Thursday, March 3, 2011

So you want Egypt to be "Normal" Again?

So I spent a couple of weeks in Egypt. Mostly Cairo, a bit in Alex. I got to speak to many types of people. Got to meet some cool activists, but also spoke and met with a number of people who were complaining about the revolution. Most complaints of the latter group centered around problems the business community or shop owners were encountering in keeping things afloat. They all wanted things to go back to "normal". Upon further investigation of what "normal" meant, I was able to hear more specific complaints, and they went something like this:

"Look at these 'revolutionaries'. Most of them don't even agree with each other. So many voices and opinions. We'll never get out of this." ("mesh 7ane7'las!")

Some of the complaints varied on the above theme a little but the central issue seemed to be that the entire nation had to agree as one voice on things or else nothing would move. Well I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but if that is what you mean by "normal" then...


Hello? The reason no dissenting voices were heard before was that there was a dictatorship in place. If you are sitting around waiting for no one to disagree about anything anymore then you have not understood democracy. What's that? You're complaining about workers striking and holding things up? Where's the problem? Just negotiate. Negotiate like they do in all the other democracies where workers sometimes strike or protest in other ways to support their demands. It's not the end of the world.

Say buhbye to "normal" and get back in gear. Stop crying and do whatever you have to to get things rolling again. Yes, in the midst of dissent, disagreeing factions, strikes, and all of it. If people in other countries can do it, so can you.

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