Civil Disobedience Instead Of Rallies

  • Comments - Tuesday, 23 July 2013, 11:23
The first mass act of civil disobedience is taking place in Armenia. Even Mashtots Park which the civil activists were able to save from destroying and the building of a trade center was not a mass act of civil disobedience.

Disobedience is the constitutional right of every citizen but the governments of even the most democratic countries do everything to prevent disobedience.

In these countries it is supposed to have an opposition which covers “the other half of the population”, demonstrations of millions, one-day strikes of trade unions, other actions of protest which do not hit the pockets of those in power. These acts support the image of the authorities but it is difficult to remember at least one such demonstration of millions of people which would achieve significant success. The example is Greece, the home of democracy.

As an alternative to peaceful protests the government usually puts forth violence compared to which demonstrations and strikes seem more acceptable. Although protests in Brazil helped return the old fares, the victims of the movement were people and property of innocent citizens.

The government is doing everything to make sure that the actions of protest do not lead to mass acts of civil disobedience because that would harm the interests of the government.

Despite populous demonstrations, Occupy Wall Street did not achieve its main goal – collapse of the banks – and was eventually mocked. The movement was against the dominance of banks and power of the global financial government but there was not a single call not to pay installments for at least a month.

In Armenia there were a number of protests and demonstrations. Raffi Hovannisian even led people to Baghramyan Street but suddenly stopped halfway and walked to Tsitsernakaberd to pray. There were other demonstrations but they did not lead anywhere because among suggested actions there was none that would hit the pockets of the guilty government.

It is hard to tell why such actions were not initiated. Either the opposition leaders did not want to change anything, and they needed demonstrations as a background or they did not want to hit the interests of their former and future supporters, or yet their consultants were not so creative.

After the gas price went up, it seemed that there would be a call for disobedience in Armenia and refusal to pay the gas bills. It is enough not to pay gas bills for a month, and this branch will collapse. It will not be a collapse for the country as it is stated but for the government which will have to make more reasonable decisions. There is no need to take to the streets. It is necessary not to take to the streets and not to pay.

Perhaps at some point the worldwide protests will lead to this, and Armenia could be the pioneer of the new protest action. The actions against expensive fare may be a good beginning.