“Hate is a strong word. But they definitely don’t like us.”

Carlos moved to Panama as a bridge between Venezuela and another destination. It was a good opportunity, he thought, where he could make easy money on a growing country with open arms. Like an American city but with calor latino, they needed professionals in many areas, and he was glad to lend a hand.

Now the change in how Venezuelans are perceived is obvious. “It’s hard to get to my house, turn on the TV and see how people talk about us, make fun of us, of the times in our country and our tragedy. I’ve seen shows where they talk about how to get Venezuelans out of Panama, or joke because we have no food. It’s humiliating.”

Laura, a designer from Caracas, was also attracted to Panama, with a wish to settle down and grow. She found very soon that the mockery extends beyond TV.

“I remember my first week here” she tells me over skype, “I took like four packs of toilet paper in the supermarket and a couple next to me giggled because there’s no toilet paper in Venezuela. They asked me how many years did I go without using it. I went home and cried myself to sleep, not only because of the incident, but for the family I left behind.”

“I will never forget that moment” she punctuated, still shaken.

Other complications have appeared in Panama. “When I came in,” Carlos says, “paperwork was easy. It got bad with all sorts of difficulties to work, because (Panamanians) took on the notion that we would steal their jobs. That’s when it started to go sour.”

I’ve seen shows where they talk about how to get Venezuelans out of Panama, or joke because we have no food.

Pausing for a sip of coffee, he reminisces:

“Everything was fine, I shared a flat with some Venezuelan friends and I had a job. My boss helped me with the papers and the rent. It was one of those companies that plan events for you and I was the most hardworking guy around. I stayed until late to make sure everything was fine, but people get jealous. This guy told my manager he’d go to immigration and complain about my papers, exposing the help I was getting. Suddenly, I had no money and no help of any kind. My Venezuelans friends helped me; and thank god, because I couldn’t even pay for food.”

Getting a job now is not easy, he says, because companies with Venezuelan workers are seen as traitors. “They don’t want people to know they hire Venezuelans. It’s like hating on us is trendy. And it’s everywhere, on the street, on Twitter…”

Carlos doesn’t regret his decision and, years after moving, he has no plans to go back to Venezuela. But if he had to do it all again, he wouldn’t pick Panama. “Now we realize it’s not just people on the street, it’s the Government that doesn’t want us here. They allow the bad press, the horrible paperwork, the visa tortures. I’m here now and I can’t do anything about it, but I wouldn’t recommend this destination to my friends.”

Laura agrees.

“They really remind you that this is not your home. Once they hear your accent, the show begins. I had a client that loved my project and we agreed on everything, until she found out I’m Venezuelan. She cancelled it all because ‘she supports the national talent’.”

She seems at ease away from home, but when she talks, you can almost hear her voice break. “You feel ashamed. You should defend your country, but that may get you in trouble. Nowhere is safe from what we’re living and what pisses me off the most is that this crisis is not my fault.”

It takes her a while to define the essence of her cruel shelter, like something she has thought for long, but never dared to voice.

“We were victims then by having to move out” she avoids my gaze, “and we are victims now by having to stay here”.

111 COMMENTS

    • Have you ever been a victim of xenophobia yourself? … it’s not really a laughing matter…

      Also: why are you so often vitriolic? is your commenting some kind of method to make yourself feel better?

        • well I am sorry you experienced that — does that make it okay then for others to be discriminated ? does the fact that you seem to be okay with it mean that everyone else has to be too? does it mean that everyone can deal with it or that it can’t be worse for some or is experienced even more often than in your case?

          I think it is really strange that you, who have been a victim yourself, show zero understanding for the plight of others experiencing the same thing…

          still don’t see how xenophobia is taken lightly…

          • I was a stranger in a strange land.

            Did I expect to be loved and kissed and hugged?

            Jesus, you are so fucking naive about the world.

          • to not be kissed and hugged is not what xenophobia is

            Jesus, you are so fucking simplistic about the world

            not everyone is like you, people go through worse that you…

            nuance!

  1. No entiendo que los nativos de ese pantano infectado de zika y paraíso de narcotraficantes y delincuentes de toda clase se pongan con eso. Estuve allí hace años y junto con Curazao y Antimano son problablemente los sitios más desagradables del mundo. Si pueden deberían irse de allí, no vale la pena tanto problema por semejante pozo séptico

    • Is kinda funny how a venezuelan will make these kind of racist remarks, all the while coming from a place that has the higher corruption rate and crime rate in the world and where Malaria and child mortality are making a comeback.

      I mean, venezuelans are basically refugees scraping by to run away from a narco republic but that won`t stop us from feeling like The lost Elf race from Atlantida gracing the plebian places we emigrate to with our manners and cultural refinement.

      • Being “basically a refugee” doesn’t take away our sense of dignity, coming from a wrecked country doesn’t detract from our ability to see wrong and criticise other places, and being a ‘guest’ in another land or a ‘refugee’ as you say does not mean we should shut up and put up with such treatment. We’re not acting like ‘the lost elf race’ or whatever by doing those things.

        • “Being “basically a refugee” doesn’t take away our sense of dignity”

          Except i am not referring to that, but to the racist and jingoistic remark by venelondoner expressed above, its “cachicamo calling morrocoy conchudo”, you are asking respect and dignity from people you feel no respect and dignity for.

          And, yes , its worth nothing that venezuelans are not Gods descending from Olimpus, they are basically refugees and should learn a bit of humillity and be grateful instead of scorning and patronizing their host culture at the moment they set foot in their country.

          • It’s a two sided issue. Venezuelans were brought up in a culture where their government promised to take care of all their needs. For a long time, that was the case. Venezuelans arrive at Panama with a sense of privilige, not because they are bad people, but because they are used to thinking the world owes them a favor, which is quite the opposite, in this particular case. There has been a great increase in hate speech from Panamanians to Venezuelans, but let’s not get myopic. Venezuelans complain about Panama’s weather, their people, their culture, and heritage. The anger many times comes from irrational places such as ignorance and fear, but sometimes it stems from betreyal. I’m happy to accept any foreigner into my country, but I’m not fond of the communist baggage they bring with them. Some Venezuelans complain about how We capitalists put them in the position they are in. They say that with a large coffee from Starbucks in hand. It is this priviliged sense of “you’re lucky to have me” that really ticks Panamanians off. And who wouldn’t be upset. I am not an expert in the subject, and I may even be biased, but the first time I heard about the feud was through a famous Venezuelan comedian on youtube, blasting Panama right when the massive immigration started. I guess the comedian must have been hopeful that things would soon be ok in his nation, because I hear he now lives in Panama as well.

      • No veo donde esta el racismo en decir que Panama no es más que un pantano infectado de zancudos con cuatro calles (financiadas por el narco internacional) que los hacen pensar que viven en el primer mundo. El haber tenido que emigrar no nos hace ciegos a la realidad y mucho menos nos despoja de nuestra dignidad.

        Los venezolanos van a Panama (equivocadamente en mi opinión) no por merito de Panama sino mas bien por demérito nuestro; eso debe quedar bien claro.

        Lo demás es fumigar y educar un poco al istmo…

  2. Pay back for what we did (and still do) to the Colombians and the Ecuadorians in the 70’s and 80’s.

    Beware of generalizations, not all Panamanians are bigots nor all Venezuelans behave. Other countries will have more or less similar stories because individuals nor the general population (ask the sudacas in Spain or the wetbacks in US).

    Suck it up and chug along. Hard work and integrity to show them that we are there to add to the prosperity not to take it away.

