Venezuelans fight for their future


The situation in Venezuela is critically bad.

There is poverty, unemployment, insecurity, lack of political input, among other issues. A large number of Venezuelans have died because of a shortage of food, medicine or being killed defending their rights.

The quality of life in Venezuela is getting worse every day. People live with the risk of dying without being able to buy food because of its high cost or because there is no food at all. For the last five years, people have been starving. About 75 percent of the country has lost an average of 19 pounds per person since the food crisis.

In addition, the minimum wage does not cover all the necessary expenses in a low cost living. For these reasons, the people in Venezuela decided to take to the streets to defend their rights. Once again, this freedom could not be achieved so there is a lot of emigration in the country not only by the people but also airlines and importing companies.

Venezuela has always been a country that has a lot of potential and wealth. It was the richest country in Latin America and now it is broke thanks to the collapse of the oil industry and general mismanagement of the economy.

It used to welcome many foreigner visitors and today, this beautiful country full of landscapes, beaches and tropical climates has become the most corrupt country in South America.

President Nicolas Maduro isn’t helping to improve the situation. While people are starving, president Nicolas Maduro focuses on changing the constitution in order to give himself more power. This means, people in Venezuela would not be able to have the right to vote anymore.

We as journalists need to stop ignoring the situation in Venezuela. We need to be the voice for those who do not have one. We need to make the world see the reality of Venezuela and contribute to those Venezuelans desperate to have that freedom they have fought so much.

FDA OKs ‘living drug’ in leukemia fight


On Wednesday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a new and unconventional treatment that is expected to have an incredibly positive result on children with leukemia.

The treatment genetically alters the patient’s cells to be anti-leukemia specific cells, although experts are hopeful that it will also be useful against other forms of cancer. It is the first treatment of its kind to be approved by the FDA and its genetic nature has led writers from The New York Times to dub the cells it produces a “living drug.”

The treatment, named Kymriah and licensed to the Novartis pharmaceutical company, is predicted to cost $475,000 per patient and will be available in a specified chain of hospitals in as early as three to five days.

Both The New York Times and The Washington Post do well in covering the specifics of the treatment and the movement surrounding it, particularly in regard to sources. They cover people whom the treatment will affect, such as the sickly 12-year-old Emma Whitehead and her family, as well as health professionals and experts on the topic.

They go through people involved in every stage of the treatment’s development, from the University of Pennsylvania professor who pushed its development to the FDA officials who had the final say in getting it approved.

The newspapers also did their research and included explanations of how the treatment works, why it’s so costly and time consuming to produce, and how patients would be covered in the unlikely case of failure. Both news outlets seem to have covered all their bases while remaining factual and unbiased, making their articles both informative and professional.