In the western world, most people take democracy and human rights for granted. The reality of countries where these things are not present is something that rarely crosses our minds. This is where great minds like Thor Halvorssen come into play. Born in Venezuela, Halvorssen has become a man of international renown thanks to his goal of advocating for human rights across the world. He has done this by investigating corrupt governments and corporations across the world with the intent of shedding light on their dark deeds. This isn’t any ordinary muckraking you might see in a run-of-the-mill documentary. Halvorssen has risked incarceration and death to make the world a better place. Learn more about Thor Halvorssen: https://www.buzzfeed.com/rosiegray/is-this-the-face-of-a-new-global-human-rights-movement?utm_term=.hu1rbrvoK#.sgLP3Pq98
As president of the Human Rights Foundation, Halvorssen has expanded his influence beyond exposing the atrocities of South American dictatorships and affect international politics. The impact he has had and the risks his work at the Human Rights Foundation poses for authoritarian regimes across the world has made him a subject of violence frequently.
An example of the dangers Halvorssen faces when he tries to advance his cause was exposed when he took a trip to Vietnam to interview Thich Quang Do, the patriarch of the Unified Buddhist Church of Vietnam. At this time the Church was banned by the Vietnamese government prompting Halvorssen to visit the country to conduct an interview with Thich Quang Do. Read more: Thor Halvorssen | Facebook
Shortly after that interview wrapped up Halvorssen was arrested by Vietnamese authorities and imprisoned until he convinced the authorities that he was in fact simply seeking to become a Buddhist. Such an experience would cause many to abandoned the important work Halvorssen is doing, but Halvorssen himself simply shrugs off he danger.
Halvorssen comes from a long line of politically active leaders. His parents were involved in exposing the Venezuelan government’s corruption and faced serious consequences for their efforts. After seeing his father imprisoned and mother shot, Halvorssen has made it his life’s work to stop the human rights violations and brutality that led to his own personal tragedy. With his long record of advancing human rights, Thor Halvorssen seems to be right on track to meeting his goal.