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Sunday, October 2, 2011

When protests start to have impact

The leading edge of a protest movement is usually young. They are people who are outside of the mainstream of society. Often they look pretty scruffy. If the population of a protest is comprised only of this group, their impact will be limited.

It’s when the make up of a protest changes that you have to take notice. When the middle aged blue collar guys join in, pay attention. When the guys in business suits march, the movement is really gaining momentum. When the mothers, grandmothers and grandfathers appear in the crowd, something pretty darn serious is going on.

Zoom in on the protesters in Greece. To me, they kinda look like a cross section of Greek society. Trouble is definitely brewing there. It’s obvious that there’s widespread opposition to the politicians and their austerity program. That has wide implications for the whole Eurozone.

Now check out protest footage of the Wall Street Protests. You might have to go to the foreign press to get good coverage. Main stream US media is barely covering it. At first it was the neo-hippy scruffy types, with ratty T-shirts and banging on drums. Now they have union supporters. There’s a lot of guys in business suits. Plenty of people look like they drove in from the suburbs in their minivans. Here and there I see gray and bald heads in the crowd.

Support is widening. Could it be that Americans are waking up to economic disparity?



  1. We old folks just protest everything. I do. I protest everything I can as long as I can do it from my couch in front of the TV. . .

  2. Dizzy: Hey, I'm not in the streets either. Maybe I'll send them a pizza.

  3. i really believe that young people/hippies provide a valuable function for society in that they are idealistic and will lead the charge (protest-wise anyway ;-). often they are way off base or outright wrong... (eg. "anarchists" during the vancouver hockey riots) and get the bad rep they often deserve.

    but sometimes their persistence will galvanize others and lead to strange bedfellows like you mention above - in this case ENTIRELY justifiable.. HOW MUCH money the the financial machine get in the bailout and things are STILL this bad for working people??

    i'm not in the streets (too far away, another country), but hats off to those who are, maybe your congress will finally wake up and do the job they have been elected to do and server the people.

  4. Some are slowly coming around as they begin to feel directly the effects of our government's shenanigans. The lack of domestic news coverage is telling, and sadly enough, expected. It's okay, that's where we come in. The "mainstream" media is fading into irrelevance, and the truth spreads like wildfire over the internet. Our time has come. Hoist the colors...

  5. I just can't believe it took NPR three weeks to start even mentioning it, and that so many young people still haven't even heard of it. A friend of mine is a professor at our local State University, and another student brought the subject up during class- she asked "How many of you have heard of OccupyWallStreet?" and only 15-20% of students raised their hands. You would think the young'uns with all their techno-savvy would be first to know all this stuff. (And I can say that, I've taught students who are now in college.) I really hope that support continues to grow until some sort of change has to be made- start taxing the rich, rewrite lots and lots of tax codes and legislations, etc etc. Things are so f'ed up right now. And that's my $.02