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Episode 7: Chile, part 2. Student Power

In the second half of my conversation with Rodrigo and Paloma we get to hear about the Chilean Student Uprisings from someone who lived through it.

The Power Young People Hold In Chile

Paloma, it turns out, was one of the high school students who went on strike in 2006 to demand better public schooling, including higher salaries for their teachers. This protest movement spread across the country, winning support from not only teacher and parents but other workers and retirees.

Know as "La Revolución de los Pingüinos" (the penguin revolution), because of their distinctive school uniforms, the student protest turned into a significant political movement.

Paloma describes what happened when those teenager protesters entered university and continued their fight. And what it means, to grow up in a country that respects and listens to the voices of young people.

The current president of Chile, Gabriel Boric, came from the ranks of those student protests, and we talk a little about the challenges this presents for him now.

Voting As Spectator Sport

In this episode we also go over the voting process in Chile. And this is where I finally get to understand what on earth I was watching on TV, back in the 2009 election.

I mean, look at these photos! This is what was showing on television the whole day of the election. Random people leaning over the shoulders of vote counters, who hold up each ballot like a little flag to show off to the crowd. It was so bizarre!

Thanks again to my guests Paloma and Rodrigo! And look out for new episodes, coming soon, on DEMOCRACY IN INDIA.


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