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Todays student protest

(8 Posts)
outtolunchagain Wed 21-Nov-12 12:58:08

DS1 has just texted me to say he is in London marching,not sure how much good it will do but feel imensely proud of him for standing up for what he believes in .

I am not a socicialist (although ds is) but I firmly believe that Education ,at least up until the end of a first degree ,should be free ,the benefits accrue to the whole of society not just to the individual.The new system is wholly dysfunctional and won't save anyone any money .

I just hope the protest is good natured and there is no trouble (anxious mummy momentblush )

ttosca Wed 21-Nov-12 13:53:38

While I completely understand a mum's worry about the well-being of their child, I have to question whether a 'good natured' protest is the best form of protest - or, in fact, effective at all.

Solopower1 Wed 21-Nov-12 15:40:46

Good luck to your son, Outtolunchagain!

I'm more optimistic than you, Ttosca - yes, I do think it makes a difference. It might not be immediate, but the drip drip effect is there, and governments do take note.

For the people who participate, they can really feel that they are part of something good.

And what's the alternative? Do nothing? Violent protest? No thanks.

ttosca Wed 21-Nov-12 17:08:18

No, I agree the alternative is not to do nothing at all. But I don't think the main point of the protest should be to 'feel part of something good'.

It's not good enough to go on a protest to feel good about yourself and congratulate yourself. So much protest in the UK has turned in to a spectacle or carnival.

While I don't necessarily thing violence is the answer (though historically violence has sometimes helped a cause), I do think that we (people in the UK) need to practice more protest which cannot be so easily ignored by the government - which it inevitably is.

Solopower1 Wed 21-Nov-12 17:40:15

Ttosca, I think it's vital that the people going on demos (for the rest of us) feel good about themselves - or they wouldn't do it. It absolutely is a valid effect of going on a march, and it's better than the opposite. It can make people feel empowered, even if only temporarily, and supported, and part of something much bigger than themselves.

Having said that, no-one I know actually goes on a demo in order to feel good about themselves. They march for a cause, and it's usually something they have thought about carefully beforehand, discussed, publicised. What's not to like?

ttosca Sun 25-Nov-12 20:17:51


I don't want to dissuade anyone from attending a demo or protest. I definitely think that people should be encouraged to do so.

Sure, feeling good about yourself by going on a demo is valid. It's valid not just because it's an end in itself, but because it's empowering.

My only point is that 'feeling good' is not a sufficient reason to go on a demo. The primary point should be to try to enact change; feeling good and empowered should be a happy side-effect.

I'm just a bit concerned with the state of UK protests at the moment. Many protests seem to be all about spectacle and achieving nothing much in particular. Remember, the government will do everything it can to ignore and diminish your efforts. It is your job to make sure you can't be ignored.

MiniTheMinx Mon 26-Nov-12 10:57:55

I hope your son comes home all in one piece as I suspect he will OP. I can understand your worry, the police can be savage.

Change doesn't happen without struggle, always violent, history shows us this. However if every protest were to become a violent bloodbath you would struggle to get people off their bums. We are an apathetic bunch, too wrapped up in our own vanity for the most part.

Even if we had a general strike and the rest of us all sat down and refused to work, instead making plans to co-operate only amongst ourselves, to ensure we feed each other and stop the flow of capital for a week or two, I suspect our government would bring about martial law fairly swiftly. It would be akin to Syria within no time.

dotnet Mon 26-Nov-12 17:33:52

My dd went on the demo as well. She was disappointed by the turnout, which she said was about 10,000.
About student fees, like outtolunchagain I think the new system is really terrible and I'm so glad that dd has escaped it and I'm so very, very sorry for the new intake.
'They' (the coalition) won't acknowledge the whole thing has been a cruel fiasco, because the chickens will really come home to roost some time well in the future and Cameron and Clegg will certainly pretend they were not the instigators of the huge financial disaster which will come.

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