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How a Subway Fare Increase Kicked Off Chile's Largest Protest
A fare hike of 3.75 percent might not sound like much, but it was enough to spark the massive protests that have engulfed Chile for nearly two weeks. According to reporting by Juan Pablo Garnham and Nicolás Alonso, Santiago's Metro system illuminated, for many, a landscape of rampant inequality that the government had failed to address.
Although 19 Metro stations have suffered arson attacks, many poorer residents appreciate the subway's connective capacity. "Its clean trains and stations full of art have been a metaphor for Chile as the 'good student' of Latin America," Garnham and Alonso write. At the same time, Santiago's Metro "is already one of the most expensive in Latin America, and had seen an increase in fares of almost 100 percent in 12 years."