ne can always tell the value of a social rally by observing the day after. If nothing of society has changed save
for the amount of human excrement to be found in public places, a movement hasn't done much besides released its own bowels.
It can be shown that other than the delaying of traffic, the noise, the destruction of property, the defacing of buildings and landmarks, the pitting
of community member against community member, all with a false sense of solidarity, the protest has only ever been a measly display of ones wounds,
and not the catalyst for change it is always made out to be.
In other words, your romantic notion of revolutions have failed, dear reader. Your dreams of overthrow and paradigm shifts remain as dreams, which is
especially true in a democratic system where the only ones who should be protested are its citizens, the same ones who willingly vote into power and
buy into the very same system their protesting.
First, we both know that protests and especially protestors are quite tedious. The thought of marching side-by-side towards a common goal in a show of
"solidarity" with people I have not had the chance to meet seems dreadful. Who knows the company I keep? I could be singing revolution songs with the
very same man who broke into my vehicle a fortnight ago, walking arm and arm under the delusion of "common purpose".
Worse, humans have been known to do terrible things in group form, and evil lurks in the movement of crowds. A snapping twig could set them off on a
blind rampage if they are not already satiated by song and dance (the real reason for drum circles) and every peaceful protest is a violent one in
The protest is inefficient, friend. It involves an unnecessary amount of unruly man-power, and it is so goddamn messy. Without fail, the protestors
end up protesting their fellow community members—even the police, the government, or those who have their livelihood in the infected areas, any of
whom could be your neighbour—thus everyone and everything but
the problem is affected by it. A chance for meaningful dialogue becomes a
shouting-match, a song and dance, and nothing of worth is exchanged between one party and another if it is not John Lennon, vitriol, pepper-spray and
molotov cocktails. It is not worth the return.
What a protest is is good television. It is a helicopter camera filming by spotlight. It is a looted department store. It is a photo op for those who
need them. It is a sudden zoo display for those like me who remain at least for the humour of it all. Instead of an example of change, a protest is an
example of human herd mentality, and nothing about society changes save perhaps the lowering of our dignities.
Besides, what if any thought goes into these protests? For instance, look at all the time wasted in the Occupy Protests. Did people really think
camping in a public place would accomplish anything besides body odor? if 5% of the protestors in Occupy Wall street went and got a job on Wall street
instead of congregating around it all day, imagine the Wall Street we'd have today. If you want to shut down an institution, let it rot from within
like the protests did, or better yet, make the changes on your own accord, instead of begging—no, demanding—others to do it for you. Please don't
make me evoke Ghandi's cliché.
If people wish for a more calm and civil police force, is threatening them with violence really a good idea? If every anti-police protestor truly
sought change in the actions of police officers, they themselves might try becoming police officers, and the police force would have been infiltrated
by concerned citizens and advocates lining up for jobs long ago. In order to change institutions, the institutions must change, and every institution
is maintained, refined and built by people. Become one of those people. Hire your idealistic friends if need be. Change the institution. But of course
not. What amounts to a hissy-fit somehow seems more appropriate.
And to your penchant for displays of "solidarity"—how quaint. Yes you've expressed yourselves, you've acted solemnly, cried on each other's shoulder
for an hour or two, and now you feel better. And what next? What about the day after? What social effects besides a larger than usual cleaning bill
and police presence have occurred?
Yes; public displays of solidarity, togetherness, and letting off a little steam makes you feel good, because that's what it is about, isn't it? Not
change, but your feelings.
But the more you protest, the more you put yourself in the public square with a bullhorn screaming about "us" and "them", the more the chains tighten,
the more it is realized we have nothing else as a populace to offer, and we prove that real change is inflicted by highly-gifted and charismatic
individuals, or in their stead, the ultra-rich, the politicians and the tyrants.
It's time for a new game plan because the day after has come once again. Heads need to join forces instead of bashing into one another. Communities
need to take real action, ready to take on responsibilities instead of continually passing it on to someone else. Hope needs to end and action needs
to begin—but don't act too quickly, for its time to think, dammit.
So let's think. What more meaningful actions can we take to refine specific institutions, systems, laws, cultures etc.?
Thank you for reading,
edit on 14-1-2015 by LesMisanthrope because: "Write drunk; edit sober" - Hemmingway