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Culture & Religion

Why You’ll Ignore This (It’s About South America)

Why does European news capture our world headlines while South America broils with protest and reform on the same landmass? Is it our assumed European heritage? 

What’s the Latest Development?

One couldn’t avoid news of the London riots this month but the confrontational demands of some 150,000 Chileans for free education went practically unnoticed in the American press. Might there be a lack of journalists because of the continent’s reputation for kidnappings? “Of the ten countries with the highest rates of kidnapping in the world, five are in Latin America.” But that explanation alone seems insufficient, especially when more dangerous areas in Africa and the Middle East receive a great deal of attention from the press.

What’s the Big Idea?

While demographic changes in the U.S. are well documented, represented by the increasing number of Spanish radio and television productions across the country, leaders of the most established news organizations are white and may perceive a common heritage derived from Europe. And despite, or perhaps because of, past U.S. intervention, there remains an ideological resistance toward the South American model. “U.S. policymakers and opinion formers are perhaps reluctant to draw attention to the examples of successful social democracy that have taken root in their back yard.”


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