For the last few years you could be forgiven for thinking that protests change nothing, petitions change nothing and violence also changes nothing. You would be right.
In the last few years we have seen a million people march against Iraq with no effect on government policy. We went to war anyway. There has been a TUC march or two with around half a million protesting with no change to the Austerity measures. There have been smaller protests such as the Anti Bedroom Tax protests, anti badger cull, anti ATOS and also movements have held regular protests such as Anonymous and Occupy, all with no effect bar some minor concessions n some areas.
Next comes potentially the largest protest of 2015 so far. The People’s Protest. Some may argue that calling it the ‘biggest protest so far’ is a step too great but I don’t think it is.
This event has been in the planning for the past six months, by any standards that is quite some time although I concede that our name is not known and as such our reach has been limited but there is much to be positive about. Anonymous have backed this event and are supporting it. ‘Feed the birds’ are attending as part of Global cannabis day which happens to be on the same day. Occupy are attending for a week and have a specific event lined up for 2nd May. We have a fairly unique event taking place on the day called ‘Bouncing Bombs’ and even Russell Brand (yes, we know, loved by some, hated by others) is also likely to put in an appearance over the weekend if the photo of him holding the Occupy leaflet is anything to go by.
So as you can see, potentially this could be big. We have even gone so far as to attempt to make the event known to the Unions including the student unions, the anti-fracking community and we have tonight contacted London Black Revs, responsible for the year of action 2015 which held the event ‘Reclaim Brixton’ to see if they will promote it and send a contingent.
We have not gone so far as to contact the unions in any official capacity because we know full well the Unions will not promote this event amongst their membership due to it being an unofficial event in every respect. Too much risk involved you see.
‘Revolutionary Socialism’ has one primary goal and that is to unite everyone. Not under our name, but unde their own names. The ethos of our group on FB is that everyone should come together regardless of their own individual ideologies but for the greater good. Their is more power in numbers than there is not and there is far too much division amongst like minded groups and movements when there doesn’t need to be. We believe it is counter productive and more can be achieved together. This is why this was called the ‘People’s Protest’.
We don’t begin to imagine how many will really attend, maybe it will only be 500. Maybe it will be 4,000, maybe 10,000 even with some luck and a miracle 100,000 but it won’t be for the want of trying.
For us, the numbers attending will be interesting and will determine what the post-protest blog post will read as. If the event is a failure in terms of numbers then harsh questions should rightfully be asked. If it is a success them the call will have gone answered and perhaps set a presedent for how protests should be run.
Where do we go from that point? What is the next move for us? We will continue to promote unity amongst all groups for the greater good. During the promotion for this event we have seen many comments that have led us to believe our approach has been the right one. Several people called into question the involvement of Anonymous. Some people felt the event was too off the cuff and wasn’t ‘official’ enough (read: Union organised), some felt that the involvement of Feed the Birds was wrong. You can’t please everyone and that’s why the pitch has to be right. Appealing to as many people as possible. It’s a shame it has to be like that but this is the issue we mentioned above, too much division with ideology. We need to it aside and that may just start with a movement for everyone to unite.
If the Unions don’t respond in any way, if London Black Revs don’t take up the call, if the Anti-Fracking community have no input what will that say about unity?
Of course there may be many other reasons we are unaware of that would determine the involvement or lack of involvement of others but we can only speculate at this stage and come May 2nd through to May 7th we will see what occurs and we will have a clearer picture.
Will this just be another protest that gets forgotten about as soon as it’s finished? Quit possibly. But persist we must. No one else will do our bidding for us, so we must.
Come May 2nd we will see what transpires and how much impact calling for unity can have or maybe what little impact it has and what we need to do to address the shortcomings.