    • Oh yeah, we gave Colombians and Ecuadorians, citizenship and tons of money in welfare, and this our payback.

      Good to know that our Latino American community is so friendly.

  3. Take some advice. (or not)

    You are now in Panama. You are a “new Panamanian”, not an “old Venezuelan”. You may not be a full citizen, but you need to get into that mindset.

    My wife struggled for only a few years with that concept, in America. Don’t be embarrassed about where you are from, but embrace where you are going.

  4. “I took like four packs of toilet paper in the supermarket and a couple next to me giggled because there’s no toilet paper in Venezuela. They asked me how many years did I go without using it. I went home and cried myself to sleep, not only because of the incident, but for the family I left behind.”

    Well, at least you got some toilet paper …

  5. If you have no option stay.

    But if can GTFO.

    Nothing special about that swamp, that would not be anything if it were not for the Canal (which was not built by them).

    Nevermind all the illegal venezuelan oil money laundered trough there.

  6. I lack sympathy.

    The Venezuelans coming to Panama are as a whole better educated, wealthier, whiter, and better skilled than the average panameña.
    The Venezuelans destroyed their own country and now they are moving in greater numbers to Panama and getting better jobs with better pay than the locals.
    The reactions to Venezuelans are the same as the reactions to Nicaraguans and Colombians.
    All are moving to Panama, but the Venezuelans are getting better opportunities than the Colombians and Nicas and Dominicans. More importantly, Venezuelans seem to be getting better opportunities than Panamanians.
    Venezuelans in panama seem to get a better start than most Panamanians have after years of work.
    Venezuelans in Panama complain about the food while in Venezuela they would be hungry.
    Venezuelans complain abut the culture.
    Venezuelans seem to the Panamanians as immigrants who are disrespecting Panama in a way that Colombians and Nicas never would.
    Panama was a banana republic and a joke to Venezuela just 25 years ago and now here come the Venezuelans seeking safe harbor (for something “rich” Venezuela did to themselves and will not fight to save their own country).
    Venezuelans are not integrating but acting like the rich gringo expats.
    Venezuelans have addded to racial tensions.
    Venezuelans are staging protests and waving their flag while Dominicans, Colombians and Nicas are not. Venezuelans are bringing a foreign conflict into Panama, Colombians leave their conflict at home.

    Are Panamenos wrong in many regards? Yes.
    Their own work ethic and education is shit.
    They need immigration to continue their growth, it just seems to them thsat the amount of Venezuelans has reached a tipping point that will change Panama forever.
    Most Venezuelans have a skill set that allows them better options.
    Venezuelans will add to Panama’s prosperity.
    The Panama government was once welcoming to Venezuelans and has changed direction with the mood of the people.

    Read the article above:
    Laura is a “victim” of Panama and her white collar employment in Panama.
    Carlos, in a chavista manner believing that government should stifle press freedoms, complains that Panama allows “bad press” and complains about the same paperwork that a Colombian or Domincan experiences.

    Venezuelans are suffering nothing in Panama that the Colombians, Nicas, and Dominicans are not.
    But, Venezuleans are too obtuse to understand that they are making the problems they are having worse.
    .

    • Wow. You noticed the one sentence in this piece that bothered the shit out of me. I thought I was the only one to be so disturbed by it:

      “Complains that Panama allows bad press.”

      What the fuck is THAT supposed to mean!? And how the fuck can CC sanction THAT kind of editorial content!?

      Jesus, fucking, Jesus Christ.

      It seems the biggest problem to afflict Venezuela is Venezuelans, and CC is promoting this?

      • You seem to have comprehension problem, or maybe you are troll.

        In no way this article from CC is complaining that Panama allow bad press about Venezuelans, the article is quoting someone.

        you know what, just fuck o** Ira.

        • I’m a troll? Exactly how?

          By the way, you sound just like a fucking Chavista! If you don’t like the opposing point of view, censor it or jut react like a fucking idiot.

          Do you think I care what you think of me?

          • Only Chavistas resort to ad hominem, just the way you do Ira. In fact you sound like a illiterate redneck white supremacist with a hint of Antifa.

    • Many Venezuelans never voted for Chavez, many never were old enough to even vote at all, they did not destroy their own country – also, voting does not disqualify somebody from being able to denounce discrimination
      In any country of this world, higher qualified people get higher paid jobs, including immigrants! That is how ANY open market, capitalistic and meritocratic society works
      So because every immigrant gets discriminated it is fine? Equality of discrimination for all? No one is allowed to complain?
      Yes, because you have valid statistics about every Venezuelan’s opinion on Panamenian food and culture… EVERY Venezuelan has the exact same OPINION, OF COURSE …. Lets attribute the thoughts of some to “Venezuelans” at large, by VIRTUE OF THEIR NATIONALITY (… widespread hunger is relatively recent and does not disqualify anyone from having preferences ….)
      Yes, OF COURSE you MUST KNOW WITH CERTAINTY how “Venezuelans” felt about Panama 25 YEARS AGO & apply your suppositions and generalizations to today as a means to forbid immigrants from denouncing xenophobia — I can anecdotally ascertain that Panama never had such a reputation in my own lifetime of 21 years of age (at least it is as valid as your own “facts”)
      Many immigrant communities fail to integrate, xenophobia also does not help this
      (sure, “Venezuelans” are all rich)… I don’t know what you mean by racial tensions…protests are not illegal and neither are flags
      So people with a good job can never complain just because they have a good job? Now THAT is some chavista rhetoric
      Populist xenophobia, what a great accomplishment…

      Immigration never changes countries forever , not beyond recognition anyway, and as is the case in all human history, culture grows, changes, & with added input culture becomes something new (this happens everywhere, since human communities have assembled)

      “Bad press” is not what xenophobia is, great euphemism by the way — in Germany the sort of crap being aired on TV about immigrants would NEVER fly, EVER and that does NOT amount to “stifling free press” (way to mask discrimination being shameless grandeur)

      So all immigrants in Panama (Nicaraguans, Colombians, Dominicans, Venezuelans…) have to endure discrimination and just take it?… is that what you are asserting? HOW ABOUT US/ EU EXPATS?

      Empathy is not the only VIRTUE you lack…

      PS: “Will not fight to save their own country” fuck that condescending, dissociative BS !

      • it’s the Government that doesn’t want us here. They allow the bad press.
        “Bad press” is not what xenophobia is, great euphemism by the way

        This is a Venezuelan (one of only 2 interviewed for this article) complaining that The Panamanian government allows “Bad Press”. What the actual Spanish words were, I do not know, Prensa mala?
        Either way, this is a demand by an immigrant that the government of Panama stifle free press that they do not like.
        As I said, “very Chavista”.
        Do you condone this demand that the Panamanian government censor “bad press” about Venezuela and Venezuelans?
        Nicaraguans, Colombians and Dominicans are not making these demands of Panama.
        Only Venezuelans are demanding this.
        Perhaps censoring free press a VIRTUE to you. Otherwise this is an appalling statement by a Venezuelan that you refuse to criticize, yet you criticize the gringo for defending “bad press”.
        HOW ABOUT US/ EU EXPATS?
        I think they have also received their share of “bad press” in Panama, yet have not called for press censorship.

        “Many Venezuelans never voted for Chavez, many never were old enough to even vote at all, they did not destroy their own country –”
        I believe people get the governments they deserve.
        Their parents and grandparents gave them the government that is in place.
        If you do not believe your government is legitimate, overthrow it.

