An alternative to protests and violence
Anyway, some thoughts,
note: it was interesting to note that the BBC entitled the related article, 'TUC condemns post-rally violence', but the article mainly quotes police opinions. And the TUC, in the said article, places stress on how the violence ought not to detract one from the main message of the protest. But this is not reflected in the title, or the general content of the article.
Said Commander Bob Broadhurst who was in charge of the Met police operation,
"All was peaceful for quite a long while but then for some reason one of them made an attack on the Olympic [countdown] clock, we moved in to make an arrest, the next minute they're attacking us and they're trying to attack and damage the Olympic clock in Trafalgar Square." - bbc
No, i’m not supporting the attack on this metallic effort to incite excitement amongst the people in with regards to the forthcoming event extolling the virtues of international disunity and competition, innocuously termed, ‘the Olympics’. Just imagine massive monuments being built to commemorate Louis the 16th’s birthday whilst the people were starving in pre-French Revolution days. Can we truly blame them for honoring such monuments with well-aimed dung? Would they be ‘mindless thugs’ and ‘hooligans’? Or should we be scrutinising the self-absorbed mindlessness of Louis et al for their insensitivity to the needs of the people.
So, in this sense, when Commander Bobby, Bob, stated,
“"This is just mindless vandalism, hooliganism, it's nothing to do with protest."
...we can say, yes, it has nothing to do with protest, but it has quite a bit to do with the the reason for it, i.e. looking after the interests of big business at the expense of the people. Wouldn’t this olympic monolith be perceived as an insult to the difficulties of the people? And would the more irate be inclined to spit at it, as opposed to spit-shining it?
the message is clear - ‘violence is always wrong, protest is alright, but considering the interests of the people is always optional for the elite’. It’s no wonder, with such reasoning, people either become apathetic and view politics as a ‘lifestyle-choice’
Some might say, ‘hey, you’re justifying the violence at the protest’. To this, i would say, the people have really painted themselves into a corner when the alternative to justifying a violent protest is to justify the privilege of the elite. That is when the message is clear - ‘violence is always wrong, protest is alright, but considering the interests of the people is always optional for the elite’. It’s no wonder, with such reasoning, people either become apathetic and view politics as a ‘lifestyle-choice’ - like lifestyle-choices between one hobby and another - or get violent. With such reasoning underlying the approach of the elite, the people are, in effect, given the choice of doing wrong, or doing nothing at all - and given the effectiveness of protests against this or that, that is not significantly dissimilar to doing nothing.
As i stated in a previous observation, the elite have to either stick to their batons and say no to violence by the people, and don’t bother to do anything significant about the people’s concerns until they give up and do as the confucians - make the best out of a bad situation by screwing thine neighbour so that they can afford top-down cuts and demands. That is when such violence will cease, and the people will have become apathetic enough to view democracy as a problem because it keeps interrupting their efforts at doing the best to put up with top-down evils.
Of course, the democratic alternative, which i would personally recommend, (as i had in a previous article) is that referendums be held for significant issues. Let the people decide. We should move away from this stupid notion that the people only ought to decide during elections, and then allow the government to get on with the business of governing for the rest of their term without interruption. That is akin to saying that governments ought to be allowed to do as they please during their term, whilst the people do their best to compensate and recuperate in the face of its consequences - till the next elections where they will have been numbed and dumbed down enough to make more mistakes at the polls.
And the other democratic alternative, my personal favourite, is the Indian method of a week of peaceful ‘fasting and prayer’ and withdrawal of labour, i.e. strike. Besides helping reduce the waistline of the more ‘fuller’ forms in this country, it would compromise the interests of the elite enough to either lead to significant efforts for the people, or to bring about the institution of the aforementioned referendums as that is far quicker, and people can still go to work to enrich the elite.
Now, whilst the government, or governments all over the world, state, ‘violence by the people is always wrong, protest is quite alright, but bothering about your concerns is optional on the part of the elite’, the people should return these choice with the aforementioned. Either is far more relaxing than a day of demands and demolition on the streets isn’t it.