Thursday, June 9, 2011

Brigette DePape: No struggle - no progress - no hope - no change !

In my last post I raised the possibility that Brigitte DePape's "Stop Harper" protest during the recent Throne Speech may have been orchestrated by the government. Her media statements post event along with her recent piece published in today's Toronto Star entitled "Message in a stop sign" categorically refutes this possibility and signals a much needed affirmation that - no struggle results in no progress - no hope results in no change. Ms. DePape embodies the spirt of hope and change that Canada and the world needs at this time.

Despite her tender age Ms. DePape seems to have a keen understanding and appreciation of the dynamic known as social and political change. She understands that social and political change comes from the people and it is often a small segment of the people who are the necessary catalyst for change. One simply has to look at the very recent civil rights struggle of African-Americans to understand this. Social and political change in that specific context only came about when individuals like Rosa Parks got tired of feeling powerless and hopeless.

Despite her tender age Ms. DePape understands the direct relatioship between hope, the power of the people and change. The power of the people is infinite and change is always possible so long as the people have hope. Ms. DePape's work is - if nothting more - a reminder that change does not just happen. Social and political change comes about by self-less and often spontaneous acts of individuals when hope seems non-existent.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Stop Harper Protest: Reverse Sting ?

As the pomp and cerimony of the Speech from the Throne Ceremony was unfolding on the Senate floor yesterday a young woman named Brigette Depape held a sign in the form of a stop-sign which read, "Stop Harper !" The message was clear and simple. Viewers all over the country and indeed the world received the message.

The question is was that message part of a spontaneous and legititmate political expression on the part of this young woman or was it "orchestrated" by the government. Why would the government do that you ask ? Why not ? Harper's government was recently voted in with a majority. Harper's government cleverly faulted the demise of their minority government on the opposition. The oppossition according to the Harper government acts contrary to the interests of Canadians. Orchestrating such an act does two things for the Harper government. Firstly, it reaffirms the pre-election message that the opposition want to destroy the country and only Harper can save it. Secondly, it sends the reverse message that the Harper government can not be stopped and at the same time solidifies the Harper base of support.

Time will tell whether Brigitte DePape's "Stop Harper" message was spontaneous and legitimate political expression or a reverse sting operation orechestrated by the Harper government. If it is the former there is hope for Canadians. If it is the latter Canadians must ready themselves for reform.

Note: This piece is written for the sole purpose of drawing attention to an issue of public importance. I do not profess to have any knowledge of the communicator's or the government's motivation with respect to the sign. I am simply outlining two possible scenarios. I leave it to those who earn their living in the media to investigate the communicator's background and enlighten us. Democracy works best in this way.