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Re: [xmca] From NYTimes: Brazil’s Leftist Ruling Party, Born of Protests, Is Perplexed by Revolt

Chile has been experiencing the same level of unrest for several years. Interestingly the focus of protests here is on the inequalities of our educational system, which express the ominous inequalities of Chilean society. The "student movement" has thus galvanized a broad demand for social justice, although some of their demands may have consequences that would not necessarily foster social justice if applied as requested without adding other structural reforms. The more contentious issue is whether university education should be free for all. As the universities here recruit most of their students among the socio-ecomomically advantaged, free public education at the university level will give more money to those that have more resources. In a country where the majority of poor kids don't have access to a good pre-school education many people think we should address preschool education first. 

My main concern is how this social unrest can be channeled in a way that strengthens democracy. So far, our politicians have been incapable to provide an adequate interpretation to what is going on. And to the lack of communication between politicians and the public we can add that there is a generational struggle going on between the generations that were educated in a recovered democracy and the older ones that had to go through the ugly business of reconquering it by means of negotiation and not violence. Unfortunately, many of the protests have provided the occasion to violent clashes between protesters and the police as we are seeing in Turkey and Brazil. And students have adopted strategies that some people may share, and some others not: e.g., occupying schools, universities, stopping classes, and so. On the other hand, some student leaders are not necessarily "dialogical" (neither is the government). So, we have been in an impasse for almost half decade.

There is a lot at stake here. Not only whether people would pay or not according to their means for a public funded university education but also the way disagreements are and will be solved within Chilean democracy. Are our institutions solid enough to provide a good solution to civil unrest or would the country enter a stage of increasing polarization that would take the issue to a different arena where those with more power will end up imposing their views? 

On Jun 20, 2013, at 4:04 PM, mike cole wrote:

> Here is what a leading American newspaper is telling its readers about
> Brazil today, for those outside of Brazil who have not been following
> events.
> mike
>>       Brazil’s Leftist Ruling Party, Born of Protests, Is Perplexed by
>> Revolt
>> <http://p.nytimes.com/email/re?location=InCMR7g4BCKC2wiZPkcVUhzORrBwHzZn&user_id=bd31502e6eb851a9261827fdfbbcdf6d&email_type=eta&task_id=137175838146698> By
>> The governing Workers Party is watching with dismay as Brazil’s largest
>> city braces for a new round of demonstrations on Thursday.
>>    Or, copy and paste this URL into your browser: http://nyti.ms/16jagoV
>> <http://p.nytimes.com/email/re?location=InCMR7g4BCKC2wiZPkcVUhzORrBwHzZn&user_id=bd31502e6eb851a9261827fdfbbcdf6d&email_type=eta&task_id=137175838146698>    To
>> ensure delivery to your inbox, please add nytdirect@nytimes.com to your
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>>  Copyright 2013<http://p.nytimes.com/email/re?location=4z5Q7LhI+KVBjmEgFdYACMlEhIhWVuPIxganfKahJGpDcKtdpfztygRnz23j1z6nDpx4eAAqQbYRMMl5L56EeQ==&user_id=bd31502e6eb851a9261827fdfbbcdf6d&email_type=eta&task_id=137175838146698>
>> | The New York Times Company<http://p.nytimes.com/email/re?location=4z5Q7LhI+KUv6vqdu/zT/DtUzLlQEcSh&user_id=bd31502e6eb851a9261827fdfbbcdf6d&email_type=eta&task_id=137175838146698>
>> | NYTimes.com 620 Eighth Avenue New York, NY 10018
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