Almost as soon as I started reading Revolution 2.0, there was one paragraph that jumped off the page and into my life:

“I could not stand by passively in the face of such grave injustice. I decided to employ all my skills and experience to demand justice for Khaled Said and to help expose his story to vigorous debate” (59).

Though the rest of the chapter concerns Ghonim’s hunt for justice, this is the most universally appealing section for me. The spirit is eternal; replace some key words, and you could have a sentiment befitting any issue. “I could not stand by” should be the first and last things out of our mouths when we begin our journeys.

Even so, the most important idea in Ghonim’s narrative (aside from not standing by) is nonviolence. When the author didn’t want to just go with the (pseudo-militant) Facebook group created by another, he created his own page that only brought awareness. In speaking on the Silent Stand, Ghonim writes: “We reject [the state’s] practices and at the same time we are peaceful” (71). I cannot emphasize this enough. Fighting with violence will always lead to death and hatred; best case scenario, one military replaces another. Nonviolent resistance, as the Silent Stand was, is crucial in any true revolution.

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One response »

  1. hannahmwebster says:

    Great post. It definitely seem tremendously counter-productive to the demands posted if the protests were to initiate violence, which is why he lists in the guidelines that security forces will try to provoke them, and he prepares them for this possibility. He encourages that everyone maintain this guideline by excluding those who behave violently.

    He states on p 165: “The protests are peaceful. We are peace advocates and not advocates of violence. We are demanding our rights and must uphold the rights of others. We will not respond to any provocation from security forces and leo control. This is what they want us to do.”

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