Hi, my name is D and this is my writings on subjects. I'm no rapscallion or anything at all. If you want to you can read my writings on subjects if you have free time. If you want to argue with me or call me names then please comment. Negative feedback is very welcome...I love dat shit. Me? I'm not even a noun, I'm a fucking verb, dude.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

On Civil Disobedience...

Montreal Student Protest
Lots of students filling the streets this week in Montreal to protest tuition hikes. Yes, it's annoying that they are non-violently protesting and blocking streets off...but I can't be mad at them because I know that non-violent civil disobedience is one of the major factors that made Canada what it is today, and although it is a little annoying, I respect the students.

Canada has a long history of non-violent civil disobedience and it's pretty interesting.

History of Canadian Civil Disobedience

This got really big in Canada after World War I, when all the veterans came back bloodied, tired, and broken...to nothing. They were thanked for "Fighting for Freedom" and then forgotten about. Out of the 500,000 (est.) that returned home from WW1 many were disfigured or amputated, and a person with no arms has no chance of finding a job.


"Returning soldiers were angry. They had risked their lives for their country and now were returning to economic chaos. They had great difficulty finding jobs. They sometimes saw them occupied by immigrants. They bristled at annual inflation rates of about forty percent. They heard tales of people who had profited immensely from the war. " 

(http://canadachannel.ca/HCO/index.php/1._Strikes_and_Labour_Disputes_1918-1920)


It's hard to find a job when you have no legs...
People were starting to notice that maybe World War I was more about sending poor people to die off and making rich people more "war-bucks" than it was about "freedom" or some bullshit word...and so they got really really mad.

You can search "Winnipeg General Strike" or "On-to-Ottawa Trek"  for some good examples, or read through the link after the quote mentioned above...but to sum it up, Canadians protested like crazy and won all of the gains we take for granted today. All the social gains we have today were won from the powerful elite class by unions, veterans, and regular folks who practiced civil disobedience in the streets. That is not mentioned very often, in fact, usually when they talk about something we have in Canada they tell us it was given to us from an elite, like a God giving his peons something.

Take medicare for instance, in the interest of the history of medicare, we are told a horribly sappy story about how Tommy Douglas was once treated for free by a doctor and he decided that one day he will give everyone free health care. This is bullshit, Douglas was a crazy Christian preacher who wrote essays in support of eugenics and establishing a "Canadian Master Race." This crazy fool didn't just hand Canadians health care like some sort of God. Real Canadians took to the streets and fought for these gains.

Similarly in the U.S.A. veterans came home to nothing as well, and at some point must have said to themselves "fuck this shit, I went to kill other poor folks over the pond for what? To come home and live in the fucking street? Fuck this."  In 1932, a group of 17,000 veterans (plus their families and supporters, which in turn made the group total about 43,000 people) marched on the White House demanding compensation and a better life. This protest did not sit well with the Americans in power at the time and they ordered the protesters removed, President Herbert Hoover told the guards to use force if necessary and two veterans were shot and killed by police. So basically, two people who went to "die for their country" did indeed die for their country...but in their country and by their country. That's fucked up. (see: "Bonus Army" for details)

Civil Disobedience All-Stars

NVCD Icons of Yesteryear
The two most iconic faces of non-violent civil disobedience are Gandhi, and Martin Luther King Jr.

If you are interested in knowing about these two men and their methods please by all means use the power of the internet and research them. Putting their names into a search engine will give you all you need to know about them...also having King's "I Have a Dream" book in your library (either print or digital) is a must have.

(I might fill this blog out more after, but that's the basic reason I'm not gonna hate on the students for blocking off the roads even if it is annoying. It's good to keep pressure on your government.)


Ammendment (May 27, 2012:)

After 100 days of greasy students and crazy cops fooling around in the streets, it might be time to end this silliness.

Think about this...

As more US and UK universities are making their research and curriculum available for widespread free use online (example: http://webcast.berkeley.edu/)...it looks like the whole face of education is changing.

Michael Geist argues that Canada should catch up to the US and UK on this matter: (http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1177735--is-canada-lagging-behind-in-online-education)

For the record, a full year ago I wrote about free internet education in my blog: (http://writtting-d.blogspot.com/2011/05/free-educationget-it-while-its-hot-and.html) 

Online free education is really good, you can pause the lecture (to open a new tab and search for a term you didn't understand), you can rewind it to see a part over again that you didn't quite get. It's so convienient and free.
 

Right now, for instance, I'm watching lectures on computer programming as presented by the notorious mutha fuckin' Paul N. Hilfinger.

(http://webcast.berkeley.edu/playlist#c,s,All,EE65657BC5C79469)

...and it's FOR FREE! You can do this for any subject! You people are fighting for an ancient educational model that is going extinct fast.
It's pointless...

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