        “In any country of this world, higher qualified people get higher paid jobs, including immigrants! ”
        Perhaps thats why the Cubans are now the bosses of Venezuela. Quality Senior and Executive management is difficult to find in some locales.

        “So because every immigrant gets discriminated it is fine? Equality of discrimination for all? No one is allowed to complain?”
        The complaints above include how much more difficult it is now to become a “legal” immigrant in Panama. Did you read it?
        “This guy told my manager he’d go to immigration and complain about my papers, exposing the help I was getting.”
        Carlos was not really “legal” but gaming the system. A Panamanian that had a right to work complained about hiring workers without the rights to work.
        I have seen this over and over in Costa Rica and Panama. If Carlos was legal, he would not have lost his job. I know of plenty of “Gringos” and other nonlegal immigrants that have left work in handcuffs and then deported because a citizen employee complained.
        Carlos can “complain” all he wants, he needs to get legal.

        “every Venezuelan’s opinion on Panamenian food and culture… EVERY Venezuelan has the exact same OPINION, OF COURSE”
        As I said, these grinding complaints are not coming from Dominicans, Colombians, etc. But they are coming VERY LOUDLY (since you like caps) from many ungrateful Venezuelans.

        “I can anecdotally ascertain that Panama never had such a reputation in my own lifetime of 21”
        Since you had no opinion 25 years ago, your anecdote is really moot, obviously math is not your strong suit.
        Ask your parents what they thought of Panama in the 80’s.

        “I don’t know what you mean by racial tensions…protests are not illegal and neither are flags”
        Protests- Colombians and Nicarguans are not waving the flags of their home country. There have been protests in Panama regarding Venezuela, both pro/antichavista. This has gotten old and annoying to Panmanians who have not seen the same from other Latin American immigrant groups.

        “Immigration never changes countries forever , not beyond recognition anyway”
        Of course it does.
        Immigrants bring foods, words, music, traditions, etc that last long after they have fully integrated.

        “So people with a good job can never complain just because they have a good job?”
        No. You miss the point. It is Panamanians that are complaining. They feel you are taking their jobs and Carlos proves it.

        Venezuelans in Panama are reaching a numbers point that are are no longer rare or a sympathetic cause. They are now affecting the lives of many Panamanians. These same Panamanians are not as “xenophobic” towards other immigrant groups as they are towards Venezuelans. Why?????
        I gave you some of the answers, but like Carlos and Laura, you just don’t like/believe what I am telling you.

        Instead, you claim it is I who lack virtue.
        I am simply explaining why Venezuelans are getting the blowback that other groups are not getting, and when the other groups get that blowback they understand it, while Venezuelans whine and complain even louder, which increases the problems.

        • Bad press as I understood it refers to the xenophobia being aired on TV, which would not be acceptable in many countries —— being the target of discrimination on TV is a valid complaint. Thee is NO “DEMAND” just a description of what was being aired on TV & feeling that it amounts to a rejection of the Venezuelan nationality in the country. There is no talk of stifling whatsoever, what IS chavista is the scapegoating of immigrants, the insults on TV, the lack of condemnation …
          Just because other immigrants don’t denounce xenophobia does not mean that nobody can. Actually EU/US expats are NOT targets of xenophobia on TV, I have EU friends living there for many, many years and there hasn’t even been a rumor of that.
          So people “DESERVE” dictatorships, hunger, repression, persecution? Children “DESERVE” to die from lack of medicines, malnutrition ? People who never voted for chavez nor maduro “DESERVE” the theft of their property, the violation of their human rights?? Your really are disgusting, and have NO VIRTUES …
          Did Panama overthrow their dictator? Do you even know what you are talking about? could the Chinese overthrow their awful, savage regime? Could Russia? Iran? Syria? Turkey? They were elected too, did all those millions and millions “DESERVE” death, hunger, persecution? REALLY? THEIR CHILDREN DO TOO?!
          Yes I read it! Does it justify xenophobia?
          Wow, “gaming the system” — Carlos appeared to be a very hard worker, meaning: a very valuable asset to his boss (bosses help out their good workers all the time, everywhere) , I don’t think it was made clear that Carlos was illegal and even if he was, it never justifies discrimination —— you are making suppositions and generalizations…
          Sure “MANY”, because that is valid, sure NO OTHER IMMIGRANT COMPLAINS EVER, of course! Complaining is not a crime! And who even cares if anyone likes food or not??
          Not moot at all, it is EXACTLY as valid as your dumb “assertion” —— YOU DON’T KNOW HOW EVERY VENEZUELAN FELT 25 YEARS AGO, IT IS ALSO IMPOSSIBLE FOR EVERY PERSON IN A COUNTRY TO THINK EXACTLY THE SAME (actually math happens to be a strong suit of mine, statistical validity and data analysis seems lost on you though…) —— I asked, the barely had an opinion on Panama, that is the prevailing attitude in my environment: nobody gave much thought about the reputation of Panama, it was always a non-issue!
          Having flags os not illegal, US Americans put their flags everywhere, so do cubans and Dominicans, not a crime or even wrong… you want us to overthrow the dictatorship without protests? Protests are not illegal
          Yeah, immigrants add contributions so cultures grow to INCLUDE new things, CULTURES DON’T REPLACE THEIR OWN WITH THE NEW, THEY JUST ADD MORE
          So that fallacy should just be cuddled? There are no set number of jobs in any economy, by employing a Venezuelan it is a lie that there is one less job available in the country! It is lazy, BS scapegoating, no more no less —— actually I have heard there have been marches against Colombians, yes MARCHES! Also against Venezuelans, and you have maintained that ALL immigrants are discriminates (to a greater or lesser extent)
          What am I not believing? I am only disagreeing with your seeming acceptance of xenophobia, your lack of empathy based off a reductionist, ignorant and dumb understanding of the economy, statistics, immigration, the lives of people under dictatorships, and the smug characterization of a whole nationality — anyone SHOULD COMPLAIN IF THEY ARE BEING DISCRIMINATED

          • Venezuelan Rita Garcia de Zedde wrote a Facebook post in which she called the Central Americans “monos” or monkeys.

            “I believe that any behavior of foreigners that contains elements and attitudes of superiority and devaluation of our identity will have reactions of rejection. I think the behavior of Venezuelans has been interpreted under these parameters”,- Professor Geraldo Mahony

            Leyda Paz, a hairdresser, assures that it is the “arrogant” attitude of the Venezuelans, which has caused conflicts. “They are too rude, too rude and believe they are superior to everyone. And above all, they have undermined jobs too often, that’s why we, the Panamanians, do not want them here”, she said.

            Professor Juan Jované, a Panamanian economist and political analyst, said that his students were asked about it. “Many told me that some have a behavior that collides with the Panamanian culture. That usually refers to rich people, who come to the country and treat others arrogantly”, said the professor.
            Jované suggests that it is a culture shock; a minority that has arrived in Panama and with scorn voice that it is an inferior society to where they come from.

            We Panamanians do not accept Venezuelans, and that dispute arises because we think they come here to take our jobs.

            http://www.panamatoday.com/special-report/venezuelans-have-cultural-integration-problems-panamanians-4071

            This is the behavior you are defending.
            This is why Panamanians want the Venezuelans to gtf out while Panamanians are not upset with Nicas and Colombians.
            Venezuelans are coming to Panama in increasing numbers and with that the problblems are increasing.

            “Does it justify xenophobia?”
            In the Panamanian mind it does. In the Panamanain mind Venezuelans are behaving very differently than the immigrants from dozens of other countries. Venezuelans are wearing out their welcome.

