Adbusters

The Passion in Quebec

Tuition peeve or spectacular revolt?

ELOI BRUNELLE

The mood on the streets of Montreal is electric, with growing numbers of activists flooding the streets nightly, banging pots and pans and vowing to protest until victorious. One jammer described the scene: “I come home from these protests euphoric. The first night I returned, I sat down on my couch and I burst into tears, as the act of resisting, loudly, with my neighbors, so joyfully, had released so much tension that I had been carrying around with me, fearing our government, fearing arrest, fearing for the future. I felt lighter… Every night is teargas and riot cops, but it is also joy, laughter, kindness, togetherness, and beautiful music. Our hearts are bursting…”

After over 100 days of protest, the question is whether the students will go beyond a simple demand for free education to begin struggling for a totally different future.

As one commentator put it: “While student issues are important, the Red Square has come to represent something much more than just disgruntled student demonstrators against tuition hikes. It has become another symbol – think the tent and the term Occupy – of a growing awareness that continuing the ‘business as usual’ model in Canada will not solve economic or social inequalities and we are, in fact, heading towards economic and social disaster.”

By pushing through an unpopular and authoritarian anti-protest law, Bill 78, which bans demonstrations near universities, and declares protests consisting of more than 50 people illegal (unless routes, times, and transportation methods have been cleared by police), authorities have handed students an opportunity to shift the uprising onto new terrain: the struggle over the future of democracy… the same struggle that animates the global Occupy insurrection.

Ultimately, youth have the passion and the daring to catalyze a spectacular global revolt. But to pull it off, they’ll need to keep going deeper, past Ivory Tower protests, and start rebelling against the black hole future that awaits us all.

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82 comments on the article “The Passion in Quebec”

Displaying 11 - 20 of 82

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Anonymous

Adbusters was around long before the Occupy movement, when did they lose the right to report on whatever they wanted? ...and the comparisons in this article are apt.

How did all of you trolls find this website? The comments really have been painfully dull for months now.

Anonymous

Come on now. We all know that the original poster is perfectly correct.

We all know that you have to be a pretty shameful dreg to protest things, and that we're all really just in it to feed our own vanity.

We just won't own up to that fact. Which we also all know.

Good job original poster, you go on finding websites where people post things about current/ongoing protests, AND GIVE'M HELL!!!!

Bravo.

Anonymous

If there's a riot anywhere, Occupy will be there.

Can any Big Brains who deserve a Free University Education please turn that into a slogan?

Anonymous

Americans are just perfect slaves, just perfect. Who needs riot cops when you have guys like below me (not replies)?

Anonymous

Slaves lead the best revolts.

But why only start one revolution when you can start several?

PhilT

If anything can give you a hint of what is going on here, it's this:

Casseroles - Montréal, 24 Mai 2012
http://vimeo.com/42848523

And the Casseroles movement is much more than Occupy (no offense): it's students, it's workers, it's grand-mothers, it's John & Jane Doe. It's urban, it's suburban, it's rural. It's a spontaneous movement with no leader or political affiliation. Just normal people fed up with what the government is doing right now (see Bill 78). And it's spreading fast.

I work full-time. I'm not unionized. I work long hours. But each day at 8PM me and hundreds of people in my neighborhood we express our discontent in a noisy but pacific way. It's festive. It's liberating. You should try it sometimes.

For our Canadian friends, you should check out 'Casseroles Night In Canada'.

Anonymous

I tried watching that video, but the sappy french music and corny imagery made me have to shut it down after 20 seconds.

Huge 'vomit alert' on that one, folks.

Anonymous

" past Ivory Tower protests", this is quite a sweeping statement to make that any movement has to include everyone or else it's ivory tower politics, and even so how is education not a universal right?

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