher’s Union.
“There was one event at McGill already, but this has been the best event so far,” Hands-Off Venezuela organizer Joel Bergman said.
The talk lasted about two hours, with in-depth descriptions of the journalist’s experience and knowledge about Venezuela and the revolution.
The first hour consisted mostly of the speech given by the journalist, and the next hour became a group discussion between the audience and speaker.
“It [the event] was enlightening,” second semester student Martin Sonin said. “It was a status update on the situation in Venezuela; for people to go and get some important information about it, and how it relates to us here.”
“It was very informative,” said second semester Pure and Applied student Joseph Rakofsky. “But I feel like it wasn’t geared towards people who weren’t really informed about the subject. The speaker assumed we already knew a lot of background information.”
The Dawson Socialist Club began last semester, though they are growing and becoming more known. This was the second activity organized by the club, but they plan on having more in the future.
“We have documentaries and a film screening coming up,” said Social Club President Alan Bariman. “I have a list of events that we still need to plan dates for.”
If you are interested in joining the Dawson Student Socialist Club, drop by 2C.11 or contact them by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.