            “NO “DEMAND” just a description of what was being aired on TV”.
            “the Government that doesn’t want us here. They allow the bad press, the horrible paperwork, the visa tortures”
            No. Carlos is shocked that the government allows “bad press”. He wanst the government to not allow “bad press”. Perhaps he is a supporter of Venezuelan “hate laws”.

            “This guy told my manager he’d go to immigration and complain about my papers,”
            Carlos is not legal. If Carlos had a legal right to work, immigration could do nothing.
            “it was made clear that Carlos was illegal and even if he was, it never justifies discrimination”
            No, it is clear. And Yes, if Carlos does not have a legal right to work in Panama he can be put out of a job.
            “Carlos appeared to be a very hard worker,”
            According to Carlos.

            “So people “DESERVE” dictatorships”
            Yes. This is not a foreign invasion. Venezuela cheered this dictatorship on. Venezuela got exactly what it asked for.

            “YOU DON’T KNOW HOW EVERY VENEZUELAN FELT 25 YEARS AGO” ahhh caps again. I never said “every”, I gave a broad statement, like “people rated that movie highly”. Did everyone? Of course not.
            It appears that you do not know how ANY Venezuela felt 25 years ago. You were not alive and you have not asked anyone.

            “CULTURES DON’T REPLACE THEIR OWN WITH THE NEW, THEY JUST ADD MORE”
            More caps. You like shouting. How is the Taino culture doing? Or has it been replaced? How is the Dutch culture in NYC, or has it been replaced? How is the Armenian culture in Turkey, or has it been replaced?
            Adding new often adds up to “replacement” proving another one of your ridiculous statements wrong.

            “Your really are disgusting, and have NO VIRTUES …”
            Ahh yes. You disagree with me. You have no clue what the Panamanian viewpoint is, so I must have zero virtue when I explain it to you because you do not want to hear it.

            Why is there not the same “bad press” about Nicas and Colombians?
            The Venezuelans are getting a slightly different reaction and giving back a different response. Why???

          • Yes! I LOVE CAPS! Hardly a big deal…

            Ok so a Venezuelan was racist, lets discriminate ALL Venezuelans
            Arrogance of the rich, what about the non-rich, how about the non-arrogant rich? Lets just discriminate ALL Venezuelans
            “Devaluation of our identity”? What sort of AfD crap is that??

            “We Panamanians do not accept Venezuelans, and that dispute arises because we think they come here to take our jobs.” Textbook definition of xenophobia & the perpetuation of the LUMP OF LABOR FALLACY, great stuff!
            (“The lump of labour fallacy has been applied to concerns around immigration and labour. Given a fixed availability of employment, the lump of labour position argues that allowing immigration of working-age people reduces the availability of work for native-born workers (“they are taking our jobs”).
            However, skilled immigrating workers can bring capabilities that are not available in the native workforce. Additionally, immigrating workforces also create new jobs by expanding the economy and creating further jobs either directly by setting up businesses (therefore requiring local services or workforces), or indirectly by an increased population. “)

            I am not defending anything other than the right of people to complain about being the targets of xenophobia, I am opposing the generalization and acceptance of discriminating people BASED ON THEIR NATIONALITY

            I have read Colombians are also recurring targets of xenophobia in Panama…
            I would be shocked too if Germany EVER allowed xenophobia to be aired on TV, Germany does NOT allow it, AT ALL, EVER — Carlos never demanded any stifling, he just comments that xenophobia is not condemned, that is all

            fine, he was illegal, & sure, that means he can be put out of a job, but it doesn’t justify discrimination just because he happens to be Venezuelan, that’s my point (well if his boss was helping him, then it stands to reason that Carlos was in fact a very hard worker)

            NO, NOT ALL VENEZUELANS CHEERED THE DICTATORSHIP, NOT THE YOUNG PEOPLE, NOT THE OPPOSITION AND NOBODY DESERVES TORTURE, PERSECUTION, HUNGER, DEATH!

            I have asked, and I have lived in Venezuela where Panama was NEVER even a topic — the fact is that YOU DON’T KNOW HOW PEOPLE FELT 25 YEARS AGO, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR EVERYONE TO HAVE FELT THE SAME AND IT DOES NOT JUSTIFY XENOPHOBIA TODAY (it is just a really bad argument)

            All those cultures you mentioned have mixed and even if they were untouched they would have changed WITH TIME ANYWAY , that happens to every culture since people have cultures and people have immigrated since there are people
            (Venezuelans are not present in Panama in such a significant percentage of the whole Panama population to stamp out Panamenian culture)

            Yes, I disagree with you and find you ignorant and disgusting for suggesting that Venezuelans deserve the fear, the hunger , the persecution, the death — FUCK THAT — that statement is why I consider you lack virtues not your unreasonable viewpoint that generalizes, condones and erases nuanced reality

    • I don’t think you know, or want to know, the true Cuban-Miami story.

      As a whole, they made enormous contributions to this country, but the drug money via Cuba is what rebuilt Miami.

  7. I’ve heard stories and seen videos of Venezuelans in Panama speaking poorly of Panama. And saying what a great country Venezuela is, better than Panama. One has to remember that while in Panama you’re a guest there and should bahave accordingly. Even if you’re not there one should not call another country a swamp, or any other derogative. One never knows if some day we end up there.

    I remember many years ago, an Argentinian family that would complain about anything and everything Venezuelan and how great Argentina was. The standard reply was, if it’s so great there why don’t you go back. And many Venezuelans made fun of their accent etc.

    So I guess stuff like that may happen to everyone every where.

    I’ve heard similar stories about Chile, but I now a couple of Venezuelans that moved there and love it because they were able to share their culture without rubbing on their faces and have learned to appreciate all the new stuff Chile has to offer them. They have made a lot of local friends, etc. If you only talk to Venezuelans and only hang around with Venezuelans, you will never be able to learn all the good stuff your host country has to offer.

    • This is actually a mistake common in a lot of Venezuelans emigrating, they stay to themself creating groups to the point they isolate themself instead of interacting with the locals and learning their culture and the country they about to call home. I avoid them for that reason they act more like a tribe instead of a group of people in another country

      • We are not exactly the only one doing this, in fact there are group of people from other nationalities and other cultures that fails to integrate in a much greater rate than Venezuelans.

  8. Having experienced the Panamanian immigration process some years ago and currently assisting my wife in obtaining Panamanian Residency, the disorganization and incompetence of the Panamanian Immigration Ministry seems to be rampant. It is a real embarrassment.

    I also obtained Brazilian residency this year. In contrast, It was about 1/10th the cost of my wife’s Panamanian experience visa and much more professional.

    • So you got Brazilian residency this year, you’re wife is struggling with Panamian residency and you’re complaining about their system, and your point is exactly what?

      Do you actually think that you have any kind of right to emigrate to any country of your choice? Seriously:

      Are you fucking joking?

      • Having fun beating up that strawman, Ira? All he’s saying is the panamanian immigration system is terribly flawed. So is the British one, where I emigrated, which is immensely complicated and so disturbingly flawed and mishandled they have recently issued deportation letters to citizens, EU nationals and adoptive children of British nationals, all of which have the absolute right to live here and are not subject to deportation. All because of glitches and human error. Not going to loudly sing the praises of a very flawed, underfunded, understaffed, poorly trained and overcomplicated system just because they have been ok with me so far.

      • Yes, he has right to immigrate (not emigrate).

        The word “emigrate” is used when the person leaves the country, Immigrate is when the person goes to another country.

        Stop being a fucking idiot Ira, you are not exactly the kind of person who should be correcting anyone else’s grammar.

