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This is a question Protest!

Sit-ins. Walk-outs. Smashing up the headquarters of a major political party. Chaining yourself to the railings outside your local sweet shop because they changed Marathons to Snickers. How have you stuck it to The Man?

(, Thu 11 Nov 2010, 12:24)
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I don't understand people who never protest about anything
Sneering at people with ethical views or who fight for better working conditions is just a sad way for doormats to cover up their own passive attitude.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 17:04, 22 replies)
The problem is, the kind of people who go round in mobs assaulting suspected "peedo's" usually think they're being ethical too.
Where do you draw the line? (I use the term "people" very generously.)
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 17:13, closed)
There are thousands of people across the world in prison, being tortured, or dead because they stood up for their beliefs. In some of these countries, the people have been shat on for thousands of years without change.

The rest keep quiet, raise families and enjoy what little freedom they have. They grumble, but they are alive.

Tough choice.

I choose doormat.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 17:14, closed)
We live in England.
Beauty is, we don't have to. So be walked all over if you like. Your choice, and you've made it. Can't say I agree with it mind.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 17:16, closed)
^^ this
THere's no excuse for being a doormat in this country. However, name me one peaceful protest that has succeeded in changing government policy.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 18:04, closed)
Or one violent one, for that matter.

(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 18:10, closed)
Does this mean I get to start a war?

Who's with me?

(Not sure about what yet, but that's a minor detail.)
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 18:15, closed)
voting en-masse for the opposition party in an election.

This kind of peaceful action (and this year, no less) has resulted in some changes to government policy.

And no, I don't care whether you agree with the changes or not - changes have occurred.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 18:24, closed)
If you voted for the encumbent party
are they the changes you voted for?

To me, democracy is giving the lesser of three evils carte blanche to do what they want for 5 years.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 19:05, closed)
logic fail
So everyone cant get what they want at the same time, eh? That does not mean that peaceful change of some kind has not occurred.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 19:14, closed)
I heard Mahatma Ghandi didn't beat too many people up
nor Martin Luther King Jr, at that.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 20:33, closed)
not personally, no

(, Sat 13 Nov 2010, 12:52, closed)
Most of the Chartist's demands have been met
only took 170 odd years to sort out.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 21:42, closed)
Oh, and I seem to recall a few people on the streets in Eastern Europe during 1989
might have had some effect.
(, Sat 13 Nov 2010, 16:06, closed)
Hmm, I seem to remember
when the HGV drivers started slowing the roads down a few years ago, the price of petrol went down fairly quickly.

People going on marches - achieves nothing. Did that myself four times against the Iraq war.

Non-violent disruption processes such as 1000 people - 100 a day for ten days - slowing down traffic on the major motorways. That would change things.

But of course, one risks arrest for such actions. Which no-body will do. Fact is, we are all cowards, which is why we get repressed. People should not be afraid of governments; governments should be afraid of people.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 23:41, closed)
From what I've seen it often works better if there's a good figurehead
As has already been mentioned; Martin Luther King, Mahatma Ghandi, even Joanna Lumley on behalf of the Ghurkas.

A crowd of people can push their way to the doors of parliament, but only a few will fit through the door.

(btw I have more platitudes in my fridge if anyone wants them)
(, Sat 13 Nov 2010, 1:49, closed)
It doesn't really work....but then neither do communist regimes, nor totalitarian states or any of the other bizarre socio political human constructs. They all have faults, they all have things that function well, none of them can offer everything. Protest is an inalienable right in some lucky countries but violent protest in such a situation generally suggests an excuse for a dust up and some wanton carnage. I would have thought that taking an ethical stance would engender some pride in ones beliefs and doesn't necessarily go hand in hand with masked muppets lobbing missiles. In some countries/regimes certainly it may be necessary to enable radical change, in the UK I am not convinced it is really necessary.

No, I don't have any particular long standing political leanings before you ask. Oh, and I appreciate I may be wrong.
(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 20:28, closed)
Maybe you could be a part of this anti-government protest
Kinda not too cool

(, Fri 12 Nov 2010, 21:43, closed)

its not a passive attitude, its protesting against protesting
(, Sat 13 Nov 2010, 0:34, closed)
I knew quite a lot of the students protesting on wednesday...
...I just went to work and did my job. I reasoned that the only effect of me attending that protest would've involved getting a bollocking from my manager.
(, Sat 13 Nov 2010, 1:45, closed)
I still..
Get involved if I can, purely for personal, selfish reasons. I couldn't look myself in the mirror if I didn't..
(, Sat 13 Nov 2010, 9:18, closed)
Here in the Western first world
There's very little to protest about.

I mean - students are protesting because Nanny State doesn't want to pay for their tertiary education any more.

People were getting uppity at the beginning of the year because a volcano had inconvenienced their return from their foreign holiday.

People get upset about perceived rigging in TV game shows.

We're all chatting on an Internet forum using our nice expensive computers.

THAT'S how fat, warm and comfortable we all are.

Protest? How worthy! How righteous! How sanctimonious.
(, Tue 16 Nov 2010, 14:21, closed)
I don't sneer at people for protesting
I am sometimes of the opinion that their views are complete shit though. The two things are very different. I would, however, fight tooth and nail for your right to protest about whatever it is you read in the guardian this week.
(, Tue 16 Nov 2010, 19:20, closed)

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