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To the non-violent protesters, people power revolutionaries, and good people across the Middle East and North Africa, a glimpse into your future:
Because as Gandhi himself once said, “Anger is the enemy of non-violence and pride is a monster that swallows it up. And terrible breath is what that monster belches up once he’s finished feasting on his rage.”*
*More of a paraphrase than a direct quote.
Filed under: Ad Campaigns, Capitalism, Civil Disobedience, Democracy, Egypt, Gandhi, Gandhi Gum, Happydent Gum, India, Iran, Jordan, Middle East, Mother Theresa, Nonviolence, Nonviolent Protest, Nonviolent Protesters, North Africa, People Power, Revolutionaries, Revolutions, The Revolution Will Be Marketed, Tunisia, Weird Indian Behavior
Like us, you’ve probably been following what’s been happening in Iran over the last week–a stolen election, the violent government crackdown on pro-democracy protesters–and thought, WTF. But thanks in part to technology, you don’t have to be a helpless spectator like you might have been in the past. Here are a few simple things, via the Utne Reader, that you can do to show your support for the protesters.
1. Provide Cover: If you are Twittering about events in Iran from outside Iran, you have the luxury of not worrying about that knock on the door. Not so for Iranians. There is a movement afoot to provide cover for Iranian cyber-dissent by changing your Twitter profile to match the time zone and location of the Iranians brave enough to tweet the updates and calls to action. To do this, simply open the settings page and select “GMT+03:30 Tehran” and change your location to Tehran, Iran.
2. Change Your Facebook Picture: We did! It’s a small thing, but a show of support on Facebook is something Iranians can see, so long as the government doesn’t shut down the internet completely.
3. Spread the Stories: Iran is a deeply misunderstood place. Stereotypes abound and are typified by the front page of today’s New York Post, which featured a photo from the protests and the headline: TURBAN WARFARE. Powerful narratives are emerging from inside Iran. Put them in your Twitter feed, on your Facebook page, on your blog, or send them out via email. The best place to find these narratives is over at Andrew Sullivan’s Atlantic blog The Daily Dish or through a Twitter search for tweets about Iran.
Read our friend Reza Aslan’s blog post over at The Daily Beast, “Iran’s Military Coup,” about the scary implications of this stolen election. And finally, show your solidarity by wearing green. This takes zero effort and, besides, green is an awesome color. And these days, it’s also the color of freedom.
The first parliamentary election was held today in Bhutan, ending one hundred years of absolute monarchy in the tiny Himalayan nation. I’ve been to Bhutan once, in 1999, the same year that television was made legal there, although no one I met at the time actually owned one. It was a magical trip, because the country is so removed from the rest of the world and, thus, so different. The trip was also, with its 8 straight days of trekking and camping, the most grueling adventure I’ve ever been on, lazy, indoor cat that I am. It turned out to be a wonderful way to see the country and meet the people, even though I was hampered for much of it by food poisoning, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration and altitude sickness. Me and the mountains–we really don’t mix. So when I heard that 65 year-old grandmother Tshewang Dema (pictured above) hoofed it for 14 days and 380 miles just so that she could cast her vote in the country’s first democratic election, I was blown away. And then I thought, there isn’t a reason in the world why we shouldn’t vote. Not one.
In an update on the scary shit going down in Myanmar after tens of thousands of Buddhist monks took to the streets for the last month to support democracy, the U.S. announced today that we are imposing economic sanctions against senior officials in Myanmar’s ruling junta.
Even China, after cockblocking a UN Security Council call for sanctions yesterday, asked for “calm” and “restraint” from the Myanmar government today. As usual, China’s steppin’ up to the plate for the greater good of
Meanwhile, earlier this morning, Myanmar soldiers raided several Buddhists monasteries and nine people were killed on the second day of the goverment’s crackdown.
For once, DISGRASIAN hopes that Prayer Hands will make a difference.
Click here to learn how you can make a difference, too.
The results are in from the disgrasianation-wide vote over this video “homage” to William Hung.
And the people have spoken.