          • Oh yeah? With that sort of grammar mistakes, you can’t even work as the delivery guy.

            You are just a plain moron…

        • Hey, shmuck;

          You’re wrong about “emigrate” and “immigrate.”

          And you’re so much of a shmuck as to not even admit it? Seriously:

          Are you retarded?

          You emigrate FROM places, and immigrate TO them. And my usage in that sentence was totally correct.

          Why don’t you go back and climb under your very special stupid rock?

          • Alright Mr. copy editor, the right in question is the right to immigrate, the person already exercised his right to emigrate by leaving Venezuela.

            So the question was about the right to enter the country, to stay and to work in the profession of his/her choosing, that’s immigration.

            capisce?

            copy editor my ass…

    • …no? People who arrive somewhere to work hard with honesty and integrity are still allowed dignity and deserve respect. Yes some Venezuelans in Panama have been shit and have earned everyone this ill treatment, but it doesn’t mean what those panamanians are doing is fine or justified. And immigrants in all places are allowed to voice their complaints, what is wrong with you? Immigrants work, pay taxes, contribute to the economy, we’re valuable to our host countries too, we’re not here receiving presents for being so precious. We have a right to complain when we are being systematically disrespected.

  9. a lot of people who are emigrating to Panama in the last few years are vivos chavistas y enchufados , same as in Miami communities getting an influx of bolichicos, there`s also a lot of people of lower social strata more recently and a lot are not there legally and go there without trade or disposition.

    Then there`s the fact that Panama is seen as a “whatever place ” that venezuelans move while saving for another country, so there is a general attitude of disinterest and disrespect towards the local population coming from a lot of venezuelans.

    So while there may be a lot of good earnest venezuelans they will pay the broken dishes for the money launderers, tukki hustlers and spoiled brats that are littering the PR of the venezuelan exodus and making communities shitier for both local panameños and legal hard working venezuelans who also dislike the mediocrity of their compatriots,

    Let`s get real, Venezuela is one of the most violent and corrupt places in the world thanks to the every day deeds of a lot of its inhabitants, so when those inhabitants go to another place you know that the same behavioral patterns will repeat one has to give some credit to the complaints of the local people instead of prancing on a politically correct high horse while singing “imagine all the people” everytime someone from another country expresses their discontent.

  10. It’s freaking hilarious really, For decades Venezuela have been receiving tons of immigrants virtually with zero complaints, and this is how they treat our immigrants?

    Specailly you Colombia and Panama, don’t forget that we took your refugees when you were failed states and you didn’t care to protect your borders. One could make the case that all these immigrants from latino-america contributed with the demise of Venezuela, by voting for these narco-socialist in exchange for citizenship and welfare.

    Anyway, It’s great that you are finally leaving the shithole you were in, but I think is time you start taking back your refugees, don’t you think? Or that at least accept our immigrants as a sign of gratitude, after all they are contributing greatly with making your country great, and if they complain, so what? Just remember my country gave your migrants citizenship and money, and you don’t see us bitching about it.

    • Are you retarded?

      There wasn’t one mention in this “news piece” how Panama isn’t welcoming VZ ex-pats. They’re giving them VISAS to live there, for Christ’s sake!

      And Colombia is saving tens of thousands from starvation and disease!

      You seriously are…a fucking idiot.

      • You did not read the article. Go back and read the article one more time and I suggest you take lessons of humility and respect, don’t use insults that may well be applied to you, and deservedly so.

        The piece clearly imply the rise of xenophobic sentiments against Venezuelans immigrants simply because locals feel threatened, or that somehow Venezuelans come across as dissing out their host countries.

        I merely point out, the irony of their attitude towards Venezuelans immigrants when their fellow citizens were received in Venezuela with open arms.

    • Loro, what country were you born and raised in? It does not seem to be the same Venezuela where I grew up. I remember perfectly the attitude of Venezuelans looking over their shoulder at the “cachifas colombianas” and at every other type of immigrant. Every time somebody was robbed in the street the usual suspects were Colombians, and the old joke about how Colombians are such skillful thieves that they will steal your milk from the “marroncito” without taking the coffee.
      More personally, I remember the “panas” thinking that it was cool to “echarle el carro al portu”. Dine-and-dash in the American idiom. And to add insult to injury you stop for a split second at the door and turn around to yell “jodanse, portus co#o’emadres, que vinieron a Venezuela a robarse los reales de los venezolanos”. And I am talking about both the cuarta and the quinta, and not about malandros, but about well to do kids from places like Bello Monte and Las Mercedes.

      • You know usually is kinda bad to generalize and attribute to the majority of Venezuelans the attitude of few.

        For starter, Las Mercedes and Bello Monte does not represent ALL Venezuela. I don’t know if you haven’t noticed but Venezuela is larger and have millions of people that have a more open minded attitude, as opposed to the few Venezuelans you interacted with.

        My family is from the country side, we are proud to say that we accepted immigrants with open arms, I have two aunts who married two fine foreign gentlemen, one from Italy and the other from Portugal, their children are proud Venezuelans. I’m sure there are similar cases across Venezuela.

        I have no doubt that there are Venezuelans who have displayed some xenophobic remarks, but that could be so few that we can safely say this attitude is non existent and is very rare.

        Just so you know, I’m living abroad, and I heard stories of people who have said that Venezuelans are by far the nicest people of Latino America. I’m not joking and I’m not making things up.

        So your assertions are demonstratively: NOT TRUE.

        • I don’t think the experience of your uncles was across the board.

          From what I gather, some of the large numbers of Colombians who came over in the 80s were treated differently, especially in crowded urban areas, then those coming from Europe in earlier decades.

          In any event, the treatments Venezuelans are getting in Panama mostly in par with other immigrants experiences during periods of mass immigration from one place to another. It’s just human nature, unfortunately.

          • and who were the Colombians that came to Colombia in the 80s? weren’t they unskilled poor people with no prospect to make any contribution to our country?

            Do you know that we took hundreds of thousands of refugees and they went into welfare.

            Also some other group of people, came voluntarily, to try luck with the boom of our oil industry. Some of them could, and the rest that couldn’t, I guess they feel they were discriminated.

            This reminds of Arabs coming to France, demanding to be treated with preferences just because they came from poor countries.

            The Venezuelans, on the other hand, at least emigrate to other countries with a University degree in one hand, and their backpack in the other.

            btw, A lot of people from Colombia and Ecuador got citizenship and tons in welfare, they even get free houses and claps. Just so you know.

            While Vargas Lleras, Vice President of Colombia, gets to say that no house should be going to any veneco, a pejorative term that Colombians made up to reference Venezuelans.

            Isn’t that nice? So much for Colombians being discriminated.

            I guess when you say that Colombians are being discriminated, I think you are projecting.

