Venezuela Demonstration in West Boca

This afternoon dozens of West Boca residents gathered on the southwest corner of 441 and Glades in a demonstration related to the current unrest in Venezuela.
Woman with sign: Pray for Venezuela
Large demonstrations began in Miami roughly four days ago, covered yesterday by NBC Miami. Certain areas of South Florida are known for having large Venezuelan populations, especially Weston (jokingly referred to as Westonzuela). Boca Raton is better known for its large Jewish population. West Boca has prominent Brazilian and Colombian communities. Apparently Venezuelans are growing here, as shown by today’s demonstration. However, it’s too soon to call it Bocazuela.

We talked to several of them. This demonstration was led by students, both from the local high schools (one mentioned Spanish River) as well as area colleges including FAU. They were emphatic about the government murdering and raping people as well as the lack of press freedom. A few noted that they enjoy much greater freedom here in the US, as evidenced by today’s protest.
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We asked why they were doing this in West Boca, and why now. The timing results from the protests in Miami and recent events in Venezuela. And they’re doing this in West Boca because it’s difficult for many of them to get to Miami, and because they feel it’s important to spread the word to a larger audience. A larger demonstration will take place tomorrow (Tuesday) at the FAU main entrance at 4 pm.
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Several seemed unaware who their congressman was. Congressman Ted Deutch lives roughly two miles away, near West Boca High. Having heard the name, one young man indicated he was involved with some kind of student caucus connected with Deutch. He hadn’t thought to contact the congressman but said he would reach out to him now.
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It will be interesting to see if Deutch says or does anything. A search of the Deutch page on house.gov reveals zero results about “Maduro” (Nicolas Maduro is the current leader of Venezuela), zero about “Chavez” (Hugo Chavez was the previous leader) and nothing meaningful about “Venezuela.” Deutch is known for being staunchly pro-Israel but it’s unclear if he has any guiding principles to his foreign policy views or how they might apply to what’s going on in Venezuela now.
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The Palm Beach Sheriff had a noticeable presence with three deputies. They told us they noticed the gathering during a routine patrol and were not sent because of any calls. They expressed their support for the right of citizens to demonstrate and were focused on making sure they were able to do so in a peaceful fashion. The deputies kept their distance and were polite.
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We were alerted to the event around 4 pm. The photos were taken by this article’s author before 5 pm. We confirmed that the demonstration was effectively over at 6:15 pm when another member of our team drove by.
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Author: Warren Redlich

Warren Redlich is a real estate agent and an attorney. He focuses on selling homes in West Boca Raton. Find out more at Yes Boca Real Estate.