Occupy Wall Street protest in New York
Photo: AP
Rally for social justice in Tel Aviv
Photo: Hadar Cohen

The ‘simple folk’ won

Op-ed: In Israel and elsewhere, silent majority is fighting for new vision and new hope

At this time, the “simple folk” are writing whole chapters in the history of their nations and refusing to continue living as a direct product of its circumstances.


Cairo, Athens, New York, London and other cities are witnessing unprecedented uprisings by the “silent majority” against their governments’ policies, conduct and values.


The so-called Arab Spring is not similar to the crumbling Euro bloc, and every location has its own backdrop and circumstances, which are prompting raging social outbursts. At the same time, a deeper glance allows one to identify a theme that connects the protest-filled cities: Young people fighting for hope.


With empty hands but with great faith and spirit, the young people of the world are charging at the current reality in the hopes of leading their society towards a better future. The struggle does not amount to one law that needs to be changed or one product whose price must be cut: This is a battle for lost values, vision and hope.


As such, this struggle managed to stimulate the fight for a more moral and more equal society.


Since the dawn of history, young people were the ones to break the impasse, shake up the rules, and undermine customs – leading their societies forward to better places. Now, our turn has come.


The ‘new people’

Over the summer, Israeli students refused to accept a tempting offer to better their terms only, in order to have the privilege of fighting for others. The solidarity touched and swept many people and gave rise to the “new Israelis,” who started to show interest in the economy and became more sensitive to the distress of others to the point of staging a determined fight for their sake.


And just like us, suddenly we saw the emergence of “new Brits,” “new Greeks,” and even “new Arabs.” They stopped viewing reality as a frozen, silent picture. They believe in change and are determined to fight for it over time.


The “new people” know that the great victory of their struggle – a change in perception – had already been achieved. Many now feel that we, mostly, hold the potential for society’s change and growth. This is what we are aspiring for, and I know we shall get there.


The writer is the chairman of Israel’s National Union of Students




פרסום ראשון: 10.16.11, 18:26
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