          • El sentimiento antivenezolano de hoy en día va más allá de los roces y de las tensiones típicas del fenómeno complejo de la inmigración y de alguna manera es inducido en algunos países por los medios e incluso las instituciones. Lamentablemente, muchos venezolanos comparten ese mismo sentimiento anti-venezolano y no comprenden que en el fondo es escupir para arriba.
            A mí no me gusta cuando un venezolano dice que no le gusta la comida del país que lo acoge o una de sus costumbres , sin embargo no le tiene por qué gustar nada realmente (nadie está obligado a eso, digan lo que digan) y no me parece que por expresar una opinión merezca un maltrato o que haya que hacer un drama al respecto. En definitiva lo único que está haciendo es complicarse la vida con su imprudencia. Además… no es como si la discriminación realmente se originará por cosas así… Además, la discriminación es un hecho que das por sentado cuando eres un extranjero, el problema no es la discriminación como tal que siempre de alguna manera sientes (independientemente de que tengas un buen trabajo o no), el problema es cuando la discriminación es algo sistemático y apoyado por los medio y las instituciones. Eso ocurre de cierta manera en Panamá y es injustificable.
            Sobre las actividades ilegales de los venezolanos en el exterior no hay estadísticas reales y creíbles, sólo opiniones basadas en casos aislados. Sabemos que hay venezolanos que cometen delitos, pero estadísticamente son muy pocos. Si tienen datos, apórtenlos. Acá en Argentina quienes tienen fama de ladrones, por ejemplo, son los colombianos. Lo cual yo tampoco creo que sea un hecho sólo porque lo haya escuchado varias veces.
            YO estoy harto de los venezolanos que de verdad creen que los venezolanos somos los peores inmigrantes del mundo, cuando en realidad no lo somos de ninguna manera. No estamos ni siquiera en la competencia. Sí, hay cosas desagradables, pero ya está. Nada que no haya visto de otras comunidades de inmigrantes y a mayor escala. Y también hay cosas buenas que decir, que nadie dice, además. Yo he visto también cosas positivas. Piénsenlo.

    • Exactly as i thougth, Bohoo , i come from a family of european inmigrants and we know full well about the criollo “open arms” and attitude towards different cultures and customs. Venezuelans will very casually make a jingoistic remark, insult another persons religion, etnicity or race with a backhanded insult passed a s a panita joke but then cry themselves to sleep when they go abroad and get asked why is their country so shitty.

      • I have to say, that has never been the case.

        You know what, just look at our customs and cuisine, 100% NOT CRIOLLO. African, Asian and European influence right there. pasticho, asado criollo, hamburguesas, perros calientes, our bakeries have a strong influence from French/Spanish/Italian bakeries.

        hmmm… It sounds like we are rejecting other cultures.

        Let’s move on, compared to other countries there are no clash or discrimination on the basis of religion, except when the far-left decided to deface the Synagogue of Caracas, when Israel was raiding Lebanon back in 2006. But that’s about it.

        Our current president may be a Colombian citizen and no one seems to give a fuck about it, and even the current vice-president has an Arabic sounding name and no one cares.

        hmmm… immigrants are having a hard time in Venezuela.

        • Yet everyday the chavistas blame the colombians , the chinese, and the portus for everything , from the economy to crime, to wathever, and from the other side the same thing, i believe they are already theorizing that are Colombian inmigrants who control the weather and cause shortage of water.

          And if you believe no one cares about Maduro being Colombian is only because you have never ever, i mean, never entered venezuelan twitter accounts.

          You should ask your average doña what they feel about santeros and arabs, you`ll love the responses…

          • Yet Venezuelans are not all chavistas and everyday they are less so…
            it is also a fallacy to confound chavista state propaganda with the people being oppressed by it

            you (rightly!) reject & condemn the scapegoating of immigrants as culprits of a country’s failures, yet fail to condemn the EXACT SAME BEHAVIOR directed at immigrant Venezuelans (logic 10/10 congrats!)

            And if you believe that twitter users are a valid representation of all Venezuelans you have never ever, I mean, never, entered statistics 101 / logics 101 / or data analysis 101 classes

            ask an average doña here in Germany what she feels about jews and arabs… the disgusting responses will be quite similar to that of any racist & wrong “views” held by older folk everywhere — it still doesn’t disqualify immigrants from denouncing xenophobia!

  11. I will leave this tab bit for you guys.

    I was in Panama for a couple of weeks on a business trip and it was horrible experience. Not because of the way I was treated. I was treated just fine. Not because of the food or anything about their culture really.

    No no no… The real problem was I did not see one beautiful woman that wasn’t an immigrant. Be it Venezuelan, Colombian, Ecuadorian or from a Caribbean island. Their quality of women leaves a lot to be desired.

    The Venezuelan are generally more educated, better looking and more refined then the Panamanians.

    All I see is a huge case of envy. They feel threatened in their country and honestly I don’t blame. Venezuelans literally built Panama from the swamp that it used to be.

    Panama was for all intent and purposes a just a tax haven and canal until the Venezuelan started constructing.

    • “Venezuelans are generally more educated, better looking and more refined then the Panamanians.”

      If you don’t know the difference between “then” and “than,” I don’t think you’re exactly in a good position to comment on who is better educated than others.

      • Ira,

        Are you retarded?? Ad hominem

        Typing “then’ instead of the “than” is just carelessness, but it doesn’t invalidate my argument.

        Go pull up statistics regarding the average education level of Panamanians vs. the immigrating Venezuelan population.

        Look at classical standards of western beauty and compare that to Panamanians. Next, compare those standards to the immigrating Venezuelan population.

        Lastly, don’t be such a cunt.

        • Ira… a bit small on what you’re hoisting your flag. Recognise that a great number of people that comment here use english as their second language, and that this isn’t a blog for language improvement, and people that make common english errors like then/than may just have really fucking big fingers. Something to consider if you ever do meet them… 😉

          *not disagreeing with the accepted status of Venezuelan women though. They’re the gold standard.

    • Bullshit.
      It was Colombian money that built the cocaine towers of Panama.
      It was European and North American retirees, tax dodgers and con men that followed by buying the condos that were built.
      It was the canal and free trade that allowed the money for infrastructure.
      The Venezuelan money is new.

      And yes, all the best looking women are Colombian and flying back to Bogota and Medellin evry three months with thousands of dollars in their purse they earned from the gringos and coke lords.

      • Yeah, you’re right about drug money fueling Panama’s growth in the inception of it’s growth. I shouldn’t have written that there in the way that I did.

        I have a couple of associates involved involved in the Panamanian construction industry and that influx has been there since the 2000s till today.

        Can’t blame those guys for seeing the Colombian women. The locals aren’t appealing at all.

    • And from all angles, you have the ones saying migrants should just shut up and deal and never complain, that ostrich guy with his head buried so far into the sand he’ll soon pop up in China with his ideas about how Venezuelans have never been racist or xenophobic and why is anyone mean to us, the guy saying to go back if we don’t like being mistreated… it feels like scrolling down in a CC article leads to a literal sock puppet discussion, like crappy Lamb Chop or something.

      The article is good though, thank you Gaby.

    • Venezuelan expats living in Panamá arrived on this site and it all went to shit. If you don’t believe me, read through shit like whatever Venelondoner vomited at the beginning.

      • La verdad duele compatriota. Afortunadamente no me toco escapar para alla. Por decir mentiras la realidad no cambiará.

        Y no soy yo dado al chauvinismo irracional que infecta a nuestro país en general… pero de verdad… esta cosa de Panamá no lo comprendo.

    • Did something happen to CC? Where did all this vitriol come from?

      Trolls like Ira that contribute nothing and only come here to hate and insult the contributors.I think he/she is better suited for the YouTube comment section or all caps yelling on Dolar Today.This used to be a great place for thoughtful and insightful analysis but it is getting worse by the day(comment section)Great articles on Venezuela still.

      • The comment section has declined significantly in the last several months. The percentage of comments by people hating and insulting has shot up significantly. It also seems that some of the “better” commentators no longer frequent the site.

        I don’t know why, maybe the depressing let down after the protest movement has finally led to some people finally giving up on the situation or taking a break, and not bothering to check in. And the ones that still do, do so to vent hatred or rile up others.
        Just a theory…

        Personally, I’m less apt to comment when I see mostly back and forth vitriol. To be clear, I don’t claim any insight or wisdom in my posts, but I imagine those who can contribute meaningfully may be turned off as well.

