November 8th, 2021

CNN Opinion Launches “Voices of Freedom”

Today, CNN Opinion launched “Voices of Freedom,” a series highlighting the stories of thirteen dissidents from across the globe who have fought to preserve democracy at great cost to their own lives. The voices in CNN’s series are active participants in the nonpartisan organization Renew Democracy Initiative, a non-partisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering the public to uphold constitutional principles in their civic behavior.

In an opening essay, CNN Opinion’s Yaffa Fredrick writes, “The stakes could not be higher. Freedom House, a nonprofit research organization, put this battle in almost apocalyptic terms in its annual report on liberty…The organization labeled 2020 ‘the 15th consecutive year of decline in global freedom’ and determined that less than 20% of the world’s population now lives in truly free countries. Among the countries where democracy is under assault is the world’s longest lived modern democratic government: the United States.”

The series will utilize a combination of visuals, video testimonials and written essays by dissidents from across the globe who have been on the frontlines of this ideological divide. From Evan Mawarire of Zimbabwe, to Masih Alinejad of Iran, to Andrei Sannikov of Belarus, these voices and more remind us how valuable the concept of democracy is to the millions around the world who look to it as a model in the battle against autocratic rule. Though many are fighting for just a fraction of the democratic rights that Americans enjoy, their experiences offer insights into democracy as a fragile political enterprise that requires constant work to preserve.

The Voices of Freedom series will continuously publish written and video pieces throughout the week.



Press Contact: Sophie Tran