To help you get the full picture!
On the evening of the day the April 6 strike failed, SMS's were sent out all over Cairo informing us that Egypt's # 1 political couple, Ayman Nour and Gamila Ismael are divorcing , with Gamila being the one asking for a divorce. Rumors floated that this is due to continious infidelity on the part of Mr. Ayman Nour (He likes younger females), which prompted Gamilla to try to leave him a number of times before, and now that he is out of Jail, she believes the time to be right. Needless to say that this came as a shocker to everybody, especially given the timing (6 of april and all), and everybody all over Egypt was talking about it. And most people were sad, given that it it signaled the end of the legend of Gamila and Ayman, a love stronger than imprisonment and the entire Egytian State Security Apparatus. I suspect that the only people who were happy when they heard the news were the "6th of april youth", because everybody started talking about that, instead of what a colossal failure the national day of anger was. Those 6th of april kids were yesterday's news that same day, which probably saved them from the humiliation they were set to endure if people weren't distracted by Ayman and Gamila, and their juicy divorce story. And as I followed its details, I have to confess that I wasn't getting upset over it. One could even say that I was actually pretty freakin happy that it happened.
Don't get me wrong: I don't harbor towards either one of them any ill-will. But see, they, along with the 6th of april youth, were the two remaining empty, yet shiny, symbols left in the egyptian opposition, and it's a good thing that they both got destroyed on the same day. Now, there are no more symbols. No more made-up hyped-up lying heroes with no actual feasible plan to save us all from this mess called Egypt. No more false saviors whom we would place on high pedestals, only to see them fall from it later, alongside with all of our hopes and dreams. None of that shit anymore. All the symbols are destroyed. We now have a clean slate. A fres start. Tabula Rasa, for the lack of a better term.
So what now? Ehh, now we get real about some things: Facebook movements won't amount to anything beyond joining facebook groups. Labor movements are all about their demands, and not systemic change. All the parties are more inept than each other, and the Muslim Brotherhood is a paper-tiger at best and a bunch of whores at worst. The good news is, we don't need them. We don't need any of them if we want to improve things in this country. All that we need is one thing: Voting Cards.
You see, we have a huge parliamentary election in 2010, and a Presidential election in 2011, both are going to be quite significant for the future of this country, if one wishes to state the obvious. Now, all that we need to do, after we get over the loss of our symbols, is get that dirt off our shoulders, focus, and start getting people to register to vote and get their voting cards issued. The way you get them to do so, is not my concern. Wether via an organized online campaign, a grass-roots movement, or through threatening every friend and relative you have with physical violence if he/she doesn't get their card issued, the means are inconsequential. The End is all that matters.
Why? Because in order to affect change, you need votes. And votes require voters. The ones that do exist are not enough, so let's get more people involved and voting. If you are not doing this, and you are talking about political change, then you are pretty much wasting all of our time. Sure, voting registration is no Panacea, but it's a start. It would also help if everyone who gets their friends and relatives to register to vote also manages to get their contact info (names, addresses, e-mails and phones) and puts it in a small excel sheet. It might be helpful if someone in the opposition develops half a brain and decides to start a new-voter data-base, divided by region and electoral district, in order to make turning out the vote on election day easier for their candidates. Cause they kinda need that to have a chance at winning, you know?
Just a thought. Think about it.
This is beautiful. The Head of the NY chapter of NOW is attacking Teddy Kennedy for endorsing Obama, calling it a Betrayal. Here is the text:
“And now the greatest betrayal! We are repaid with his abandonment!
He’s picked the new guy over us. He’s joined the list of progressive
white men who can’t or won’t handle the prospect of a woman president
who is Hillary Clinton (they will of course say they support a woman
president, just not “this” one). ‘They’ are Howard Dean and Jim Dean
(Yup! That’s Howard’s brother) who run DFA (that’s the group and list
from the Dean campaign that we women helped start and grow). They are
Alternet, Progressive Democrats of America, democrats.com, Kucinich
lovers and all the other groups that take women’s money, say they’ll do
feminist and women’s rights issues one of these days, and conveniently
forget to mention women and children when they talk about poverty or
human needs or America’s future or whatever.
“This latest move by Kennedy, is so telling about the status of and
respect for women’s rights, women’s voices, women’s equality, women’s
authority and our ability – indeed, our obligation – to promote and
earn and deserve and elect, unabashedly, a President that is the first
woman after centuries of men who ‘know what’s best for us.’”
Holy Shit. Thankfully I am not the only one who would like this Lady to chill the fuck out. Emily Bazelon from Slate chimes in:
So, that's it—an endorsement of any candidate but Hillary is a betrayal
of the feminist cause? I suppose the more sophisticated version is that
interest groups expect the politicians they support to support them
blindly in their time of need. This is their time of need, the NY NOW
chapter argues, ergo, Kennedy should be with them. But that assumes
that the feminist time of need equates with electing Hillary. Would
most women, or even most feminists, agree with that? I just can't.
Yay for common sense!