        The articles are as excellent and varied as ever, though.

        • Rory, the comments section turned into a discussion forum for vile, angry xenophobes right here:

          https://www.caracaschronicles.com/2016/11/09/president-trump/

          They number about five, they came here to defend their standard bearer in his moment of victory (paradoxically enough), and then stayed on to brag about the size of their dicks (metaphorically and hypothetically speaking) and throw shit at anyone with anything to say containing an ounce of nuance.

          I don’t know if that has discouraged writers from writing for CC, but it certainly appears to have discouraged- as you observe- interesting commenters, among whom you are reliably counted.

          I bet if posts started showing up in spanish, the quality of the discussion would vastly improve and these guys would migrate over to some OTHER website that they can hate and that allows them to comment.

  12. Reminds me of the Cubans here in South Florida.They think they own the place and we should all bow down to them.They can’t speak English or Spanish properly after generations here lol.

  13. One sometimes gets the impression that the CC comments section has become a meeting area for embittered, burned out old gringo businessmen full of unresolved anger at their Venezuelan ex spouses. Or some very particular demographic like that. It doesn’t do justice to the consistently bright, engaged people who write here.

  14. The English expression: It’s like the pot calling the kettle black. – springs to my mind! Great article! Shame about some of the comments (revealing though)…..

  15. I don’t often post here, but with these sort of comments I felt the need to.

    İ have to wonder where all this looking down on other countries came from. We aren’t exactly in a position to feel smug about it.

    (Ira is still an imbecile.)

  16. Well, SCREW xenophobes, any time, any place, anyone. I am a good citizen wherever I go. I am no kleptocrat, thief or panhandler and woe to them who imply it. But I won’t bow my head to racist animals or hide my origin to them, instead I’d love to rub them in it. I intend to make myself useful to any country and any new friends and business partners I make in it. And I intend to succeed honestly, it’s the best thank you I can give them who treat me well. It’s the best f*ck you with double bird salute for inferior beings who stoop to xenophobia, who don’t deserve any better than a knuckle sandwich (but we have to be civil).

  17. Existe en ciertos lugares un ensañamiento particular contra los venezolanos que hay que analizar en profundidad sin caer en lugares comunes. Yo creo que obviamente los inmigrantes deben adaptarse lo más que puedan al país que los recibe, pero también creo que los inmigrantes deben unirse y formar una comunidad sólida porque esa es la única forma que tienen de protegerse contra los atropellos y los abusos de los racistas y xenófobos. No soy un idiota y entiendo que los inmigrantes son vulnerables y que están sometidos a numerosos abusos que no son su culpa. A mí me parece miserable proyectar sobre los inmigrantes la culpa de los abusos de los locales.A mí me preocupa mucho que los venezolanos en el extranjero seamos incapaces de unirnos y nos veamos a nosotros mismos como enemigos mortales. Eso causa mucho daño a corto, mediano y largo plazo.
    Lo cierto es que para el inmigrante es fundamental por muchas razones conocer a otros inmigrantes, y si a lo mejor entendiéramos esto podríamos de hecho evitar la mala prensa que nos afecta. Yo nunca he visto a algunas comunidades de otros países tener los problemas que los venezolanos tenemos, quizás porque esas comunidades se ofrecen trabajo y alojamiento entre sí. Eso no es malo para nada. Yo no digo que debamos crear nuestro propio ghetto, pero sí creo que debemos unirnos más. Nuestro atomización nos genera muchos conflictos y en realidad hace más lenta la adaptación y la asimilación.
    Los opinadores y los psicólogos de las redes sociales están haciendo mucho daño con sus “teorías”.

  18. WHAT A FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT OF AN “ARTICLE”

    Two skype calls and you write this piece of shit!? really!? and CC publishes this shit!? Unbelievable!

  19. The problem with so many Venezuelans is how they think. This article is a perfect example of it. The right to entitlement is off the fucking charts, and that’s what brought you Hugo and the mess you’re in:

    Curse the Gringos, kick them out, and let’s all take their money! And some of you have the balls to complain when others curse you? When your country has turned to shit and you seek sympathy and special treatment elsewhere?

    Your mindset is sick, and until that changes, nothing will ever change in the country. It will only get worse. Isn’t it great? Cuba, Part 2!

    The truth may hurt, but it’s still the truth.

    Calling it vitriolic doesn’t change a thing.

  20. I’ll start by saying I’m Panamanian and half Colombian, I’ve had relatives living in Venezuela, and I’ve visited three times for long periods.

    Let’s begin by acknowledging the reality of the “bad Venezuelan immigrant.” If you’re a Venezuelan reading this, you know well who they are, and you know how they behave in their host countries. The more of you who somehow come to grips with that reality, the quicker we can move on to try and remedy the situation.

    Overall, this entire argument just goes to show how entitled Venezuelans are…in general. Unfortunately, the real world is the place where we our lives take place; not some fictional land where all sing Kumbaya and each and every person is judged only by their individual actions. Unfortunately for the good Venezuelans living in Panama, participants in a massive migratory movement will always be subject to evaluation and generalization by the locals of the host country — it’s not Panama, it’s human nature. Unfortunately, enough of the “bad” Venezuelans have created a reputation for the rest, that it will be next to impossible to erase it under the current situation.

    To any Venezuelan crying xenophobia! I’ll remind you that Panama has welcomed more Venezuelans than any other country in the world relative to its size, and proportionately, there are more Venezuelans in Panama per local population than in any other country in the world. Period. That’s a fact, look it up!

    Funny thing is Panama has always been a country of immigrants, and what some call “xenophobia” has never been an issue — we have more Colombians, Chinese, and Jews than we have Venezuelans…no problem whatsoever — and you can argue that Colombian women are prettier, Chinese are smarter, and Jews are wealthier than any and all Panamanians. But damn it if those “bad Venezuelans” (again, in general) love to act as if they’re better looking, smarter, and wealthier than anybody. Add a healthy dose of “viveza criolla,” and you’ve got yourself the perfect recipe for Venezuelans in Panama as a group becoming “victims” of “discrimination.” These attitudes just rub people the wrong way, not only in Panama but anywhere they go. That’s also a fact and you know it. Your own countrymen did this, not Panama.

    Panama truly doesn’t need you here, and I don’t mean that in a cruel way. I mean that Panama would be just fine without you…probably even better off. Your coming here has just introduced an element of social tension that’s never been seen before. So, food for thought: start by looking within yourselves before blaming others for your actions, or the actions of your countrymen…you just come across as ignorant, resented people, who probably deserve the mess you have at home.

    I could go on with specific examples, but what’s the point. If you’re Venezuelan you know what I’m saying is true. However, I truly wish your country gets rid of that evil regime as soon as possible. So many innocent people shouldn’t have to die or suffer for the greed of those bastards.

    Best of luck.

  21. I’ll start by saying I’m Panamanian and half Colombian, I’ve had relatives living in Venezuela, and I’ve visited three times for long periods.

    Let’s begin by acknowledging the reality of the “bad Venezuelan immigrant.” If you’re a Venezuelan reading this, you know well who they are, and you know how they behave in their host countries. The more of you who somehow come to grips with that reality, the quicker we can move on to try and remedy the situation.

