Thursday, September 24, 2009

Protests Violent and Otherwise

It’s been a hectic week — but one in which I encountered some signs of hope:

Whiteout wasn’t as bad as I’d been led to expect — nothing momentous, but a decent little thriller.

•Walking downtown to watch it last night, I saw thousands of Iranian-descended people protesting against the Iranian regime, with posters saying things like “Freedom yes, Islamic no,” a tad clearer global-freedom-movement message than even some libertarians have been willing to read into the recent protests against the regime.

•This in turn made me wonder if, despite all my recent pessimism about the state of the world (given the debt, the galloping advance of unscientific regulations under Obama, etc.), we might just look back and say the positive trends at the end of this decade were obvious: the Tea Party protests, the town hall protests, the opposition to socialized medicine, the embrace of social networking even for political ends, and so on.

•Disturbing as the murder of that Kentucky census worker was (perhaps simply for being a “fed,” perhaps for stumbling on pot growers, depending on how badly one wants to leap to right-bashing conclusions about the whole thing), I’m pleased to see there are still plenty of more-clever, less-violent protests against government out there — like the one staged by the makers of the impending documentary Not Evil, Just Wrong this past Monday, amidst a big U.N. climate conference here in NYC. The video has gotten some 2,000 hits in about one day, they tell me.

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