Protests Throughout the Years

Protests Throughout the Years

Ameera Ahmad, Staff Writer

Governments and communities response to protests and how it can impact you

Just because you are not completely involved does not mean it can’t have an impact on you!

What are protests?

Every individual has an opinion about a certain situation or topic especially towards what the government does to the country which has a massive impact on the residents. Though sometimes what other countries do can have a domino effect on other places bordering them making it the high topic in the news being spread throughout the world for everyone to know and form an opinion about it.

Having an opinion can be a good thing but can also lead to destruction which can cause harm for the people around you. Usually we just state our opinions, however when people want something to change they will usually protest so their voices will be heard. 

Protests are usually done to spread awareness, opinions and sometimes even the rights of a community. Most people don’t realize that protests don’t always have to be done in a negative way and could just be the outcome of a positive situation or choice.

Powerful protests are such as; The Boston tea party when groups of people were angry at Britain for imposing “taxation without representation” in 1773. The bus boycott with Rosa parks and MLK fighting for equality in race which happened in 1955. The march on Washington for jobs and freedom in 1963, stonewall riots for gay rights in 1969. 


Some of the most recent protests that are well known are the England riots or most commonly known as the London riots in 2011, March for our lives against school shootings and violence in 2018 led by students, climate – change protest run by a young girl Greta Thunburg in 2019. The Hong Kong protests from 2019-2020 and the BLM/George Floyd protests and riots on May 26 2020. 

History of protesting

Protests are not a new thing, they have been around for centuries used as a way for making the government aware that the community doesn’t agree. A powerful protest that was done around 1913 in Washington DC was the woman suffrage movement that was first brought up in 1890 – 1919 and was globally recognised while the men were getting ready for WW1. 

They were fighting for the right to vote in a time where gender equality was there but unnoticed where men would do the work while women would stay home. Most women disagreed with the government not allowing them to vote so they started to protest in a peaceful way putting up signs in the streets, walking around chanting for their rights and trying to get people’s attention. However, a group of women knew that it wasn’t getting any attention from people of high positions in the country so they started rioting. The riots then split into two groups; one called the ‘suffragists’ which would protest peacefully while the ‘suffrajets’ would burn buildings, break into homes and destroy government headquarters.

Though over time they were sent to prison because it was a violation of the laws but they didn’t stop protesting. They then went on a hunger strike where they wouldn’t eat in prison and had to be force fed because if they were caught starving to death in jail then the government would start to collapse because they still have the right to live while behind bars. 

Another protest they did was at one of the biggest horse races where they knew the royal family’s horse was racing in and would make the front cover of the paper. Emily Davison, a suffragette who fought the right for women to vote, decided to go out on the track and attach a scarf that had what they stood for written on the scarf about women voting rights, however she ended up being trampled by the horse and everyone came running out to see what had happened and that is when their movements were starting to be recognised.

How it can impact you and ways of spreading awareness through technology

 Sometimes protesting can be taken out of hand and can be turned into an uncontrollable snowball effect where it can start to harm lives or put innocent people in danger. This can also sometimes lead to the destruction of homes, a place where children make memories, where people try to find jobs and what makes this world very diverse with many cultures, languages and traditions. A massive protest that was widely known was the ‘Black lives matter’ movement that took place after the death of George Floyd on May 25th 2020. In the beginning it was made with peaceful protests created with communities in America where they would take on the streets and chant, make petitions to get their voices heard however it went downhill once people knew that the government wasn’t listening to them so individuals or groups would start to rob shops, disobey authority positions, catch buildings on fire and destroy government property. Leaving people without jobs, empty pockets and nothing to call home. 

The UAE was formed in 1971 and has grown rapidly with a 88.52% of the population to be expats where people are provided jobs, better education and is also rated one of the top 10 safest countries in the world. With this you can already infer that many residents are from outside the country and usually go back home to family or the comfort of a place they know is safe. Can you still call it home if it’s destroyed? We don’t have control over what happens outside of our reach; students, teachers and parents have to go back to what they had left behind to having nothing, in debt and have nowhere to go. 

Social media also has a huge impact on those who participated in spreading awareness such as ‘black-out tuesday’ which was a day where people posted black screens on their social media to get recognition for those that were harmed. Technology has advanced throughout the years so now we can easily find out information about what’s happening in other countries, how to help, what are the latest inventions, the change in development of new jobs and more. But who can we blame? We can’t blame ourselves, we can’t entirely blame the government so how can you solve an issue without knowing where to start? As an individual and student at this school, sometimes we can all feel powerless with how we can help. We can’t always fix what’s out of our reach and only have limited possibilities on how we can try to reinforce the importance of why the problems should be fixed,but if we can’t state are own opinion and make it relevant and heard by others why we disagree towards a situation or perspective than what can we do?