    Overall, this entire argument just goes to show how entitled Venezuelans are…in general. Unfortunately, the real world is the place where we our lives take place; not some fictional land where all sing Kumbaya and each and every person is judged only by their individual actions. Unfortunately for the good Venezuelans living in Panama, participants in a massive migratory movement will always be subject to evaluation and generalization by the locals of the host country — it’s not Panama, it’s human nature. Unfortunately, enough of the “bad” Venezuelans have created a reputation for the rest, that it will be next to impossible to erase it under the current situation.

    To any Venezuelan crying xenophobia! I’ll remind you that Panama has welcomed more Venezuelans than any other country in the world relative to its size, and proportionately, there are more Venezuelans in Panama per local population than in any other country in the world. Period. That’s a fact, look it up!

    Funny thing is Panama has always been a country of immigrants, and what some call “xenophobia” has never been an issue — we have more Colombians, Chinese, and Jews than we have Venezuelans…no problem whatsoever — and you can argue that Colombian women are prettier, Chinese are smarter, and Jews are wealthier than any and all Panamanians. But damn it if those “bad Venezuelans” (again, in general) love to act as if they’re better looking, smarter, and wealthier than anybody. Add a healthy dose of “viveza criolla,” and you’ve got yourself the perfect recipe for Venezuelans in Panama as a group becoming “victims” of “discrimination.” These attitudes just rub people the wrong way, not only in Panama but anywhere they go. That’s also a fact and you know it. Your own countrymen did this, not Panama.

    Panama truly doesn’t need you here, and I don’t mean that in a cruel way. I mean that Panama would be just fine without you…probably even better off. Your coming here has just introduced an element of social tension that’s never been seen before. So, food for thought: start by looking within yourselves before blaming others for your actions, or the actions of your countrymen…you just come across as ignorant, resented people.

    • O quizás estás proyectando. Yo de verdad conozco muchos colombianos, judíos y chinos, y los mismos rasgos que mencionas como típicamente venezolanos los he visto a veces en ellos (sin generalizar, por supuesto). De hecho, son los mismos rasgos que citan en general todos los xenófobos cuando la agarran con algún grupo en particular. No creo de ninguna manera que los venezolanos sean notablemente peores en nada. Creo que por alguna razón que escapa mi comprensión los panameños se sienten amenazados especialmente por los venezolanos. Por supuesto que hay venezolanos terribles (y éstos deben ser procesados por la justicia y rechazados), pero no creo que sean la mayoría, y tampoco me parece que puedas justificar con datos reales y creíbles lo que dices en tu comentario. Yo vivo afuera desde hace años y conozco muy bien a los venezolanos que emigran, y puedo decir que la gran mayoría son honestos y trabajadores. En definitiva, yo creo que si bien hay venezolanos que la cagan, también creo que lo que pasa en Panamá tiene que ver más con los complejos de inferioridad de los panameños y con su propia forma de ser. Los argentinos de ninguna manera se sienten intimidados por los venezolanos, por ejemplo. Saben que son los dueños de su país y tienen todo el poder y no los veo especialmente acomplejados.

      Lo que pienso es que los venezolanos tenemos que defendernos entre nosotros y no salir de jalabolas a creernos cualquier matriz de opinión antivenezolana porque sí. Que hay un sentimiento antivenezolano totalmente injustificado y arbitrario en algunos países es un hecho, y tenemos que lidiar con eso, así como tenemos que lidiar con otros problemas.

    • Panama históricamente solo ha recibido con brazos abiertos a narcotraficantes (colombianos?), lavadores de dinero (chinos?), etc y toda esa buena gente que decidio hacer de una fraccion de pantano un “pais” cuando USA necesito construir dos exclusas. Tenlo claro, y en eso tal vez coincidimos, los venezolanos dejaron en tal estado a venezuela que prefieren irse para allá que quedarse en su propio pais (…) ya lo dije antes: demerito nuestro mas que mérito de ustedes. De verdad no comprendo como ese llamado “centro financiero” pagado con dinero del narco internacional los hace siquiera soñar q viven en algo parecido al primer mundo. Es un pantano infectado de zancudos; supérenlo.

    • I think this is a more about of Panamanians having some problem Venezuelans, I mean the article says it all, there is a xenophobic sentiment, not because we Venezuelans are causing trouble of some sort, it is purely because you guys can’t stand the competition.

      I mean why shouldn’t you be? we were the richest country in South America, we had more opportunities in terms of good education and formation, and since a good number of people feels that there is no way they can use those skills in our homeland then they try their luck in Panama, for a lack of a better choice.

      Considering that Colombians and Panamanians people that came to Venezuela in the 70s and 80s, were not as prepared as we are right now, Colombia and Panama should consider themselves lucky that they are receiving such a high number of high skilled workers.

      Without us, you’ll be a swamp.

      • VZ was the richest country in SA because American and other countries pumped your oil.

        On your own, you guys didn’t do fucking SHIT!

        And since you kicked the American companies out, you’re STILL doing shit.

        You’re really an ignorant asshole.

        • lol, you are fascinating creature Ira. NOT!

          Our oil industry was pretty much top notch, and we Venezuelans were handling that industry with such level of efficiency until the moment Chavez decided to put his pawns in PDVSA, and filled the company with as**holes like you Ira. Ignorant resented losers, that can’t properly talk or write without insulting or denigrating others, just to have some sense of superiority and pride.

    • Nothing wrong with Panamanians imo. I just find it ridiculous to be discriminated by them. See if it were Brazil, we really wouldn’t be having this discussion. I

      Countries like Argentina and Panama owe a great deal of their livelihood to Venezuela. Argentina has been commendable in receiving our countrymen. Macri cited how many Argentinians were received during their dictatorships and solidified they will return the favor. Chile has been great as well. Most respectable Latin America countries have shown great solidarity.

      When almost every government in Latin America was a dictatorship, like Panama, Argentina, Chile, etc; Venezuela stood as a democratic nation that was the model for the region. We took refugees from Colombia, Argentina, Cuba and others nations. Panama’s latest modernization of the last 15 years was fueled by Venezuelans.

      So why is Panama acting all tough and mighty when all of those vastly superior powers have been welcoming us with open arms.

      I’m not going to answer that for you or insult your people for that matter, but you will get to an approximation of the answer if you think about it long enough.

      I have never been discriminated for being Venezuelan in my life. If it’s going to happen, at least let it be from a respectable country.

      These are huge generalizations and I’m sure there are guilty parties on both sides. I only state what the rest of the region is doing vs. Panama.

  22. There is nothing left of Veneuelan culture to defend. Yet some of you fucking idiots think you’re special and better than the host countries you move to.

    My grandparents spat on Germany and Russia when they got the hell out.

    They kissed the soil when their boats landed on Ellis Island, and others of their generation kissed the soil elsewhere that they landed.

    And some of you fucking idiots still want to consider yourself Venezuelan? And have a problem when the world says “Drop dead” to you?

    If you want to remain Veneuelan, stay there are and suffer and starve to death.

    If you want to emigrate and then complain that you’re not being treated well enough, who really gives a shit? You know nothing about real suffering.

    • Ira, why so much anger and rage in your comments – no need for that here; it doesn’t help. I imagine you’re aware that ‘Ira’ in Spanish means ‘Ire’, but there’s no need to live up to you name here. Tone it down, please.

    • You are the most terrible commentator ever. Even the YouTube comment section are feeling so proud right now. Is unbelievable. No one can display such level of racism and vitriol the same way you do. You are on a different category of assholes on internet.

    • Will you spit at the U.S when there’s a decline?

      Rome fell. The British Empire got broken up. Everything returns to dust eventually.

      You’re the worst kind of person. The ones that don’t contribute and just suck everything from their environment.

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