They say that the young shall inherit the earth and it appears they have no desire to follow in their fathers’ economic, social and political footsteps and who can blame them. The youth in revolt, already tired of life without employment prospects, decent food and freedom are taking to the streets in northern Africa, the Middle East and around the world.
The revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia could never have been successful without the resourcefulness of their countries’ kids. With their love of modern technology, they were able to organize massive rallies and protests using Facebook (even their CEO is a youth!), Twitter and cell phones. They were the main reason why decades of oppression and autocratic rule came to end in these two countries.
Knowing they should not have to settle for anything less than what most adults strive for; peace, justice, liberty and a means to live a healthy and happy life, the fires in their eyes have now spread to other parts of the world. The children of Libya, Bahrain, Iran, Morocco, Yemen and Wisconsin (really, Wisconsin?) have all seen their brothers and sisters take to the streets in recent weeks to vent their anger.
While the youth of the Middle East and Africa are fighting for the freedom that even their fathers have never known, the kids of Wisconsin are fighting for something that their fathers have always taken for granted, the right for government workers to collectively bargain.
Much can be argued about the usefulness of the unions for public workers with the seemingly limitless wallets of the government. The fact is, why should teachers, policemen and firemen have less rights then the plumbers or steel workers? Politicians give out handouts to banks and car companies, build sports stadiums and give out tax cuts to corporations and the wealthy and then they have the nerve to say that not only will you not be getting that annual inflation raise, but we’re going to take away your right to try and do something about it. I digress.
Kids today, just when you’ve witnessed them speak their first words, you turn around and they’re staring down a tank while screaming for freedom. Dissent will always be the realm of the young and I’m happy to see it’s not always about the size of their allowance.