It's not about the 20 cents.
Go straight to the links below the video on how to help or keep reading for background:
For those who know me well - you know I love me a protest and manifestation against the unfair and for the good! However I have not been to any of the manifestations here in São Paulo - yet. First, because I didn't know about them until I went to the bar one night and saw Av Paulista on fire (literally) before jumping into the metro. Secondly, because I didn't know how I felt about going onto the streets and rebelling against something that seems menial compared to other problems in the city. And then once I realized it was more than that, because I promised my mother I wouldn't and because of the violence that had arisen from it.
Those who are wondering what these protests are all about and questioning the revolt against a 20 cent hike in bus fares, it's not about that at all - it may have started as that - but now it's a manifest against the whole system. Brazilians here and abroad are protesting against violence caused on passerbys and passive protesters by police officers. And here, we're especially focused on the money that's irresponsibly spent by our government on overbudgeting and their own corrupt desires, all these years we've been made into fools by policy makers! We want an end to the crime and violence we're exposed to or afraid of facing each day. The poverty we see on our streets and in our familie. And above all - we're fighting for democracy!
A journalist who I follow on Facebook posted a quote that I think is perfect for this occasion:
The quote by Clay Shirky states - "A democray works when its citizens are happy enough to not go to the streets; when they do, it's a sign that something's not right."
And that's what we should do - whether you're on the streets or tweeting/blogging/telling all your friends, or hanging a white sheet or curtain on your window -
I'm still not sure if I'm going to attend tonight's manifestation (due to my promise to my mother!) which is going to be the biggest and hopefully most successful - but I will say I am proud of those involved who have commited to the cause sans violence and property destruction, and if you are keen and able - attend tonights rally and support those of us who are fighting to change Brazil one way or another - for the better!
Here's a list of links + a great video on the protests and what you can do to help!
- Attend tonight's event - but stay safe!!
- What to wear to protect yourself from the tear gas police officers have been using
- Print your signs off for free
- Participate in the Facebook event for up to date info before attending!
- Show your support
- Through photographs in honour of a journalist + all injured last week
- By hanging a white sheet from your window
- By making your wifi available if you're near the protests
- Sign a petition
- Wear white today!
- Find more information on the details
- Go to the streets no matter where you are in the world!
If anyone has any more links or useful information - please collaborate in the comments below!
And remember -