Apparently it sounds an awful lot like “Europe’s last dictator” Alexander Lukashenko feeling all butthurt. Lukashenko, the dictator of Belarus has ordered a crackdown on political protests.
In order to evade tough regulations on public rallies, protesters eschew placards and shouted slogans, and merely clap their hands to display their anger at Mr. Lukashenko’s policies. Since the weekly flash mob protests began last month, more than 1,700 people have been arrested – 400 this week alone. Most of them were fined heavily or jailed for up to 15 days on police court testimony that they were expressing a political opinion by clapping their hands in public. (source)
Konstantin Kaplin from the town of Grodno, Belarus, was apparently convicted of “applauding in public,” and fined $200, despite the fact that he had probably the greatest defense argument ever — he has only one arm. Reports state that the judge seemed disturbed by the sentence herself, but was likely under pressure from superiors… so she was just doing her job.
This is what happens when you don’t stand up for your civil liberties. Remember that the next time you sigh that the poor little TSA fuckwad is “just doing his job.”
This could happen anywhere, given enough complacency for enough time. And, every time you don’t do something to resist the erosion of your civil liberties, you are part of the foundation for one man being convicted of clapping here in the future.
So ask yourself this question: What have I done this week to resist? You don’t need to go out in the street with molotov cocktails. That might be appropriate, but I don’t expect that kind of bravery from Americans. (I’m not even that brave, so how can I expect it of you?) But, did you fly this week? Did you refuse the rape-scan? Were you pleasant to the TSA, or did you tell them that they should be ashamed of themselves?
Did you donate money to the legal defense fund for someone being abused by a petty little dictator in Florida? See Kimberly Kupps.
Did you at least argue when you heard someone say “if you’re not doing anything wrong, you shouldn’t worry about the government spying on you”?
Did you call your congressman and tell him to support federal anti-SLAPP legislation, or donate money to a candidate who would?
Did you teach a kid about civil liberties? Even a little bit?
Did you do do anything for civil liberties this week? If not, why not? Opportunity didn’t present itself? Bullshit. If you did nothing, then you’re a lazy fuck who believes in “going along to get along,” just like you’re doing time in prison.
To change that, you don’t need to cut anyone’s throat or start a riot — but small moves, small actions, even just the act of discussing the problem, is an act of resistance. If you didn’t do anything this week, then congratulations, you’re part of why we are no longer the Land of the Free, and we are now the “Land of the Mewling Cowards.”
But I have good news for you — you can make up for it. Do something today.
Because the only thing that evil needs to triumph is for good people to do nothing.