A few minutes ago I received a request by email from a conference organizer who wants me to speak at an event in a foreign country. Unfortunately, the particular country has become a place I won’t go.
Having decided that I want my policy and my reasoning to be publicly known, I reproduce here the request and my reply. I withhold the requester’s name for his protection.
Hi, Mr Raymond. I am Free Software promoter and I always try to create new events of this topic.
Few days ago I readed “How to become a hacker”: Congratulations… I like it very much. Your excellent file and your interview in Revolution OS make me decide to write a mail for you to know your opinion about a visit (of you) to Venezuela.
Would you like to visit us the next year? Every year, in april, the community of my city organize a event, but there are many time to create a plan to guarantee your visit to Venezuela. If you could come only in another month, there will be not problem. I am sure that my partners would be happy to work to mak posible your visit.
If there is any possibility to invite you to our country, it would be fantastic… I guess that your visit would be a great support to the movement. I will be waiting your answer. Thanks for to read this mail.
Thanks for the invitation. I have good memories of Venezuela; I lived there as a child for four years. When I revisited in 1998 I was told that my fragmentary Spanish still carries a Venezuelan accent. In better circumstances I would be happy to travel there again.
Unfortunately I must decline. I will not go where a communist or socialist regime holds power. I have refused several invitations to mainland China for the same reason. You can ask me again when Maduro is deposed, the Chavistas are broken, and the Cuban Communist “advisors” running the apparatus of repression have been deported or (better) shot like rabid dogs.
Until then, I don’t think I’d be safe in Venezuela. And even if I did not have that concern, I refuse to give a socialist/communist government even the tiny, tacit bit of support my visit would confer.
Good luck taking back your country.